I love TCKs. I have talked to many of them about their lives as TCKs. I have ideas, suggestions, etc. But there is nothing that compares to hearing yourself from the source.
So I asked several adult TCKs a question: What helped you the most in your return to the States for college? I will be posting their answers. If you are a parent of a TCK, listen to these adults and their responses. — Bonnie
Returning to their home country is challenging for every TCK, some more than others.
When I returned to America in middle-school, I struggled to fit in with my peers. Middle-school is hard enough on a teen-age girl without changing countries, friends, and cultures.
I was embarrassed that I didn’t know all the pop culture that my “friends” talked about all the time. I was embarrassed that I didn’t have a boyfriend. I was embarrassed that I didn’t have cool clothes like they did.
Then I found a group of real friends in a TCK youth group. These friends didn’t care about pop culture, boyfriends or cool clothes. The youth leader was not a TCK, but he had spent a lot of time learning and talking to TCK’s, so he knew how to build relationships with us.
He knew how to ask the hard questions to make us think about our lives and what we had been through. He knew how to make us appreciate our unusual upbringing, rather than wishing we had a “normal” life.
He challenged us to use our broader worldview in helping others. He invested so much time into us, that it made us feel welcomed. He taught us that it was ok to be weird.
Having a group of TCKs and a caring adult that I could relate to made all the difference in making those first challenging years a lot easier.