Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

MusicTravel30
Posts: 19
Joined: Fri May 18, 2018 8:52 am

Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by MusicTravel30 »

I am in Serbia.

Am I demanding too much? Ok, the school does not provide housing but during my first two days I have not gotten any support in regard to finding housing. Maybe just a local from the school to come with me and help me find an apartment and other key things. I have been on my own. So in the meantime I am staying at hostels while I send email after email to various landlords to try and set something up, all fruitless.

I am bouncing from one hostel to another and will go to another one tomorrow because most hostels are full. In fact because I had to move from my first hostel to my second, I missed a visa meeting with the school today but I need to ensure I have a roof over my head every night, you know? The visa meeting is important but a roof over your head is more important. At the hostel today I was lucky because it was the last bed so I had to make sure I got it!

I am having a very hard time here in my first 48 hours. Advice? Thanks!

TeacherGal
Posts: 128
Joined: Sat May 14, 2016 8:51 am

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by TeacherGal »

Here are some ideas:
1. Try Airbnb to get a nicer place.
2. Join Facebook groups of people of your nationality or just expats living in Serbia or the city where you are in Serbia to get advice and support.
3. Join Internations and find groups there for support and network.
4. Maybe contact your embassy there or consulate and see if they have any support systems.
5. Get plenty of sleep, try to get some exercise, eat healthy and keep booze and coffee at a minimum to keep up your health. Go easy on yourself until you get on your feet and are more settled.
6. Skype with family and friends back home to get ideas and support.

Good luck. :)

Vrstefko
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Mar 25, 2019 11:20 pm

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by Vrstefko »

Try Belgrade Foreign Visitors Club on Facebook.

yoplay
Posts: 33
Joined: Wed Nov 05, 2008 11:19 pm

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by yoplay »

No, you're not asking too much.

Your post reminded me of the first time I went overseas to teach. It was also a situation where I had to figure out everything on my own and I arrived with only a duffle bag of clothes and no plans or ideas for how I would get set up. I quickly reached panic mode and felt entirely overwhelmed by the new setting and culture and the feeling of isolation from my support networks back home. What's strange is that I now look back fondly on those first few weeks where everything was a new experience.

I second the previous advice on limiting booze intake and trying to get some exercise to clear your mind. Both things have always been helpful for me when getting started at a new post.
Another thought would be to ask your contact point at the school to put you in touch with other expat teachers there who might be able to offer suggestions of how they went about finding housing.

Good luck!

vandsmith
Posts: 338
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2014 12:16 am

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by vandsmith »

MusicTravel30 wrote:
> I am in Serbia.
>
> Am I demanding too much? Ok, the school does not provide housing but
> during my first two days I have not gotten any support in regard to finding
> housing. Maybe just a local from the school to come with me and help me
> find an apartment and other key things. I have been on my own. So in the
> meantime I am staying at hostels while I send email after email to various
> landlords to try and set something up, all fruitless.
>
> I am bouncing from one hostel to another and will go to another one
> tomorrow because most hostels are full. In fact because I had to move from
> my first hostel to my second, I missed a visa meeting with the school today
> but I need to ensure I have a roof over my head every night, you know? The
> visa meeting is important but a roof over your head is more important. At
> the hostel today I was lucky because it was the last bed so I had to make
> sure I got it!
>
> I am having a very hard time here in my first 48 hours. Advice? Thanks!

hey there, sorry to hear everything you are going through. question though: did you know they weren't going to find you a place when you accepted? i also wonder if you are working at an international school there? i am interested because serbia is a place that i am very interested in.

v.

wrldtrvlr123
Posts: 1161
Joined: Sat Feb 06, 2010 10:59 am
Location: Japan

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by wrldtrvlr123 »

Not sure what kind of school you are at but what you describe is unacceptable. Even at our small, relatively Mickey Mouse school in Egypt, there was someone associated with the school to show you some available apts. and deal with the landlords. Sure, it was probably because they had some nefarious deal and made some extra coin out of it but we were happy with the situation being brand new to city and country.

Reach out to your admin. and appeal for some help and guidance. It should be common sense that you can’t focus on your job if you are worried about where you will be sleeping that night, but maybe you could politely point that out to them. Good luck and hang in there.

shadowjack
Posts: 1900
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2012 9:49 am

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by shadowjack »

You also need to consider the time of year. Everybody’s on holidays.

PsyGuy
Posts: 9405
Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:51 am
Location: Northern Europe

Response

Post by PsyGuy »

No your not asking for too much, not by a long shot. I concur with @WT123 the situation is unacceptable. Whats the long term strategy you keep bouncing from hostel to hostel until the time comes and no one has a bed for you? Thats crazy, you need to do more than reach out to your leadership. You need to draw a line in th sand, either someone in the ISs helps you find a place you can afford in X days/weeks or you need to execute your exit plan.

Heliotrope
Posts: 686
Joined: Sun May 13, 2018 1:48 am

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by Heliotrope »

Assuming you're in Belgrade, just join an Facebook group for expats in Belgrade, post that you're looking for a place, and quite likely you'll get either tips on specific apartments for rent, or tips on good estate agents that can show you available accommodation.

And yes, your school definitely should have helped you. I hope the HR department doesn't reflect the quality of the rest of the school.

h1275
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2020 2:55 pm

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by h1275 »

Pull a runner right after payday.

h1275
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2020 2:55 pm

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by h1275 »

Why would you stay at a place where you are left to sleep in a dorm room and the admin clearly don't give a damn about you? Just LOL if you would put up with such treatment because of some worthless piece of paper you signed.

PsyGuy
Posts: 9405
Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:51 am
Location: Northern Europe

Reply

Post by PsyGuy »

If you are going to pull a runner, doing so after you have at least gotten your first pay disbursement is advisable.

Heliotrope
Posts: 686
Joined: Sun May 13, 2018 1:48 am

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by Heliotrope »

Bad treatment by the HR department doesn't always equal bad treatment by the rest of the administration. It might still be a job that you will enjoy.

Plus, it's not very hard to find a place to live in any city with a sizeable expat community. Shouldn't take too long to move out of the hostel circuit and into a decent and affordable apartment. That being said, they still should have helped you out.

h1275
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Jan 02, 2020 2:55 pm

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by h1275 »

Not helping someone find a place to live after you've employed them from overseas goes way beyond 'bad treatment', and more into the realm of a human rights violation.

Run, and don't look back. They've left you in a hostel ffs, how much worse can it get?

Heliotrope
Posts: 686
Joined: Sun May 13, 2018 1:48 am

Re: Feeling very stressed in my new city - Advice?

Post by Heliotrope »

h1275 wrote:
> Not helping someone find a place to live after you've employed them from
> overseas goes way beyond 'bad treatment', and more into the realm of a
> human rights violation.
>
> Run, and don't look back. They've left you in a hostel ffs, how much worse
> can it get?


Wow, you really don't know what actual human rights violations are, do you?
I've seen schools where the HR department was crap, but the rest of the school was pretty good.
Give it a chance, and if after doing so you wanna run, you can always do so then.

Plenty of schools put you up in a hostel for the first few weeks while you look for a place to live, but then the school finds and pays for that hostel, and puts you in contact with real estate agents. So yes, bad treatment.

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