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Canadians and different ways of thinking in the US

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Canada
Timeline

First, a bit of my background. After the man who became my husband and I developed a relationship online and met in a neutral city, I spent 2 months with him in Michigan. That time was mostly for us to decide if we wanted to move forward, but it was also for me to decide if I could be comfortable living in Michigan. The answer was yes for both parts of that, and we've been married and living in Michigan for over 3 years.

I really like living in a small city (compared to a big Canadian city) in this state. People are friendly and genuine, and it didn't feel like a huge adjustment. I'm happy living here. But we had a possible opportunity to move to a different state (Texas) a few months ago, and while we ended up staying here, it got me thinking. I chose to live in Michigan to be with my husband, but could I be just as happy in another part of the US?

While of course there are differences, Michigan isn't hugely different from Canada. But my impression is that the mentality can be quite different for the majority of people in some other states, particularly states further south. The line between religion and everything else might not be as clear, and women might not have the same rights and status in reality despite what the law says. I've gotten that impression from the media, from news articles about how specific situations were handled, from what some people have told me, and from what politicians from some states say. I don't know if that impression is accurate, though.

This isn't a "right" or "wrong" question. Some things do feel wrong to me as a Canadian, but I imagine that to people who think very differently from me, some things would feel wrong if they were in Canada. My question is how you, as a Canadian, feel about the ways of thinking in the part of the US that you live in. Was it an easy adjustment? Did you see things differently after you'd lived there for a while? Are you happy living where you are? In what other parts of the US would you want to or not want to live based on the mentality of that area?


K-1, AOS, ROC
2007, 2009, 2011

Naturalization

2016-05-17 - N-400 package sent

2016-05-21 - NOA1 (IOE receipt number)

2016-06-15 - Biometrics

2016-11-08 - Citizenship interview in Detroit: approved
2016-12-16 - Oath ceremony

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Canada
Timeline

I honestly don't think I would be happy living in a big Cdn city!! And here I am in the Washington DC area,lol I find most smaller cities/towns to be a much more relaxed, and that shows in how people interact with others!! My wife knew I wasn't happy here and she has the importunity to travel so we are off to another country this August(Not Canada, and won't say,lol) Life is an adventure. 1 of my co-workers is always saying Texas, this, Texas that, she loves it and misses it a lot!


Canadians Visiting the USA while undergoing the visa process, my free advice:

1) Always tell the TRUTH. never lie to the POE officer

2) Be confident in ur replies

3) keep ur response short and to the point, don't tell ur life story!!

4) look the POE officer in the eye when speaking to them. They are looking for people lieing and have been trained to find them!

5) Pack light! No job resumes with you

6) Bring ties to Canada (letter from employer when ur expected back at work, lease, etc etc)

7) Always be polite, being rude isn't going to get ya anywhere, and could make things worse!!

8) Have a plan in case u do get denied (be polite) It wont harm ur visa application if ur denied,that is if ur polite and didn't lie! Refer to #1

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Filed: Timeline

Well I'm a Canadian living in Georgia for the past 12 years. And I can tell you, I find Atlanta and surrounding areas to be similar in the friendly nature. The part that I cannot get use to is the racism. Growing up in Canada I don't ever recall hearing or seeing anything like I've seen here. I had diverse friends growing up and went to college in Toronto. Even lived in a town of 1500 with only one black family. They were always treated equally.

The other issue in the south, religion. I'm a Christian with an open mind, my fiance was raised Muslim and he too has had open discussions on religion. But the folks here in the bible belt they seem to judge. And quickly.

So to answer your question, huge adjustment in some respects. But I love the friendly town I live in just north of Atlanta. I find it much like the area I grew up in. Change happens all the times and helps us grow. I just take the opportunity to try to affect change on small minded people when I can ;)

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Canada
Timeline

First, a bit of my background. After the man who became my husband and I developed a relationship online and met in a neutral city, I spent 2 months with him in Michigan. That time was mostly for us to decide if we wanted to move forward, but it was also for me to decide if I could be comfortable living in Michigan. The answer was yes for both parts of that, and we've been married and living in Michigan for over 3 years.

