Dual Citizenship Dilemma: Where Is Home?! (3rd Culture Kid??) | KatChats

Dual Citizenship Dilemma: Where Is Home?! (3rd Culture Kid??) | KatChats

So I just wanted to take this moment and talk about something that I’ve been thinking a lot more about Recently as a whole as the world becomes Much more of a global place. This feeling is increasingly common amongst people. So I just like to talk about my experience being From a dual national family having parents from two different countries two different cultures and how that has affected Me as a person and me growing up so I wouldn’t consider myself a third culture kid although there are aspects of that that I do. Relate to quite strongly and I’m sure some of you guys are probably third culture kids and I’ll just read the definition out loud real quick. So third culture kids are people who have spent a portion of their formative childhood years Around zero to 18 and a culture different from their parent, but as some of you probably know My dad is Finnish and my mom is American. Now I spent pretty much all of my formative childhood in Finland and if you were to ask me Katya Where are you from? My answer would be Finland. Automatic. No questions asked, but on the other hand if someone asked me are you American I would say well yeah, of course I’m American. That’s just the most outer layer of it. I say I’m Finnish. I say I’m American, but what do I actually feel cuz that’s just like holding a passport. Yeah, I’m from that country book Am I really from that country? And that’s where the confusion starts to form for me at least because Sometimes I feel like I’m from neither of them. And of course now I’m living in a third culture from those two I’m living in the UK Scotland. So now I have that add it in the mixed. Of course. I don’t feel like I’m British I don’t feel like I’m from Scotland for obvious reasons, but there are times I don’t feel either Finnish or American. So I just kind of wanted to take this time to kind of explore my feelings About this and maybe some of you guys can share your own experiences in the comments So yeah, as I said if someone were to ask me where am I from? Like here obviously coming to university one of the first questions. Everyone asks you is so where are you from and I say, Finland? I’m finish I speak Finnish I’m from Finland, but then I have grown up in an environment Where I do have a lot of American influences my accent for one is clearly American my worldview has been shaped by my mom as well I’ve gone to the States pretty much every year of my life. I have family there, but I don’t quite feel American if that makes any sense But then again, I don’t quite feel Finnish either like I’m kind of hovering in this weird middle place where I feel like I don’t quite belong completely in either culture so it’s … it’s hard to explain so Let’s take Finland for example, so I was born in Finland. I’ve lived in Finland until I was 20 years old, you know, so I grew up there. I speak the language. I… I am a Finnish citizen. I should probably feel Finnish and I do it’s the country I identify with strongest and If I think of a country that I would consider home Finland would be that place When I think of home, I think of my parents house in Finland however When I compare myself to other Finnish people that have been born and raised in Finland as well But don’t have as much of an international background as me I don’t feel like I quite fit in when I hang out with Finnish people that are 100% Finnish I feel like there’s a lot of stuff that we don’t particularly have in common and And just as a whole I think a big part of it was I went to international school since I was 7 years old So I was kind of in a bubble with in Finland in an international bubble. Of course, I did hobbies and I interacted with outside of the bubble but the bubble really made me not integrate with other Finnish people as much as you know probably would be ideal to feel hundred percent Finnish and Through that most of my friends are from an international background You know that feeling where you just you feel like I feel like I’m Finnish But I feel like I’m not Finnish enough sometime. You know, I’m too European to be American so for some things for example behavior I don’t behave like a typical Finnish person I of course I have traits like … like being more of an introvert I follow Finnish customs More than I would follow American customs Because you know, I was brought up in Finland, like just these kinds of umbrella terms that people associate with Finnish people. I have more of these traits than I do have like American “American” stereotypical traits, but then when you compare me to an average Finnish person. I don’t really behave like them either or when you compare me to an average American person. I don’t know. This is like super super vague because of course there’s all sorts of people in both countries but as like a general rule like… I don’t really behave exactly like either of them because of course when I’m in Finland I have all these American influences that I’ve had that Shapes me to be a bit different from the typical Finnish kid and then in America, of course I’ve had my Finnish upbringing and all the Finnish influences so that my Perspective is a bit different And of course like in America You have all sorts of cultures coming together and it’s a whole racial mixture of different folk from all over the world but just in general at least like where my mom’s family lives and it’s quite People don’t really leave their city too much or the country for that matter. So of course, I stick out as the Finnish person and So then sometimes it just feels like wherever I am. I’m kind of the foreigner So in the in America, I’m seen as the Finnish kid the foreigner which you know I am and in Finland I’m seen as the American because I’m not Completely Finnish so I’m right away seen as the foreigner there, too So it kind of feels like and of course here in the UK as well. I’m clearly a foreigner So sometimes it just feels like wherever I am. I don’t quite fit in and I’m always kind of on the outside not Really a part of that country But you know, I don’t really mind That’s why I guess I kind of gravitate towards other international students and people who have quite similar backgrounds as me Maybe they did haven’t lived in one particular country their whole life But maybe they’ve moved around or maybe they went to international school as well I feel like we have a lot of things in common, but then on the other hand I would never change this experience for anything. I really love having the opportunity And to have the chance to be a part of different countries and different cultures And I’m really really happy that my life is the way it is Like I really really appreciate that I can experience both the American life and I can experience also the Finnish life and now I’m experiencing the British life and I’m feeling really grateful and thankful that I’ve been life’s handed me these opportunities and experiences to me so I would never ever change that to the world but sometimes You know, especially if you know a certain Instance happens and it really hits you that wow Even though I’m Finnish. I’m not Finnish enough or Wow, I’m always gonna be a bit of a foreigner in my own country, you know what I mean? So yeah, that’s just a little thought I had but yeah And it is true when I really learned to appreciate Finland a lot more when I moved away That when I’m on an airplane going back to Finland I do feel like I’m going home when I land in Finland, I get off the plane. I’m in the airport I just feel real settled and it feels real homey to me. I’m like, ah, I’m finally home I’m in Finland love life. But yeah, I don’t really know where I was going with this video It’s I’m sure it was one big mess, and I’m sorry about that My thoughts on this topic are real muddled and no matter how much I was trying to ship through them beforehand it still kind of Ended up a mess. But yeah, if you have any similar stories to share, please comment them down below Maybe we have something in common. So yeah, I guess that just about concludes this video so until next time


