General Question

mooi's avatar

How can I be happy with my situaion...?

Asked by mooi (7 points ) April 26th, 2010

I am currently living with my boyfriend in the Netherlands. He has graduated from university last year and since October he has been working at a govermental office. As for me I am at the moment waiting for the residence permit and have no friends around here. :( I am not allowed to work yet. I am only able to attend language classes if I get a residence permit. I have almost everyday nothing to do.. am stuck in front of PC learning the new language and so on because I feel even more isolated if I would not understand the language! Other things I do is just cooking, cleaning and waiting for him to come home from work. We have been together for 4 years and had no serious arguments until I moved to the Netherlands. I am basically optimistic and have been trying to stay positive but getting more depressive these days. :( He does not earn much and not really enough for 2 person. I would like to join some circles but it costs money and as I do not speak the language well, I feel the isolation and I am not welcomed. :( My boyfriend likes to do sports and he used to run 2 times a week with his brother and learn ju-jutsu once a week but now he only runs once because of me being alone. I feel a bit guilty. :(
I am happy to be with him. He is caring and nice guy. But I miss the time with my friends, family…It is really hard to live abroad that has a totally different culture.

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7 Answers

rebbel's avatar

There is this It starts with language-website where you can find a downloadable Pdf-file in which it is explained who/where/how you can learn the Dutch language.
I am not sure if you need the permit first to be able to attend these classes, but maybe that information is in that Pdf too.
My girlfriend had the same problems (the boredom) when she was here for some months.
She went out for walks and ‘discovered’ my hometown, and of course after i came home from work we spend time together, in and out of the house.
Some things cost money, obviously, but there are plenty of things that you can do which don’t cost much or nothing at all.
Cycling for transportation, for instance, or public transport.
Visit museums, parks, botanic gardens, surrounding villages, etc.
And, if you didn’t so already, talk with your boyfriend about your worries.
I am sure that he doesn’t like for you to be unhappy.
You are in it together, so he, and you, need to put effort in it.
Good luck!

Buttonstc's avatar

Until you can get a job that pays, perhaps you could find an organization with a cause you’re interested in and do some volunteer work.

If you’re an animal lover, for instance, I’m sure that any animal shelter would welcome any volunteers they get regardless of language difficulties.

This would give you something to do, contact with other people and the possibility of language practice or friendships formed.

Depending on the organization, you may also get experience which you can list on a resume when you can work.

These are just a few of the possible benefits to volunteering. If nothing else, it gets you out and about and prevents the boredom of staring at the four walls.

Welcome to Fluther ! Since you have time on your hands, spend some of it here with us

You could do worse :)

Cruiser's avatar

You are homesick and understandably so. Have you looked around for any type of clubs or associations that may have a focus on your homeland? I would even think you could also volunteer at a school or university as a tutor to students who are taking English classes. Get out of your home and just walk around and make yourself a familiar face and you may be surprised to find people who would welcome the opportunity to speak with a “foreigner”! Good luck with your new life!

marinelife's avatar

Try not to let your situation bring your boyfriend down.

@Buttonstc has a great idea with volunteering. It would get you out of the house and talking to people.

Look online and see if there is a meet-up group for other ex-pats. If you had someone to talk to from home that might help.

trailsillustrated's avatar

what I used to do, was go to the second hand shops. I found lots of old books, (some valuble), and a really cool teapot. I would walk and walk. Look for an ex-pat club. Good luck I know what that kind of boredom is, you will learn the language, good thing you have internet.

PandoraBoxx's avatar

Ex-pats

If you’re creative or can source or find interesting items, you might want to think about opening a shop on www.etsy.com

Blog about your experiences about adjusting to life in the Netherlands, and how you go about doing everyday things; take pictures, and translate what you write into Dutch to improve your writing skills. This is how a friend learned Italian.

If you have room, you might want to sign up with couchsurfing.com or one of the other home stay exchange sites and host Americans who are coming to the the Netherlands and need a place to stay. That will put you in touch with Americans, and give you a chance talk about your new life.

Gemini's avatar

Just a few ideas;
Maybe you could take an online course not related to any language barriers, but something you’ve always been kind of interested in. Rent some good chick-flicks and lose yourself for a litttle while in them. Do some crafts that you could possibly sell or give as gifts later…..I did this when I first lost my job of 22 years and it really gave me a feeling of accomplishment and time just slipped away. Do you have a web-cam to talk to your friends and family back home? Good luck with everything.

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