I really like living in a small city (compared to a big Canadian city) in this state. People are friendly and genuine, and it didn't feel like a huge adjustment. I'm happy living here. But we had a possible opportunity to move to a different state (Texas) a few months ago, and while we ended up staying here, it got me thinking. I chose to live in Michigan to be with my husband, but could I be just as happy in another part of the US?

While of course there are differences, Michigan isn't hugely different from Canada. But my impression is that the mentality can be quite different for the majority of people in some other states, particularly states further south. The line between religion and everything else might not be as clear, and women might not have the same rights and status in reality despite what the law says. I've gotten that impression from the media, from news articles about how specific situations were handled, from what some people have told me, and from what politicians from some states say. I don't know if that impression is accurate, though.

This isn't a "right" or "wrong" question. Some things do feel wrong to me as a Canadian, but I imagine that to people who think very differently from me, some things would feel wrong if they were in Canada. My question is how you, as a Canadian, feel about the ways of thinking in the part of the US that you live in. Was it an easy adjustment? Did you see things differently after you'd lived there for a while? Are you happy living where you are? In what other parts of the US would you want to or not want to live based on the mentality of that area?

I"ve been in Chicago for over a year now..and to this day i keep annoying my husband at times with "its not like that in Canada, or we dont do that in Canada, and I like the way Canada does it better".

He's learned that i'm still adjusting to alot of differnet things. And hes also learned ther are some things i wont compromise on espeically when it comes to shopping. As for the mentality, i live in an area where there are alot of different ethnic groups, and ironically i'm the minority ( tiny white english girl). Trying to adjust to living in a complex with this many mid easterners mexicans and asians is hard for me. I get constant annoying looks, i've bene yelled at for many things, I've seen people sneer at me and say stuff in other languages. It has brought me to tears many times. To be honest, i'd have to say and my husband commented on it as well, there is so much rudeness here that i have been angry alot, and in some cases i'd say i've become racist in a way. Although he tells me the rudeness is a chicago thing. Also the drivers here are all nutbergers. lol. But the way women seem to be treated here annoys the ** out of me. Like the old adage stay home barefoot and pregnant? yeah that gets thrown at me in many ways...and on more than one occasion my husband has had to stop me from almost punching ppl. So much for being the nice Canadian eh? LOL.

I would imagine any other part of the usa is different in ways too, just like montreal quebec is differnet than Hawekesbury ontario, and i've lived in both places. I grew up in Montreal, but i hated the people and politics there, and being english i hated the french naturally :P. When i moved to Hawkesbury Ontario, (halfway between montreal and ottawa) it was a whole new world. i absolutely adored the area, the peple and hte places. Friendliness and smiling people were everywhere even if you had no idea who they were. In montreal if i said hello to a random person they would give me alook like i was crazy. lol.

Edited by Kimbear

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Filed: Other Country: Canada
Timeline

Well, I do agree with everyone on here, about how small towns in the US are nice and friendly, probably whatever state you're in. However, I'll just say this, the south is very different than the northern states. Racism is a big issue here, and imagine how Texas must be towards hispanics! Also, religion is very intense here, just like tolsab said... I guess it depends where you are exactly, but expect things to be quite different than Michigan!

Am I happy here? Some days are easy, some days are hard. It's better than a couple months ago when I was seriously doubting my decision, but I don't think I'll ever be able to call this 'home', no matter what state we live in. It's home for now I guess! :)


For our detailed K-1, AOS and ROC journey, see the "about me" page on our profile!

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I went to school in a southern town in Virginia and loved it! Then I moved to Washington, DC and (am getting better) but still don't like it! I'd move back to Canada in a heartbeat :) I grew up in decent sized towns in Ontario, but nothing close to Toronto, so Washington, DC takes some getting used to. I definitely miss the small town mentality!


