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Following on from the siblings thread - did you know you were moving house?

(73 Posts)
Willow500 Thu 24-Oct-19 17:54:12

I was 8 when we left my home town and moved to the seaside.

I was vaguely aware that we went about visiting different businesses in various towns but had no idea why. One night I was sent to stay over at a friend's house up the street and next day my parents picked me up but instead of taking me home we travelled for what seemed like hours and turned up at a grotty flat above a drapers shop. The only thing I do remember is my mother bursting into tears and the next day we went to stay in our caravan for a holiday. Apparently she was so upset at the state of the flat they thought a few days away would help. When we got back Dad got stuck in and transformed that flat to a lovely home while Mum ran the shop.

My husband also had no idea he was moving until they rocked up at the boarding house his parents had bought (ironically round the corner from our shop) when he was told he had moved to the seaside!

It seemed to be the norm back then for children to be kept in the dark about all things that 'didn't concern them' hmm

watermeadow Sun 03-Nov-19 20:02:27

My parents moved when my brothers were half-way through their A levels and I was about to take GCEs. We went from big city single-sex grammar schools to a tiny rural mixed grammar. Different exam board and syllabuses. It was a terrible time to move us.
When my youngest daughter was 16 and had just finished GCSEs I had to move a long distance and daughter was distraught. She’d lived in the same house all her life and hated me for uprooting her. It totally mucked up her education.
Parents don’t usually choose to massively upset their children.

Willow500 Sat 02-Nov-19 20:30:56

70Sue what a dreadful thing to do to your poor dog - I'm not surprised you were heartbroken!

There are some very sad memories in some of these stories and a lot of families who seemed to be almost nomadic the amount of moves which were made!

grapefruitpip Sat 02-Nov-19 19:50:20

What an interesting tale Blue jay. That unsettled feeling never leaves you.

bluejay29 Sat 02-Nov-19 13:15:53

Our family immigrated to New Zealand when I was 7. We had relatives over there already. We were living in a little flat in London with a yard and one day my mum sat me down at our kitchen table and showed me a colour brochure of a beautiful place by the sea. We went on a passenger ship which took 5 weeks and stopped at some lovely places on the way. We moved 5 times when we were there as my parents only rented but we were always in the same area by the sea. We came back to London 5 years later and then a good many years later me and my daughter moved to Eastbourne because I still love the sea. This is my 15th address now and I went to 6 different schools in all. I also can't settle in a house for too long.

grapefruitpip Mon 28-Oct-19 13:21:36

So you grew up in Orkney?

seadragon Mon 28-Oct-19 12:41:34

We moved from Orkney to my first NHS professional post in Norfolk when our children were 11 years old and 13. I had been away training in Bristol in the preceding years. We sat round the table and explained it all to them. Our daughter - at 13 - has no recollection of the discussion. I must try and remember to ask our son whether he does. It proved a good move for our daughter who still has a close friend from our time in Norfolk. It was less good for our son. My dad was in the Royal Navy. Consequently I moved school 7 times altogether with the most miserable time spent in an Aberdeen school where I was bullied by the pupils, led by the teacher with disastrous consequences for my end of term results. Fortunately I moved from there to a tiny village school in Somerset where I passed the 11 plus with top marks (according to the teacher, anyway), moved back to a secondary school in Aberdeen where I was a year younger than my class mates through all the toing and froing over the border. Prior to that, I was devastated to leave Lossiemouth for the second time and lay on the floor of the car sobbing. In general, I feel it meant I make and keep friends easily and am often amazed when I bring a group together and some take an instant dislike to others when I like them all!!

Barmeyoldbat Sun 27-Oct-19 20:25:40

Mt dad was in the RAF and we moved every two and half years. After 2 years we, as a family, would start discussing where in the country or world we would like to go and live. We would have maps out and dad would tell us all about the area. This where I found a love of geography and maps..

When it came to the move dad would go first to find us somewhere to live and then mum and four kids would follow. It must have been tough on my mum not knowing what she was moving into but we all seemed happy.

