Thursday, July 14, 2011

Will Miss #341 - living far from family (the good)

Most people have complicated relationships with their families. In my case, that is even more so than many others. My relationship with my mother is especially bad, and the truth is that we haven't spoken in over 15 years, though we are each informed about each other through my sister who lives with my parents and who I am in almost daily contact with. This hasn't happened because of any sort of falling out, and if I needed help, I could go back home without any ifs, ands or buts. The silence between us is because living all the way over here means I have very little to offer her and she doesn't care about my life if there's nothing in it for her. You'd be surprised how many families take little to no interest in the lives of their family members abroad. It's a common complaint amongst women who marry Japanese men and I've read many tales of disappointment in "gaijin wife" blogs. Our families live in their own "bubble" and our lack of interaction with them means our respective spheres of existence overlap too little for them to relate to us in many cases. I don't say this to be critical, but merely as a reflection of the reality of the situation.

This isn't a confessional about the hardship of my upbringing or problems with various relatives because that'd take a whole blog all by itself, but let's say that one thing I will miss is the gigantic buffer zone between me and people who may expect certain things of me while expecting less of themselves.