any US natives married to a US immigrant - Mothering Forums

 
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#1 of 15 Old 01-01-2005, 01:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Mammas and Papas,

Anyone want to talk about the interesting viewpoints, funny stories and frustrating aspects of being married to an immigrant?

I love my DH who is from The Cape Verdian Islands ( a little country off the coast of Senegal) he was born and grew up there for the first 25 years of his life and has some pretty good insights into american life,


Anyone else want to chat or sometimes vent?
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#2 of 15 Old 01-01-2005, 01:51 PM
 
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my dh is from india. we get along wonderfully but have hit a few stumbing blocks when it comes to extended family (mine and his). have you visited your dh's country? i had been to india before i met dh, so that helped considerably.
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#3 of 15 Old 01-02-2005, 03:18 AM
 
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My Dh is British and grew up in Belfast N. Ireland. We used to go over every year, but both of his parents have passed away so it isn't a priority anymore.

Have you guys gotten passports for your kids? I have US passports for my kids but I want to get them British passports too. I need to check into how to do this.

Did everybody have fun at their green card interview?
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#4 of 15 Old 01-02-2005, 03:43 PM
 
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Haven't gotten passports for the kids. At my interview (DH is the American) the guy spent the whole time asking DH about getting into his field because his 13 yo son was interested in it.
DH claims that is was a trick to see if we were in a real marriage but my experiences have been that they treat Canadians like they are already sub-Americans so the whole thing was some kind of formality and he just didn't care much. - and, yeah, this WAS after 9-11 even.
Honestly, there isn't a big difference between Canadian and American living so I have little to share, but there is a big difference between very liberal Vancouver (think San Francisco north :LOL ) and the red red state of Arizona. For one thing, everyone throws their garbage onto the highway here. Really. I have seen people toss stuff out of their SUVs. People never say hi here. My son will say hello to kids on the playground and they do not reply but when we visit up north they do. The roads are a LOT better to drive on but there is no reliable convenient public transport here and so on. It almost never rains here whereas it almost never stops on the West Coast.The biggest difference has been the lack of taxes. I look at our year end and it's like - that's it??

Edited to add. The kids say hi in Seattle too so I find this is an AZ thing NOT a Cdn/Am thing.
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#5 of 15 Old 01-02-2005, 06:16 PM
 
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I met and married dh in Ethiopia, his home country.

He has some rather, uh, biting insights about this country, after we moved here. :LOL But he's more conservative than most American Evangelicals, so I guess MDC isn't the best place to post his comments.

He turned thirty a month after we arrived here, three months after we married, so real and true culture shock has been a big part of our marital experience. Not always fun. There were a lot of things that never occured to us before marriage, and they just sort of kept popping up and smacking us in the face. It's getting easier, though. Just takes a lot of stick-to-it-iveness.
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#6 of 15 Old 01-03-2005, 03:46 AM
 
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Married to an immigrant from Vietnam, here.

He's fairly well Americanized (been here since his early 20's) and I'm fairly well Vietanamized (speak the language and lived there for several years) but we still bump up against cultural issues occasionally. Like, he thinks our daughter isn't going to have a boyfriend until she graduates from college! :

I've really appreciated his perspective on the U.S. too, but unlike cappucinnosmom's dh they fall to the left side of the political spectrum. I think coming from a small country that has suffered through a lot of wars gives one a very valuable perspective on international affairs.
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#7 of 15 Old 01-06-2005, 07:10 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for chiming in mommas

while i enjoy that my hubby is not a typical american, watching football, eating fast food and playing computer games. It is also frustrating that i dont have someone to chat with casually about pop culture and stuff like that as dh's english isn't too good and my Kriolo is horrible.

I also thinks he has culturall expectations of what a wife should be that i have no desire to live up to.

i have to take care of everything that involves reading and writing i.e. EVERYTHING so i sort of pass of washing dishes and taking out the trash and changing vacuum cleaner bags to him.

anyone else?
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#8 of 15 Old 01-06-2005, 08:17 PM
 
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My dh is Swiss (French speaking) and has lived in the US for 12 years. He became a citizen in 2003. He is really progressive politically and I can always count on him to slam American "culture" We are really quite alike in so many ways. I find actually that his way of communicating is really more passive than mine, and he has a tendency to "build stories" which sometimes makes me impatient. I find that he is way more sophisticated than most men I've met - he's travelled a lot and is tri-lingual. Not a snob, just really worldly and, as such, he has a lot to offer my dd and our soon to be kiddo. I've been to both Switzerland and France about a dozen times and I'd love to be living in France. My dh spent the past 6 months there on assignment. He liked it, but he's glad to be back home with us.

Me : living with and loving papa and the kids: Dd1 8/97 , dd2 8/04 and my sweet baby ds 5/09 : :
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#9 of 15 Old 01-08-2005, 12:18 AM
 
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My Dh is from Morocco. We met in Amsterdam, married in Alaska, and live in Texas. For the most part we get along swimmingly, but every once in a while cultural differences pop up. Sometimes they are funny, other times they really tear our relationship apart (I don't know if anyone else experiences conflicts in their marriage that basically reduce the current relationship to rubble, on top of which you build the new relationship? does that make any sense?). Anyways, he's pretty acculturated to the US and *to me*.

