PREPARING FOR THE ARRIVAL OF YOUR K1 FIANCE OR CR1 SPOUSE
If you’ve ever spent several weeks or longer in a foreign country, you know that eventually you missed certain things from home: The foods, friends, maybe even television programs that you enjoy. But at the end of your vacation, you were able to go home to all of these things.
This is not the case for your foreign fiancé. Once here in the US, it will most likely be many months or years before they get to make a visit back home. This can be depressing for some, as they may feel alone & isolated in a strange land. This can be compounded by the fact that you both just went through a very stressful process of obtaining a K1 fiancé visa, or a CR1 spouse visa, and you’re both mentally exhausted.
But there are certain things that you can do to make that arrival & transition period a bit easier. Think about the things that will suddenly disappear from their life when they come to the US, and take steps to provide at least some of these comforts from home:
-Seek out the local markets in your area which offer some of the cooking & food products that your fiancé is accustomed to. If you’ve done your homework, you paid attention to what they eat in their home country, and will find some of those same products & brands that they know & love. Prior to their arrival, go to these markets, and stock your pantry with some of these familiar foods, spices & products; believe me, it really helps bring a smile to their faces when they arrive at their new home. I made my wife one of her favorite breakfast dishes on her first morning here in the US, and she was speechless!
-Get on social media and seek out the local community that your fiancé identifies with; reach out to some of them, and make connections before they arrive from overseas…instant friends upon arrival (or at least a start!) I actually did this for my wife, and within a few days of her arrival here in the US, she had some of the girls come & pick her up for lunch. Instantly, she knew she was not alone, and was not the only one from her country in the local area. She was also not the only one who came here on a K1 fiancé visa.
-Consider adding certain international programming to your current cable or satellite account; most times, this can be done with a simple phone call, and within minutes, your new channels are ready to watch. I did this as well, and the look on her face when I turned on her favorite show was priceless!!
Remember, we all take things for granted in one way or another, and everything that your fiancé had in their life before coming to the US is now gone. Remember how you felt after several weeks in a foreign country, and multiply that feeling. At least you had a return ticket to go back home, so you always knew when you’d be back home; your fiancé doesn’t have that luxury, and it’s up to you to guide them through this transition period, and make them truly feel comfortable, safe, secure & at-home in their new home.