PamelaJ1 Sun 27-Oct-19 20:10:33

I only went to 6 proper schools but if you count the ones we went to whilst on leave then I can add another 3 or 4. We used to travel back and forth by ship. This was before they were called cruises!
I don’t know how much school I missed but judging by my GCE results it must have been a lot😟

sazz1 Sun 27-Oct-19 17:15:09

Moved so many times 15 different schools, flats houses rented rooms etc. Father never paid the rent so thrown out, lived with each parent, grandparent, fostered etc. DV at home, never knew which school or home I was returning to. Never told anything either it wasn't discussed infront of kids in those days.

merlotgran Sun 27-Oct-19 17:01:56

I only have vague memories of going round the pyramids, Pamela, because I was about four when we went to Egypt. I was thrilled because my older brother kept falling off the pony he was given and mum and dad rode in a very sedate horse drawn carriage. I was able to show off my riding skills on a thankfully co-operative donkey!

Twelve schools in all. I don't think it did me any harm grin

PamelaJ1 Sun 27-Oct-19 16:41:15

Merlot- yes it did, I remember my dad winching it up.
The gully gully man came on board when we went through the Suez Canal.
When we got older we would get off the ship and travel by car to see the pyramids. That was in the days when you go go in them.

merlotgran Sat 26-Oct-19 20:38:16

Pamela Your toy dog might have come from one of these Bumboats in Steamer Point harbour.

There would often be a gully gully (magic) man producing live chickens out of his mouth or making things disappear before your very eyes. grin

watermeadow Sat 26-Oct-19 20:20:07

I was another army child with many moves between countries, houses and schools. I found each move exciting but new schools were horrible, being always the child without any friends, talking differently, writing and doing arithmetic differently.
We were told about each impending move but not of our mother’s pregnancy nor where babies came from. Nor were we given any choice in what we wore or ate.
Grown ups and children lived in separate worlds then.

Lilypops Sat 26-Oct-19 08:51:01

So many sad stories on this thread, what you must have all gone through, being moved, not told, separated from family, I only have admiration for the way you all coped and came through it ,

NfkDumpling Sat 26-Oct-19 08:24:55

Until I was eight we lived in a rented, slightly bomb damaged terrace house next door to my GPs. My junior school too had 46 in the class and was awful. I wasn’t learning much! My parents were miles down the long council house waiting list so saved every penny they could for a deposit on their own home. Eventually they had enough for a small new build bungalow in a village ten miles away. Mum was so excited we went nearly every weekend to see how it was progressing so by the time we moved there I already had made friends. Living there was bliss for me.

Grammaretto Fri 25-Oct-19 22:37:45

We were told we were to move from New Zealand to England when I was 10. My dad had died and mother was never happy there so it was a big adventure though sad saying goodbye to all our friends and family. Waving to my gran for the last time.

6 great weeks on the ship but England was a major disappointment . We had such a build up from DM about it and instead it was freezing cold and lonely. We lived in a B&B until we found a flat to rent and it was a long time before we had our own house.

School was strange - 45 in the class. I suffered from chilblains. The children were nice apart from making fun of my accent and I made some pals.

I am now wondering if we really consulted our own DC when we moved them

bluebirdwsm Fri 25-Oct-19 22:14:28

When my mother married my stepfather [I was 10] we continued to live with my Grandmother who I'd lived with for most of my life. We lived there for a year, I was happy there.

Then we moved not too far away, thankfully, to be a 'family' as my half sister was on the way.

That's when it all started to go seriously wrong for me. I had to let stepfather adopt me when I didn't like him much [he wasn't interested in me either then...he was later!] but wasn't told there was an option and that I could have said no. Mother was stressed to the eyeballs running a house and finances. Stepfather kept packing in jobs, mother then had PND, deep down knew she had married someone who was not making her happy and I was sent to an awful secondary school.

Things got worse and worse over the years and really affected my mental health. I wished so hard that I could go back to live with my grandmother who I adored, and where I was happy and loved. But other family were then living there so impossible even if it had been allowed.

It was the worst move of my life. The only saving grace was I could go to my grandmothers any time, and I did. She knew things were wrong at home but her door was always open.

