On the FIGT website I saw this: The guiding question when considering the applications is, "Who is missing at the FIGT table?" They are looking for a diverse field of applicants from each of our traditional sectors, (including corporate, diplomatic, academic, military, mission, arts and entrepreneurial) plus voices not well represented, such as those involved in immigration and refugee work, an increase in male voices, and participants from all parts of the globe.
I noticed that the FIGT organizers want an increase voices not well represented including an increase in male voices. While searching the internet this week I noticed two stories both by (adult) third culture kid males so I do want to share these stories. The first story is by Chris Aslan. Chris was born in Turkey, lived in Lebanon and returned to the UK for schooling. He later lived in Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. His whole story "Both and Neither: Exploring my Third Culture Kid Identity" can be read here. He writes about feeling in between cultures and not really belonging to either. I like his conclusion.
"There have been times when I’ve felt a stranger in both cultures, but gradually I’ve learnt to feel at home in both. I’ve discovered that I’m a pretty good bridge that others can use to walk along to have their horizons broadened and to meet people they might not otherwise have met. I’m letting my character and values to be shaped by the best of both cultures. It’s not always as comfortable as being one thing or another, but embracing the concept of ‘both’ is really good, and that’s better than being comfortable."
Marilyn Gardner writes the same in her Thoughts on Entry, Reentry and Third Culture Kids. She says that as third culture kids we should accept that we are a combination of worlds.
Joshua tells us his own story. He now lives in Suriname but he grew up in many different countries: Egypt, Singapore, and China. He tells about the culture shock he had when he moved to China. He shares what he learnt by growing up abroad. Please listen to his story, it will take you less than 6 minutes.
Thank you Chris and Joshua for sharing your stories. Will you consider joining us at the Families in Global Transition Conference this March here in the Netherlands? We want to hear more male third culture kid stories. Please let us hear your voices. Come and join us. Do you know male third culture kids or are you one? Let's hear your voice.
- Cultural identity Confusion
- Interview with Rachel Cason on her research on third culture kids: identity, belonging and relationship to place.
- Interesting post TCK Talent: Where am I from? on the website DisplacedNation.com
- Chris Aslan's website, he is an author and adult third culture kid
- Podcast with Michelle Phoenix on Third Culture Kids - The Forgotten Missionary Kids, and about her new book "Stillness and Storm"