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    Janne Schroderus

    Tiedätkö,että vaikka minä olen 100% suomalainen,niin minä en ole koskaan tuntenut olevani erityisesti suomalainen! Minä en ole siis mikään patriootti ja joskus tunnen olevani "outo",kun en fanaattisesti kannata suomalaisia urheijoita/joukkueita… (vaikka itse olenkin urheillut koko elämäni) En myöskään tunne mitään erityistä kansallislaulun soidessa,joten ymmärrän sinua täysin… Tervetuloa kerhoon.. ; )

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    Human Man

    Interesting thoughts especially the one about integrating and schools. I have always thought that feeling separated would be the end result of not spending the youth with the local populace. Those years are so defining in a person's life.

    This made me think that there are people who very much identify people also by the local area. Like for example my gramma always says that people from Karjala are so nice and talkative, they help and laugh. The Savo on the other hand just stare and never speak. I haven't heard this kind of talk from younger people so maybe it's a generational difference.

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    ''I  don't quite belong completely in either culture'' yeah maybe that's a better explanation since you have parents from both countries

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    This is really interestimg and amazing… Imagine if someone had a American father, a Brazilian mother and was born and raized in Italy after his parents decited to move to Italy

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    Sakhi Namdar

    Very nice ,don't think about your nationality only think about your future do good things, it's not matter your Finnish or American, important is that your a kind, good ,nice, and beautiful person. 👍🌻👌

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    Tapani Löfving

    Maybe you could consider yourself as a Finnish person with a good hint of Americanishness to it 😀
    When I was living abroad I learned to love home country Finland so so so much! It's the best place for Finns…

    Edit: I think Finnishness is a feeling, so if you feel like you are a Finn and you want to participate in the society by making it better, the you are a Finn (If you know the language ;))

