In a recent discussion with friends that have foreign partners, it came up that someone always has to lose in an international relationship.
I guess this post is a little near and dear to my heart seeing how I’m in an international relationship, and I sure do know quite a few foreign girls that are currently residing in Australia because of their Aussie guys. What is it with Aussie guys by the way, snatching up girls in other countries and luring them to the land down under?
Anyway, being in an international relationship can be a bit stressful, especially when you’re first getting started with testing the waters and trying to figure out if what you want is the same. It’s a big headache, and even now as I sit here thinking about how I’m on the path to getting an Aussie partner visa, I’m still not 100% convinced that it is the best thing for our relationship.
Now, don’t go thinking the worst here. It has nothing to do with me questioning the relationship itself; it has more to do with whether or not being in Australia is right… or fair. Of course, I’m not about to pull out now. I do, overall, enjoy Australia, and I have done a lot so far to get set up the way I am – but… it has been a challenge to say the least. When you join in an international partnership, one has to move in with the other, and in this case, it was me sticking around in Australia. I have come with nothing into a world that is solely my boyfriend’s — his friends, his family, his culture, his home – and I have had to adjust to this.
When it was Christmas Day, I stayed with his family. We ate their typical Christmas dinner, which was based around seafood (and I hate seafood) and turkey cooked in way I didn’t expect (and turkey is my favorite holiday food). When it was Mother’s Day, we went to have dinner with his mom. All of the holidays still feel foreign to me, and I never feel more out of place than when I’m sitting there around a group of his family and friends just wishing I were back somewhere in America.
The thoughts may be fleeting (stress is on fleeting), but when they come, I get really worked up. I start cursing the fact that the visa woes are on my end of the relationship. I start asking about when we’ll get to travel around my country, hang out with my old friends and explore my stomping grounds. Even though I know that the timing and money and many other factors come into play, I can’t help but think that I have been the one to sacrifice in order to make it work.
It’s funny that I feel this way, especially since I know that for a fact it would be an even bigger pain in the arse to get him over to America and working (not that I even want to go back for good in the first place). Sometimes, I even throw out the idea of us just moving to another city in Australia so that both of us are on more equal ground. That seems pretty fair to me, but is it rational? Probably not.
For me, it’s frustrating to think that one person will have to always feel this way in an international relationship, but at the same time, I can’t think of it being any better if the situation were more in my favor. Does anyone reading this have experience or words of wisdom to share?
Update 4/18/2011: It’s been a long time since writing this post, and we have officially applied for the partner visa and are waiting for the results. We’ve also booked a trip to the States to visit my family. I think booking the trip helped a lot with these feelings.