***Removing Conditions***

Submitted I-751: March 4, 2011

Check cashed: March 10, 2011

NOA1: March 8, 2011

Biometrics Appt: April 21, 2011

Early Bio Walk-in: April 7, 2011

Approved: September 7, 2011

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Canada
Timeline

Texas is Texas. You either love it or hate it. Its hot. Its really hot.

As far as the area goes, you have all kinds of nationalities. Im in Dallas/Ft Worth Metroplex which is HUGE to my wife who is from Winnipeg.

In the city you will meet all types, and sure you can find racists, but more often then not you wont. And no one is going to say "OMG a Canadian, we hate you."

You can always go to Austin, where you will find a mix of everything and the nice younger forward thinking crowd.

Houston and El Paso are just kinda ick.

Really we got everything you need here, which is good, cause its like a full days drive to at least 3 of the 4 borders from most places!

I prefer living in the Suburbs to the city. You got everything you need without the drama and cost of downtown. I am not a country boy by any means.

If a job presented itself I would move to Washington, Oregon, or Colorado in a heartbeat.

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Filed: Citizen (pnd) Country: Canada
Timeline

Texas is Texas. You either love it or hate it. Its hot. Its really hot.

As far as the area goes, you have all kinds of nationalities. Im in Dallas/Ft Worth Metroplex which is HUGE to my wife who is from Winnipeg.

In the city you will meet all types, and sure you can find racists, but more often then not you wont. And no one is going to say "OMG a Canadian, we hate you."

You can always go to Austin, where you will find a mix of everything and the nice younger forward thinking crowd.

Houston and El Paso are just kinda ick.

Really we got everything you need here, which is good, cause its like a full days drive to at least 3 of the 4 borders from most places!

I prefer living in the Suburbs to the city. You got everything you need without the drama and cost of downtown. I am not a country boy by any means.

If a job presented itself I would move to Washington, Oregon, or Colorado in a heartbeat.

Hell, I'm debating on leaving Colorado to move to Texas. Actually my relatives are in Dallas and Austin and I have friends in College Station and San Antonio and stuff. The only thing I don't like about it is the humidity in the summer. Dry heat is fine with me and I'm great when it's over 100, but the damn humidity sucks.

And yes I agree with Hell Paso and Houston being ick.

But really Texas is so big and there's so much to do and so different depending on which part you're in...


I'm just a wanderer in the desert winds...

Timeline

1997

Oct - Job offer in US

Nov - Received my TN-1 to be authorized to work in the US

Nov - Moved to US

1998-2001

Recieved 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th TN

2002

May - Met future wife at arts fest

Nov - Recieved 6th TN

2003

Nov - Recieved 7th TN

Jul - Our Wedding

Aug - Filed for AOS

Sep - Recieved EAD

Sep - Recieved Advanced Parole

2004

Jan - Interview, accepted for Green Card

Feb - Green Card Arrived in mail

2005

Oct - I-751 sent off

2006

Jan - 10 year Green Card accepted

Mar - 10 year Green Card arrived

Oct - Filed N-400 for Naturalization

Nov - Biometrics done

Nov - Just recieved Naturalization Interview date for Jan.

2007

Jan - Naturalization Interview Completed

Feb - Oath Letter recieved

Feb - Oath Ceremony

Feb 21 - Finally a US CITIZEN (yay)

THE END

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Canada
Timeline

After almost 4 yrs I have come to the conclusion there will be some things I'll always find different. I just accept them and move on (but some days I have a nice pi$$y day and mope around). Racism is common (as are raging stereotypes) here in Northern Virginia. I have to say that as a mother of a mixed race child, it's not a treat. My daughter is 19½ and I know that she has had a hard time fitting in...being mixed here is different then be mixed and from outside Toronto...unless you live it, it's hard to see that difference.

