The Lonely Yabanci

We’ve been married for three weeks, and it has been a little crazy. Canim is a great husband. No surprise there. His family and I have gotten closer and we are able to understand each other better, though neither side has really improved their language skills.

Things at work have been rough. My new position is literally giving me gray hair. I found one two hours ago. More work, a lot more responsibility (read: PRESSURE), no extra money, and my colleagues are (inexplicably) still showing resentment towards me because I was chosen for the job.

On top of that, due in part to my colleagues being spiteful, my company informed me that everything in my apartment (which was leased by my job until July of this year) has to be returned (and replaced at my expense) by mid-October. To add insult to injury, a company associate disrespected Canim.

BRO. I flipped out. I showed my teeth. I was scolded by my boss but I refused to back down. Our little intervention ended peacefully and while I know she’ll never admit it, I think she was shocked and a little bit impressed by my ability to go from Glinda the Good Witch to the Wicked Witch of the West and back in no time. I knew I had it in me, but she has only ever seen me being a delicate, agreeable flower.

The thing is I JUST made vows to my husband two weeks ago, so they’re fresh in my mind. I will forsake (or annihilate) all others for him, if necessary. It was necessary.

Feeling betrayed by my already sketchy colleagues, plus being in the doghouse with my boss has made me realize that I don’t have close friends here. I have plenty of people who care about me, and for that I am blessed, but the people in this country who really know me and love me anyway can be counted on one hand, with fingers to spare.

Sometimes I feel like people are “Turkish nice” to me, which means they smile at me whenever they see me, they exchange various pleasantries and olsuns with me, and they may occasionally gush over me because I said one Turkish word or because my dress is cute. But the minute I make a mistake, or raise my voice (in excitement, not even anger), or if I dare to put my foot down for any reason, they will kus me and forever consider me to be an entitled ingrate.

My fellow yabancis are no better. Sometimes they’re actually worse. You’d think our foreignness would lead to a sense of camaraderie. Instead, it leads to a sense of competition, where one party inevitably feels the need to be the boss or the expert.

Why can’t we all just chill out and lift each other up?

This stress and loneliness has led to me feeling depressed. Not necessarily sad, although definitely sad sometimes. But I feel like my battery is low and I just want to escape. I sleep a lot, and I am often irritable towards the one person who loves me for me — Canim.

I wonder if other yabancis ever feel like this. I wonder if this is just a lame pity party and if it will pass soon.

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2 thoughts on “The Lonely Yabanci

  1. Have your pity party. Revel in it. It is bloody hard here in Turkey. You (and I) are not in an area where there are a lot of expats and so it is “go native of go home”. Every morning brings more adversity and a headache in my mind and some days I just want to pack everything and run back home with my tail between my legs.

    Start each morning with a smile from Canin and I bet everything else will seem unimportant.

    Also send me an email next time you’re in town. I don’t want to be your boss.

  2. Chin up, baby. You are a fighter , NOT a quitter. It’s their loss if they can’t see or appreciate you for who and what you really are. I would probably be there a week before I would be sent home bound and gagged. Don’t allow ANYONE to get the best of you. This being said and done, enjoy your day. 🙂

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