Even though being an expat mother can be a challenge, living abroad can make you a stronger parent. Having undergone the difficulty of motherhood without a traditional support network, you will reinvent yourself and discover skills you never knew you had. Here at Santa Fe Relocation, we’re taking a look at the life of expat mothers across the globe, to help you understand what moving away from home with a baby on the way or young child is like.
The difficulties of mothers without a support network
Without a doubt, the time after giving birth can be tough, and if you are an expat, it means that your own mother may be in another country. Soon enough, your husband, partner or the father of the child will return to work, and thus with a limited support network, you will be left to your own devices for the first time with your new-born, which can be challenging alone.
With this in mind, being a mother living in a country away from your beloved friends and family can become considerably lonely. The few friends you have made will lead their own lives, and will be unable to meet with you all the time, no matter how eager they are to see you.
Despite the initial difficulty, as your baby grows, you will begin to grow with them as a confident individual. In time, you will find alternative ways to stay in touch with your family, and begin constructive strategies to create a new support system. Seeking out mentors, getting out and meeting other new mothers and keeping in regular contact with other parents are just three effective ways that help make raising a child when you are overseas more bearable.
Dealing with a travelling partner
Despite what we may believe expat life is like, it is not only filled with perks. Sometimes, moving to a foreign country comes with a catch, which is, more often than not, associated with work-related travel. If you are an expat family member and your partner or husband has an expat job, it is more than likely that a toilsome travelling schedule is a part of his role. If this is the case, you will be responsible of keeping yourself – and your children – afloat.
While it can take its toll on everyone, soon enough you will realise that you are doing a good job. You will develop strategies to help both you and your children cope when he is missed, and will develop an emergency plan that will give you invaluable peace of mind, enabling you to relax.
You are able to chose what your family looks like
Many mothers favour the sense of getting a clean slate as an expat. Moving to a new country as a family may mean that you feel a bit lonely from time to time, and potentially find it challenging to deal with all the common practicalities that come with motherhood. However, it does mean that you will get the last say when it comes to deciding what your family looks like, and will be free of commitments and judgement that may unknowingly form your home culture.
The life of an expat mother is very different to that of a mother living in their home country. From having to deal with the difficulties of motherhood without a support network away from close family and friends, to learning to deal with a travelling partner and keeping your family afloat single handily, expat mothers are often faced with the challenge of being the central pillar the family relies on.
If you need help with your relocation process contact a member of our expert team today.