I have a few things I'd change - who knows, maybe someday I'll run for governor of Virginia - if Arnold can, so can I (PS - and I won't have any 'love children' either, my eggs are too old... lol )


Wiz(USC) and Udella(Cdn & USC!)

Naturalization

02/22/11 - Filed

02/28/11 - NOA

03/28/11 - FP

06/17/11 - status change - scheduled for interview

06/20?/11 - received physical interview letter

07/13/11 - Interview in Fairfax,VA - easiest 10 minutes of my life

07/19/11 - Oath ceremony in Fairfax, VA

******************

Removal of Conditions

12/1/09 - received at VSC

12/2/09 - NOA's for self and daughter

01/12/10 - Biometrics completed

03/15/10 - 10 Green Card Received - self and daughter

******************

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Jeff came here to New Hampshire from Montreal this past January. We have talked about the move on different occasions and he seems to be fitting in well here. I always try to "check in" from time to time to see if he's feeling any adjustment anxiety and it really doesn't seem to bother him. We are lucky to live about 4 hours away from Montreal so we are able to visit as often as we need to. I know that he is at a point in his life when he really wanted to get away from his family and be out on his own. I think that desire helps him to adjust better. He calls them from time to time and talks to them on MSN as well.

Some of things he does comment on is that we basically live in the middle of no where. You can't just walk to the corner store or get in the car and drive 5 minutes to grab something quick to eat. Everything is a bit of a project here and is at least 20 minutes to really get anywhere by car. He used to live outside of Montreal where everything was pretty centralized. It isn't really like that in NH at all. He also said it's a little weird adjusting to English all the time. He's perfectly fluent and doesn't have an accent at all. He does say sometimes he just expects people to start speaking French. He does miss French a little but overall he said it isn't too bad.

I think NH isn't too different from Canada as far as friendly people are concerned. Jeff is really great at adjusting and I think that getting a job right away has really helped to ease the transition. I know when he started looking for a job he was just out of his mind with boredom. I always tease him about being a sociopath and that's why he can adjust so easily and think that it isn't really a big deal. Another thing that sticks out for me is that in Canada I find families to live a lot closer together than in the US. Jeff's family was very close, everyone within a 45 minute drive of each other. Family is also more important too. Down here, my family is scattered all across the US from here in NH all the way out to Arizona. Because I rarely see some of them and we don't always spend family holidays together family is not as important to me as it is to Jeff. Whenever we visit his family, we have to make sure we see EVERYONE and that can take up a lot of time.

We do have a lot of conversations about the American way vs. the Canadian way. Some things are definitely different, some better some worse. I think if I had the opportunity I would want to move up to Montreal. I think if Jeff had the choice he'd probably want to stay down here. lol

J-


Our Story

03-05-2008: Met Online (World of Warcraft)

04-19-2008: Met in Person and Started Dating

04-19-2009: Engaged

08-07-2009: Married at Laconia, New Hampshire

USCIS

10-21-2009: Mailed I-130

10-26-2009: NOA1

05-17-2010: NOA2

Our I-130 was approved in 203 days from our NOA1 date

NVC

05-25-2010: Called NVC to receive case # and submit emails

06-01-2010: AOS Fee Paid

06-09-2010: Opt-in accepted

06-16-2010: E-mailed I-864 package

06-23-2010: IV Fee Paid

07-12-2010: E-mailed DS230 package

08-04-2010: Email from NVC - Case Completed

NVC process completed in 71 days

CONSULATE

12-07-2011: Received consulate interview date

12-13-2010: Medical Exam (Medisys)

01-07-2011: Interview - APPROVED!

POE & POST INTERVIEW

01-16-2011: POE Highgate Springs, VT

01-22-2011: SSN Card Received

01-24-2011: Receipt Letter Arrived

02-10-2011: Biometrics Appointment (uncommon for CR-1)

03-15-2011: Welcome Notice Received

03-19-2011: 2 Year Green Card Arrived

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Another Canadian/Michigander here....