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    I can really relate to the feeling you described, where it's almost like you don't fully belong anywhere. I was born in Estonia, and spent the first 10 years of my life there. I then moved to Australia for about a year, then back to Estonia for about 2 to 3 years, and then I moved to Spain where I lived for around 2 years. I finally moved to the UK, where I've been living for the past 4 to 5 years. My biological father is Finnish (I barely know him though), my mother is Estonian with a German background, and my step-father is Estonian with a Russian background, so you can kind of get a picture as to why this feeling is present within me. It doesn't help that I never fit in anywhere at school whilst in Estonia as I kept getting bullied, which drove me to become more isolated and introverted, but it has also left me feeling like I don't really connect with my home country as much as someone would expect me to. At the end of the day, when someone asks me where I'm from, my answer is Estonia, but I am very much a mixture of multiple cultures.

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    I feel that so much, since i was born in Estonia, but spent most of my 'concious' life in England, and also travelled a lot around the world as a child (which is cool). yet, i never felt Estonian, since i never even picked up the language, grew up only speaking English and Russian (bilingual household, yay), yet only ever been to Russian 3 times in my entire life, so I don't feel Russian at all. i am also part Greek, but have little connection with that side of myself, but want to explore it. if anyone ever asks me where i'm from, i would say England, and if asked of my nationality, i would say i'm British, but i never really feel like i'm any of those things. nykyisin, mä opettelen suomen ja suunnnittelen muuttaa Suomessa, kun olen luottavainen tietämykseni suomeksi. olen vielä aloittelija, mutta minä yritän saada parempaa! olen pahoillani virheistä – toivon, että sä ymmärrsit mitä mä sanoin :3 (also any feedback is kiitokset)
    we'll see where the journey takes me!

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    Luke Harvey

    Identity and nationality are interesting things. I think I can relate a little (although probably not to the same extreme) I have a Scottish and an English parent. Born and raised in England. For me there is the convenient label of British I use but when I'm in Scotland I definitely feel like its not 'home'. I know is all just one little island and its all technically the same country but the identity element still has an influence. Maybe its from comparing to my cousins of the similar age who are born and raised there I don't know. I've also been lucky enough to study abroad too and the people I have met would sometimes just consider me as English even if I say British. I'm not sure if this is due to the incorrect England=UK/Britain rhetoric or if people are just quantifying that England is where I consider where 'home' is. Maybe a little bit of both. I know that they are not doing it on purpose or to be disrespectful but the continuous reinforcement of the identity the people I spend the majority of my time with think I am has kind of subconsciously made me feel even less Scottish. Do you feel like the majority of people you meet in Scotland consider you Finnish over American (or vice-versa)(again not in a hurtful way)? Never really thought of it in this detail so it doesn't effect me too much but it's certainly interesting to reflect on! Sorry for the essay but thanks for the great video! Very (evidently lol) thought provoking.

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    Anna Birulina

    I absolutely agree with you! I’m Russian but I grew up in Germany since I’m one year old but I would never say that I’m German, maybe because I was always told that I’m not.. like whenever I didn’t know something there was always someone who said something like „you can’t know that, you’re not German“ but whenever I was in Russia everybody was like „at your home in Germany…“ so it was always weird.. but nevertheless I have a stronger connection to the Russian culture than the German..

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    I've spent most of my life in Norway yet i by no means feel Norwegian. For me the answer is simple. I was born in Finland, I served in Finland. Finland is my home i have pride in my heritage. I will always be Finnish and i will always choose Finland.

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    Ondrej Benko

    You’d love Canada, pretty much everyone fits in here.

    I’m also sure you have heard that lots, but it’s a pretty relaxed place and very beautiful to explore. Seems that you like traveling.

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    Apologies, might be long.

    I related a lot to what you were saying. My mum's Finnish, my dad was British (N Irish) while I grew up in England. I also married a Finn. When I was little, accepted wisdom in UK teaching was that you mustn't try to teach kids to speak two languages as it would confuse them (nonsense, in case you were in any doubt), so my mother was discouraged from teaching me Finnish (though my first words were "heittää!"), and I grew up an English monoglot. We did go to Finland every year though, so I was close to my Finnish family and saw them a lot, and I learnt to love forests, sauna, kesämökki, Moomins and ruisleipää.

