Editor's Note: Dear Nazneen, thank you for sharing your thoughts with us on India, staying in the USA and on coming back to the home country. it has been chosen as the best of forums. Congratulations! For viewership by a larger audience we have it as an article here. --------------------------------- Hello, I am new to Indus Ladies and wanted to introduce myself. Born and brought up in India I have now (7 yrs ago) moved to the US as a result of marriage. I have many interests, cooking, reading, just watching TV- alot of TV, gardening(when I know what to do). Anyways I have been surfing the IL web pages for a month now and all this time I've been wondering which would be the appropriate place to put down my thoughts. My thoughts are more so questions posed to you'll because this is a community (also)of Indian women settled abroad coming from different ethnicities and age spans. Okay so here goes. As I mentioned I have been in the US since 7 yrs due to marriage. These 7 yrs have not been easy. I was brought up with alot of family/friends in India. Here I have always felt lonely. At first people said give it a few years- marriage will help you make couple friends, studying will help, working will help and the latest was having a child will help you make "good" friends. This has not been true in my case. Don't get me wrong, I have made alot of acquaintences. We have a big group of couple friends we meet up with every other weekend. I am no longer working(because of my child and the "great greencard"process) so I am not as much in touch with work friends. The thing is with all these people its just superficial talk, not real intimacy and genuine friendship where you go shopping together or plan outings just to be with each other, like it used to be when we were younger in school or college(bachelors in india). For e.g . I recently went with my husband and daughter(15 months really cute) for a vacation to Europe. When I got back, there was no one other than my parents and FIL to call (in india) and discuss how our vacation was. I seem to find myself thinking that this(lack of genuine friends) is so because I am trying to settle in a foreign country to me. I don't have that familiarity with the culture, the news, the sports, cuisine,or even simple things as entertaining my "american friends". I can't tell you how tense i get at the thought of entertaining any of my husbands "american" work colleagues. U know we bought our first formal dining set(wine glasses etc) when we had to invite his friends over. Every milestone of our marriage has been soo difficult to assimilate- getting into college, job, buying a house here(we had no clue) having a baby here. Sometomes its the small stuff not even the big stuff- like getting to know neighbours, finding playdates for my baby, trying to make indian khana just like in India. Let me tell you I live in a small town in NY, my husband isn't into organised religion and unfortuantely relations with the only family members here haven't been a source of comradrie(thats a whole other story) My parents don't like visiting the US. So other usual sources of making good friends through religion or family are'nt really open for me. You know I somethimes think godforbid if something horrible were to happen to all 3 of us(my husband,daughter and I) then noone would know for a week or 10 days, that to only because we would miss our weekend calls to India. These things terrify me I am left wondering will it always be like that? will I always feel this alienation, this heartache for what life could have been like if I had married and stayed on in India- been close to my family and old friends. What if I am 55 yrs old and I still feel like this what a wasted life it will be.... So dear IL members, especially the ones who have lived and settled lives abroad please tell me truthfully how you'll feel. I have an aunt whom I spoke to before I got married. She was settled in the US after marriage and had 3 children(all very well educated) . She spent 35 years here, now she has returned back to settle down in India in her retirement years. I can't understand that. How can you go through as much adjusment, sacrifice , and then land up returning to your home country? after 35 years and turning from age 25 to 60 is India still your home country? Thanks in advance for reading this ~ Naazneen.