I like where I live, small town, but not far from bigger towns/cities. In the country, which is new for me! I grew up just outside of Toronto, so its a little quieter here.

I'm glad I live close enough that I can drive to see family/friends every couple months or so.

And ya, not a huge culture shock moving here, but they DO have an accent (I don't care what they say!!!)

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As ex-Canadian (and not by birth), I'll chime in. I was able to adjust easily to Atlanta from Calgary (where I lived ages 8 to 30), so it should be even easier for one born in Canada given that "cultures" are already rather similar.


2005/07/10 I-129F filed for Pras

2005/11/07 I-129F approved, forwarded to NVC--to Chennai Consulate 2005/11/14

2005/12/02 Packet-3 received from Chennai

2005/12/21 Visa Interview Date

2006/04/04 Pras' entry into US at DTW

2006/04/15 Church Wedding at Novi (Detroit suburb), MI

2006/05/01 AOS Packet (I-485/I-131/I-765) filed at Chicago

2006/08/23 AP and EAD approved. Two down, 1.5 to go

2006/10/13 Pras' I-485 interview--APPROVED!

2006/10/27 Pras' conditional GC arrives -- .5 to go (2 yrs to Conditions Removal)

2008/07/21 I-751 (conditions removal) filed

2008/08/22 I-751 biometrics completed

2009/06/18 I-751 approved

2009/07/03 10-year GC received; last 0.5 done!

2009/07/23 Pras files N-400

2009/11/16 My 46TH birthday, Pras N-400 approved

2010/03/18 Pras' swear-in

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As long as the LORD's beside me, I don't care if this road ever ends.

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Canada
Timeline

Hell, I'm debating on leaving Colorado to move to Texas. Actually my relatives are in Dallas and Austin and I have friends in College Station and San Antonio and stuff. The only thing I don't like about it is the humidity in the summer. Dry heat is fine with me and I'm great when it's over 100, but the damn humidity sucks.

And yes I agree with Hell Paso and Houston being ick.

But really Texas is so big and there's so much to do and so different depending on which part you're in...

I would never in my life leave Colorado for Texas. Flat, no mountains, the heat. Just plain ugly compared to Colorado!

But if you want to trade ill give ya my job and apartment in DFW!

And most of the time its Dry Heat. But we have had some crappy humidity lately. It doesn't have anything on the humidity in Louisiana though, that place sucks.

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Filed: TN Visa Country: Canada
Timeline

I think I'm qualified to help out a bit here.

I'm Canadian and have been living in "ick" Houston for six years. I live a relatively sheltered life in that my wife and I love being home. We work together so we spend most of our time with our colleagues as friends. That being said, the people I know here are kind, gentle, caring folks. I have no issues at all.

The comments earlier about the bible belt, judgements, and racism are true yet not. I go to a nice church with good people running it. I don't SEE first hand these judgements. I also live in a pretty mixed suburb of Houston, so I don't SEE the racism either.

Do you see what I'm getting at here? Those negatives certainly exist here in Houston. But with the way I live my life, I am almost never subjected to them. I could watch TV or read about them and get myself riled up, sure. Especially the racism thing, it doesn't really exist in Canada (at the very least nowhere near as much as here). But do I see it? Nope. I pretty much have never even heard a first-hand racist comment here. In six years.

Every place has their negatives. It's simply how much you want to focus on them. Can we honestly say Canada doesn't have some pretty bad negatives too? But because we grew up there, we are simply used to them. We don't focus on them.

I try and do the same thing here. I don't focus on the bad.

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Canada
Timeline

My brother just moved from Canada to Austin. He's a somewhat left-liberal Canadian, and he says it's great. He described Austin as not so much a part of Texas but "a piece of Seattle that broke off and, kind of like a blood clot, floated around until it lodged in the center of Texas." :) In a good way, mind you.


DON'T PANIC

"It says wonderful things about the two countries [Canada and the US] that neither one feels itself being inundated by each other's immigrants."

-Douglas Coupland

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