    As time's passed, I've come to wonder whether certain character traits are buried Finnishness: among these a tendency to introversion, find honesty and fairness essential, stubbornness bordering on irrational (though that could be dad's Ulster), preference for reason over blind faith, a certain wry humour. These can be good or bad depending on their extreme or the situation.

    I don't really feel like I 100% belong anywhere either. At least in part, this is because to people in the UK, at work or school, I'm "the Finnish one". Unusual name may promote that. I've lost count of the number of times I've had to correct colleagues that I wasn't born in Finland. The fact I repeatedly need to do this (well, I suppose I could not correct them), despite my BBC accent, makes me feel like they've mentally classified me as "other" or "foreign". At the same time, in Finland I'm English of course, including to my relatives there, though there's no way I can criticise for that.

    The Brexit decision's been no fun for me on many levels. I'd already decided to push on learning Finnish because I wanted to, but it's prompted me to get my Finnish citizenship too. Was very happy and proud when that came through.

    I started watching your channel because it was interesting to see stuff from someone who's also Finnish/anglophone but from the Finnish direction so I could learn more about that (and thanks for the suomenkieli!), plus the fact you're smart and engaging helped of course.

    I think if you're part-X, part-Y, there can be a yearning to be "properly" something, usually the culture you grew up in. It's normal to want to belong. You sometimes see people go flagwaving superpatriot, overcompensating for the internal fear of being found out as being "other". I'm pretty sure that's not good. Better to accept that you are both, and try to take the positive aspects from each.

    Warned you it'd be too long – identity can be complicated – thank you so much for all the vids Katja! Timo.

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    Koi Mies Profeetta

    I was born in Canada Quebec specifically my mother is French Canadian my dad is American. I moved to the US at 14. When I was 31 I met and married a Finnish woman and now call Tampere Finland my home.

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    That was very inciteful, thanks for sharing. I had always assumed you were an American who had moved to Finland (probably just your accent). Your channel is great, thanks for making these great videos.

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    My mom was half Finnish too, born in America, my great grandparents emigrated from Pohjanmaa. Our dad was Mexican, but they divorced when I was young so we were raised with Finnish and American culture. We found our relatives in Finland thanks to dna and genealogy so we are going next summer for the first time since 1905. You are a beautiful lady and it’s wonderful to have two cultures and the ability to understand both. In Malaga, Spain, the tourist guides spoke to me in Finnish as I look just like my mother. Now I need to study modern Finnish, thanks to your videos! ❤️

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    Finland is the land of Finns where you don't belong.. Can you ride a Tundra reindeer? Can you ride a reindeer sleigh? Can you eat raw meat of the reindeer? Probably not.. Get the UK citizenship which is better the US citizenship.

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    Arthur Vieira

    So, I was born in Brasil. At 2 yrOld I moved to Madeira Island, Portugal. Then at 12 I moved to Lisbon (Portugal mainland). And now I'm in Finland. Oh, and my aunt lives in the USA and is married to a Canadian :D.

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    Nicole Skoglund

    Haha so relatable! I'm half Swedish half American and I've always gone to an international school. You do sort of live in an international bubble once you've gone to an international school you're entire life. You might not feel like you fit in anywhere but it's kind of nice because you're usually surrounded by people who feel the same way. :') You learn so much about yourself as well as other cultures. Btw found you through your Singapore dorm vid, I'm going on exchange to NUS in a few months and feel real nervous! Your vid helped 😀

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    fawning over fiction

    I totally understand. My mum's family is irish and I have an irish passport, my dad is british and I was born there and have a uk passport, but we moved to New Zealand when I was four. I also hv a nz passport. My parents and even sister grew up mostly in england but I grew up here but have no blood connection to here, and all my family attitudes and traditions are british. If someone asks where I'm from I have absolutely no idea what to say! People here say I act like Im english but English people say I act kiwi. But I havent lived in England. In the end I can claim to be nothing!

