Monday, April 28, 2008

Living Abroad

The decision to live abroad is not an easy one, especially if you already have children. In all my travels and the places that we have lived I've noticed there are two types of women abroad. There is the woman who embraces the decision she has made with her family to move to a new country. She accepts the challenge of setting up a home all alone, without her parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts and uncles nearby. She looks forward to making new acquaintances and to find new friends not only for herself but for her children and possibly her husband too. Then there is the woman who is miserable and makes everyone around her miserable too. She has never accepted the move to a new country even though she came willingly. She is constantly laying guilt on her husband, complaining to everyone she meets about how much she hates being where she is and most importantly she cheats her children out of the opportunity to explore a new country and culture with an open mind. The first woman will be happy where she is and her family will be happy, she will always miss her family and most likely always cling to the hope of returning home someday. The second woman will be miserable no matter where she is because she is unhappy with the person that she is. Her marriage will most likely fail or at the least be scarred permanently and her family will in turn fall apart. Which woman are you? The internet has been an amazing source of help to me in finding new friends, groups, and clubs to become a part of and to start my life anew in a foreign country. My advice to any woman going abroad is to remember that you made the decision to go so now instead of focusing on what you have left behind focus on what you have yet to find. Identify your interests and find these elements in your new environment. You can't make friends sitting at home waiting for them to find you.