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Do you find yoursefl growing away from friends back home?

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Do you find yoursefl growing away from friends back home?

Postby carteki » Mon, 09 Mar 2009 1:38 pm

I remember returning home after my first 3 year trip overseas. I thought it was amazing that even though I'd been away from home for 3 years when I returned it was as if I'd been away for a week. My friends were still there, in the same jobs, with the same routine as when I left. Given the traumatic events that led to my returning home I found it very comforting to "slip right back into things".

This time, it is different. I have now been away from home for 18 months and recently my friends back home have been saying that I've become selfish because I no longer agree with everthing they say, or (even worse) openly disagree with them. I can see that the experience of living in Asia has changed me, while they have remained the same. I ocasionally get fustrated by their "sameness", but by and large let them be. Why can they not afford me the same?

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Postby sierra2469alpha » Mon, 09 Mar 2009 2:06 pm

Carteki - we've found that the type of behaviour you describe (of your "back home friends", is typical of those who either haven't travelled much, and/or haven't worked overseas. That being said, we do make a real effort to keep in contact with them all, so I guess that has helped us a bit.

Working overseas requires us to adapt to different cultures, and in turn, the smart ones of us grow and adapt better. If people in your social circle haven't had the same opportunity (or share the same attitude) then it's only their ignorance (not meant in a offensive way) and as such they have no way of understanding this. Therefore, it's important for us to identify those differences and account for them accordingly.

Not sure if that helps? Mr. P and Ms. C

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Postby carteki » Tue, 10 Mar 2009 4:01 pm

Thanks Mr P. I know why it happens. It doesn't stop it hurting when it does though.

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Postby sierra2469alpha » Tue, 10 Mar 2009 5:58 pm

Yeh I hear ya there carteki - was just offering possible reasons why it happens. Shed a tear myself on occasion about it so yeh we do understand.

Anyway, you got new friends now!

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Postby road.not.taken » Tue, 10 Mar 2009 6:40 pm

Probably not so helpful, but...

I still have friends from Kindergarten back home. The way I see it, if we've survived high school, college and raising babies, well then -- a few thousand miles won't change things. No, we don't agree on everything, but we still do agree on the important stuff, so the rest is just geography really. We also keep in touch so there are not long expanses of time in between, which helps. E-mail, phone calls, facebook, it all helps.

The harsh reality is, if your global perspective is threatening to them, then they weren't in it for the long haul anyway.

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Postby carteki » Wed, 11 Mar 2009 10:29 am

Thanks both of you. I am enjoying meeting new people and making new friends in SG - which is good. It also is nice just to be able to let stuff off my chest knowing that others out there go through the same things...

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Postby bluenose » Wed, 11 Mar 2009 2:59 pm

Maybe they were not really friends in the first place...maybe only acquaintances?
Real friends never leave or judge? Real friendship is unconditional, so it does not matter where I live or how long I have lived there?
I always listen to my real friends as generally they have my best interests at heart and tell the truth...only problem in this society is finding many 'real friends' can be hard ?

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Postby k1w1 » Wed, 11 Mar 2009 9:19 pm

This is a tough one. I have only a few friends at home now, and it is true that it feels like time stands still there, but the truth is that you just haven't been there to see all the changes.

And I agree that a good friend will still be despite distances. I also think a true test of a good friend is when you don't see each other for a while and then "slip right back in" again.

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Postby GarethPhua » Wed, 11 Mar 2009 10:47 pm

I remember when I first went to England and came back for the hols, things were as the threadstarter mentioned, all well and good.

After four years in 'ole Blighty, I came back to hear things like "there's rampant racism in England no?" etc and when I correct them they too have mentioned I have changed. I was initially saddened but like what sierra2469alpha mentioned, we have to take into account that not everyone of our friends have had the opportunity to go overseas to work or study.

With a new environment, we need to adapt and that also means being able to see things from the local point of view at times. Hang in there carteki
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Postby ScoobyDoes » Thu, 12 Mar 2009 12:08 pm

GarethPhua wrote:With a new environment, we need to adapt and that also means being able to see things from the local point of view at times. Hang in there carteki


Travel broadens the mind.........its not a cliche without reason.

