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upworthy
Joy

Mom shares the 'major reason' she decided to raise her kids outside the U.S.

Her family moved to Denmark in 2020, and they’re staying.

denmark, spain american ex-pats

Woman beside river between buildings in København, Denmark.

It’s a little hard to determine whether there is a trend in Americans relocating to other countries. Still, approximate figures show that the number of U.S. citizens living abroad has just about doubled since 1999, with the number jumping from 4.1 million to 8 million.

Mexico, Canada and the United Kingdom are the top 3 most popular destinations for American expatriates.

In a recent article for Business Insider, Brooke Black shared that she and her family relocated to Denmark in 2020 and one of the biggest reasons they have decided to stay is that it feels much safer. Black has a husband and two young daughters.


​“Overall, Denmark is a safe place, and Danes value trust,” she wrote. “Crime is rare — I rarely see police cars — and gun control is strict. We feel very safe here, which was a major factor in choosing to stay in Denmark.” When you crunch the numbers, Denmark is much safer than the United States. According to Nationmaster, America has 7 times more guns, 6 times more homicides and 4 times more rapes.

Back in 2020, shortly after Black had her second child during the pandemic. Her family decided to leave Los Angeles for two weeks because it was a COVID-19 hotspot and spend two weeks in Denmark with her husband’s family. What started as a 2-week trip became permanent.

Black finds it is much easier to take care of young children in Denmark because of its shorter work weeks. “Because the Danish workweek is 37 hours, most parents pick up their kids by 4 pm at the latest on most weekdays and even earlier on Fridays,” she wrote for Business Insider. “I work for a Danish company and can easily leave in time for pickup. In LA, I would rush across town to get my kid at 5:30 pm, leaving just enough time for a bath and bedtime. I cherish the time I get with my kids now.”

"I’m very grateful for that because that time isn’t coming back," she wrote on LinkedIn.

Black works for Podimo, an app that publishes over 1,000 exclusive podcasts and 70,000 audiobook titles.

Black isn’t the only American who has found a safer home living in Europe. Earlier this year, Upworthy shared the story of Luna Ashley Santel, her husband and young daughter, who left St. Louis, Missouri for Spain.

@lunagoestospain

Here’s what shifted for him. I’m sure this’ll piss the right people off. No pun intended. #movingabroad #spaindigitalnomadvisa #movingabroadwithpets #movingtospainwithkids

After relocating to Spain, they realized that they had been carrying an invisible mental load while living in America. One day, while sitting in a busy cafè, which would have made them nervous in St. Louis, the couple realized that none of the people milling about had guns.

At this moment, Santel’s husband realized that living in America caused him to be on alert whenever he was out in public. A feeling he never got in Spain. “And I realized this weight that I had been carrying around my whole life wasn't necessary. Like what we think is normal is not normal,” he said.

Kayleigh Donahue explains the differences between the U.S. and Europe.

American-born TikTok user Kayleigh Donahue is going viral on the platform because of her unflinching take on why it was a mistake for her to move back to the U.S. after spending 4 years in Ireland.

She now lives in the Boston area.

Kayleigh moved back to the U.S. from Ireland to make more money, but that didn’t go as planned. Even though she got paid more, the cost of living was so much higher that she saved less money than she did in Ireland. She also missed the generous number of vacation days she got in Europe as compared to America.

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A photo of Jordan Anderson.

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Dayton, Ohio,
August 7, 1865
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