Questions to Lebanese Emigrants: Why did you leave Lebanon? What did you gain/lose?

Indie

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
Here are the questions to Lebanese emigrants. Jo, feel free to make this into another thread if you think it would be better.


1 - How long have you lived abroad? What country did you move to? And how easily did you adapt?

2 - What were your motivations for leaving? Overall, did you get what you wanted or were you disappointed?

3 - What did you gain and what did you lose by moving away from Lebanon? Did you gain things you had not considered or anticipated? Did you lose things you had not considered or anticipated?

4 - When you left, did you think to yourself it was for good, or did you think you would move back to Lebanon eventually? Do you still feel the same, or have your plans changed since moving? If your plans have changed, why is that?

5 - Do you feel torn between Lebanon and your new country (i.e. You see advantages and disadvantages to both). Or, do you categorically prefer one to the other. What do you like / dislike about Lebanon, and what do you like / dislike about your new country?

- If you’re happily abroad, what would it take for you to want to move back to Lebanon (if anything). If you’re unhappy abroad, what would it take to reconcile you with the idea of not living in Lebanon anymore (if anything)?​

- If you’re someone who’s equally torn between Lebanon and your new country, how do you deal with it? For example, maybe you love your job abroad, but still have family in Lebanon. Or, maybe you want to move back to Lebanon but all your family has moved out and isn’t there anymore. Maybe you love the climate in one place, and the lifestyle in the other. Feel free to give examples of your own.​

- Do you ever feel confused about what you want: for example, craving the chaos of Lebanon when you’re abroad and everything is too orderly, and craving order when you’re in Lebanon? Feel free to give examples of your own.​

6 - Is Lebanon still your home (as much, less, or more than your country of adoption)? Or is Lebanon just a place to visit? How often do you visit Lebanon and for what reasons? Would you prefer to visit more often or less often if your circumstances permitted?

7 - Do you ever feel like you don’t know where home really is? Or, that you don’t feel 100% at home anywhere?

8 - Have you ever, or do you still suffer from nostalgia or homesickness?

9 - Idealistically, do you feel it’s a patriotic duty to stay and make Lebanon better (even if you don’t personally feel up to the task)? Or, do you think that everyone should just think of their own well-being and that of their family?

10 - If you’re established abroad and never plan on moving back, how do you feel knowing that in a few generations, your kids / grandkids will probably not be Lebanese anymore?
 

DLT

Well-Known Member
Orange Room Supporter
Here are the questions to Lebanese emigrants. Jo, feel free to make this into another thread if you think it would be better.


1 - How long have you lived abroad? What country did you move to? And how easily did you adapt?

2 - What were your motivations for leaving? Overall, did you get what you wanted or were you disappointed?

3 - What did you gain and what did you lose by moving away from Lebanon? Did you gain things you had not considered or anticipated? Did you lose things you had not considered or anticipated?

4 - When you left, did you think to yourself it was for good, or did you think you would move back to Lebanon eventually? Do you still feel the same, or have your plans changed since moving? If your plans have changed, why is that?

5 - Do you feel torn between Lebanon and your new country (i.e. You see advantages and disadvantages to both). Or, do you categorically prefer one to the other. What do you like / dislike about Lebanon, and what do you like / dislike about your new country?

- If you’re happily abroad, what would it take for you to want to move back to Lebanon (if anything). If you’re unhappy abroad, what would it take to reconcile you with the idea of not living in Lebanon anymore (if anything)?​

- If you’re someone who’s equally torn between Lebanon and your new country, how do you deal with it? For example, maybe you love your job abroad, but still have family in Lebanon. Or, maybe you want to move back to Lebanon but all your family has moved out and isn’t there anymore. Maybe you love the climate in one place, and the lifestyle in the other. Feel free to give examples of your own.​

- Do you ever feel confused about what you want: for example, craving the chaos of Lebanon when you’re abroad and everything is too orderly, and craving order when you’re in Lebanon? Feel free to give examples of your own.​

6 - Is Lebanon still your home (as much, less, or more than your country of adoption)? Or is Lebanon just a place to visit? How often do you visit Lebanon and for what reasons? Would you prefer to visit more often or less often if your circumstances permitted?

7 - Do you ever feel like you don’t know where home really is? Or, that you don’t feel 100% at home anywhere?

8 - Have you ever, or do you still suffer from nostalgia or homesickness?

