Depressed and want to go back home

by Mark Cerny
(Mito, Japan)

When I decided to retire I bought a condo in Mito Japan, my wife's country. I paid cash so that when I retired and sold my house in California I would not be strapped with a mortgage and only needed to cover the monthly expenses....well within our social security income.


Sold my house in CA for a huge profit and moved to Japan so with more than enough money in the bank I don't have the pressure of monthly rent, but after several months I feel depressed and longing for my life before retirement.

First couple of months was good, unpacking and buying the things needed to furnish the condo which kept me occupied, but now after 3 months I feel that this was the worst decision that I ever made....

I feel like I am stranded by myself on a desert island wishing to return to the U.S. even though I know it would be starting over and I am 68 and my wife is 75.

I am lost here with absolutely no social interaction with others, foreigners or Japanese and living in a smaller city.

Don't know if I can stay sane......

Comments for Depressed and want to go back home

Click here to add your own comments

Boy, can I relate...
by: Tom Germany

Mark, I feel your pain. I did almost everything you did conceptually except a windfall, and feel similarly to you here in Germany.

It sounded blissful at 35 to commit to a retirement in the land of my bride, until retiring in the land of my bride.

I’m a retired USAF officer and former airline pilot who now cannot find his a$$ with both hands. We’re on vacation in Garda, IT and I have made the experience miserable for my bride and myself. Vacation from what?

If you seek American conversation, seek out the American enclaves. There’s one in Okinawa. Do something for others...there is still a high demand for those who will teach English.

Review your commitment to your bride. What was her situation in the US? Spend some time volunteering at the A-Bomb monument. That would be big as an American.

Think of others instead of yourself. You‘ll be surprised how fulfilled you will feel. Those are my questions and thoughts.

Mark is Depressed living in Japan
by: Ken San Diego

I am your age and also purchased a condo in Thailand .. I thought I would retire there for 6 months a year. After going to Thailand 13 times, I thought that I prefer just living in San Diego CA where I lived most of my life!

SO you have to do what you have to do, but give it a year...and if you don't like it ... you can always come back to CA and maybe used your profit from the sale of your CA home to buy a condo here!

Best Wishes!

An uncomfortable opinion
by: Sandy

This is my opinion only, but it would seem like you bit off a little to much when it comes to change.

I think many of us underestimated the life jolt the retirement would bring. That's why so many on this site have experienced depression, sadness and anxiety. Many come out of it, however, through determination, family/friends and especially by listening to others. It is hard.

Coupling that with a move to a foreign country seems like too much change (to me). Many of the healing processes for retirement would not be available to you, such as connecting with old friends, volunteering at your favorite charity, etc.

You could do some of these things in your new home, but not sure it would be the same. I can only speak on how I would feel, but I would have to throw in the towel, thinking that I gave it a try and it just wasn't for me.

Life is short for all of us on this site. Let's spend those years finding the most joy that we can. I hope you find yours.

Depressed and want to go home.
by: Florida

Mark, I am sorry to hear your story. Retirement is quite an adjustment plus being in a foreign country. I am in the States and still get depressed and know your feeling of having no one to talk to. As a person gets older, it feels as though you disappear. I hope you find a solution.

Different country
by: Anonymous

Mark, it sounds like you need to move back to the U.S.

If you have friends and relatives alive you can move near them, if not, try a "Sun City" type development where you will have activities, equipment to use, and make friends through the clubs and classes.

I hope your wife is ok with that, she probably would enjoy it also. Good luck!

Depressed and want...
by: Natasha

Oh my! Can you speak or start to learn the language? Keep a sharp eye out for any other person you can communicate with who is also new. Try not to include other factors in looking for a friend. Do whatever that person brings up. Best in luck

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Anxiety and Depression.