The Self Sacrifice of the Overseas Worker

I have been encouraged to write this piece by someone who feels it needs to be aired. I have avoided writing it for a number of months, but having recently seen more and more financial hardship by people around me, I have finally decided to see if I can write something that can do the subject justice.

I am not discussing Qatar here, nor any particular nationality. The situation can be found anywhere in the world by anyone from anywhere. The issue is the sending home of money by those working abroad. Oh for those curious, this is certainly not about me or my circumstances either.

Excluding the upper wage bracket, most people working abroad are doing so with the sole purpose of sending money back home to their home country. To support those they love. It doesn’t matter how much they earn. It doesn’t matter if they should be paid more or less than they actually get paid. What I am highlighting here is those who send virtually everything they earn, no matter how much they earn back home. Retaining just enough to live in the country where they work. Well when I say live, I mean survive.

Look I’m not saying they deserve a medal, a certificate of merit or any kind of recognition. I am not saying they are heroes, a special breed or supper human. That is unless you are the ones being sent the money! Then all of the above apply.

I am actually talking directly to those back home. Those lucky enough to have someone working abroad, sending money back to them. And especially to those who take their hardworking family member that is away from home for granted. If you appreciate those enduring hard working environments, who have little life outside of work and only basic food to eat, and who miss their family and friends like crazy. Then I am not addressing you, and you can read on without feeling guilty.

I am directly addressing those who expect money to arrive on time every month. Expect those working away to magic up more money when extra is needed. And believe that their benefactor is the lucky one in the arrangement. Believe me they are not the lucky ones!

I am talking to too many people these days that have demanding ungrateful families back home. In extremes I am even talking to people who eat an entire loaf of dry bread as their daily main meal. Who have no money to buy new clothes, or do anything interesting with in their spare time. Who can’t be bothered to go anywhere on their day off where they can see things no matter how cheap, that they can’t afford? Who not only endure the stress of work, the stress of no money, but also the stress of people back home telling them sad stories that mean they have to go and take out expensive loans that they can’t afford, to send even more money back home on demand. Loan sharks feed on these poor people. These people are sending you all of their hard earned money, and sometimes more, and you greedy, ungrateful parasites don’t know, or don’t care what your benefactor is going through so that you can enjoy a good quality of life in your home environment.

I have discovered from talking to people I meet, that even when they try and explain that something over here has happened, and they need to retain some money for themselves to address an issue here, the recipients get angry and pile massive doses of guilt, stress and blame on the poor guys that reduce them to despair and tears.

It seems to me that it doesn’t matter how much they earn, it’s not enough to quench the thirst for money back home. They must find the money to sustain the lifestyle back home that back home has become accustomed to and now demands. They must ensure that those back home maintain their image, luxuries and wellbeing even when they themselves are being deprived of even the slightest self-indulgence.

I hope that someone somewhere in the world reads this, and it helps them realise what they are expecting of loved ones working abroad. Sometime those loved ones don’t even disclose the hardship they are enduring. They don’t tell you how bad they are missing home, or how hard their job is. But even if they don’t, please, please, please ask them if they are alright. Check they are keeping enough money back for their own wellbeing, and give them some good news from back home to make them feel good. In most cases people I know working away, are very happy people as long as the ones they love back home are happy. Tell them happy things, and let them be happy, and avoid those dim grey stories that are going to make it hard for them to preform their duties in work.

And if you are reading this and you are one of the poor blighters being bullied by home to send more, more and even more. Send them a link to this page and make sure they read it. And I pray it makes them feel uncomfortable.

Someone recently said to me, only those who have worked abroad and experienced it, can relate to it when they are back home depending on someone else working away. Otherwise it is always assumed that you are the lucky one travelling to exotic places, experiencing new sights and sounds and meeting interesting people. And everyone back home thinks you are having a great time.

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