9 - Idealistically, do you feel it’s a patriotic duty to stay and make Lebanon better (even if you don’t personally feel up to the task)? Or, do you think that everyone should just think of their own well-being and that of their family?

10 - If you’re established abroad and never plan on moving back, how do you feel knowing that in a few generations, your kids / grandkids will probably not be Lebanese anymore?

1- 12 years-Canada-not too easily but now it's better.

2- Stability / a future-Got what I wanted

3-Gained more crediblity education wise (diploma) / more experience / learned about new cultures/ higher level of security

4-I thought I would move back - plan changed because there is no job opporutnities in Lebanon

5-used to feel torn, not anymore especially with all the recent events happening in lebanon (security, CORRUPTION, lack of respect...)
The only major bad thing about Canada is the weather.
A-to move back to Lebanon : laws against corruption, Job opporutnity, order, security and laws that are actually being applied?!?
C-I know what I want and it's not in Lebanon

6-Lebanon is still my home, I visit once every 2 years, sometimes more depending on circumstances. That's enough I think.

7-At the beginning I get that feeling, after few years I got used to it.

8-YES! especially when it has been a long time.

9-Idealistically everyone should just think of their own well-being and that of their family!

10-to be honest it doesn't really bother me. However some of the culture must be passed on to the next generation :)
 
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Indie

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
1- 12 years-Canada-not too easily but now it's better.

2- Stability / a future-Got what I wanted

3-Gained more crediblity education wise (diploma) / more experience / learned about new cultures/ higher level of security

4-I thought I would move back - plan changed because there is no job opporutnities in Lebanon

5-used to feel torn, not anymore especially with all the recent events happening in lebanon (security, CORRUPTION, lack of respect...)
The only major bad thing about Canada is the weather.
A-to move back to Lebanon : laws against corruption, Job opporutnity, order, security and laws that are actually being applied?!?
C-I know what I want and it's not in Lebanon

6-Lebanon is still my home, I visit once every 2 years, sometimes more depending on circumstances. That's enough I think.

7-At the beginning I get that feeling, after few years I got used to it.

8-YES! especially when it has been a long time.

9-Idealistically everyone should just think of their own well-being and that of their family!

10-to be honest it doesn't really bother me. However some of the culture must be passed on to the next generation :)

My first reply! Thanks DLT :)

I know my questions are a bit daunting but hopefully others will follow your example, so we can do something other than fight about religion or political affiliation for once.
 

DLT

Well-Known Member
Orange Room Supporter
My first reply! Thanks DLT :)

I know my questions are a bit daunting but hopefully others will follow your example, so we can do something other than fight about religion or political affiliation for once.

Welcome ;)
Actually I enjoyed answering your questions.
 

Libnene Qu7

Super Ultra Senior Member
Orange Room Supporter
Here are the questions to Lebanese emigrants. Jo, feel free to make this into another thread if you think it would be better.


1 - How long have you lived abroad? What country did you move to? And how easily did you adapt?

To the UAE (Dubai) since 2005... And counting.

2 - What were your motivations for leaving? Overall, did you get what you wanted or were you disappointed?

I simply couldn't find work in Lebanon. And the salaries that were being offered in Dubai were ridiculous. It was also a year of turmoil in Lebanon, with bombs going off everywhere every now and then.

3 - What did you gain and what did you lose by moving away from Lebanon? Did you gain things you had not considered or anticipated? Did you lose things you had not considered or anticipated?

I gained the ability to get married and start a family. I couldn't do that in Lebanon not only because of financial difficulties but also the overall familial atmosphere. I am more on the introverted scale of personalities and I just couldn't deal with every yahoo in my village sticking his/her nose in my business. Emigrating gave me true independence.


4 - When you left, did you think to yourself it was for good, or did you think you would move back to Lebanon eventually? Do you still feel the same, or have your plans changed since moving? If your plans have changed, why is that?

I always thought it was for a short while. I actually believed that upon the return of GMA, things will get better, Hence my joining of this forum in August of 2005 :)

I still return to this forum so maybe there's something inside me that wishes to return, or, more likely, that I miss the feeling of missing Lebanon.

5 - Do you feel torn between Lebanon and your new country (i.e. You see advantages and disadvantages to both). Or, do you categorically prefer one to the other. What do you like / dislike about Lebanon, and what do you like / dislike about your new country?

