Currently, our thoughts are bound up in the not-too-distant future and our plan to move to live in London for two years beginning next summer. This plan is fraught with difficulties mainly because it’s something that I want to do, that my bf doesn’t want to do so much.
My desire to live in London again has two components: I want to study for my MA in English at the same university where I did my BA, and I feel that, after about four and a half years of living in Israel (where my bf’s from), the time has come to attempt living in the UK (where I’m from). We’re both aware that in the next few years we’ll have to decide where we’re going to settle down permanently and I believe that we won’t be equipped to make that decision without living together in each country for a reasonable amount of time.
Although my bf can understand my arguments, he is also afraid that it will be difficult for him to find satisfying work in London. He is a software developer and wants to further his career in the next few years. He’s worried that he will be at a disadvantage in the UK job market, partly because we’ve seen little evidence so far of the existence of the kind of job he is looking for, and partly because he’ll be a foreigner, unfamiliar with the protocol, and with qualifications that, although recognizably stunning here in Israel, will not necessarily be recognized as such in the UK.
He’s also worried that he won’t be able to handle the cold grey weather and the city atmosphere (he’s not a big lover of cities).
Both of us are also aware of the fact that this move will be expensive at a time when one of the most important things for us to be doing is saving money for the future. And it will be another disruption to our lives just when it seems that things are starting to settle down and become more stable.
So, all in all, we’ve been feeling very ambivalent about the whole thing, and that’s without even going into all the emotional and psychological issues involved!
Fundamentally, I believe that the move is the right thing to do. On the most primal level, I feel that I have made compromises and sacrifices by living in Israel for the last few years and that I would probably end up full of resentment if we decided to settle down here without even attempting to live in England. And, of course, I miss my family and friends back home.
It is situations like this which make this goal challenging: what to do when our desires do not coincide? It’s not that my bf refuses to make the move; it’s only that, at the moment, he is mainly seeing the negative implications of it. He understands that he’s not really in a position to fight me on this, but it’s clear that he would be much happier remaining in Israel. Although, thankfully, not at the expense of my happiness!
I expect what I have to do is just be really clear that I think that this is the right thing to do, while at the same time sympathizing with my bf’s concerns and doing my best to be supportive throughout the process. I think a lot of his fears spring from a fear of the unknown and that, as soon as we get going on the concrete logistics of it all (me applying to the university, getting him his visa, examining the work options etc.), it will all seem more manageable.
This weekend we’re going to sit down and talk about everything we need to do, make priorities and decide on our next actions. I’m optimistic that getting down to business will help. 6 years ago