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robhostein

When people find out you were not born here

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8 minutes ago, robhostein said:

Every single time I talk to someone, either I recently met them or I've known them for months, the moment they find out I was born in another country, suddenly I'm a different person to them.

 

They're shocked that I don't have an accent. That I speak such good English. They start asking me questions about my country of origin. If I've ever been there since I left, what languages I speak, if I want to go back. They start talking about political and economic issues about the country as if I still live there. They start recommending me to restaurants and stores that sell food and other items from the county.

 

I mean basically, as soon as they find out you were not born here, your identity to them is no longer "Rob, the guy I met at the library," but instead becomes "Rob, the guy from Africa" or "Rob, the guy from Honduras." And so every conversation you have they have to bring up something about your country. I mean, this is all fine and good for a few hours, but when its been days, weeks...

 

I've been here since before I hit puberty. If I wanted to go to my country, I'd have done it years ago and not stayed here. If I wanted food from my country, again, I wouldn't be here.

 

Lol I can relate in a way although I take it as compliment that they couldn't hear my accent. They also asked when did I learn to speak English or if we speak English in my country. I think people just get interested. I feel the same way when I meet people who are from France and speak french or other countries.  I'm sorry you feel that way though. 

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4 minutes ago, POA said:

 

Lol I can relate in a way although I take it as compliment that they couldn't hear my accent. They also asked when did I learn to speak English or if we speak English in my country. I think people just get interested. I feel the same way when I meet people who are from France and speak french or other countries.  I'm sorry you feel that way though. 

Oh, I definitely also take it as a compliment about the accent. Although, whatever accent I had, probably faded away when I was 5.

 

And bless them, for being so interested in the country. I get it's fascinating for them to meet a foreigner. But, unfortunately, I just can't be their tour guide.


10-year green card received: 2004-02-01

N-400 Filed Online:  2018-11-28

N-400 Biometrics Appointment: 2018-12-20

N-400 Notice of Interview: 2019-01-04

N-400 Interview Appointment: 2019-02-21

N-400 Application Approved: 2019-02-21

N-400 Notice of Oath Ceremony: 2019-04-11

N-400 Oath Ceremony: 2019-04-18

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Just now, robhostein said:

Oh, I definitely also take it as a compliment about the accent. Although, whatever accent I had, probably faded away when I was 5.

 

And bless them, for being so interested in the country. I get it's fascinating for them to meet a foreigner. But, unfortunately, I just can't be their tour guide.

Oh lol now I get what you mean! Specially for you, you don't even probably remember much about it.

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8 minutes ago, geowrian said:

I concur - it may be annoying that suddenly you feel more like a generic person of your nationality, but I really don't think most people mean it as anything bad.

Oh, yes, I understand completely, they're always very nice and polite about it. And I entertain them by answering their questions as best as I can. Though, some questions I don't have enough knowledge to answer. Which is a sad consequence of me being here for so long.

 

3 minutes ago, millefleur said:

Honestly, they're probably doing this out of sheer curiosity and trying to be polite by offering recommendations?

 

Everywhere else I've been, foreigners tend to get questions...ranging from politely inquisitive to judgemental, depending on the region.

I hope I don't encounter the judgmental kind.


10-year green card received: 2004-02-01

N-400 Filed Online:  2018-11-28

N-400 Biometrics Appointment: 2018-12-20

N-400 Notice of Interview: 2019-01-04

N-400 Interview Appointment: 2019-02-21

N-400 Application Approved: 2019-02-21

N-400 Notice of Oath Ceremony: 2019-04-11

N-400 Oath Ceremony: 2019-04-18

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Just now, robhostein said:

I hope I don't encounter the judgmental kind. 

I hope so too.

 

10 minutes ago, robhostein said:

And bless them, for being so interested in the country. I get it's fascinating for them to meet a foreigner. But, unfortunately, I just can't be their tour guide.

You could just be honest with them and say you have your reasons for not really wanting to talk about it?


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10 minutes ago, POA said:

Oh lol now I get what you mean! Specially for you, you don't even probably remember much about it.

Exactly! I remember the houses I grew up in, the schools I went to, the kids I played with in school, and that's about it.


10-year green card received: 2004-02-01

N-400 Filed Online:  2018-11-28

N-400 Biometrics Appointment: 2018-12-20

N-400 Notice of Interview: 2019-01-04

N-400 Interview Appointment: 2019-02-21

N-400 Application Approved: 2019-02-21

N-400 Notice of Oath Ceremony: 2019-04-11

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2 minutes ago, robhostein said:

Exactly! I remember the houses I grew up in, the schools I went to, the kids I played with in school, and that's about it.

If I were you, I would probably say something like this, yeah I wasn't born here but moved here when I was very young and don't remember anything. lol. In my case, I just moved here 5 years ago an already an adult so I know a lot.

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Posted (edited)

I recently got my EAD, and every interview I have the first question they ask is "why the heck did you trade in the Netherlands for the USA?!" (so much for patriotism lol) I don't really mind, I take it as a compliment.