M0nica Fri 25-Oct-19 21:41:30

I do not think my parents had their wishes taken into account when we moved either. Every few years, sometimes less, DF was told where he was being transferred to and that was that. Where he went, the family went with him.

Although my younger sister and I essentially lived with our grandparents for three years because my father was due to return from an overseas posting in April when I was due to take my A levels and DS her O levels 2 months later. We flew home for the summer holidays each year they were away, but that was all.

PamelaJ1 Fri 25-Oct-19 19:55:09

So many of us on this thread seem to have been to lots of schools and lived in many places.
I was definitely told when we were moving to Nigeria. I had just started school and I had to stand at the front of the class whilst we looked at a map of the world.
We flew and I distinctly remember my little sister sleeping on the floor between the seats. When I grew up I thought that I must have imagined it but we went to Duxford and my dad pointed out the type of plane we flew in.
Seats had a lot more leg room back in the day!
Next stop was HK but by sea. I bought a battery run dog in Aden. From a man in a boat.
Never bothered me either MOnica.
It makes me smile when I watch Wanted Down Under and the parents take their children’s wishes into account😂

SunnySusie Fri 25-Oct-19 19:44:25

We only moved once when I was a child and we were told all about it and visited the new house beforehand, although we only sat in the car and looked at it. The house was rented and the tenants didnt want to move, so they locked and barred all the doors and wouldnt allow access. My parents bought the house without seeing inside. We moved in the winter of 1962/63, the worst winter for 200years. I was 10 at the time and was given a shovel when we arrived to help dig the snow away so that the removal van could park near the front door. It was to be three months before we saw the garden which was buried under huge snowdrifts. A week after the move the entire family came down with the flu and we all lay wrapped in blankets in front of the fire because there was no central heating. Despite all these traumas my parents stayed in the house for sixty years until they passed away.

M0nica Fri 25-Oct-19 19:29:49

Since between birth and my 21 birthday I moved house about 20 times, I cannot say it bothered me much. I am pretty sure my parents always told me in advance that we were moving and where to. I went to 10 schools as well.

In case anyone is puzzled by such a shifting childhood, it was because my father was in the army. There was a shortage of married quarters after the war and when my father was reposted we usuallstarted off in hirings, or even living in a hotel and gradually moved up the list towards getting a quarter, by which time my father was due to be reposted somewhere else.

It doesn't seem to have done me much harm. We stayed about 5 years each in our first three houses before staying in one for 15 years and we have lived in our current house for nearly 25 years.

Nanna58 Fri 25-Oct-19 18:24:30

I lived in the one house all my life until marrying ninathena na. Then , when my widowed mum moved to sheltered housing my daughter bought the house and my DGS was born there and slept in my old bedroom. They moved last year when he was 3, very odd now to see the house occupied by ‘strangers ‘ after more than 60yrs in one family.

freyja Fri 25-Oct-19 16:45:53

I was not told I was leaving school! It was the last day of the school year, I was told that day I had won the national art prize and was to be the first in assembly to collect my prize. Whilst there the headmaster shook my hand, gave me my prize, the bible and wished me luck. I only 14, because my 15th birthday was in the holidays. I thought nothing of it until I told my favourite teacher I would see her in September. Oh no she said you will not be coming back.

The next day (Saturday) I was sent to Boots the chemist to work where I stayed for 2 years. That same Summer I went as usual on holiday with my aunt and uncle, with whom I had lived for seven years only to be sent to a lodging house after a week because I had also left home. Nothing was ever discussed or mentioned as my life had changed from a child to adult over night.
Never forgot how it felt to be abandoned and alone. I never treated my children like that. I would always prepare them for anything that came their way. We travel throughout Europe, during the children's formative years so changing homes and schools was a major part of life but we always talked it through. We still discuss their life changing decisions, so no one is left in the dark.

grapefruitpip Fri 25-Oct-19 16:41:01

I remember being in the doctor's surgery with my mother and he asked " When are you moving?" I was told to wait outside and pondered the word moving....moving what? Something heavy?

I have no recollection of the 2 moves which happened in quick succession. Unbelievable really.

Grannycool52 Fri 25-Oct-19 16:39:15

CBBL, that was really tough. 16 schools is more than anyone could cope with.