The Myth of Expat Life and Global Living

In Member Post on February 27, 2016 by joshsandoz

Contributed by Susan Dellanzo

Photography by Wendy K YalomMany people perceive the life of an expatriate as exciting, glitzy and glamorous when, in fact, it often is not. Global living can be both positive and negative, as with everything else in life. In the same way a magnet is always positive and negative, so is everything else and one of the greatest illusions people fall into is the search for pleasure without pain, praise without reprimand, or nice without mean, etc.  Ironically, it is in looking for those imagined one-sided events in a two-sided universe that we experience so-called ‘suffering’.

Some expats experience loneliness, isolation, and even frustration with what they perceive to be ‘missing’. However, often, nothing is, in fact, missing from their lives – it has just been transformed. Unless you ask the right questions, you will constantly be living in a state of stress and disempowerment which can, in turn, effect your health, wellbeing, relationships, family dynamics and even wealth building. Read More »

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2016 Winter Review

In Site Information on January 18, 2016 by joshsandoz


ITD News:

Over this past quarter, there have been updates to the following sections of the directory: Australia, England, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Netherlands, Singapore, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, USA, and Worldwide.

Welcome to all new members!! Read More »

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TCKs Make Great Therapists

In Member Post on November 30, 2015 by joshsandoz

Contributed by Lois J. Bushong, MS, LMFT

puzzleIt is a fit! As a Third Culture Kid and in the light of my natural giftedness as a counselor, I selected a vocation that is a perfect fit.

When I was in college in the 60’s, I only knew of one TCK who had become a therapist. Dr. S. was a mess! As he valued another TCK and me for an overseas assignment, he made a most obnoxious comment to us: “Anyone who ever went to a boarding school has severe psychological problems today”.

I stopped listening to anything else he said. He had lost all credibility with just that one flippant declaration. For many years, that TCK psychologist was one of the reasons I did not want anything to do with the world of psychology. If his statement was part of the evaluation, I certainly flunked the test. Read More »

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2015 Fall Review

In Site Information on October 17, 2015 by joshsandoz

Quarterly Review Time!!

ITD News:

Over this past quarter, there have been updates to the following sections of the directory: Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, England, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, USA, and Worldwide.

We’ve also added sections to the directory for Brazil, Turkey, and United Arab Emirates!

Welcome to all new members!! Read More »

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In Member Post on September 10, 2015 by joshsandoz

Contributed by Anastasia Piatakhina Gire, Member of IIAP

There are places I’ll remember all my life.Russian Town

I was born in a small Russian town, a very cold and dirty place.

This was one of the first things Anna shared about herself in a long introductory email reaching out to me for online psychotherapy.

In this description of her native town, I could sense her sad childhood: a lack of emotional warmth and possibly some neglect.

The way people describe their early surroundings usually tells something significant about their life story. Read More »

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2015 Summer Review

In Site Information on July 15, 2015 by joshsandoz

Time for a mid-year review, an at a glance summary of ITD activity so far in 2015.

ITD News:

Over this past six months, there have been updates to the following sections of the directory: England, Germany, India, Italy, the Netherlands, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, USA, and Worldwide.

Welcome to all new members!!

We’ve also added four new sections to the directory for Hong Kong, Norway, the Philippines, and Vietnam!
Read More »

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Adult Third Culture Kids and Non-Third Culture Kids Relationships: How do they work out?

In Member Post on May 11, 2015 by joshsandoz

Contributed by Judy Hansen, MA, LPCC

relationships·       Do you ever wonder how non-TCKs and TCKs get along much less have lasting relationships?

·       Do you find yourself jealous or slightly cynical of those who seem to have close friendships and wonder how they got there?

·       Do you question how TCKs in relationship with non-TCKs have managed to reconcile their different worldviews and ways of thinking?


I’m a Third Culture Kid married to a monocultural man…

I live in both worlds: I’m a TCK married to a monocultural man from Colorado, where we’ve raised four children, all born in this beautiful state. You might benefit from hearing how I have learned to juggle both ways of thinking, perhaps you will glean something from my experiences and observations and how my life has become richer for it. Read More »

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The Price of the Resilience

In Member Post on March 31, 2015 by joshsandoz

Contributed by Anastasia Piatakhina Gire, Member of IIAP

Plant Info“You are so resilient!” – said with a shred of admiration and with some (more subtle) envy underneath. I have heard that so many times. And every time, even though I feel grateful that the person appreciates my striving, it irritates me slightly.

But what may cause this irritation? I have the impression that some part of me, well hidden under the resilient and adaptive part, somehow gets missed. To be resilient, in other words “bouncing back” from difficult experiences, is a strength often found with expats. But it comes at a price. One loses other things on the way.

Neglected Roots

Let’s look at an experiment I have been running, as it happens, with my terrace plants. I love my earthy pots and my lavender, my pine tree, and my yucca. They are fellow travellers and they have bravely followed me around the world for the last ten years. Right now they are happily sweating on our Madrid terrace. Read More »

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Expat Kids… Stress… and Mindfulness

In Member Post on February 27, 2015 by joshsandoz

Contributed by Kate S. Berger, MSc, Child & Adolescent Psychologist

Expatriate children deal with a laundry-list of stress factors that are associated with the dynamic lifestyle they live – e.g., packing, unpacking, saying goodbye to loved ones, time differences, new schools, new friends. And after one has made it through those stressors there is the difficult process of adjustment where the child realizes s/he is totally our of their comfort zone, has no firm ground to stand on, and must find a way to adapt to the local culture.

However, despite the challenges associated with this cycle of life events, expat kids can – and do – achieve success because they are uniquely qualified for leadership positions in society (due to their vast experiences from living in different contexts, their exposure to diverse thinking styles and their capacity for resilience). That said, the road to success isn’t always easy because of that nasty thing called – you guessed it – “stress.” Read More »

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Happy 2015!!!

In Site Information on January 2, 2015 by joshsandoz

Happy New Year!!fireworks

As 2015 dawns, I want to take a brief moment to reflect on the substantive year of growth that was experienced over the course of 2014.

Perhaps most notably, updates were made to each of the following sections:

Albania, Australia, Belgium, Canada, China, Colombia, England, Germany, Greece, Kenya, Netherlands, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, USA, and Worldwide.

In fact, the Netherlands section experienced so much growth that it was reorganized to provide individual pages listed by province.

Several guest ITD Blog posts were posted over the course of the year, and I want to express special gratitude to Kate Berger, Kay Bruner, Lois Bushong, Judy Hansen, Mari, L’Esperance, Kim Roberts, and Paula Vexlir for each of their very thoughtful contributions.
Read More »

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