- If you’re happily abroad, what would it take for you to want to move back to Lebanon (if anything). If you’re unhappy abroad, what would it take to reconcile you with the idea of not living in Lebanon anymore (if anything)?​

- If you’re someone who’s equally torn between Lebanon and your new country, how do you deal with it? For example, maybe you love your job abroad, but still have family in Lebanon. Or, maybe you want to move back to Lebanon but all your family has moved out and isn’t there anymore. Maybe you love the climate in one place, and the lifestyle in the other. Feel free to give examples of your own.​

- Do you ever feel confused about what you want: for example, craving the chaos of Lebanon when you’re abroad and everything is too orderly, and craving order when you’re in Lebanon? Feel free to give examples of your own.

I do not crave Lebanon's chaos at all. I miss everything else, but especially not that.

I was definitely torn for the first couple of years. But beyond that I got used to living here, used to how organized it is, and how all (well, most) people are beneath the law. Now when I return to my country I feel like a tourist. I honestly can't see myself settling back in Lebanon any time in the near future. But something in me truly and deeply misses Lebanon in the 90's. The Syrians and Israelis occupied us but there was fire in us, as students we marched and shouted and got arrested. We spray painted and we met in secret and we threw eggs at Syrian checkpoints. Now our biggest enemy is ourselves, and I don't like it at all. It's a lot harder to blame yourself instead of a foreigner.

6 - Is Lebanon still your home (as much, less, or more than your country of adoption)? Or is Lebanon just a place to visit? How often do you visit Lebanon and for what reasons? Would you prefer to visit more often or less often if your circumstances permitted?

It has slowly transformed into a recurring touristic place of visit for one reason only: to see my parents. But after that, after they pass away (hopefully after a long time), I don't really have a reason to go.

7 - Do you ever feel like you don’t know where home really is? Or, that you don’t feel 100% at home anywhere?

I don't feel 100% at home anywhere. I'd be stupid to think Dubai is my home. Sure, it's a great city for work and everything else, but I've seen people who have spent upwards of 30 years here leave the country as though they've been in it for a day. No permanent visas, no retirement visas (we're not asking for UAE nationality!).

8 - Have you ever, or do you still suffer from nostalgia or homesickness?

Every once in a while. The pangs hit me every 6 months. Almost like clockwork.

9 - Idealistically, do you feel it’s a patriotic duty to stay and make Lebanon better (even if you don’t personally feel up to the task)? Or, do you think that everyone should just think of their own well-being and that of their family?

I honestly think Lebanon is beyond redemption, therefore people must do what's in their best interest. The centuries-old political elite that has ruled us is here to stay. Besides, in Lebanon if there are 4 million people then there are 4 million definitions of the word "patriotic".

10 - If you’re established abroad and never plan on moving back, how do you feel knowing that in a few generations, your kids / grandkids will probably not be Lebanese anymore?

That used to worry me. But I quickly got over it and now I'm almost thankful that they won't be. My children have a different passport than Lebanese and somehow that helps me sleep better at night.
 

HannaTheCrusader

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
@Libnene Qu7

So basically, you are still in a limbo
Dubai can never accept you Or others for that matter

So unless you have other options,it's lebanon where your family will return and settle ??? Correct ?
 
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Indie

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
To the UAE (Dubai) since 2005... And counting.



I simply couldn't find work in Lebanon. And the salaries that were being offered in Dubai were ridiculous. It was also a year of turmoil in Lebanon, with bombs going off everywhere every now and then.



I gained the ability to get married and start a family. I couldn't do that in Lebanon not only because of financial difficulties but also the overall familial atmosphere. I am more on the introverted scale of personalities and I just couldn't deal with every yahoo in my village sticking his/her nose in my business. Emigrating gave me true independence.




I always thought it was for a short while. I actually believed that upon the return of GMA, things will get better, Hence my joining of this forum in August of 2005 :)

I still return to this forum so maybe there's something inside me that wishes to return, or, more likely, that I miss the feeling of missing Lebanon.


I do not crave Lebanon's chaos at all. I miss everything else, but especially not that.

I was definitely torn for the first couple of years. But beyond that I got used to living here, used to how organized it is, and how all (well, most) people are beneath the law. Now when I return to my country I feel like a tourist. I honestly can't see myself settling back in Lebanon any time in the near future. But something in me truly and deeply misses Lebanon in the 90's. The Syrians and Israelis occupied us but there was fire in us, as students we marched and shouted and got arrested. We spray painted and we met in secret and we threw eggs at Syrian checkpoints. Now our biggest enemy is ourselves, and I don't like it at all. It's a lot harder to blame yourself instead of a foreigner.



