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Are there any communities (other than VJ) for expats/immigrants to the US? Or international couples in the US? Particularly from Japan?

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: Japan

This is a huge longshot but I may as well ask. There's plenty of communities/groups/forums on the internet for American or European expats who move to other countries (especially Asia); unfortunately as those groups are geared towards that group they're not keen or friendly on entertaining questions regarding those in the opposite situation. My wife is thankfully now in the U.S. with me and we're doing pretty well, waiting for the next step in the immigration process. However now we got a kid on the way and there's certain things that we wish we could discuss with other couples like us who have raised or are raising their kids in the U.S. (for example citizenship issues on the Japanese side, international schools, medical records etc etc). This has so far proven to be impossible for me to find. I suspect its probably because the ones that exist are run by the immigrant and in Japanese rather than English. However if someone happens to know of a group like this - or if you're in the same boat yourself, I would greatly appreciate being pointed in the right direction. I appreciate that people here are much more friendly and helpful to those found in toxic expat communities of other countries - speaks volumes to the kind of people the U.S. is exporting around the world.


Thanks in advance

K-1 Fiancé Visa

01/17/2018: I-129F Sent

01/19/2018: NOA1 Received

08/03/2018: NOA2 Received

11/01/2018: K-1 Visa Interview

12/12/2018: Married in U.S.

Adjustment of Status

02/01/2019: I-485, EAD and AP Filed

02/15/2019: I-485, EAD and AP NOA1

08/07/2019: EAD and AP Approved

10/29/2019: Interview for AOS


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Filed: AOS (apr) Country: Philippines

Probably. FB is known to have a lot of custom groups.

08/15/2014 : Met Online

06/30/2016 : I-129F Packet Sent

11/08/2016 : Interview - APPROVED!

11/23/2016 : POE - Dallas, Texas

From sending of I-129F petiton to POE - 146 days.


02/03/2017 - Married 

02/24/2017 - AOS packet sent

06/01/2017 - EAD/AP Combo Card Received in mail

12/06/2017 - I-485 Approved

12/14/2017 - Green Card Received in mail - No Interview



brickleberry GIF they see me rolling college football GIF by ESPN  

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: China

I'm actually interested in something like that as well. More for my wife to use and read.


There's the Japan-America Society and other local (for me) groups. The Japanese Consulate website also lists events which could help you meet and connect with others in your situation.





I-130                                                                 I-129F



Mailed: Mar. 9, 2019 (Phoenix LB)              Aug. 9,  2019

Delivered: Mar. 12, 2019                               Aug. 12, 2019

NOA1/PD: Mar. 15,  2019 (LIN)                   Aug. 15,  2019

NOA2: Sep. 24, 2019 - Approved                 Sep. 24, 2019 - Denied 

I-130 sent to NVC: Oct. 8, 2019

Received NVC: Oct. 18, 2019

NVC Case#: Nov. 09, 2019 (Assigned to China, should be Japan )

AOS Submitted: Nov. 18, 2019

IV Submitted:  Dec. 23, 2019

AOS/IV Approved: Jan. 16, 2020 

Interview Scheduled: Jan. 23, 2020


Request location change: Mid Nov. 2019 --> Feb. 21, 2020

Contacted my Rep's for help: Feb. 5, 2020 - Rep contacted Guangzhou & Tokyo. 

Response 1: Feb. 11, 2020 - Guangzhou gave copy/paste info to my Rep's office.

Response 2: Feb. 18, 2020 - Tokyo Embassy - Requested transfer fm China - Case in Administrative Processing 

Response 3: Feb. 21, 2020 - Transfer complete; New interview scheduled.


Interview Date: Mar. 2, 2020 - Tokyo Embassy 

Interview Result: Approved

Visa Issued: Mar. 4, 2020

Visa in hand: Mar. 6, 2020


Time: ~359 Days from start to finish 

  Stupid COVID-19 delaying travel to the US :clock:


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Filed: Citizen (pnd) Country: Russia

Try facebook, reddit, meetup.com...you could even try looking on YouTube, see if you can find relevant videos, maybe reach out to the creators if they are active on YT.


NYC has a huge Japanese community...I would assume LA does too. Try looking into local Japanese grocery stores and see if they have flyers/event posters for community events. You may have to resort to networking in person rather than online but since you are in a big city, it shouldn't be too hard.


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


26-Jul-2016: Married abroad in Russia (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 (Apr 2019-Oct 2019) 📝 Filed via mail, processed by MSC & passed interview


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

26-Jun-2019: Case ready to be scheduled for interview 

04-Sep-2019: Interview was scheduled - letter to arrive in mail

09-Sep-2019: Interview letter arrived in the mail! ✉️

17-Oct-2019: Interview scheduled @ local USCIS  

18-Oct-2019: Interview cancelled & notice ordered*

18-Oct-2019: Case was approved! 🎉

22-Oct-2019: Card was mailed to me 📨

23-Oct-2019: Card was picked by USPS 

25-Oct-2019: 10 year GC Card received in mail 📬


*I don't understand this status because we DID have an interview!


🇺🇸 N-400 Application for Naturalization (Mar 2020-????) 🛂 Online filers note: Use INTERNET EXPLORER! Other browsers may not work!


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

01-Apr-2020: Filed N-400 online 💻 

02-Apr-2020: NOA 1 - Receipt No. received online 📃

07-Apr-2020: NOA 1 - Receipt No. received via mail

05-May-2020: Application transferred to another USCIS field office for review*

??-???-????: TBA... 


*NOTE: Moved to another state in May.



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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Japan

I saw your post on r/japan. That group is mostly weebs outside Japan who don’t have any specific knowledge about Japan (with some exceptions). r/japanlife is specifically for grumpy expats inside Japan. And r/japancicrclejerk is for bitter alcoholic expats who’ve given up on life. 



In addition to what’s been mentioned, many cities have a Japanese supplementary school (補習授業校) so you might check into that. If you live in a larger city there might be a Japanese supermarket. There aren’t any communities dedicated to American/English-speaking spouses of Japanese as far as I know, because as you’ve noticed that’s not how it works. Honestly unless your Japanese language skills are quite advanced you should let your wife handle the JP baby registration, JP passport, etc., and let her pick things up through her own social network. Having a kid is exciting (congrats!) and the first impulse is to do everything at once but the first rule of parenthood is to relax :) You'll be fine. 

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Filed: AOS (pnd) Country: Japan

Do sites written in Japanese count?

These bulletin boards seem pretty active.

If you can go to Japanese markets like Mitsuwa or Nijiya, there are some free magazine/newspaper with a lot of info catered toward Japanese in US too. (also written in Japanese)
Congratulations on your baby by the way! 

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: Japan

@nakuke One more thing to keep in mind, a few years from now. Japanese schools basically can’t refuse to take kids so you can potentially send your kid to school in Japan for a couple months every summer. There’s a super cute little girl who shows up in my daughter’s class in June/July every year during the US summer holiday.

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