I feel a void - is it the US or is it growing up?

Mar 27 48 Comments

I feel a void in me since I have moved to the US. Anyone else who feels lonely in this country? I moved from India few years ago and though I have a thousand friends in this country, I never feel this is home. I have friends calling me everyday, visiting me often, I visit them, pursue my hobbies, and work out.

In this country, I have gotten used to doing everything on my own and being comfortable just by myself (not sure if I should be happy or sad about this). Back home, I never had food just by myself in 25+ years. Indeed Iwas the kind who would rather not have food than have it alone. I wonder if it has something to do with the life here or is this just called growing up.

I often think I should move back to India. But I am afraid what if this void and being by myself is just a part of growing up, and I end up feeling the same if I move back.

Any thoughts?

comments

Want to comment? LOG IN or SIGN UP
TOP 48 Comments
  • This comment was deleted by original commenter.

    • OP
      I see your point. I worked in India for a few years and I never had a meal all alone. But here, I hardly have lunch with friends. Even if it is, it's very formal. I have not formed deep friendships with any non-Indian as yet (though I talk to everyone). I always have to be politically correct here, so that reduces the banter. This void is killing me. But I am just unsure if all this is a part of growing up. Thanks for your insights though, appreciate the honesty.
      Mar 27
    • Groupon xWRH58
      I'm exactly in the same boat. I think it's a mix of growing up and seclusion of American lifestyle.
      Mar 27
    • OP
      I thought guys have it easier. Aren't women more emotional and connected to people?

      Yeah maybe it's both about the American lifestyle and growing up. But I want to get rid of this void.
      Mar 27
    • OP
      Probably the reason they open up faster than men is because they feel the need for people around them more than men. So in an individualistic culture like America, men may just be happier.
      Mar 27
    • Oracle / Ops houzu
      I am a woman and I feel the same. Only friends who share deeper connection with me are my best friends from college(from India)
      Mar 27
  • Amazon lolwhat
    This void is the only reason I decided to get married.
    I wonder how many people would stay happily unmarried if there was a way to get the kind of closeness you described from friends (everywhere, not just US)
    Mar 27 7
    • Amazon lolwhat
      Is it a wrong reason though?
      Everybody grows apart as we grow up, because we get married/ get into a relationship and that, along with kids, and the paraphernalia (house etc) keeps us so busy that all the other relationships, like friendship, weaken.
      So basically, everyone gets married because everyone else gets married.
      If marriage wasn't a thing at all, then I doubt someone would've wanted to invent that concept and get married.
      Mar 27
    • OP
      @F5 haha I hope you are kidding.
      Mar 27
    • OP
      @lolwhat this is exactly my question - is this growing apart specific to the US or is this just a part of growing up? Will this void go away if I move back to India?

      I don't want to get married because everyone else is getting married. And if I do, then my partner may or may not want to move back. If not, then it will be an added constraint.
      Mar 27
    • Amazon lolwhat
      US is not different from India in 2019 in this area.
      Although since all your family is in India, you're feeling what an American would've felt living in, say, Poland or some totally alien place.
      Mar 27
    • OP
      I see your point. You may be right. But aren't Americans just used to not having much of a social circle, so probably an American living in Poland would find it easier than an Indian (or another Asian) living in Poland.
      Mar 27
  • Amazon qhUc80
    I’m American and this is my least favorite aspect of American culture. It’s very individualist and not communal.
    Mar 27 1
    • OP
      I am glad someone accepted this. I noticed Americans supporting it by calling it 'true independence'. I find it sad that many people here don't know what it is like to have a social circle, active friends, to visit the extended family once a month, cook together with friends, and celebrate festivals together more often.
      Mar 27
  • Groupon xWRH58
    I've always said this to my friends. I'm too American to be considered Indian and too Indian to be considered American. The tragedy of immigrants.
    Mar 27 1
    • Amazon / Mgmt AWSer
      So true
      Mar 27
  • Glad you brought this up because the void is becoming unbearable. Sometimes I feel this society is so individualistic that even if I die, no one will come to know/ care. India has it issues but it has a heart. Unfortunately, I find people here are mechanical/ superficial and don't have heart. No festivals, no sharing lunches/ dinners/ social gatherings/ pilgrimages/ stories of personal milestones/ achievements. People hardly speak to each other at work and even if they do, it is sanitized conversation. In India, one would know not only about the colleague, but about his/her spouse, kids, parents and in-laws. Here, knowing what the colleague does/ likes, outside of work is itself an uphill task unless the colleague opens up him/herself. I don't expect emotional overdrive, but at least say "hello"? I doubt SOs can compensate for the void outside home. 'SO's like hobbies, offer the mirage of fulfillment without solving the root issue.
    Mar 27 1
    • OP
      On point. Here people are very closed. I agree about India having a heart. People welcome one another and know so much about each other and what's going on in their lives.

      I am single. On one side I am happy because I get time for myself and my hobbies. On the other hand, the void is killing.