It has slowly transformed into a recurring touristic place of visit for one reason only: to see my parents. But after that, after they pass away (hopefully after a long time), I don't really have a reason to go.



I don't feel 100% at home anywhere. I'd be stupid to think Dubai is my home. Sure, it's a great city for work and everything else, but I've seen people who have spent upwards of 30 years here leave the country as though they've been in it for a day. No permanent visas, no retirement visas (we're not asking for UAE nationality!).



Every once in a while. The pangs hit me every 6 months. Almost like clockwork.



I honestly think Lebanon is beyond redemption, therefore people must do what's in their best interest. The centuries-old political elite that has ruled us is here to stay. Besides, in Lebanon if there are 4 million people then there are 4 million definitions of the word "patriotic".



That used to worry me. But I quickly got over it and now I'm almost thankful that they won't be. My children have a different passport than Lebanese and somehow that helps me sleep better at night.

Thanks for sharing your experience. I especially liked what you said about the Lebanese having become their own enemy.
 
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joseph_lubnan

Legendary Member
Here are the questions to Lebanese emigrants. Jo, feel free to make this into another thread if you think it would be better.


1 - How long have you lived abroad? What country did you move to? And how easily did you adapt?

2 - What were your motivations for leaving? Overall, did you get what you wanted or were you disappointed?

3 - What did you gain and what did you lose by moving away from Lebanon? Did you gain things you had not considered or anticipated? Did you lose things you had not considered or anticipated?

4 - When you left, did you think to yourself it was for good, or did you think you would move back to Lebanon eventually? Do you still feel the same, or have your plans changed since moving? If your plans have changed, why is that?

5 - Do you feel torn between Lebanon and your new country (i.e. You see advantages and disadvantages to both). Or, do you categorically prefer one to the other. What do you like / dislike about Lebanon, and what do you like / dislike about your new country?

- If you’re happily abroad, what would it take for you to want to move back to Lebanon (if anything). If you’re unhappy abroad, what would it take to reconcile you with the idea of not living in Lebanon anymore (if anything)?​

- If you’re someone who’s equally torn between Lebanon and your new country, how do you deal with it? For example, maybe you love your job abroad, but still have family in Lebanon. Or, maybe you want to move back to Lebanon but all your family has moved out and isn’t there anymore. Maybe you love the climate in one place, and the lifestyle in the other. Feel free to give examples of your own.​

- Do you ever feel confused about what you want: for example, craving the chaos of Lebanon when you’re abroad and everything is too orderly, and craving order when you’re in Lebanon? Feel free to give examples of your own.​

6 - Is Lebanon still your home (as much, less, or more than your country of adoption)? Or is Lebanon just a place to visit? How often do you visit Lebanon and for what reasons? Would you prefer to visit more often or less often if your circumstances permitted?

7 - Do you ever feel like you don’t know where home really is? Or, that you don’t feel 100% at home anywhere?

8 - Have you ever, or do you still suffer from nostalgia or homesickness?

9 - Idealistically, do you feel it’s a patriotic duty to stay and make Lebanon better (even if you don’t personally feel up to the task)? Or, do you think that everyone should just think of their own well-being and that of their family?

10 - If you’re established abroad and never plan on moving back, how do you feel knowing that in a few generations, your kids / grandkids will probably not be Lebanese anymore?

Too many questions :) I don't feel like nor do I want to answer all of them, but I will share some thoughts :)

One thing that is interesting about Lebanon is the never ending curious political drama, quite entertaining, especially when you are watching it from afar.

I left long ago and I never saw a reason to go back. Lebanon is not a good place to live. Anyone who has the opportunity to live elsewhere probably should although I wouldn't live in a third world country, or in any society that doesn't have democracy, rule of law and equality under the law. If I can help it that is.

You Indie do not need to answer any of these questions, for reading some of what you post, I already have an idea on what your answers may be... You really should learn to appreciate your Canadian homeland much more, and try to enjoy your life there. If you miss Lebanon, come here and bicker with us. Missing something someone or a place, isn't so unnatural or uniquely Lebanese :) everyone misses something :)... Appreciate the great north and live :) just because you may miss Lebanon that doesn't make Lebanon a good place. And in conclusion an advice is worth a camel, I will also accept elk or bison or whatever you may have handy :)
 
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Indie

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
Too many questions :) I don't feel like nor do I want to answer all of them, but I will share some thoughts :)

Too bad...it would be a more interesting conversation!

