Five tips for those who can not return to their homeland
Emigration, of course, is a certain stress for each person, regardless of his personal desire to move to another country and knowledge of the language. However, most expatriates know that in a pinch they always have the opportunity to return home. Others feel themselves to those who understand that in the near future they are guaranteed not to see their homeland. We are talking about people who have applied for political asylum, are going to do it and even have already received it.
So, not everyone knows that if you applied for asylum, you will not be able to return to your country for quite a long time, even if you have a serious need for such a return, and the grounds for which you were afraid to return home will no longer exist. . This includes both waiting time status, and at least five years after you have already received the coveted refuge and green card.
According to immigration specialists, a visit to the country of persecution can serve as a basis for depriving refugee status and a green card obtained on its basis, even if the reason for such a visit was a significant change in the situation in your country. Thus, you will have to refrain from visiting the homeland until obtaining US citizenship. Those who feel that they are in real danger, prefer not to return home after receiving citizenship.
It is for this category of people that I allow myself some observations and even advice (or consolation) based on personal experience.
1. First, most often such people never planned to emigrate, so one of the first feelings that appear at the beginning of emigration can be the feeling: “I did not choose this"And" I did not want this. " It often happens that your subsequent life in a new place depends on how you cope with this feeling. If you begin to perceive yourself solely as a victim of circumstances (no one argues, terrible circumstances), you will be unbearably hard in a new place. Everything here will seem strange and inconvenient to you, everything will lose in comparison with the past life - the one in which even the walls helped, the whole world around spoke your native language and was filled with close people.
But you can, on the contrary, turn this sensation into favor. No, of course, you should not deceive yourself and inspire in yourself something that was not. But paradoxically - sometimes the fact that you did not choose emigration can help to accept it more easily, because it emphasizes it. inevitability and naturalness.
For example, you didn’t choose many other things in life, right? You did not choose parents, snowfall, early darkness and ice in winter, didn’t choose any diseases, skin or hair color. We cannot prevent natural disasters and other misfortunes, but we learn to accept them and live with them. Approximately also with forced emigration. The fact that you did not choose it means only that it has become an inevitable phenomenon of your life, like climate change, a hurricane, or a disease. She must be accepted and lived with her, because there is no other way.
2. Accordingly, forced emigration changes the attitude to the host country. You start to treat it much like your own country much earlier, because you currently have no other country. This is especially the case if the host country has agreed to give you shelter, and at the moment it is the only place where you can receive permanent documents. You begin to integrate more quickly into its society and live with its problems. Of course, to love a country does not mean to be a “hurray-patriot”, but even your criticism begins to be constructive. In the end, you live here.
3. Refugees almost always change attitudes and to the historic homeland. Of course, you will forever remain the carrier of some features of the Russian mentality, cultural code and spiritual organization. Nobody calls to forget the language and culture, and it is simply impossible to do. But gradually you begin to perceive it as your mentality, and not as a Russian mentality in general.
With forced emigration, the transition of the perception of Americans from “us and them” to “me and them” occurs much faster than with the usual one. You remain yourself, but you no longer feel like a part of Russia, which, in principle, is quite logical. Agree, it is difficult to perceive oneself as an element of something, the connection with which is already broken.
4. Accordingly, you are faster interned to local environment - because, as already mentioned, you simply have no choice. In this case, you should not believe those who assure that you will never become yours here. Maybe this is true about some other countries, but not about America. The fact is that in the USA it’s not worth the task of becoming for someone their. The country of emigrants is unique in that everyone can become an American here, while remaining By yourself. If you speak the language of this country, find your place, work, friends (believe me, all this can be found in the end), if you love this country and abide by the law, nothing more is required of you.
Although, of course, you still have to change, learn and adapt to local rules and business etiquette. Your inability to emigrate is no longer a excusable “difference of mentalities”, but your personal problem, which no one but you can solve. It will be difficult, very difficult, because at the moments of such “breaking” of habitual patterns of behavior and stereotypes you will remember vividly that you didn’t choose this, and you’ll feel sorry for yourself even more. This is natural and normal. You are not to blame for the evil that has broken your life. It is still more senseless to blame yourself for the fact that you once decided to do the right thing at the expense of yourself. But it is very important to understand that these “breaks” are more concerned with external things. In the end, we also have to change the usual route when the road is covered with snow. Your essence will remain the same. It will no longer be Russian or American, but only yours.
5. Nostalgia. It is also encountered during forced emigration, but it has a slightly different character. This is not a homesickness, but nostalgia. With all this destructive feeling, it is still somewhat more constructive than just homesickness. At least, this kind of nostalgia cannot “pull you down” anywhere — you know all too well that this past no longer exists. It is not only for you - in principle it is not on the map. If your home country had not changed beyond recognition, you would not have to leave it, right? So, the past remains only where it is supposed to be - in the past.
Another thing is that it is often psychologically more difficult for a refugee to integrate his old life into a new one. If a person left, for example, on a work visa, work in the United States is perceived for him as an organic continuation of what he did at home - the continuation of experience, the expansion of horizons, and further professional growth. But in the case of a dramatic break with the former country, past life is perceived as something cut off.
Unlike "voluntary" immigrants, you regret not that you left, but that you did not do it before. You may feel ashamed that you have spent years on what was ultimately unnecessary.
However, over time, this extreme will be erased. Your past life is a part of your experience and personality. If you had not lived it, you would not have become what you are, and then, most likely, at the crucial moment you would not be in America at all. Already for this it is worth saying thanks to your past.
But in general, the most important and universal advice is to try to love the host country. It is not so difficult, especially for a person who is used to living in one country, trying to make it better and not thinking about leaving. But you have always been just such a person, right?
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