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  1. #1
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    Default It's too hard trying to think "Dominican"

    Without going into what has just happened to me, I just want to rant...
    It's too hard always trying to think "Dominican", I don't think that I will make it.
    I have lived all 32 of my years in the USA and trying to change my form of thinking and doing is going to take some time...
    I realize now that also that way of thinking can put me in some serious trouble.
    It's too hard
    It's too hard to try to think of what you SHOULD say when want you WANT to say just automatically comes out of your mouth.
    It's hard to do things the way they are done there and not just EXPECT them to be done like they are here
    It's too hard to try to avoid simple mistakes that can very well cost you alot

    I have heard alot in my other posts "That is not how it is done here" and have been reprimanded several times for my North American thinking.
    But how can one change that so easily?
    Can someone who is right handed learn to write with their left hand in only a day?
    I am moving in 42 days, and I just hope that I can avoid some common gringo mistakes or at least not commit one that will cost me my life.
    I'm not off to a very good start, apparently.

    Thanks for listening
    SHALENA

  2. #2
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    I don't live there but.... my two cents..... I wouldn't compromise my morals... if you feel uncomfortable with doing something don't. You're going to make your mistakes. That's how you learn.

    Just sit back and observe. Have patience. You will get a feel for things and eventually you will see how it's done.

    Experience is the best teacher!!!!

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by SKing View Post
    Without going into what has just happened to me, I just want to rant...
    It's too hard always trying to think "Dominican", I don't think that I will make it.
    I have lived all 32 of my years in the USA and trying to change my form of thinking and doing is going to take some time...
    I realize now that also that way of thinking can put me in some serious trouble.
    It's too hard
    It's too hard to try to think of what you SHOULD say when want you WANT to say just automatically comes out of your mouth.
    It's hard to do things the way they are done there and not just EXPECT them to be done like they are here
    It's too hard to try to avoid simple mistakes that can very well cost you alot

    I have heard alot in my other posts "That is not how it is done here" and have been reprimanded several times for my North American thinking.
    But how can one change that so easily?
    Can someone who is right handed learn to write with their left hand in only a day?
    I am moving in 42 days, and I just hope that I can avoid some common gringo mistakes or at least not commit one that will cost me my life.
    I'm not off to a very good start, apparently.

    Thanks for listening
    SHALENA
    Hey, don't give in/ up before you start.... of course it is going to be very different moving from a first world country to a developing third world country such as DR. However, there is so much good here that it far outweighs the bad IMHO. There are many frustrations and adapting to a different way of life and values is, indeed, a huge learning curve. I have now lived here 2 years and came from the UK where things were regulated and controlled - how refreshing it is here not to have those sort of restrictions imposed on daily life. Look at the positives, put the negatives away if you can and you will do fine I am sure. Sincerely wishing you very good luck.

  4. #4
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    Yes Shalena, it's hard but it's not too hard. You're an intelligent woman so I've just PMed you a link to an article I wrote about the stages of the expat experience. We've all been there, even those who deny it . Think how far ahead of many you are.............there are those who move here not even knowing what it means to 'think Dominican', nor speaking any Spanish at all. Yep, me, 16 years ago. So, go easy on yourself, don't expect to have it all under your belt at the getgo. It's a process............has to be allowed to run its course.

    OK so you've had a bit of a setback & are getting cold feet. All perfectly normal ( like just before a wedding ). But the good news is, you've had a setback before you get here..............most have them after they arrive.

    For now, nuture yourself psychologically. And learn the art of sitting back, listening, observing, nodding, smiling & saying nothing at all (you're a nurse, you must already have this as part of your diagnostic equipment). At least in Dominican terms saying nothing with a friendly smile is better than saying something you'll later regret.

    Good luck! And come back & visit this thread 18 months down the line & tell us what you think then. OK?

  5. #5
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    Try what is working for me: Expect nothing, and you won't be disappointed.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by SKing View Post
    Without going into what has just happened to me, I just want to rant...
    It's too hard always trying to think "Dominican", I don't think that I will make it.
    I have lived all 32 of my years in the USA and trying to change my form of thinking and doing is going to take some time...
    I realize now that also that way of thinking can put me in some serious trouble.
    It's too hard
    It's too hard to try to think of what you SHOULD say when want you WANT to say just automatically comes out of your mouth.
    It's hard to do things the way they are done there and not just EXPECT them to be done like they are here
    It's too hard to try to avoid simple mistakes that can very well cost you alot

    I have heard alot in my other posts "That is not how it is done here" and have been reprimanded several times for my North American thinking.
    But how can one change that so easily?
    Can someone who is right handed learn to write with their left hand in only a day?
    I am moving in 42 days, and I just hope that I can avoid some common gringo mistakes or at least not commit one that will cost me my life.
    I'm not off to a very good start, apparently.

    Thanks for listening
    SHALENA
    I really don't understand when you say it's hard to "think Dominican"!!!!

    We Dominican are lay back, we are not robotic, we like to have fun, we have more freedom, we don't have to pay property taxes, we are more friendly so that mean you will be able to find friends right away within a week, we don't like weirdo who stay inside their house and don't socialize with its neighbors, we like to talk alot.

  7. #7
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    Shalena, my two cents - you have to be a lion to fight the hienas and a fox to avoid the traps. The key is knowing when to switch.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by korejdk View Post
    Shalena, my two cents - you have to be a lion to fight the hienas and a fox to avoid the traps. The key is knowing when to switch.
    The best advise is to find a couple of good Dominican friends that can help her adjust.

  9. #9
    Moderator - Ladies Only & North West
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    I promise you it will happen. You will realise one day that you are becoming more Dominican and as a result less stressed and more at peace with yourself and with life. For me it took maybe 3 or 4 years and is still happening all the time - little by little.

    Examples.

    I now do not mind at all if my once brand new camionetta is scratched, bashed, defaced. It is just a vehicle. Not like in the UK when one became apoplectic at any scratch on a brand new car.

    If people help themselves to things from my fridge - juice, milk, eggs, whatever, and just put back the empty cartons. Normal. Now if you see a carton in the fridge I expect it to be empty.

    Electiricity goes off. No problem. Just make sure you are always prepared with oil lamps etc, and as soon as it starts to rain or thunder, have them ready for when the light goes off.

    Expect everything to take 10 times longer and occassionally you are pleasantly surprised.

    Be pleasant to everyone and laugh and smile with them. I lose count of the number of ex pats I have seen screaming and shouting at Dominicans over some small event which really isn't that important in the scheme of things.

    Read the article Lambada sent you. It really is true and very good. You will be fine. Just wake up every morning with a smile on your face and wait to see what the day brings, and guaranteed with will go to bed with a smile too!!!

    Matilda

  10. #10
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    Shalena,
    With the right attitude, you'll learn more about yourself and likely be a better person for it.

    There comes a point, if you're open-minded and honest with yourself, that you realize your U.S. perspective of the world and how it should run isn't the only one - and at times likely isn't even the correct one.

    Enjoy the experience and read Jojo's post here & how frustration isn't always the only answer... http://www.dr1.com/forums/living/49331-cable-guy-family-huh-wheres-my-cable.html

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