One thing that is interesting about Lebanon is the never ending curious political drama, quite entertaining, especially when you are watching it from afar.

Really? I find the political drama mind-numbingly boring.

I left long ago and I never saw a reason to go back. Lebanon is not a good place to live. Anyone who has the opportunity to live elsewhere probably should although I wouldn't live in a third world country, or in any society that doesn't have democracy, rule of law and equality under the law. If I can help it that is.

Actually, depending on one's means and needs, it is quite possible to live very well in Lebanon. But if the opportunity to have a second nationality comes along, it is of course good to have it.

You Indie do not need to answer any of these questions, for reading some of what you post, I already have an idea on what your answers may be... You really should learn to appreciate your Canadian homeland much more, and try to enjoy your life there. If you miss Lebanon, come here and bicker with us. Missing something someone or a place, isn't so unnatural or uniquely Lebanese :) everyone misses something :)... Appreciate the great north and live :) just because you may miss Lebanon that doesn't make Lebanon a good place. And in conclusion an advice is worth a camel, I will also accept elk or bison or whatever you may have handy :)

My answers would be more nuanced than you think ;)

And I would replace the word "missing" with a much deeper and complex one. Though one word would not be enough anyways.

Also, if you enjoy the great freezing north, why don't you move to it...then you can get your own elk or bison or whatever :p
 

loubnaniTO

Legendary Member
Staff member
Super Penguin
Here are the questions to Lebanese emigrants. Jo, feel free to make this into another thread if you think it would be better.


1 - How long have you lived abroad? What country did you move to? And how easily did you adapt?

25 years. Canada. It was very difficult the first few years, as i felt i was FORCED to be emigrate because of the war in Lebanon. So i went back for a few years, and i realized that what i was missing was just a "dream". Reality was very different... so i came back, and this time i adapted fairly quickly and happily :)

2 - What were your motivations for leaving? Overall, did you get what you wanted or were you disappointed?

The first time it was WAR (and education.. commuting to AUB was not a walk in the park).
The second time was basic human rights and dignity. A hope for a better future. A community that values life and basic human rights, that judges less and focuses more on what matters in life. A system where your voice matters, and your complaint is heard, and change could happen.

3 - What did you gain and what did you lose by moving away from Lebanon? Did you gain things you had not considered or anticipated? Did you lose things you had not considered or anticipated?

Gained: a stable life; a career that i truly earned and not had to beg for (or wasta); a better focus on a better life and planning for retirement and education for my kids. I have definitely gained many things i havent dreamt of gaining... including a better outlook on life, a better way to raise my kids, etc.

Lost: my roots; no matter how much i feel i belong here and it is home, the fact that i wasnt born here and raised here makes a difference. My childhood friends are not around, my family is not around

4 - When you left, did you think to yourself it was for good, or did you think you would move back to Lebanon eventually? Do you still feel the same, or have your plans changed since moving? If your plans have changed, why is that?

The first time i left, i was sure it was just temporary, i was dying to go back.
the second time around, it was definitely for good.

5 - Do you feel torn between Lebanon and your new country (i.e. You see advantages and disadvantages to both). Or, do you categorically prefer one to the other. What do you like / dislike about Lebanon, and what do you like / dislike about your new country?

unfortunately, i am not torn.
Lebanon: I like
the sense of hope and resiliency in the Lebanese. I like food! i like the entertainment part (beach, evenings on a rooftop, spending 3 hours in a restaurant drinking arak,etc.
Lebanon I dislike how people think, the mentality. We are not free thinkers! we are slaves. We follow, and we are ready to die for who we follow just because we are scared of the others. We SING about our country but in fact we dont show it any respect... we litter, we prefer Iran's/Syria's/Palestinian/KSA's/Israel's/etcetc interests over ours. We show courtesy to neighbours, but in reality we are selfish... we cheat, we lie, we bribe and we like bribes.
Canada: I like: human rights, respect (even when fake), diversity, the focus on human value, the respect for nature, the sense of community, helping/donating. The right to make a change, to rebel, to speak your mind... the sense of freedom in making up your mind freely, without feeling chained to one leader or party.
Canada: I dislike the weather in the winter! it's fun for a while, but then it's a bit depressing. Our Prime Minister who is turning Canada into another US state. I dislike the voting system where a politician could be elected with less than 30% votes!

