How to Deal with Expat “Haters”

Do your closest friends and family really lay into you when you mention your desire to move abroad?

Ever hear things from them like…Are you crazy? How will you make a living (if you have no pension)? But, foreigners all want to come here, why would you go there? I don’t think it’s safe, haven’t you seen the news?

…and more…

I heard these questions before I moved abroad right after I graduated college from my dad, grandmother and host of others…

Now, some of my friends reacted differently, saying I was so lucky and they wished they could move abroad too but they just had too much debt.

Well, I smirked when they told me this cause I also had 5 figure debt after college when I moved abroad. But I went anyway, and I have since paid it off with money I made in Latin America (probably faster than I would have staying to work in the US).

I think when you deal with these people the best thing to do is remember that they mean well, but they just don’t get it. They aren’t you. And often, are projecting their own insecurities onto you.

In fact, they probably haven’t even been to the country you wish to move to, and have already passed judgment.

The fastest way to regret is to not be true to you. Be true to yourself and your dreams. Don’t let anyone or anything stand in your way.

Hear them out. Don’t try to reason with them. Say comforting things like, “I’ll come back if it doesn’t work out” or “We’ll be in touch everyday”… then just go.

Now, even though you just mentioned you’d be open to coming back, I don’t recommend having a plan B. It is like setting yourself up to fail. All or nothing, man, live like a Texan!

And unlike you may hear from other expat experts, I don’t recommend traveling around for a while in your chosen region before picking a place to stay.

I’ve done it. It is just too damn stressful. Too many options. It’s better to just go, see a couple places in your region of interest, pick one and make it work.

Besides, it’s not the place you’re after, it’s probably the “change”. And remember, being in a specific place won’t make you happy, it’s the people in the place and how you feel on the inside that are more important. So remember upon arrival, don’t camp out behind a computer, get out, meet people, learn the local language and get involved, you’ll be happy you did.

So stop reading this and go over to Expedia and book that flight already…I mean now!

Cheers, hope to see you down here, Dom

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