Repatriates also face culture shock


Expat culture shock has long been one of the prime concerns for all new and potential expats.

In fact, a recent study discovered that culture shock and other emotional concerns were the chief worries for overseas expats, often overshadowing more practical concerns such as finances.

Now, a former expat has come out and warned that culture shock is not just for expats, but that repatriates also suffer from it.

Speaking to The Telegraph, Apple Gildey, a famed writer who worked for women’s rights in a number of countries, said: “Sometimes it seems as if 'home' has changed, or maybe it hasn’t. Maybe it is just that we have changed, grown to incorporate, often without realising, elements of our life abroad. The immediate family has coalesced into a tight unit, still with the everyday rattles of family living, but firm in its face to the outside world.”

She added that “It takes time to adapt back, just as it took time to adjust to living in a new country. We might be back in the home country but we are looking at it through different eyes and have to allow the same adjustment period as when we expatriated.”

Settling into a happy expat life can sometimes take more work than simply finding the right job, to read more about some of the factors that contribute to a successful expat experience consult our Expat Living section.