- If you’re happily abroad, what would it take for you to want to move back to Lebanon (if anything). If you’re unhappy abroad, what would it take to reconcile you with the idea of not living in Lebanon anymore (if anything)?​

It will take a new MENTALITY for everyone (go figure that out!), a new system that allows people to focus on rights rather than sects. Political stability so we can focus on life rather than struggling to live.

- If you’re someone who’s equally torn between Lebanon and your new country, how do you deal with it? For example, maybe you love your job abroad, but still have family in Lebanon. Or, maybe you want to move back to Lebanon but all your family has moved out and isn’t there anymore. Maybe you love the climate in one place, and the lifestyle in the other. Feel free to give examples of your own.​

- Do you ever feel confused about what you want: for example, craving the chaos of Lebanon when you’re abroad and everything is too orderly, and craving order when you’re in Lebanon? Feel free to give examples of your own.​

Order (or lack of) is never missed!!!
I just miss the the people i grew up with, the love of entertainment... otherwise, nothing i really miss.

6 - Is Lebanon still your home (as much, less, or more than your country of adoption)? Or is Lebanon just a place to visit? How often do you visit Lebanon and for what reasons? Would you prefer to visit more often or less often if your circumstances permitted?

It's funny. Although i refer to HOME as being my adoptive country (people keep asking, are you planning to visit home? i always reply: i am home)... but there is always that nostalgia that will probably never go away. We dislike so many things, and i truly consider Canada home, but i keep frigging coming back to this forum to debate, and i still read the news... why do i care? it beats me.

7 - Do you ever feel like you don’t know where home really is? Or, that you don’t feel 100% at home anywhere?

Nope...

8 - Have you ever, or do you still suffer from nostalgia or homesickness?

to a certain extent yes... but think of it this way (i hate to draw this symmetry), released prisoners still miss jail for a while, and they dont understand why

9 - Idealistically, do you feel it’s a patriotic duty to stay and make Lebanon better (even if you don’t personally feel up to the task)? Or, do you think that everyone should just think of their own well-being and that of their family?

Not a duty, but if people care about their native country, it is good to do something. People around the world volunteer and care about other countries without having any links to those countries. Lebanon is our native country and for me, i grew up there and i still have family and friends, so of course i care. And i did invest a lot in the struggle during the 80s, so it's something that i truly care about.

10 - If you’re established abroad and never plan on moving back, how do you feel knowing that in a few generations, your kids / grandkids will probably not be Lebanese anymore?

People will either identify with their roots or completely deny them... regardless of whether they are born there or not. I will not worry too much to be honest. My son surprised me last year... he was not born in Lebanon, hardly speaks a few swear words, knows hardly anything about lebanon, and yet met people on the beach here and told them he is from Lebanon..
 

Indie

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
Not a duty, but if people care about their native country, it is good to do something. People around the world volunteer and care about other countries without having any links to those countries. Lebanon is our native country and for me, i grew up there and i still have family and friends, so of course i care. And i did invest a lot in the struggle during the 80s, so it's something that i truly care about.

It's nice to know that some people still care :)

Thanks for featuring the thread @Jo!
 

NumbNuts

New Member
Here are the questions to Lebanese emigrants. Jo, feel free to make this into another thread if you think it would be better.


1 - How long have you lived abroad? What country did you move to? And how easily did you adapt?

It's been a few years. I moved to an OECD country. I adapted immediately.

2 - What were your motivations for leaving? Overall, did you get what you wanted or were you disappointed?

Motivations were financial. I got exactly what I wanted.

3 - What did you gain and what did you lose by moving away from Lebanon? Did you gain things you had not considered or anticipated? Did you lose things you had not considered or anticipated?

I gained a great standard of living, a beautiful place to live, a fair and just society, and being around interesting and intelligent people.

I lost my family. That's a big loss, absolutely. But I did not lose much else.

4 - When you left, did you think to yourself it was for good, or did you think you would move back to Lebanon eventually? Do you still feel the same, or have your plans changed since moving? If your plans have changed, why is that?

I knew it would be for a really long time. I initially thought it perhaps I'd go back and retire in Lebanon, but I now realize this was naïve. I'm spending the rest of my life here. The longer you stay outside, the less weaker the ties you feel with Lebanon and the people you knew there.

5 - Do you feel torn between Lebanon and your new country (i.e. You see advantages and disadvantages to both). Or, do you categorically prefer one to the other. What do you like / dislike about Lebanon, and what do you like / dislike about your new country?

I don't feel torn at all. I'm Lebanese from Lebanon, and will always be. But I'm also a citizen of another country. That other country is my home now, and I'm just as loyal to it.

