it's a very hard decision to make and i think making a list of pros and cons will really help focus your mind
pros and cons of leaving Ireland but also pros and cons of living in australia -
the popular conception is of a sunny land where life is good - and that is the case for very many people BUT australia is not without its problems and in some areas there are high degrees of antisocial behaviour/racism/drug and alcohol abuse etc and in more outback areas/rural areas life is much slower/basic but with high degrees of disaffection among the population and the weather can be very harsh - drought, heat etc.
it would be hugely important to do your homework before you go regarding where you are going - the urban centres are modern, sophisticated and have great opportunities but more rural areas can be less so and if you ended up in a mining town things could be very rough indeed. even living somewhere like sydney could be less than idyllic if you were in somewhere like the western suburbs and away from the 'aussie beach lifestyle' that we all dream of.
on balance, i think australia has much more to offer than ireland and for the sake of your relationship and that of your kids with their dad, for me it would be a case of 'one out, all out' - could you take leave of absence from your job, join him out there and if things improved here come home in the future?
it might be worth looking at some of the australian papers online as well to get a feel for things politically/economically/socially?http://www.smh.com.au
FWIW - if it was me, I'd go.
can't figure out how to change my ticker but i'm 2 kg down. woo hoo. slow but steady.