Integration and making American friends.

Amazon Geervvr
Aug 29, 2018 40 Comments

I am an Indian and bought house few months back in a “community” - we are the only Indian family. My neighbors are all white Americans. Found that my neighbors are hosting weekly poker game for all the families but they don’t include us despite expressing interest. I tired communicating with them by inviting all to my house for catered lunch to know us but only one turned up.
One of my neighbors keeps Foxnews running continually on his garage tv and introduced himself as proud redneck from Idaho. The other one always wear NRA shirts. My kids get bullied by kids and I saw my neighbors kids running to my house, ring the bell and run away fast (I installed cameras that captured this - I didn’t bring this up thinking kids are kids). My son went to play them and came back saying that they were mean to him.
I really want to integrate and live in harmony respecting local culture but I am not able to make any non Indian family friends in US. I installed Christmas lights even though I don’t celebrate it, wear Seahawks and Mariner shirts and read about football and baseball to initiate conversations, tried celebrating Halloween, Easter hunt in my community etc etc but I am not able to make any American friends!

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TOP 40 Comments
  • VMware / Eng Black.Hat
    This is not a troll post. Many Indian families have described similar experiences to me.
    Aug 29, 2018 0
  • VMware / Eng Black.Hat
    My cousin was bullied in school too because he topped the class. He is American by birth but white kids yell ‘go back to your country’. How do kids know all these shit. Of course because their parents talk all these things at the homes.

    He was bullied for the Indian food he took in the lunch box. Later my aunt started giving him money to buy or European style food in his lunch box.
    Aug 29, 2018 2
    • Amazon Geervvr
      OP
      My son doesn’t want any Indian food to school to - he wants sandwich, pasta, cheese sticks etc. or buy the pizza they provide.
      Aug 29, 2018
    • Salesforce Nohana1
      All immigrant kids go thru that, well unless you are in Fremont or something
      Aug 29, 2018
  • Microsoft / Eng
    wisz46

    Microsoft Eng

    PRE
    Google, Facebook, TuneIn, Cisco
    wisz46more
    "And bought house few months back"

    Fix that immediately if you want to integrate (outside of, say, Fremont). I'm talking about your grammar.

    Next step is to *assimilate* but that may take time.

    Edit - I read your first sentence and immediately coughed and wrote this response then read the rest - sounds like you're doing all the right things so that's great! Serious pat on the back. It actually warmed my heart hearing about your effort. I really think speaking properly and dropping the Indian accent (it's okay to use it with family and Indian friends) as much as possible will get you very very far. And regarding the redneck, just kill them with kindness - maybe ask about their guns and hobbies with genuine curiosity. Open yourself up. Find common ground. Make a joke about the doorbell thing. Maybe make up a fake story about how you did it too. Cheers! 😃
    Aug 29, 2018 0
  • I applaud you for making the effort.
    What you describe were how things were in the 70-80s. They got better in the late 90s and early 2000s. But I'm afraid we live in Trump's America now.
    Aug 29, 2018 0
  • Salesforce FYWN43
    Sadly there are a lot of backwards racist people in the suburbs. You may unfortunately just have to wait for some of them to die off or leave so better people can move into the hood.....
    Aug 29, 2018 0
  • Google 🐾catar
    Aww my heart sinks just hearing this story. Best of luck mate.
    Aug 29, 2018 0
  • Microsoft / Eng mkay🔪
    Seattle freeze plus different culture. I'm a white immigrant, after 8 years I have zero American friends and have accepted that I'll never integrate.
    Aug 29, 2018 2
    • Microsoft Россия
      Where are you from?
      Aug 29, 2018
    • Amazon / Eng Hendrix x
      My wife is 14 years here now and in the exact situation. Not due to the freeze (which isn't real), but because she just can't integrate. Our culture drives her crazy. She basically lives for the couple months each year she goes back home to Eastern Europe.
      :(
      Aug 29, 2018
  • Apple magikarp16
    This is sad. 🙁
    Try moving out. Anyplace would be better. Most Americans I know are not like this. This place is definitely not worth it. Even if you lose money, move out and live peacefully.
    If possible keep video evidence of all this and upload after moving out.
    Aug 29, 2018 1
    • Walmart.com AaUU43
      There seems to be a shared lie in America that most americans are not like this. Even if they aren't exactly like this, I feel America is going through a gestation period where centuries of immigration is coming to a peak. People find it difficult to keep cultural, language and appearance related barriers out of their lives.

