When Family & Friends Dump On Your Expat Plans

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Author: Reekay V.

Since 2012 I’ve been traveling through various islands of the Philippines as a full-time Expat and spent 1999 living in Vietnam.

Share with me my ongoing adventures of life in the Philippines. Hopefully you find my observations helpful in your own adventures.
— Reekay


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  2. As if moving to the Philippines didn’t create a lot of family negativity back home, having a baby was hilarious the response I have gotten. Haha. I told those negative family members to enjoy the shitty weather and threat of mass shootings as I raise my children with my amazing Wife in a beautiful part of the world. I said no worries because I have no plan to return and visit those ignorant and miserable people. I do have a few supportive ones that I routinely talk with. Great video as it’s a common issue I think.

  3. You really have a very very wise way at looking at things man.
    I went to Cebu and I married a Filipina by way of fiancé visa , I went through with it and helped her so much to get here . I had the worst experience ever and learned the hard way…… I got an annulment and almost died with the whole thing .

    Now I realize being an expat is the best way. And so now I think I hope I go there and we can have a lunch … you are a wealth of knowledge

  4. I decided to take a solo motorcycle trip to South America, and my relatives almost had an intervention with me about it. I was going to get robbed, killed, bad things were going to happen. The reality was it was a wonderful trip, people were kind along the way down to the farthest point south and back up through Brazil. Saw many cool things I would not have otherwise seen. Rode 30K plus miles from Mexico on down- so glad I didn’t listen and made the trip. I did use common sense of course.

  5. If I could bring my guns, cats, and buy property I would consider moving to the Philippines.

  6. Every time I comment on social media that I moved from the US to Thailand I get, 100% of the time, multiple responses that I am a traitor to America. Those words or words to that effect. I interpret this as a fear response but it is also a reflection of the deeply ingrained belief that America is the greatest country on earth. They are seeing our leaving the US as a dramatic public rejection of that belief. There must be expats that have family and friends that harbor these feelings, whether explicitly expressed or not, that factor into arguments to stay.

  7. I planned my move to Vietnam for 3 years. No one knew about it until I posted pics from Vietnam on FB. My response to all the negative messages that followed was: “JUST BECAUSE YOU WOULDN’T DOESN’T MEAN I SHOULDN’T”.

  8. i would send the doubters and haters a nice pic of a hot girl on a beautiful beach and or scuba pics of corals and fish ,with a caption “your’e right , this 3rd world shi#hole is horrible,please never come here,trust me:
    my asawa and i are a few years away from the big jump and we are getting good at cutting the fat ( haters) from our life

  9. Unfortunately and from experience my friends will be supportive of my decision when I decide to move. With the exception of my older sister the rest of my family will act very negatively. They will make negative comments, they will make accusations, they will try to stop me from going all with the garbage comment of we are doing this because we care about you. I know better they are doing it because they are afraid and because they want me to stay local so I can be around to help them. I hope this doesn’t happen I really do but unfortunately I know better.

    The crap I dealt with from them just taking vacation to Thailand caused every accusation and negative comment you could think of. I was practically accused of going over to Thailand to sleep with every prostitute in the country. I didn’t let them stop my decision to go on Vacation to Thailand I won’t let them stop me when I finally decide to move abroad.

  10. A good reminder to know this is inevitable to people and other naysayers, like family members to discourage and have false biases and even fear to another country and culture besides the West, with what and whom you want to get away from as soon as possible and embark on new life. Most people want you to fail and be as miserable and “take it” as most everyone does here, and they never explore or try something different, and maybe [much] better and more fitted for you and your lifestyle and desires and peace of mind and for people that suit your persona more. Jealousy and envy are the mainstay of most of their feelings and wishing you failure and misery. Especially many [Western] women. People like their own success…Never yours!

    Truly people hate your successful journey, as it really shows what they what they are made of and what they are invested in, which seems to be just going along in life no matter how bad and you should just do this too. When you are successful then they are in your corner and your biggest cheerleader, as they did not have the courage or fortitude to do what you have done.

    You can choose to live in misery or live in your own nirvana, as the choices are the very same. Could say more…Peace

  11. FEAR:

    I have been very fortunate to have had a number of very good looking women over my lifetime, and NEVER once experienced the love and sense of respect as I get from one sweet gentle Philipina.
    Sure, she’s 25 years younger and very attractive but it’s much deeper than that.

  12. When my wife and I decided to move to Aus, we discussed it with my immediate family and why. They all agreed it was the best move. We discussed, not asked. If they had said “No”, it would have been sad, but wouldn’t have made any difference. They CARED about WHY we were moving to a different country and supported us 100%.
    My point is, you have to live your life. If other don’t like it, then it’s sad they can’t accept your reasons and your choice. You shouldn’t live you life to appease other people, even if its family.