Although today at work, I couldn't read someone's handwriting and I asked what it said. My co worker read it (it said passed away, but it looked at pet something) and then they asked if I've ever heard of that word.... I know she meant it really well, but it made me feel so dumb. I am fluent in English. So that kinda sucked, but maybe I'm just overthinking lol.

Edited by C90

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4 minutes ago, millefleur said:

You could just be honest with them and say you have your reasons for not really wanting to talk about it?

Most I've ever done is give them subtle hints through my answers. Some people pick up on it. I guess they realize that I've been here for so many years that my country of birth is in the past. But I suppose being more direct couldn't hurt.


10-year green card received: 2004-02-01

N-400 Filed Online:  2018-11-28

N-400 Biometrics Appointment: 2018-12-20

N-400 Notice of Interview: 2019-01-04

N-400 Interview Appointment: 2019-02-21

N-400 Application Approved: 2019-02-21

N-400 Notice of Oath Ceremony: 2019-04-11

N-400 Oath Ceremony: 2019-04-18

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5 minutes ago, POA said:

If I were you, I would probably say something like this, yeah I wasn't born here but moved here when I was very young and don't remember anything. lol. In my case, I just moved here 5 years ago an already an adult so I know a lot.

You know, it's funny. I've met people where I've said those exact words, and they still keep asking me questions. Guess it takes a bit of hammering that point in. Or, if I'm lucky, they just naturally have another topic they needed to talk about.


10-year green card received: 2004-02-01

N-400 Filed Online:  2018-11-28

N-400 Biometrics Appointment: 2018-12-20

N-400 Notice of Interview: 2019-01-04

N-400 Interview Appointment: 2019-02-21

N-400 Application Approved: 2019-02-21

N-400 Notice of Oath Ceremony: 2019-04-11

N-400 Oath Ceremony: 2019-04-18

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1 minute ago, robhostein said:

You know, it's funny. I've met people where I've said those exact words, and they still keep asking me questions. Guess it takes a bit of hammering that point in. Or, if I'm lucky, they just naturally have another topic they needed to talk about.

 

Funny! Though it's hard to prevent them from asking without sounding rude. 

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3 minutes ago, robhostein said:

Most I've ever done is give them subtle hints through my answers. Some people pick up on it. I guess they realize that I've been here for so many years that my country of birth is in the past. But I suppose being more direct couldn't hurt.

I'm a big fan of being direct..again, this is probably a regional thing in the US but some people might be taken aback by directness whereas in other regions its the norm (NYC, for example, heh). I think people would totally understand....hammer it in if needed, but gently! I honestly find it rude if a person keeps asking about something that the other party clearly isn't that into discussing...enthusiasm needs to be toned down at times, that can be hard for some Americans, lol.


03639.png                  

 🇷🇺  CR-1 via DCF in Moscow* (2016-2017) 🇺🇸 Info about my DCF experience here and here.

Spoiler

26-Jul-2016: Married abroad (USC + Russian husband) 👩‍❤️‍👨
21-Dec-2016: I-130 filed at Moscow USCIS field office*
29-Dec-2016: I-130 approved! Yay! 🎊 

17-Jan-2017: Case number received

21-Mar-2017: Medical Exam completed

24-Mar-2017: Interview at Embassy - approved! 🎉

29-Mar-2017: CR-1 Visa received (via mail)

02-Apr-2017: USCIS Immigrant (GC) Fee paid

28-Jun-2017: Port of Entry @ PDX 🛩️

21-Jul-2017: No SSN after three weeks; applied in person at the SSA

22-Jul-2017: GC arrived in the mail 📬

31-Jul-2017: SSN arrived via mail, hurrah!

 

*NOTE: The USCIS Field Office in Moscow is now CLOSED.

 

I-90 GC Replacment (for Erroneous GC)

22-Jul-2017: GC arrives in the mail – error in middle name 😕

01-Aug-2017: Sent in I-90 online via website

05-Aug-2017: Biometrics scheduled

23-Aug-2017: Biometrics done @ USCIS office; told to keep GC!

16-Jul-2018: RFE for original card!! 🤬

31-Jul-2018: USCIS Appointment at local field office..

22-Aug-2018: Mailed GC back to USCIS in response to RFE

29-Aug-2018: GC received by USCIS

17-Sep-2018: Received CORRECTED GC in the mail! Finally!! 😂

 

📑 I-751 Removal of Conditions - NBC (Apr-2019-???) 📝 MSC I-751 filers: Track your case here!

Spoiler

28-Jun-2019: Conditional GC expires

30-Mar-2019: Eligible to apply for ROC

01-Apr-2019: ROC in the mail to Phoenix AZ lockbox! 📫

03-Apr-2019: ROC packet delivered to lockbox

09-Apr-2019: USCIS cashed check

09-Apr-2019: Case number received via text - MSC 📲

12-Apr-2019: Extension letter arrives via mail

19-Apr-2019: Biometrics letter arrives via mail

30-Apr-2019: Biometrics appointment at local office  

??-???-2019: TBA...

30-Mar-2020: N-400 early filing window opens! 🇺🇸

 

 

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