I was offered a promotion with a major pay increase but it means living in a town I’m miserable in for another 2 years minimum.

I’m finishing up a year of service tutoring in an inner city school in New Jersey and have been offered a full time position and admission to grad school to get a teaching credential and master’s in Education. It is a major step professionally and will triple my take home income. I love my job and my students and was really happy when I got the offer.

The problem is that I’m from California, 3000 miles from here. All my family and friends are there and I feel every mile of it. I’ve made coworker friends but no one who shares my hobbies and I have to travel almost an hour to find groups that do those hobbies.

The money will definitely make next year more livable and grad school will keep me busy and motivated. My boss wants an answer from me by Friday and I think I’m going to say yes. I’ve been looking for something similar back home and I’m not finding it.

EDIT: thank you all so much for the responses. My inbox has been blowing up all day and I’m still working my way through it. To take care of some FAQ:

I am in downtown Newark and have no car. I play tabletop games and have to take the train to Jersey City or NYC to find groups to play with. In CA I had a car so the lack of convenience and long work hours has made it hard to get to do it. I see how pathetic that all sounds but it’s really just the cherry on top of how isolated I feel from my old gaming groups back home that I used to play with once or twice a week. I am playing online and it’s ok.

California has pretty lenient licence reciprocity and it looks like it will be pretty simple to get my credential set up in CA when I return.

Again, thank you all for the logical works. I’m stupidly homesick but I will get through the next two years and either move back or have settled in by than.

This year was a year of service which basically means they are allowed to pay you way under minimum wage. I work 55 hrs/week for $1000/month. That’s $4.54/hour, it comes with a free apartment that is walking distance from work. I’m also paying student loans so I’m living on about $500/month for food and everything else. Not scary tight but still paycheck to paycheck. My promotion pays 45k/year but I will have to get my own housing. I’m calculating that that means my take home after apartment and loans will be about $2000/month but I’m prepared for that to be off so triple-quadruple increase in take home income.

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