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laylalex

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About laylalex

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  • Gender
    Female
  • City
    Berkeley
  • State
    California

Immigration Info

  • Immigration Status
    L-1 Visa
  • Country
    Scotland

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  1. Aw, I really feel for you. ❤️ I have the flipside of your experience -- I went to the UK to be with my husband (now ex-husband -- we were fiances only back then) as a six-month trial run before we decided where to live. Please don't take this the wrong way, but I hated it! I had lived over there for almost a year on a junior year abroad, but it was a COMPLETELY different experience just being over there and having nothing to do (obviously I couldn't work, I was a tourist). When I was a student, I had classes and classmates and homework and projects and a big social life, and all of a sudden I had one person who was the focus of my whole life. It was better when we were in London because I had friends there and obviously (as you know) there is so much to do and places to explore, but I also spent a considerable amount of time out in Suffolk in the countryside, living with his parents. It was... not great. I am a city girl and I went a little crazy during the times I was out doing nothing but going for long walks down to the sea. It didn't help that his work took him away traveling frequently (which is why I ended up in Suffolk, he was worried I'd lose my mind living alone but honestly I think I would have been better off in London during those times!). Learn from my mistakes! I would have done better by speaking up for myself and making it clear what I did and did not want to do to cope with the feelings of loneliness I had. Living with his parents for example was not a good idea in reality, though it seemed like a good idea on paper. After the first horrible time, I should have said no instead of letting it happen again (and again 🙄). I didn't make it clear to him how much I needed him to be around more for me (this was an ongoing problem even after he settled in the US). Keeping the lines of communication clear is so important! Sounds like you have that covered so yay! I also should have made more efforts to take part in local life -- there was a Women's Institute out in the country I could have joined, but I thought they wouldn't want me, and there were ample opportunities to volunteer that I passed by. I was way, WAY too shy and I thought everyone was judging me all the time for my accent. (American accents tend not to create the positive reaction over there as any of the various British accents do over here, in my experience.) I don't regret not making the move over there, but there were so many ways I could have made it easier for myself.
  2. I believe that the OP genuinely thinks he is doing nothing wrong here, but this really does look like indentured servitude from an outsider's perspective. I make minimum wage here, which is $15 an hour (going up to $15.59 next week) and it is NOT a lot of money. I looked up the COL difference between Anchorage and Berkeley and it's only 10% lower there! I am only able to afford living here because I have an independent source of income and get a serious break on my rental unit (it's my father's friend's property). Even if I didn't have to pay room and board, I still don't know how I would squeak by without the outside support I get. You also need to factor in what paying someone a low rate can do for a person's motivation. My ex-husband used to always tell me that money has a way of smoothing out all sorts of unnecessary feelings, and I would say that also applies to working in a job that doesn't have a lot of prestige. If you want someone to be a hard worker, PAY THEM for it. If you can't afford the worker, don't employ them. When you can afford to hire someone, that's the time to bring someone on, in my opinion.
  3. My ex and I went for a K1 over a CR1 because it was important to me to have him here as soon as possible because I missed him so much, and at the time (2010) the K1 was being processed a lot faster than the CR1. He wanted to do the CR1 because he said the process of AOS was going to take too much time, and he wanted to make sure he could keep working (he had a business back in the UK that was seeking to expand over here). Even though we went through AOS very quickly (maybe just under 5 months? it was a long time ago), he was still pretty frustrated and wished he'd put his foot down and insisted on a CR1. It caused some early friction in our marriage, but for me, a K1 made sense at the time. I might think differently now, if only to have spared him the frustration during that time. It's a personal decision for each couple, I think. If your spouse-to-be is likely to feel upset at feeling like their life is on hold, a CR1 makes more sense.
  4. Thank you. We have kind of a messy background in our past -- I was dating my ex in college, then I left him for my current boyfriend, then he dumped me, then I was back with my ex (and we eventually got married), then I got back together with my current boyfriend years later... total mess! I'm pretty open about it because all my friends and family knew both of these guys over the years. It's just when people start talking about adultery that I feel really terrible because we didn't intend that to happen at all.
  5. Haha, we're not quite ready. I need a little bit more time to get over my divorce. I'm just doing my homework now so there are no surprises. 😇