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    Hang Tran

    Dear Katja,

    thank you so much for making this video!❤️ It’s so nice to listen to you talking about “hovering” between two cultures. I can totally relate about not really fitting anywhere since I am Asian born and raised in Europe. We should really embrace all the cultures that we are a part of!❤️ Yayyy

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    Bob Scott

    My dad from Ireland, mom from New York but her parents, my grandparents, from Italy and I'm born in New York so a citizen of all three countries and passports from USA and Ireland, working on the Italian one. I've also lived abroad. I like to think of myself as a citizen of the world.

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    I was looking for information about the Finnish language when I bumped into your channel. Out of interest I checked your other videos and I'm glad I did. I've never related this much to a video and it feels so awkward seeing my thoughts put into words by someone else. The sensation of not fitting in anywhere, being a foreigner in both countries, I've experienced that my entire life. My mother is French whereas my father is Turkish and I've lived in both countries. I went to middle and high school in a French school in Turkey surrounded by people of mixed origins: the international bubble you were talking about. This is actually the only place where I've ever felt a sense of belonging. If on one hand, it grieves me not being able to identify with neither the French nor the Turks, on the other side, I'm truly happy to be the mix of such different cultures. It is unnecessary for me to keep writing because you summed up everything very neatly. Paljon kiitoksia for providing me this outside view.

    Can I ask you which language do you feel the most comfortable with? 🙂

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    Tähti 별

    Even if I lived in France just an year, I feel like I'm related with the France.^^ Because when I came back to Korea, people said to me like "You are changed really like French people..". So I said like "No, I was totally out of French society. I was just a foreigner there. I'm not that changed" haha. But you have dual citizenship. Probably, I'm not able to understand 100% of your mind, but at least, I can feel what you say like 10%. Because I realized that my view of the world is not same before I went in France after all. I lost my point. My English sucks. Anyway.. hmm.ㅠ.ㅠ The thing I wanna say is…. if you get hard time by dual citizenship, just let us know. Your subscribers always support you. Seriously! 화이팅! Kittos!

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    Troy Trey

    Well I wonder what my daughter will feel like when she grows up. Me and her mum are British born, my heritage is 100% Nigerian. On the other hand her mum is of English and Seychelles heritage. So my daughter has Nigerian, Seychelles and English blood in her. I always say she’s Nigerian but my mrs says she’s not as I myself was not born In Nigeria. So confused. Lol

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    I can relate, my parents are from Italy, from gorizia which is by the italy-slovene boarder they speak Italian, Slovenian when I go there I feel out of place being born and raised in the USA, and you are expected to speak Italian lol
    And my whole name is Italian but when people ask I tell them I'm American but by my name people assume I have Italian citizenship

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    Hygge Musings

    I feel the same. I am half German and English. Brought up in England. I feel a bit like an observer, rather than someone from these countries. People always think I am English as I have the language and mannerisms. We have a Multicultural Day tomorrow and the English are discussing with me our national dress, but like them, I am flumoxed by our national dress and then I say I am half German and English and so I will choose the German option, which wil confuse them! They say I should wear Punkf for English costume, but as I am half German, thought this is fun, I am quite conservative in dress and like German traditional costume. I get confused all the time. I think nationality is fluid. When I was in China, I was absorbed into Chinese culture. I think I feel Icelandic, Norwegian, English, German, Chinese, Irish, Inuit, Chinese. I am who has the best food, countryside and crafts.

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    I really relate to what you're saying. I was born in England to Scottish/Kiwi parents and moved to the US when I was 6. I have triple British/NZ/US citizenship and spent a lot of time in each country growing up. I love them all, but I don't feel like I completely fit anywhere. I can switch between English and American accents, so no one in those countries can tell I'm a bit different until they get to know me. In NZ, I am seen as a foreigner, even though I've been a citizen my entire life and have a lot of family there. And I've never even been to Scotland, even though my family is from there and I grew up with Scottish culture and traditions. (They all live in England now.) It's a strange feeling, but I love being from everywhere. I definitely feel like I won the passport lottery, and I don't take it for granted.

