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Old 06-26-2011, 11:36 AM
 
Location: The Sunshine City
244 posts, read 878,035 times
Reputation: 144

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Hi all,
I am a graduate student currently living in Florida and I am planning on graduating and receiving my PhD in sociology in December. I have been entertaining the idea of either moving somewhere up north in the U.S. (Philadelphia, Boston, DC, Chicago) or immigrating to Canada for several years now and I am starting to have some reservations about the whole process. I have visited Toronto and I really liked it for various reasons (diversity, safety, good food scene, unique neighborhoods, etc.). However, I keep reading threads on this forum that discuss (at length) many of the negative aspects of Toronto (unfriendly and materialistic people, difficulty for single males in the dating arena, etc.) and I'm confused and unsure of my decision to possibly relocate to the Toronto area. I don't know anybody in Toronto and I don't want to move to a city that is known as being difficult for newcomers (surviving the first winter will be hard enough ). Is all the negative talk on this forum legit? Are any of the other possible relocation cities I discussed a better choice? Is immigrating to Canada in general, and Toronto in particular worth it?

Last edited by JProg305; 06-26-2011 at 11:59 AM..
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Old 06-26-2011, 01:29 PM
 
126 posts, read 537,875 times
Reputation: 208
The difficulties people associate with Toronto are real, especially for single males. It is an absolutely awful city for newcomers. If you don't meet friends at work (as I didn't), there is a high chance that you will be on your own. You can't approach women in public here; there is a high chance that they will reject you, even if they find you attractive. (Nevermind that after several months you won't be approaching women most places anyway, as you'll start to become acclimatized to the social environment.) You'd be much better off meeting women through friends. But since you don't have any here, there's a high chance that you will be forced to use online dating to meet women, and online -- more so than offline -- women pretty much just go for the best-looking guys. This kind of perception of Toronto women is amply documented. Use Google to check for yourself.

If I were you I would avoid Toronto like the plague. Good luck.
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Old 06-26-2011, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Toronto, ON
161 posts, read 507,426 times
Reputation: 144
I was born and grew up in Toronto but have lived in Halifax, NS, for the past thirteen years. I'll be moving back to Toronto in late August, to go back to school, and I'll be living with my mom for the year, to save money. I feel pretty torn about the move. In addition to understanding that it will be an enormous adjustment to go from living on my own to living with my mom and step-father, I feel like going from Halifax to Toronto is, in itself, also going to be a huge adjustment.

First of all, I want to state that I really do like Toronto. I love its diversity, especially. I love the diverse and inexpensive food. As a big music fan, I really appreciate that there is always something going on, and that so many touring bands stop there. I love being able to go to rep. cinemas (we don't have one in Halifax!). Most of all, of course, I love getting to see my family and my oldest friends. But all of that is to say that I really love *visiting* Toronto. I experience a bit of culture shock when I go home. I do find the people standoffish and rushed, and much more focused on money and careers than people are in Halifax. But I have never actually lived in down-town Toronto. I grew up and have only ever lived in Etobicoke, in the west end. I imagine I could be happy living in a neighbourhood like Parkdale or Kensington Market, and I am sure that my experience of Toronto would be very different if I actually resided in a community that was very engaged with the arts and with their neighbourhood.

Sort-of side note, as I see you're considering Boston: I was in Boston recently, and I found the people there pretty standoffish, reminded me of Toronto actually, and especially as I had just come from New York City, where everybody was incredibly friendly.

There are a lot of other wonderful cities in Canada to consider as well, and I suppose that the places I'd suggest would depend a lot on your interests. Everybody loves Montreal, though. (Or, almost everybody. I guess some people in that Toronto vs. Montreal thread don't love Montreal.) If you can find a job at an English-speaking university, you should at least be considering Montreal! I presume you're looking for a job at a university?

As I am sure you've gathered from a lot of these threads that the economics are kind of different. It really does seem to me that it's a lot easier to be really rich or really poor in the USA, whereas Canada has a larger middle class. I think this is a great thing, but a lot of people on this forum don't seem to. Canadian universities probably won't pay you as much as American universities. With that in mind, Toronto is probably second only to Vancouver in terms of how difficult it will be to stretch your money. Certainly doable, though. It all depends on your expectations and requirements, I think.
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Old 06-26-2011, 01:47 PM
 
Location: The Sunshine City
244 posts, read 878,035 times
Reputation: 144
Thanks for the input. You are correct in your assumption that I will be looking for a job at a university/college. I would prefer a small college to a large one. I am also considering going into some kind of policy analysis job. My dissertation research is based on a comparative analysis of urban policy in the U.S. and Canada. Montreal is also on my list but I don't speak French and I'm kind of worried about moving to a city where a language I don't speak is so prevalent. That being said, a lot of Quebecois come down to the Miami area to visit and French Canadian girls are HOT. Seriously.

