I just read your reply and here are a few thoughts
"I don't see that your "thoughts" add any value to the thread, at all, in any way other than to make sure you contrast yourself with people of less fortitude, competency and ability but with more capability to look for something outside the 'merican dream you purport to live. You have found a niche and we applaud you, but the rest of us haven't or don't see the possibility and seek greener(to us) pastures and are looking for similar advice/scenarios/possibilities.
Congratulations, you have not done what or explored the places that most of the posters have in this thread - the inspirational ones. I dunno what you did before you had kids but based on the chronology you illustrate, not much that might inspire most subscribers to this thread.
Lastly, aren't you enabling your kids with your "investment" in them just like the government would have with student loans or grants? Please, differentiate in the differences of enablement factor! "
well, to begin with my post was largely in response to those who believe that the cost of education and the job market are at the heart of their woes. They aren't!
As to why I'm just replying now? Well, since two days after I made that post? I've been out of the country. If you go back and read my post you'll see my thoughts on the whole expat thing. I know plenty all around the world.
So lets talk about "What I've done and explored". Hmmm.....Been to Africa, Eastern Europe, South America and the Middle East. Lived in Five States and spent countless months at a time in different parts of the country. Lived abroad in four different countries. Been a student, been an employee, been an employer, started two businesses from scratch. Watched one crash and burn, watched one flourish. Changed careers and tried something different. Fathered four children, raised three and laid one to rest....and picked up the pieces and carried on. Had so much money I couldn't think of ways to spend it and been so broke I didn't have heat or electricity............more than once in the same year!
As for the rare and mysterious skill? I barely graduated high school. I fumbled around and work most of my young adult life as a carpenter. One day decided to try something new, and I was good at it. But that alone wasn't enough. I was willing to take a big risk and commit to a school/training program about 6 months long with a 80% failure/drop out rate. I refused to fail or drop out.......and there was a pay off at the end. It wasn't easy. it was what I had to do.
Because of that I'm less than sympathetic to all the crying about how hard it is to live here. If my simple ass can do it? Anyone can! it might not be easy, but they can.
Now on to the whole EXPAT thing. In the 70's my parents moved the family to Florida. Ever notice how many people move to Florida and move back? Same thing. It all sounds SO good. warm days, palm trees, beaches, cheap cost of living. Everyone is going to be Jimmy Buffett. then reality sets in. The jobs suck, they don't pay much and the quality of life generally sucks ass for anyone living on the cheap.
Most of these so called expat paradises are no different. It all looks SO good on the face of it. Not so much in reality.
I'll be where I am for the next several months. I deal with EXPATS every single day I'm here. 90% of them are miserable and bitter. They couldn't make it back home so they came here to work jobs that sounded awesome and live in a place they were told would be so cool. Now most of them hate their jobs, can't go home because they can't afford to and wish they had tried harder to make it work at home before giving up!
If you're looking for an adventure? Then maybe a place like Mexico or Belize is for you. if you're looking to run away to greener pastures and an easier life? Well the world is full of very disappointed people who thought the same thing.
As for the paying for college? The bill payer for my kid's college was a person. A guy who held him accountable for his actions and performance. Not some faceless government agency that "Had" to give him money for school.