  6. Thank you! So when we do our timeline -- I assume we need to do a timeline when we do AOS? -- it won't be a moral character problem that my boyfriend and I technically started our relationship before I separated from my ex? I'm not saying I look really great here either, but my boyfriend and I had known each other a long time and our friendship kind of morphed into love as my marriage fell apart. I know naturalization is a very long way away, but I am always trying to find out about all the next steps in the process on here.
  7. So I have another question -- my ex and I "bumped" into each other this weekend when I was back in LA, and it was not a good experience. I was down there for a weekend with friends and the hotel was in his neighborhood. Normally I wouldn't expect to see him randomly in a city this big but I'm an idiot and posted on Instagram about where I was staying and going out (so NOT random!). Moral of the story: I'm off social media for a while. 😟 Anyway, he made all sorts of comments about how he could jeopardize my boyfriend's current visa status, not just the possibility that we might adjust from the L1 at some point, including what he says is a moral character issue (adultery). He even said that if my boyfriend and I do get married, and then he eventually goes for naturalization through marriage to me, that the moral character issue could make things "tricky." Someone tell me that my ex is just a jerk trying to mess with my head because this doesn't sound right to me. However, he sent me this article which makes me think maybe it could be an issue https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2001-apr-29-me-56958-story.html It's very old, so I don't know if this is still the case. Sorry, I've been thinking about it nonstop since Sunday afternoon and it's making me extremely worried. I think I'm more worried about the character issue affecting his current visa status and the adjustment than the citizenship because citizenship is years away.
  8. Do you feel like you can have a heart to heart conversation about this? Where you can be completely honest with her about what she needs to do as well? It is a lot of money to come and visit, sure, and also there's her fears, but there's all sorts of difficult and uncomfortable things that we have to do in life to get to where we want to be. ❤️
  9. I moved to the Bay Area! 😅 Seriously, she needs to find some solution on HER side, because from reading on here a visitor visa from Ghana is impossible.
  10. Although I have taken a lorazepam occasionally 🙄, therapy is the way to go. I have a good friend who had a lot of success with getting over her fear of flying through cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).
  11. Even if this is the only way you could be together? My boyfriend (fiance-to-be) and I have discussed what would happen if he has to move back to the UK. I have lived there before and was totally miserable. It was not a place I thought I could live long term (which is why my ex-husband came to the US from there to be with me -- even though we could have had a higher quality of life over there), but I would gladly make the move tomorrow for my boyfriend. I know the UK is not the same as moving to Ghana, but I would seriously question whether I wanted to marry someone who wasn't willing to make sacrifices. Jobs come and go, but the person you love and who loves you back should want to be wherever you are.
  12. Thank you -- I thought it was just me that thought that was a little high-handed! I can't imagine what other kinds of penalties that poster would think of for failing to register when it was a genuine oversight. People make mistakes -- genuine mistakes -- all the time, and not every error should end up with a punishment.
  13. You can do it online here: https://egov.uscis.gov/coa/displayCOAForm.do While it's true that you need to get it done within 10 days of moving, if you don't meet that deadline it shouldn't be a big deal. It wasn't an issue for my ex-husband when he filed for naturalization -- he had forgotten to do it when he moved out because I was responsible for all immigration things and since we weren't together any more... He only realized his mistake when he was filing for naturalization shortly after he moved out, and he took care of it immediately. He told me the delay was never mentioned at the interview. But he did blame me for not telling him he had to do it though! I read your story in the other thread and I just want to pass on good thoughts to you. I had a terrible first marriage, lots of verbal and financial abuse, and what I now know is gaslighting. I also "moved on" more quickly than my ex was happy with, so be prepared that that could be an issue. Take your time with the new relationship and make sure it's what is good for *you* in the long run. ❤️
  14. Do you know which county she is in in California? Some of the counties have family court self-help offices at the courthouses, and she can find out about low-cost divorce help there. Source: I got divorced in California and although I had a lawyer I saw info on the county court (LA county) website about this.
  15. Please consider divorce and get the best divorce lawyer you can afford. I was stuck too long in a marriage with a man who paid little attention to what I wanted out of life, since it was his way or nothing. I was so used to bending to his whims that I forgot who I was. He was also a yeller and screamer, and controlled me with money. His mother treated me like I was trash, not good enough for her son, and he rarely stood up to her. People told me for years I should just leave but I thought because I was in love (or thought I was) I needed to stick it out for life. Guess what? I didn't! I got out and so can you. My only regret is not getting divorced sooner. You don't have to live like this. ❤️
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