I have been living abroad for about a year and a half now. Within that time, I have had the chance to talk to many Filipinos about different things, including their biggest pet peeve about living abroad.
Perhaps it’s safe to say that the saddest thing about being an expat is when you have people in your life who are supposed to care about you but instead, you find yourself losing connection with them. It’s worse when you have family or friends who only remember you when they need something, most often money. No hi’s or hello’s for months at a time, no how are you’s, then Bam! a random call out of nowhere asking for cash. I’ve heard this story so many times and I’ve seen it happen, too. And I can tell you that perhaps nothing hurts more than this – to be thought of by your loved ones as nothing more than a human ATM.
Thankfully, this is not something that I have experienced personally. I count myself very fortunate that the important people in my life – my parents, my relatives and my closest friends – have all been very good about keeping in touch with me. And I would like to take this chance to thank them for keeping me and my family in their thoughts. Thanks for not cutting me out of your lives!
My wish at this time is for all Filipino expats who are feeling neglected to finally make that re-connection with their loved ones. Just a little bit of effort will go a long way.