- If you’re happily abroad, what would it take for you to want to move back to Lebanon (if anything). If you’re unhappy abroad, what would it take to reconcile you with the idea of not living in Lebanon anymore (if anything)?

It would take for Lebanon to become a conflict-free, democratic, prosperous, and progressive country. So, not going to happen.

- Do you ever feel confused about what you want: for example, craving the chaos of Lebanon when you’re abroad and everything is too orderly, and craving order when you’re in Lebanon? Feel free to give examples of your own.

No, there's no confusion. I love the order here. Lack of order is one of the reasons I left (though not the main one).

6 - Is Lebanon still your home (as much, less, or more than your country of adoption)? Or is Lebanon just a place to visit? How often do you visit Lebanon and for what reasons? Would you prefer to visit more often or less often if your circumstances permitted?

I've visited Lebanon twice since I left. Given the situation there, I don't think I'm going back in the next five years. I would like to see my family, but to be honest, I actually feel more at ease where I am.

7 - Do you ever feel like you don’t know where home really is? Or, that you don’t feel 100% at home anywhere?
My home is where I live now. It's 99% my home.

8 - Have you ever, or do you still suffer from nostalgia or homesickness?
No.

9 - Idealistically, do you feel it’s a patriotic duty to stay and make Lebanon better (even if you don’t personally feel up to the task)? Or, do you think that everyone should just think of their own well-being and that of their family?

I don't think it's a duty. I think one person alone can't significantly improve a country in such terrible shape. Not an honest law-abiding person anyway.

10 - If you’re established abroad and never plan on moving back, how do you feel knowing that in a few generations, your kids / grandkids will probably not be Lebanese anymore?
It is a bit sad. But I usually take the logical approach: what matters is that they're happy. In a few generations, no one will remember me anyway, whether I stay in Lebanon or here. And it doesn't matter. I'm not important.
 

joseph_lubnan

Legendary Member
25 years. Canada. It was very difficult the first few years, as i felt i was FORCED to be emigrate because of the war in Lebanon. So i went back for a few years, and i realized that what i was missing was just a "dream". Reality was very different... so i came back, and this time i adapted fairly quickly and happily :)



The first time it was WAR (and education.. commuting to AUB was not a walk in the park).
The second time was basic human rights and dignity. A hope for a better future. A community that values life and basic human rights, that judges less and focuses more on what matters in life. A system where your voice matters, and your complaint is heard, and change could happen.



Gained: a stable life; a career that i truly earned and not had to beg for (or wasta); a better focus on a better life and planning for retirement and education for my kids. I have definitely gained many things i havent dreamt of gaining... including a better outlook on life, a better way to raise my kids, etc.

Lost: my roots; no matter how much i feel i belong here and it is home, the fact that i wasnt born here and raised here makes a difference. My childhood friends are not around, my family is not around



The first time i left, i was sure it was just temporary, i was dying to go back.
the second time around, it was definitely for good.



unfortunately, i am not torn.
Lebanon: I like
the sense of hope and resiliency in the Lebanese. I like food! i like the entertainment part (beach, evenings on a rooftop, spending 3 hours in a restaurant drinking arak,etc.
Lebanon I dislike how people think, the mentality. We are not free thinkers! we are slaves. We follow, and we are ready to die for who we follow just because we are scared of the others. We SING about our country but in fact we dont show it any respect... we litter, we prefer Iran's/Syria's/Palestinian/KSA's/Israel's/etcetc interests over ours. We show courtesy to neighbours, but in reality we are selfish... we cheat, we lie, we bribe and we like bribes.
Canada: I like: human rights, respect (even when fake), diversity, the focus on human value, the respect for nature, the sense of community, helping/donating. The right to make a change, to rebel, to speak your mind... the sense of freedom in making up your mind freely, without feeling chained to one leader or party.
Canada: I dislike the weather in the winter! it's fun for a while, but then it's a bit depressing. Our Prime Minister who is turning Canada into another US state. I dislike the voting system where a politician could be elected with less than 30% votes!



It will take a new MENTALITY for everyone (go figure that out!), a new system that allows people to focus on rights rather than sects. Political stability so we can focus on life rather than struggling to live.



Order (or lack of) is never missed!!!
I just miss the the people i grew up with, the love of entertainment... otherwise, nothing i really miss.