  13. Success is a zero-sum game, so the more I can derail other peoples’ dreams, particularly those they shouldn’t even have because they make no sense, I’m both helping them and increasing my own chances. Win-win.

  14. I stopped telling certain friends about my SE Asia trips. Their reaction when I suggested they join me next time was shocking. It was exactly as you said, they had been living a certain way for so long, I had unknowingly got rid of their excuses.

    I have two other friends that will properly vet my super adventures when needed. I actually canceled one trip because after a tough but good conversation with one of those guys I was able to see how I would be wasting money given the “timing” of trip.

    The good news is that canceling trip A gave me the budget to do two other trips later that same year.

    He was right; the timing for trip A was all wrong. He had just returned from where I was planning to visit, so he knew.

    Solid video. Thank you.

  15. Most of my friends & family are supportive. I’m the kind of person who educates himself & makes plans with redundancies & Fall-back positions. I was planning to work another three years & retire at age 65. The Physical Demands are getting harder on me. COLAs will negligible for the next couple of years & Staffing is getting difficult. PLUS: I reach Full Income Replacement this Summer between my Pension & Social Security. Relocating to the Philippines allows me to Retire Earlier & purchase affordable Health Insurance until I’m Medicare Eligible. Cebu City by November 10, 2024.

  16. I need people in my life that will make my life easier – not harder. This applies to family and friends.

  17. I’ll have to start over the video… the unexpected blink of that AI Filipina at the end reset me!

  18. The mention of Phils or Thailand, and the look you get is “oh, he’s one of those”.

  19. People can express their opinions, even if they are contrary to yours, right?

  20. Here’s the thing for me after I took my first overseas trip I went to Panama and I knew right then and there I was not going to stay in the United States when I retire I didn’t know where I was going yet, but I knew it was gonna be here And now that I’ve decided that it will be the Philippines all my friends non-family members friends. Some of I’ve had since fifth grade are all for the guys at work my lifelong friend Jerry Lloyd they’re all like yeah go for it dude once you get settled, let us know and we’ll come visit. You know what I mean However on the other side, I even had one ant say that she would have me take a mental competency test to try and stop me because I was just gonna go over there and waste all my money and I don’t understand that she wouldn’t even hear my side of it. She’s never been outside the United States. She’s only ever lived in Kansas and Oregon. She’s never been to other parts of the United States even And it just amazes me how close minded some of them are especially my family my daughter, however, once she sit down with me and asked you her questions and I was able to just answer them for her she still not happy about the idea but she’s like OK you know what you’re doing I’m fineand that’s my two. Cents.

  21. I’m planning to retire to Lithuania in a couple of years. I would not even be an “expat”, because I was born there, and in process of restoring my citizenship. Most of my family and friends are at minimum very incredulous of the plan. The objections are too many to list; but all of them bogus. Ok my wife had one good objection – the winters are cold and depressing. Fine, I solved that problem: we’re just going to spend the winter months somewhere else, for example South America. They tell me the seasons are reversed there 😉

  22. Ahhhhh. thank you.
    Our well to do friends already spend months abroad and are encouraging. “Family” on the other hand…
    We don’t care, we’re leaving.

  23. I will retire this year. At work I been talking about my move for over a year moving to the phils. My operations mgr is an American filipina. 3 months a go I was threatened by her. She said if she catches me dating a minor in the phils she is going to report me. I said I don’t do that. Her ex was a passport bro that left her with 4 kids and went to the phils. But its bad here. I’m not going to tell anyone anymore. I’m paying the price now for wanting to live my dream.

  24. “Try out the life”. Personally, I wouldn’t uproot and go to somewhere permanently if not trying it out for size. I’d go 3 or 4 times for a month at a time about every 3-4 months. The amount of people that retired to Florida and came back that I know is scary. They extrapolated 1 or 2 weeks in February for 5 years straight in a condo on the beach and living the vacation life as thinking they had the whole state and every season figured out. “I DIDN’T REALIZE THE SUMMERS WERE HORRIBLE” or “I DIDN”T REALIZE HOW WORRYING HURRICANCE SEASION WAS”. That’s 2-4 hours away by plane for most people and people don’t do their homework. Vacation living is not living living. These days you can figure out a lot via the internet, but you really have to try the place out before completely buying into it. I would tell the person good luck in any case and mean it. I’d be more hopeful for them if they tried the place out first.

  25. I took a job in China and some people looked at me as if I had 3 heads. Thought I would be locked up in a gulag. Stayed 7 years. It was one of the best things I ever did.