I'm not a particularly money hungry person. I'd like to live comfortably, but I'd rather work less and make slightly less money than work my fingers to the bone and drop dead in my office because of stress. I've visited Vancouver and I didn't care for it. I do want to go back to Vancouver in the summer to get a better idea of what the city is like in a different season (I visited this past March).

I am recently single after a four year relationship and I'm kind of scared of the social scene in Toronto, at least based on what I've read in some of these threads. Yikes!

I've heard that people in Boston are standoffish too. It's tough because you don't get a good idea of what a city is really about just by visiting. I found Toronto to be delightful, but living in a city and visiting a city are really different. I'm more confused now than ever.
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Old 06-26-2011, 01:49 PM
 
Location: The Sunshine City
244 posts, read 878,035 times
Reputation: 144
The good thing about Boston is that my best friend is also moving up there. So at least I would know someone. I don't know anybody in Toronto. Wish I did.

Cost of living in Boston seems to be just as high as Toronto, maybe slightly less. Not sure.
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Old 06-26-2011, 02:17 PM
 
206 posts, read 896,131 times
Reputation: 123
Follow your instincts and move to Toronto. As an academic, you will more than likely have a different experience than most of the downers on this forum.
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Old 06-26-2011, 03:10 PM
 
126 posts, read 537,875 times
Reputation: 208
Quote:
Originally Posted by krock67 View Post
Follow your instincts and move to Toronto. As an academic, you will more than likely have a different experience than most of the downers on this forum.
I don't follow this. Why think his experience will be different since he's an academic?
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Old 06-26-2011, 03:35 PM
 
206 posts, read 896,131 times
Reputation: 123
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leaving on a Jet Plane View Post
I don't follow this. Why think his experience will be different since he's an academic?
In short, he will have more opportunities to meet people (students, colleagues, and the community), which is much different than working a typical 9 to 5 job.

Last edited by krock67; 06-26-2011 at 04:29 PM..
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Old 06-26-2011, 03:35 PM
 
Location: Oakville, ON
377 posts, read 1,642,285 times
Reputation: 435
Life in Toronto can be extremely rewarding for ambitious, intelligent and educated people. It can also be ruthless and competitive, so bring your street smarts. If you don't have them, you'll develop them.

If you are more laid back, you may find it difficult to find work, a date and even a place to live here.
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Old 06-26-2011, 03:48 PM
 
Location: Toronto
71 posts, read 339,946 times
Reputation: 123
Just remember where Slutwalk was born. That's all I have to say on that. Take the complaints from the "downers" with a grain of salt, but also from the jingoists who try to discredit anything negative said about Toronto, Canada, or its women.

The average princess here expects for the man to continue funding her paycheck to paycheck lifestyle, bringing little into a relationship except negative wealth (large school/lifestyle debt) and those rare metals that Toronto women act like they carry between their legs, vacations every year, many 10s of 1,000s for a wedding/honeymoon for which you hope the gifts cover expenses, buy a home in the greater metro area/burbs at $500-600k, 10s of 1,000s furnishing it, 10s of 1,000s renovating/maintaining it every 5-10 years if not right upon the initial purchase (ie used house), and his and hers high-end cars. You will never, ever retire, be out of debt, or save money.

My concern is a bit elevated in meeting someone as I have to take into consideration my net worth now in my mid 30s (close to a million but not quite) and the average S&TC Toronto woman spoiled into an undeserved upper-middle class lifestyle here that values consumerism, keeping up with the Jones', and showing-off over financial security like I do. I know of several guys that could only take Toronto for so long, two who are Type-A personalities that make six figures from their businesses, Toronto provided them great opportunities but it has veered them on the lifetime bachelor path...but what do they care now...they're rich!!

The funny thing is, a LOT of the guys I know who are chronically single are born-and-raised in Toronto and surrounding areas (I do think there a few more "normal" women in the burbs than the city core) yet newcomers are virtually all coupled as they brought in their S.O. or spouse from outside of the country. This is the case in my office, 99% of the relationships are couples who met/brought in their S.O./spouse from outside of Toronto. And the "foreign" men are no less/more aggressive than Toronto guys--they wouldn't have survived having Toronto as their dating pool.

Last edited by Equalizer101; 06-26-2011 at 04:10 PM..
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