It's funny. Although i refer to HOME as being my adoptive country (people keep asking, are you planning to visit home? i always reply: i am home)... but there is always that nostalgia that will probably never go away. We dislike so many things, and i truly consider Canada home, but i keep frigging coming back to this forum to debate, and i still read the news... why do i care? it beats me.



Nope...



to a certain extent yes... but think of it this way (i hate to draw this symmetry), released prisoners still miss jail for a while, and they dont understand why



Not a duty, but if people care about their native country, it is good to do something. People around the world volunteer and care about other countries without having any links to those countries. Lebanon is our native country and for me, i grew up there and i still have family and friends, so of course i care. And i did invest a lot in the struggle during the 80s, so it's something that i truly care about.



People will either identify with their roots or completely deny them... regardless of whether they are born there or not. I will not worry too much to be honest. My son surprised me last year... he was not born in Lebanon, hardly speaks a few swear words, knows hardly anything about lebanon, and yet met people on the beach here and told them he is from Lebanon..

Your son is Canadian. He just hears you and other family members say they are from Lebanon so he said it. He is probably still very young, (allah ykabbro wye7me and may he gets all he wants out of life) but when he becomes a bit older I think he will be telling people he is Canadian of Lebanese descent.
 

Dalzi

Legendary Member
I was 7. I didn't make the decision, my parents did and it was the best decision they'd ever made. They went back and forth, and that was also positive, gave me the chance to experience lots of things and learn.

No, I am not torn between countries. I know that I cannot live in Lebanon.

Home is wherever you own a home. If I built a house in Japan, then that's my home. I build no attachement to locations and individuals that are not very close relatives (with one exception lol). I've moved around too much for that to happen. Home is also where the mind is at ease.

Nostalgia and patriotism... Everything that connects with individuals that I care for; mainly my mum, dad and his father (I care for others of course but I can detach myself). Land also means a lot to me. Would never sell what is inherited because it was once theirs (my parents and grandfather). In addition, the dead that are burried in Lebanon have forced us to keep our foot stepping there. It's like they are the roots in the soil and we are the leaves!

Patriotism... Yes, sometimes, it's because of genes, identity, language and culture. That you carry wherever you go, but it doesn't mean you are dying because you're away from where that is based lol Don't care.
 

Indie

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
I was 7. I didn't make the decision, my parents did and it was the best decision they'd ever made. They went back and forth, and that was also positive, gave me the chance to experience lots of things and learn.

No, I am not torn between countries. I know that I cannot live in Lebanon.

Home is wherever you own a home. If I built a house in Japan, then that's my home. I build no attachement to locations and individuals that are not very close relatives (with one exception lol). I've moved around too much for that to happen. Home is also where the mind is at ease.

Nostalgia and patriotism... Everything that connects with individuals that I care for; mainly my mum, dad and his father (I care for others of course but I can detach myself). Land also means a lot to me. Would never sell what is inherited because it was once theirs (my parents and grandfather). In addition, the dead that are burried in Lebanon have forced us to keep our foot stepping there. It's like they are the roots in the soil and we are the leaves!

Patriotism... Yes, sometimes, it's because of genes, identity, language and culture. That you carry wherever you go, but it doesn't mean you are dying because you're away from where that is based lol Don't care.

Thanks for replying, Dalzi. However, I can tell you we feel very differently about this topic :)
 

Dalzi

Legendary Member
Thanks for replying, Dalzi. However, I can tell you we feel very differently about this topic :)
So do my parents, and to an extreme degree. You know poetry and all that emotional stuff that only weakens you by lowering your positive energy, and making your space easier to invade by darker forces :p I'm done with their emotional dramas. They are na2 professionals! Life's too short to make it miserable because you're far from a certain place or people. Have fun and enjoy every moment of it wherever you are. Who cares... When you miss something or someone hop on a freakin plane and see them w khalas.
 
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joseph_lubnan

Legendary Member
Thanks for replying, Dalzi. However, I can tell you we feel very differently about this topic :)

You will never convince me that there is anything preventing you from hopping on a plane and moving to Lebanon. Except your own choice that is to stay where you are. You chose it, might as well enjoy it!
 

Indie

Legendary Member
Orange Room Supporter
You will never convince me that there is anything preventing you from hopping on a plane and moving to Lebanon. Except your own choice that is to stay where you are. You chose it, might as well enjoy it!

Who says I'm being prevented from anything, or complaining about anything, and what do you even know about my choices or where and how I live? If you're trying to extract information out of me, just be straightforward about it ;)
 
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