  26. Good thing I am an expat in the US already! one more continent and country…. who cares 😉

  27. I live in Kentucky. It’s amazing how many people around here think the rest of the world is dangerous.

  28. If we just consider what humans continue to do to each other, and the planet we live on, it is more than understandable that the earth may just eliminate us like the cancer we are, breathe a huge sigh of relief and start healing.
    Here’s hoping my perspective changes with a change of culture.

  29. The negativity usually comes from people who have never traveled overseas, much less traveled out of state.

    Leaving the herd creates butthurt.

  30. Omg this is amazing. The images have me laughing so hard. Who would have known the story and the images were related?

  31. Wow, I literally am having this issue currently with my family right now. They want me to bring my girlfriend to the US, but she prefer the Philippines, and I do as well. My family keeps thinking it’s a third world 3 that is not safe and it’s in the jungle. They also think I am crazy for wanting to leave the US

  32. The fluorescent green and red hair color and the cats were Masterpieces of subtlety And silent protest.

  33. Once again Reekay…Thank you for the tip..Ummm What’s with the Cat lady?? .Will be visiting the Phillipines next year…

  34. Reekay, you are a master communicator Thanks for sharing this. My sentiments exactly.

  35. I was worried about retiring. My brother encouraged me to look outside the country. That’s what got me to come to the Philippines. Not retired yet, but I’m exploring every trip. I haven’t gotten any negative feedback. Just encouragement to do my research and be happy.

  36. Imagine I’ll lose some fake friends after posting FB pictures of me with a gorgeous 20 year old drinking from a coconut. Life is good!!!

  37. I have lived overseas (several countries). I would not have much regard about living overseas from someone who has never even been overseas.

  38. About 3:38: Negative people should be avoided. Not necessarily at all costs, but pretty darn near that level.

  39. Unfortunately the majority of people are stuck in their own bubble and are afraid to get outside of their comfort zone and are afraid of anything outside of it. You can’t listen to those people. In my experience, getting outside of my comfort zone is how I gained more knowledge and more wisdom. Change is a good thing and how we grow as a person.

  40. For the married men telling you this, they are just flat out jealous.

  41. I learned in my 30s family were always the first to criticize my thoughts on doing something out of the ordinary and stepping on my dreams and goals. So I stopped telling them and only mentioned it after the deed was done, such as drag racing or flipping houses. Years Later I decided to remove alk negative influences from my life including famiky members and when I wanted to visit the Philippines I told my only daughter and 1 well traveled veteran friend just in case something happened on the trip. When I announced my engagement to my Filipina on FB, I had a “female friend” & female cousin tell me how they thought it was a bad idea because they “Heard” this or that. I realized quickly they were advising me on heresay and had never even vacationed outside the country or been on a cruise. My cousin has never left her state! Typical narrow minded Americans. I am now married to my Filipina and we are happier than ever. Remove negative people from your life and follow your dreams – just do so in a smart & cautious fashion !!!

  42. I cut off most of the negative people in my life (including family) before deciding to expatriate, so I have had little pushback. Even so, those still close to me voice concerns. I’ve heard all kinds of garbage about high crime, diseases, 3rd world, etc. All, as Rekay stated, never having spent even 30 seconds researching, much less having visited to do a recon there. One of my female former colleagues warned me, “Don’t ever get married over there. Get married here here where the laws protect you!” Hahaha! Right, I’m sure she thinks that way because the laws protect women exclusively … not men. It all boils down to people valuing conformity … and if you won’t conform, then you are perceived as some sort of danger. You are a reminder to them that they cannot or will not break out of their own metaphorical prison. A select few of my male friends my age have had their interest piqued and are looking into expatriating themselves.

  43. No one will ever understand why you want to become full time expat. I just came from Pattaya few days ago full of impressions but no one asked me anything about it. If i say something, they have zero information about Thailand as a country. Same happened when i was getting motorbike driving licence and buying a motorbike. No one ever understood why. The freedom, minimalism, cheaper transportation…

  44. “If you dont control your mind, someone else will.” – John Allston

  45. I’m having that same issue here amazing mostly i believe its jealousy im hearing dangerous diseases and so on im preparing since late last year ill be 59 this year not leaving until 61 for a vacation then moving there making sure everything is in order

  46. This describes my preparation for exploring the Philippines, gathering all the info I can.

    In the back of my mind, I want to move there. I’ll mention that to no one before my initial exploratory trip. I’ll couch it as simply a vacation.

  47. The herd. I know people who have never left their home state – fear of crossing the scary border. A relative of mine went out of Oregon and realized that they had to pump their own gas and didn’t know how. I don’t know everything, but after visiting 20+ countries, I have absolutely no fear of the adventure that awaits. As an adult, I don’t need permission.

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