      It feels like everyone who actually cares for me, whom I can call and share my sad story if I have someday, with whom I can discuss a bad day at work, or simply call up to say hi, are all Indians. I haven't developed this connection with anyone else though I know a lot of non Indians.
      Mar 27
  • Walmart.com / Mgmt
    mrsam

    Walmart.com Mgmt

    PRE
    Backcountry.com
    BIO
    Relocating to Seattle this year.
    mrsammore
    It's a bit less crowded here and people are more independent. This definitely comes with some tradeoffs. Also some of this is normal home sickness and culture shock.
    Mar 27 7
    • OP
      Haha @redjacket you nailed it. I felt the same way when I last visited India. Having stayed in the US for a few years now, I am somewhere in the middle, and my parents of course don't like it 😂

      Homesickness hasn't worn off for me though. If I don't visit India for an year, I start getting sad and lonely.
      Mar 27
    • @isvoid() haha. this is my fourth year in the US and I haven’t gone back yet. My family visits me tho. And I’ve people telling me how much my city is changing
      Mar 27
    • Dolby / Eng ViAt
      I feel similar to what you guys feel, that too quite often. In my case, I am happily married but there is still that void and meaning less part of social American lifestyle... It sucks...
      Mar 27
    • OP
      You got any suggestions to overcome it? Some people have suggested getting married which honestly seems a weird solution.
      Mar 27
    • Dolby / Eng ViAt
      I keep myself busy in work, gym with wife and weekend activities with few of my desi friends. I make sure to be in touch with friends from India, so whenever I visit them we have something to talk about and get along.
      Mar 27
  • Pinterest Lishivy
    I feel the same. I asked this around as well. There are a few people who feel like this and most others do not. I guess this depends on person to person and probably on how different your life is here compared to back home. I really want to move back as well and i will soon.
    Mar 27 1
    • OP
      I haven't met many people in real life who want to move back. Most want to stay here for the better roads, higher TC, and lesser pollution. But I don't want to live my life by myself, like I am doing now.
      Mar 27
  • Google nnyy
    When you are young, it’s mainly because of the America culture. When you get older, it becomes the same no matter where you live because life just gets tougher. US might be easier then. So the most important thing would be to find someone you like to face whatever in front together, and build a good foundation now.
    Mar 27 3
    • OP
      You mean finding a SO is the only/best option to get over this?
      Mar 27
    • Google nnyy
      Yes. Find the other half, but don’t settle with someone you don’t love. Then you will feel much better.
      Mar 27
    • OP
      True love is hard to find. I don't think I can/should rely on that.
      Mar 28
  • Groupon xWRH58
    I think that is some good advice. I've done it. Helps a lot. Only if finding someone compatible was that easy.
    Mar 27 1
    • OP
      True. And then no one wants to move back to India. I am prepared to stay single forever, because of the two reasons.
      Mar 27
  • Airbnb plier
    You are not the only one. I’m Asian and plan to move back or at least time-share between America and Asia.
    Mar 27 0
  • I’m in the same boat op. And I think it’s the country and the fact that we’re on our own. Yes I do have friends- My coworkers are my BFFs we eat together and get drinks after work etc and we talk about things. And that’s where it ends.

    I had even more friends at University. We had dinner parties very weekend. But since everyone started working, we drifted. Some of us don’t even talk anymore, mainly because we changed cities and got busy with our lives.

    My friends know friends who are a part of one big group where they hang out regularly. And I think that’s a good platform to develop friendships if one wants to. But I live in a much smaller city and I don’t know enough people or enough people my age.

    Anyways I got used to living alone. It’s very peaceful in a way. May be it’s a part of my personality that allows me to do that. I have friends from India who I talk to regularly. So I feel like I still have that connection with somebody.

    Also, Developing a hobby helped a lot. But if I start feeling miserable again, I might just talk to a therapist.
    Mar 27 0
  • Amazon blind_786
    Even I feel the void too, USA is good for professional life but on personal level it doesn't provide a lot of options. If you are missing India you can always go back. But most Indians don't going back as an option 😁
    Mar 27 0
  • Lexmark DMls35
    The U.S. culture may be contributing but it’s mostly growing up. In the U.S., we find hobbies to fill the void as we grow older. People who share hobbies often connect because of similar interests.
    Mar 27 0
  • OSIsoft ret.co
    In the same boat
    Mar 27 3
    • OP
      Hi five. Do you think the reason is US or is this void a part of growing up?
      Mar 27
    • OSIsoft ret.co
      I think it's about people around me. If I get my family here and my friends from India here; US would be the ideal place to be in.
      Unfortunately that's not feasible and hence the void.

      I have just been here for 2 years so far and I have started feeling like belonging nowhere. Roads, cleanliness, no pollution, high TC, cutting edge technology, beauty of US are on one hand and people in India are on the other.
      I think I won't be fully happy anymore because I will have to choose one. And the choice is clear- I need people around me. I would miss the positives of US and I will be very sad about it; but lack of people, individualism, lack of feeling of belonging, lack of people who care in US is something very difficult to get along with.
      Mar 27
    • OSIsoft ret.co
      I think One thing that would make living in US easier is getting married. SO can make a big difference.
      Mar 27
  • Bloomberg EVALSlayer
    America has many faces. You just haven’t found your place.
    Mar 27 1
    • OP
      How do I find my place?
      Mar 27
  • Valve / Eng
    cachoonga

    Valve Eng

    PRE
    Microsoft
    cachoongamore
    Nostalgia is stronger than reality
    Mar 27 1
    • OP
      Do you want to elaborate?
      Mar 27
  • Amazon / Mgmt AWSer
    I am in the same boat. My wife spend 3-6 months per year visiting her motherland
    Mar 27 0

Salary
Comparison

    Real time salary information from verified employees