What to do if the country 'did not work out', but there is no opportunity to move
Immigration, even in calm times, is almost never without difficulties. It is impossible to calculate in advance what problems you will face in a new country, and how tolerant its shortcomings will be for you. However, in "peaceful" time, almost any immigrant had the opportunity to return home or find another country. Against the backdrop of the war, not everyone had the opportunity to choose. At the same time, new immigrants have much more problems than their predecessors.
You can not leave
This is not only about Russians, who in a number of countries face unjustified closing of bank accounts and refusals to issue or extend a residence permit, regardless of their political position. However, Ukrainians also face similar problems. For example, I know of several cases when in Montenegro both Ukrainians and Russians deliberately delay the renewal of the annual residence permit. As a result, the formal period of residence in the country is interrupted, and people lose the opportunity to obtain a permanent residence permit. Many are forced to annually renew their residence permit for 7-8 years, and do not see any prospects for the future.
Ukrainian refugees leaving against the background of the war, in many countries, also most often have only a temporary status without the possibility of obtaining permanent residence and citizenship. All this creates a feeling of uncertainty and exhausting uncertainty, which burns the resources of the psyche. Not everyone is ready to invest their energy and settle down in a country in which they may not be able to stay. The feeling of temporality does not allow you to find your home, peace and confidence in the future, which means that it does not allow you to find complete happiness.
It is even more difficult to survive cases of personal unreasonable nit-picking by the authorities. We already wrote about exampleswhen the US immigration authorities forged the documents of potential refugees in order to carry out a "deportation plan" or to prevent a person from being released from an immigration prison. Even in cases where a long wait for a decision is not associated with a personal conflict with any official, but only with imperfection of the immigration system, in an extreme situation, it is experienced much harder. It is quite possible to wait 8 or more years for your issue to be resolved if you have a home country to which you can return and where you can feel safe. However, how to survive the unknown if you literally have nowhere to go?
The inability to plan your life really creates long-term stress. Wherein jamming in the immigration system of a particular country automatically cuts off the opportunity to move to another place - at least until you completely despair of gaining a foothold where you are. If, on the plus side, you feel that even over the years a full-fledged adaptation to a new country has not occurred, and you would like to find something more suitable for yourself, this only exacerbates the problem. Living through a stressful situation for a long time, in turn, saps your strength, and there are even less resources to find a way out. We will try to give at least a few tips on how you can survive a difficult condition if you do not yet have an objective opportunity to change your life.
The Illusion of Basic Security
First, it is important to understand that the problems that come from the state, whether it be bureaucratic difficulties, imprisonment, courts and abuses of officials, long years of indeterminate status, and so on, are experienced much harder than any other shortcomings of the country, because they destroy the so-called “illusion of basic security." There is a feeling that the country you are in is not safe for you, because it creates problems for you that you constantly need to deal with. Worst of all, this happens at the level of the "system" and not individuals. Naturally, all this increases the level of anxiety.
At the same time, psychologists emphasize that the very feeling of basic security, that is, the feeling that the world as a whole is friendly and safe for us, is just an illusion. Dangers can lie in wait for us at every step, but in a healthy state a person does not think about it. It is thanks to the illusion of security that we can enjoy life, create and make plans, while the constant memory of possible misfortunes literally paralyzes the will. Therefore, the main measures that can be taken in such a state are aimed at restoring the illusion of basic security. It will not solve your problems on the merits, but will help you gain the strength to solve them yourself.
1. Making it feel like home. As we have already noted, the sense of temporality often deprives one of the motivation to create comfort in a rented apartment. Sometimes you don’t even want to buy new things, knowing that you most likely won’t be able to take them with you. However, creating an atmosphere at home does not involve a lot of things. It is very important to form your little corner from your favorite books, souvenirs dear to you and significant photographs - the material expression of a small world that will follow you to any country.
2. Body care. As trite as it may sound, anxiety is born in the body, so taking care of it is extremely important in order to be able to relax and feel safe. How notes psychologist Olga Podolskaya, who are "taking care of your body in some way recreates the feeling of warmth and security that we all experienced in the womb, and therefore helps restore the illusion of basic security.". Spas, saunas, massages, creams, warm relaxing baths are suitable for this. In addition to general relaxation procedures, there are special exercises that mimic the first stage of fetal development, for example, “self-rocking” to relaxing music in the fetal position and other attempts to regain a state of rest.
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3. Support group. It is essential to create a circle of support, or reference group, consisting of people who understand your problems and are able to empathize with you. In addition to purely emotional support, there are practical benefits to this. If you are really faced with abuses, and even more so illegal actions of officials, it is very important to have witnesses to whom you informed about what was happening in a timely manner. On occasion, they can confirm your words in court or tell you a good lawyer. Publicity is the best defense, so don't be afraid to speak up about the problems you're facing.
4. Investment in the future. If you are forced to wait a long time for your fate to be decided, and you can’t influence the waiting time in any way, try to perceive this time as an opportunity to invest in your future. If you have already clearly decided that you will not stay in this country forever, you may well look for other opportunities online. Of course, we are not talking about specific job vacancies in case you do not yet have the opportunity to move. However, you can learn general visa requirements, take some courses online, learn a new language, earn money to rent or buy a home in a new country, etc. If you feel like you're investing in your future, waiting will be much easier for you.
5. Investment in health. And, of course, do not forget that one of the main investments is an investment in yourself. It is not only about education, but also about such an important component of life as health and recreation. If you have the opportunity to do this at least partially where you are, do not miss it. Try to survive as much as possible from the current situation in order to gain strength for the future - the future that you really want and will definitely achieve!
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