My friend Jim in the US pointed this article about being a “Trailing Spouse” to me. Like the author, I can honestly say that the last six months haven’t necessarily been what I thought they’d be. That there was far more isolation and loneliness than I expected. However, I will say that Elanor has been my ticket to friendships and community far faster than I would have found them as a non-mom. Also unlike the author, I haven’t been as eager to throw myself into local culture; I find myself craving the familiar-American TV, American Food, etc–because a day out in Singapore can still completely overwhelm me. I want home to be a safe place full of the comfortable and the familiar.
The hardest part, which the author addresses eloquently is the dependence.
But my husband had the simple advantage of going to a job everyday, offering him benefits I didn’t share. His days had structure, he made friends at work, and he maintained his professional identity.
In my case, I was financially, socially, and emotionally reliant on him.
This dependence was surprising given that I had lived abroad before. I was certainly no stranger to culture shock and lifestyle differences. I had expected them, but I hadn’t considered the difficulty of adjusting to a new country as an “accessory” without my own purpose for living there.
If you’d like to read more, click the link to the article…