A Newcomer Asked Canadians Why They Always Say Canada 'Sucks' & The Answers Are Too Real

"Are things really that bad or is it an inside joke?"

Trending Associate Editor
The Canadian flag. Right: People on a busy street in Toronto.

The Canadian flag. Right: People on a busy street in Toronto.

If you're thinking about moving to Canada or have already taken that step, there are lots of things that might impact your experience – and other people's opinions are a big part of that.

On the Reddit thread r/AskACanadian, a newcomer recently posed the simple question: "Canada keeps being ranked as one of the best countries to live in […] so why does everybody here say that it sucks?"

The newcomer, who landed in December, went on to explain that on subreddits about Canada, "3 out of 5 posts are about how bad things are or how bad things will get."

"Are things really that bad or is it an inside joke among Canadians to always talk sh*t about their current situation?" they asked.

The post prompted a whole lot of debate and some very real answers from both Canadians and people who call Canada home.

To begin with, some people had good things to say about the country as a whole.

As one Redditor put it: "It's a great country! But every country has problems, and we just want our society to be the best it can be."

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Others also had positive things to say, especially in comparison to other countries they've lived in.

"I grew up in New Zealand, lived in Amsterdam for 5 years, and moved to Canada in 2019. I genuinely can't believe how good we have it here compared to elsewhere and am amazed by some of the complaining I see online," one Redditor stated.

"It just shows a lack of understanding that many of the things we're struggling with here (housing, for example) are big problems (and often worse) in basically every other place too."

They went on to add that Canadians should be annoyed things aren't better and keep pushing for change but acknowledged that "we do have it pretty good here on a global stage."

Unfortunately, that sentiment wasn't shared by the majority of those in the comments.

A whole lot of the responses said there were many aspects of life in Canada that are troublesome, particularly the high cost of living, the state of health care, the housing crisis and inflation.

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But, for the most part, the most popular answer seemed to be that people are complaining because they're comparing life now to how it was a few decades ago.

"It was a much more affordable country where those with middle-class incomes could afford homes and luxuries like vacations, etc," one response – that got upvoted 375 times – read.

"That affordability is gone and hard-working people are bitter (rightfully so) because their quality of life is lower than previous generations with less education and fewer skills."

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"I think this is really it. Canada is noticeably worse than it was 10 years ago," another agreed.

Somebody else chimed in to say the complaints are because Canadians are remembering a better time.

"I think the problem is that we have personally lived and experienced an alternative, and that was when living in Canada was much better than it is today."

"Remember when a couple with modest incomes could afford a detached house, two cars, a vacation and daycare for two kids?" they asked.

"Remember when your grocery bill wasn't $250 per visit to feed that family of four? Remember when you weren't terrified of getting sick because health care was accessible? Because I do, and I'd really like to get back to that," another comment read.

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Some acknowledged that things might not be perfect right now, but overall, there are pros and cons – just like any other country.

"It's easy to complain when you can pick and choose individual elements like it's a buffet, without realizing all the other knock-on consequences or effects those things can have that might not work here due to other things we have that they don't," one Redditor said.

Looks like it might all boil down to perspective, eh?

This article's cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.

Janice Rodrigues
Trending Associate Editor
Janice Rodrigues is an Associate Editor for Narcity Canada’s Trending Desk focused on Canadian immigration and passports, and is based in Scarborough, Ontario.
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