I am relatively new to blogging… I’ve been a reader and a commenter for a while, but I hesitated for quite some time before I decided to take the plunge.
I originally turned to the internet because I wanted some advice. Last summer my partner of 6 years—let’s call him P—his family came to visit us in the US for five weeks. His aunt, mother, father, brother and sometimes his cousin stayed with us in our small 2 bedroom apartment. I had a great time getting to know them better, but I also felt exhausted and a bit stressed out by the situation. I felt like I didn’t really have anyone to talk or relate to about it.
Meanwhile, I have had an ongoing “discussion” (read: on-again, off-again fight) with my mother about my interest and participation in many aspects of Nepali culture, and her fear that I am abandoning my “American-ness” and my culture for P’s.
Out of frustration and curiosity I started searching the web… surely there were multitudes of people out there in similar situations. What did they do? How did they cope? What compromises did they make and what suggestions did they have?
At first I wasn’t finding anything useful. Then I stumbled upon a great blog on intercultural relationships—Gori Girl—which promptly launched me into the blogosphere. Becoming more active on GG’s blog and forum made me feel like I was part of a community, even if it was purely an online one.
However it seemed that many of the commenters on her site, as well as other blogs that I googled were about relationships between Indians and westerners. Although the information was useful and the stories great to hear, I also wanted something a little more. Eventually I was excited to start reading a blog made by a woman who married a Pakistani man because at least it was a bit of a different perspective, but I wasn’t finding anything out there written about Nepal and households consisting of an American and a Nepali.
Yes, I know… Nepal’s culture is similar in many ways to certain cultural groups in India… and yes, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, etc, all fall under the South Asian umbrella, but I felt there was certainly room out there for an intercultural blog with a slightly different perspective.
So here I am. For better or for worse.
As a disclaimer (to paraphrase/steal a line from Gori Girl-I hope she doesn’t mind!): South Asia is a large place, with a number of different religions, ethnicities, and languages. I’ve had significant contact with several friends and families from certain types of backgrounds from specific regions (mostly Kathmandu and Chitwan area) of Nepal. But, generally, I have my own experiences with my network of Nepali friends and family, and these experiences might be totally different from yours. Hopefully, though, this will be a place where I can share my thoughts, and others can share theirs.
So let me be the first to officially welcome you to the launch of “Musings from an American-Nepali Household.”