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    Maylia Blacklet

    I understand what you're saying, about the whole "i don't belong anywhere" thing. My father's British and my mother's French and I was born and raised in London until 12. Then I moved to France. Before that, I would feel both British and French since I spoke both languages at home and had the two cultures. But when I came to France I realised I was not as much French as I was British because I had never lived there. I had already been in France for holidays, to see my family but it was different than experience daily life. But after some time I adapted to my new life in France and now after 3 years I feel French but when I come back to Britain, I feel like I missed many things about the whole country's life. Almost like I am one nationality at one part of my life and another at another part… And as if it wasn't enough, I am moving out to the US this year… another culture to learn, and this time it will be harder for me because I don't have a parent who's experienced this culture or the life there. So, in some ways it's great to have the opportunity to know different cultures but sometimes it's scary and hard to handle.

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    That international school bubble is definitely a real thing I lived my childhood next to an international school and went to a finnish school which was further away. And still most of my friends were from the area close to me and I don't know anyone who even knew one person who went to that international school. I know more people from the swedish speaking school and i can't even speak a word in swedish.

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    Gregori Quirós Dos Reis

    Oh boy, finally someone who understands me lmao.
    I’m Spanish-Portuguese
    Born in Luxembourg
    Studied my entire life in the European School of Luxembourg, IN THE Spanish section (so I had a Spanish education and therefore I don’t speak Luxembourgish and German)
    And finally studying in the Netherlands.

    Why is it so complicated.

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    I'm an American. I recognize your US citizenship because of your mom. I'd give partial credit culturally because you were raised by an American. However, I don't recognize you as a fellow American. You would have had to be born and raised in the US.

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    I'm a bit late, but I wanted to say that I agree a lot with what you're saying. I lived in NZ until I was 8 and then moved to Spain. I have double nationality. I'd never given it much thought, I was always fine with being "the New Zealander" here in Spain and at school. Because of my surname and the fact that I had to suffer through very easy English classes at school for 8 years, my identity has always been quite noticeable in class. I always just saw myself as half-half, a mix, something in between, who knows. But it wasn't uncomfortable for me to feel that way.

    Two years ago, I met a NZer in Japan and I just felt so… out of the loop. Places that I should know the names of as a "real" NZer, a different way of seeing the world and especially lots of experiences that I've never had. I felt like I wasn't kiwi enough. I think that having double nationality, at least in my situation of having grown up in both countries, having two homes, is that there will always be an underlying homesickness. When I'm at home in Spain, I'm away from my home in NZ, and vice versa.

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    Arrant Frost

    I tend to identify mostly with New Zealand. My mother is from New Zealand, I’m from New Zealand. My father is Moroccan. I see myself as Moroccan but my first and foremost connection is towards New Zealand and I don’t find myself debated there.

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    Nico Borbely

    So much of this resonated very deeply with me as a dual American and Italian citizen and having lived in Egypt, Turkey, Iceland, Azerbaijan, Russia, and Finland (asuin Turussa ja opin vähän suomea!) as an exchange student. Not being a third culture kid but relating to many aspects of TCK identity, feeling both American and Italian but also neither at the same time, hovering in the middle and not being able to fully relay aspects of the experiences or other places to people in a different place, being VERY clearly a foreigner in a third place in spite of really liking living there and feeling connected to it, etc. Sometimes it's hard not to have a "home" in the same way as other people do, but I try to remember that having all these experiences has been so enriching and empowering for me in so many ways, and I would never give that up for anything either. I'm glad it sounds like you feel that way too! Thank you so much for putting this out there, I'm sure a lot of others could also relate to it and felt seen/heard when they watched as I did ❤︎

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    Thanks for a great video! I can totally relate. Born and raised in Sweden, my parents are from Finland and I speak Finnish as well. Here in Sweden you can tell by my full name and the way I speak that I come from a Finnish family. But when I am in Finland, after a minute of conversing Finnish people can probably tell I am not from there – I sometimes struggle to find words (that I know in Swedish, but not in Finnish), for example. I feel like you – I am not Swedish enough, and I am not Finnish enough. Sweden is home to me, but Finland feels kinda sorta like home too in the sense that my family is from there and I speak the language – although I have never lived there. I don't know, it would be nice to feel like you belong 100% somewhere, but at the same time I appreciate knowing two languages and having had the opportunity to spend time in Finland visiting family.

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