We see our country for what it is, for where it stands in the grand scheme of things, the the things it does well and likewise for the things it doesn't in comparison to where we end up.

I have said it many times before and even on this board, teenagers should be sent abroad for 6-months or a year taking a year out from High School to experience life in a toally different culture. I don't mean like sending them from the US to UK but from the US to China, Japan or the Middle East etc. From Japan to Europe or the US for example.

Most of the problems in the world today are caused by ignorance and mis-understanding. Some stuff i hear coming from some of the British government is purely ignorance and stupidity, from people that have no experience or understanding of what they are even commenting on.

Those people that stay at home, usually through lack of opportunity, willing or immagination only have one viewpoint but, alas, we have no other way at this moment but to accept it.

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Postby GarethPhua » Thu, 12 Mar 2009 3:44 pm

Good point there Scooby_Does. When I was a student in the UK, what really amazed me was how some of the Singaporean students would forever stick together in groups, from the college right through till out of college, refusing to mingle around or share ideas. Not all mind you but a majority of them.

The interesting thing is, these students are not the ones without the privilege of going overseas to study but rather they were already there.

I believe one's mindset plays a big part in being open to new cultures and adapting to new places
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Postby carteki » Thu, 12 Mar 2009 7:01 pm

ScoobyDoes wrote:
Travel broadens the mind.........its not a cliche without reason.



Have you read the Dark Side of Singapore thread yet or various other examples on this forum? These are the travelers who dislike everything just because its not the way that it is at home.

Gareth Phua, thanks for the thoughts and I really appreciated the "quack vicious" comment - it made my day!

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Postby sierra2469alpha » Thu, 12 Mar 2009 8:07 pm

carteki wrote:...These are the travelers who dislike everything just because its not the way that it is at home.


Xenophobia has been alive and well for many generations, Carteki. Pity the advent of faster international travel carries not only this disease but many others. I've seen it in my country of birth - Australia - in various places. That being said, I am very impressed with Singapore's attitude to managing various races here, particularly in terms of HDB - I'm sure I'll get flamed for making that observation.

Many years ago, in Australia we had riots between a "generalised" Middle-Eastern population, and "white" Australians over the use of beachs near Sydney. It was disgusting (we were in Paris, France at the time). In subsequent interviews by non-mainstream media, and a social study report, the main issue the "white" Aussies had was summed up with, to summarise it (I can get you the full link if you want it), was "We don't understand why they come here - it's our beach".

Case in point about your comment - in reverse. But as we used to say in Vietnam, "Same Same".

Stay brave and true - P & C

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Postby sundaymorningstaple » Thu, 12 Mar 2009 11:32 pm

sierra2469alpha wrote:That being said, I am very impressed with Singapore's attitude to managing various races here, particularly in terms of HDB - I'm sure I'll get flamed for making that observation.


Yeah, and by none other than the ole farmboy hisself! HDB's solution is Government legislated Racism. I am not arguing the point that it "seems" to work (only on the surface though). It does because the whole population is cowed into submission out of fear of the government. But for the person who understands what is really going on it chafes at the bit nonetheless. Anytime someone tells you were you can and cannot live because of your race, it's racism pure and simple.

For the record, the rest of the world doesn't see that which the actual inhabitants of the heartlands sees (like me) and feels. Like the policies in the US prior to the '60's, the majority race doesn't feel the effects of their racist policies as they control enough % points that it rarely becomes a problems. But you take an Indian or "Others" like myself (7% & 2 %) we are limited to where we can buy a flat regardless of how much money we have or are willing to spend.

People need to walk a mile in our shoes before they praise policies they don't really understand the effects of on the local minorities.

:mad:

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Re: Do you find yoursefl growing away from friends back home

Postby maneo » Fri, 13 Mar 2009 1:31 am

carteki wrote:This time, it is different. I have now been away from home for 18 months and recently my friends back home have been saying that I've become selfish because I no longer agree with everthing they say, or (even worse) openly disagree with them.

So, what was it you found you had to openly disagree about?
:-s


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