Brasilmagic\’s Weblog

Venting to the World

An immigrant’s marriage

Sitting at my dentist’s chair the other day, I listened to the dental hygienist give me her whole life story while I could only go “aww” and “a-huh”. I promised her at the end I would mention her in a post, which she gave me the thumbs up.

She and her husband came to America when they were only 18 and 19, as newlyweds. They are Russian Jews. Neither of them had any money nor any education above high school, and knew very little English. When they arrived, she became pregnant of their first child. They both had odd jobs and decided that to advance in this society, they needed skills and education. Therefore, he worked while she got her dental hygienist license. When she was ready to enter the job market and bring home a better salary, it was his turn to go to school.

They had one more son and prospered. Nowadays, their grown children are successful on their own. As a couple, they have this huge sense of commitment as a family and to each other. They’ve been married for 30 + years now, and wouldn’t have it any other way. What a far cry from other couples out there, where you see so many stories of selfishness and infidelity!

There are many immigrants that have a similar trajetory in America. They fight together and they make it. They don’t even consider divorce because they know they have a good marriage based on companionship, friendship and common goals.

I also happen to know a couple who moved to America about 6 years ago. She is an architect, and he has a degree in Languages. Since she was not authorized to work as an Architect in America, she had to clean houses while she learned English. Her goal is to eventually be able to get a license and return to her profession. Her husband is a delivery man, and they both bring home just enough money to keep them afloat while sharing a small apartment with their two grown children.

The two children learned to work hard and study at the same time. Since you cannot live without a car in America, their 17 year old daughter has her own car payment. No gift from Daddy. The son wants to be a lawyer, and pays his own College bills with his work as a waiter.

Here is what I see when I meet them: a very cohesive and close family. They are happy and have get togethers with friends. They work hard but are always smiling, knowing they have each other. Meanwhile, in the mansion on the other side of town….

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May 26, 2010 - Posted by | Family, Society

1 Comment »

  1. Impressionante como as pessoas conseguem as coisas na vida após batalharem…lição de vida!

    Comment by Priscilla Tollini | June 17, 2010 | Reply


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