BTW, Cappucino's Mom, a close friend of mine choose 'Josiah' as the name of her little baby-to-be. I love that name!

Wife, Mom, Health Services Researcher
Uno ('03) Dos ('08) and Tres (Aug '10)
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#10 of 15 Old 01-08-2005, 12:31 AM
 
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My dh is from India. We will be celebrating our 9th anniversary on Jan 10th.

7yo: "Mom,I know which man is on a quarter and which on is on a nickel. They both have ponytails, but one man has a collar and the other man is naked. The naked man was our first president."
 
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#11 of 15 Old 01-08-2005, 07:53 PM
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My dh is from the Rep. of Georgia in the former USSR. We've been married for seven years and met and fell in love almost ten years ago when dh was a foreign exchange student .

He is HIGHLY americanized and has impeccable English. He wants to get his citizenship soon so he can work for the Foreign Office .


For the most part, all cultural differences have been minor and not a big deal. There are two or three things that have at times driven a wedge between us (not wanting to rock the boat by standing up for himself or me a number of times, not being able to say no to any Georgian that asks for his help), but mostly we understand each other very well and get along great. He is a wonderful friend, is very funny and looooves American pop culture. We have lots in common.
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#12 of 15 Old 01-12-2005, 06:03 AM
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my husband is from Turkey. met him while visiting a dear friend 10 years ago. had long distance relationship for three years then got married and i moved to CA and had dd1 soon after

he is very westernized. is a us citizen and a wonderful dh. i won't trade him for the moon.
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#13 of 15 Old 01-17-2005, 04:28 PM
 
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My husband is from Russia but he has been here for 12 years and speaks *perfect* English (better than me!). He came here to go to college and we met in the town where he was going to school, which was also the home town of my best friend. We have been together for 5 1/2 years (our 5 year anniversary is on Wednesday!) and I have to say, things just keep getting better. American men have never heald much interest for me- soda drinking, non-smoking, video game playing, sneaker wearing, fast food eating guys.. not for me

I love that he is so well traveled, wears nice clothes and shoes and has a completely different idea of hospitality than any Americans that I have met (myself included.) He's really sensitive to making the guest as comfortable as possiable: offering them the best of what we have in the house, always and not giving it a second thought (where as i might be the slightest bit more self centered - like "you're going to offer them ALL that nice bottle of port that I gave you for Christmas?"). I have also learned a ton about Russian culture, like that most of what we actually grew up thinking that we knew was BS (like that you could buy helium balloons, for instance, or that there really was tons of food to be had... for some reason I me and my family and eveyone else that I knew had this idea that people in the USSR were all one step away from starvation)

As far as cultural differences go I think we have had the most trouble with him expecting me to work. His mother worked full time And did all the cooking and cleaning. It's been hard because I feel like he expects the same from me. In the USSR child care was free and they also had a big network of extended family to help with the kids. It's just not like that here! To pay for child care for three children and work I would have to be making mega bucks. Well anyway. He also can't understand why my family won't help us out when we need it (financially). His family does help us out if we get into a fix but he can't quite understand the Prodestant idea of "well, you're married now, good luck, see you later, kid. Don't ask for anything. You've got to make it on your own now 100%" I get the impression that in his culture, families stick together much more and pool resources more.

Oveall it's been great. I love him and we have such a great time together.
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#14 of 15 Old 01-17-2005, 07:32 PM
 
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my partner is from guatemala. he's lived here 10 years and is fluent in both english and spanish. i'm bilingual too (french), so sometimes for kicks we talk to one another in our respective second languages! i hope to learn spanish one day, and he's interested in learning french too. our kids are going to be multi-lingual, so that is exciting! no problems or complaints about his being foreign.. on the contrary, man is he sexy when he speaks spanish!! :swoon: plus our very different skin tones look awesome together, and that is always a source of excitement for us (we are weird)!
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#15 of 15 Old 01-18-2005, 05:06 PM
 
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I was born in the US, moved to Jamaica with my mother as a child, and only returned to the US in '97 after 28 years. My Dh is Panamanian, but has been here since he was 17 (he's 52). I'm really more of an immigrant than he is, since I don't have many memories of living in the States.

Besides the fact that I find Spanish whispered in my ear incredibly sexy, there's not too much culture clash. He loves American football, which I cannot stand ( I like real football! ) so I call him a sell-out. Which self-respecting Latin American likes American football more than futbol? So we fight over the remote when I want to watch a match and he wants to watch a game.

We both like to party until dawn, we both like to dance, although he looks silly dancing reggae and I can not salsa to save my life.

He still hasn't figured out where we keep the kitchen. Very different from Jamaican men who all know how to cook.
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