Mother of Three from Australia


We were enjoying our lives on Sydney's Northern Beaches, when my husband received an offer from a company in Holland.

I was reluctant, I was happily employed, settled with a new baby, living in our forever home.  

After much discussion we decided we would do it, only if it was not at a financial cost.  With the cost of moving and setting ourselves up here and the 30% ruling we pretty much took a sideways step.

So, here we are. We have added to our family in the meantime, bought a house, renovated it, learned the language (some more successfully than others), undertaken voluntary work, become involved in my children's school / peuterspeelzaal and our community. 

We love it here, love it!  So much so, we had started to incorporate the end of the 30% ruling time frame into our planning. we find out, we may lose this as early as January, 2019.  

We respect the Dutch Government's right to make changes, and let's face it, 5 years is generous.  However, we were promised 8 years.  We have made plans based on 8 years. We would have done things differently if it was 5 years.

Our little family is in turmoil.  My husband feels responsible for uprooting us from our comfortable existence to move to the Netherlands.  He is beside himself at the thought of disappointing us.  He is hard on himself, angry and exhausted.  He feels he let us down and he feels let down. I am worried about him.

We are fighting as a family, there is resentment from my side that we are now under this pressure, concern with the kids and their future and quite frankly, our family life is strained.  Our lives are unsettled, our future uncertain and we are in limbo.

I wonder how many other families are under this pressure, too? How will this uncertainty (and perhaps eventual decision to affect current expats) affect relationships?  What is the effect on individuals’ mental wellbeing or on society and business with the potential outcome of burnouts and depression?

This is more than about money.  Much more.