      I am a fairly well educated, well spoken, well read and well earning individual. I've lived in 5 other countries before this and have overall had very welcome experiences. But I see a super stratified society in america. I had very high expectations of this country and society when I arrived, but I must sadly say that I have resigned myself to the social sidelines in this country and really no one but time (centuries of co-existence among the immigrant and incumbent sections) can change that.
      Aug 29, 2018
  • NetApp 2CH41NZ
    Born and raised in the Bay Area and it's still hard for an Asian American to befriend Caucasians. I wouldnt try to befriend those neighbors since they dont seem welcoming and itll be a waste of time. I recommend finding a local community that has diversity or just open to different people.
    Aug 29, 2018 0
  • Google / Eng happy2help
    Move out and keep this as rental/investment property.
    Aug 29, 2018 0
  • New / Eng Ndjeiba
    East side suburb? I lived in an all white neighborhood for 3 years and most neighbors were friendly.. again not friends but friendly but I get that.. whenever we would cross paths they would greet us with a warm smile but I never got to know them personally which was okay by us.. I don’t think in our community people really interacted much which seems common here.. if you feel isolated you should move to a more diverse neighborhood.. if you feel your child is bullied you should definitely consider moving since that can leave a lasting impact.. in Seattle market it is not too difficult to sell your house though it is sad if you need to do that because of this reason..
    Aug 29, 2018 0
  • New DuQvV7x
    Integration is not the same as inserting yourself in your neighbors lives.
    Aug 29, 2018 2
    • VMware / Eng Black.Hat
      Devils advocate
      Aug 29, 2018
    • New DuQvV7x
      Not exactly. This reads like laying the entire goal of integration on the neighbors.

      There are many approaches and sources to do this. And expecting your neighbors to become cultural ambassadors is a big expectation.

      Remember, you don’t have shared social interests automatically with a neighbor. Just shared economic interest.
      Aug 29, 2018
  • Cisco molyneux
    There is a reason why foreigners flock to major urban cities in bay area or New York and live in their own ethnic groups. It's not so much as they don't want to assimilate. It's just that having the same tastes, lives and interests as country Americans is literally damaging to their families socially, mentally, physically.

    This is what African Americans keep complaining about. But you, as a rich property owning educated Indian, your voice is heard more than them. But make no mistake, American redneck interests are harassing others

    You'll find better educated people in New Delhi or Mumbai or Bangalore or what have you.

    In America, you can only do so much to assimilate. The rest of the burden has to be borne by white Americans.

    You can personally move out of redneck country. Sell your property, move to bay area.
    Aug 29, 2018 1
    • New / Eng Ndjeiba
      Why just Bay Area? Seattle is pretty liberal.. there is a huge Indian community in Redmond and Asian community in Bellevue.. Seattle is awesome
      Aug 29, 2018
  • VMware / Eng Black.Hat
    A dumb fuck classic republican would say “if you don’t like it here go back to your country”.
    Aug 29, 2018 1
    • Microsoft TrumpWins
      Be careful. We can talk about the current racism and xenophobic extremism in India if you really want to compare which country is more inclusive.
      Aug 29, 2018
  • Sirius XM PtCebx4
    I would try making friends at work instead (kids should also make friends at school) and consider moving to a more diverse neighborhood. Your neighbors sound like weird assholes. A certain amount of bullying and doorbell ditching is common for kids but the lack of attempt to include you or accept an invite sounds off.
    Aug 29, 2018 1
    • Sirius XM PtCebx4
      Also if you want to keep trying to make inroads and you aren’t morally opposed to it, tell the NRA neighbor you’re interested in learning how to shoot and ask him for advice on the best way to learn. He may offer to take you to a range or for you to go with him next time he goes. I’ve done this for friends and coworkers many times. He may ask you why you’re interested to make sure your intentions are good and to help you figure out what to learn how to shoot, so think about why in advance so that discussion doesn’t feel weird to him in case you’d be standing there struggling to come up with a good answer. Gaining common ground with him in a way like this may help ease things along.
      Aug 29, 2018
  • Microsoft / Eng
    Topcontrib

    Microsoft Eng

    BIO
    Hate coding quizzes but studying hard for better future!
    Topcontribmore
    I think Americans in general are very careful at making friends. They are easily accessible for casual conversation which is often not the case in other countries. So please don’t think you are being singled out or they hate you.

    As an Asian, I also feel similarly to yours but with Indian neighbors actually. They seem only interested in making friend with white Americans. Some never even smile and talk harshly to my kids for no reason. Some horn with angry face while driving in the neighborhood street which was surprising as it was not even my fault. One guy horn to my 5 year old which frighten him for not crossing the road immediately after pressing the crossing signal. I am a friendly and social guy and became close with most of my neighbors including three senior citizens. One came from south. I am closer to Canadian neighbors and thought Americans in this town lack social skill in general. I don’t feel they discriminate. Rather I feel they keep the distance for many reasons.

    In Seattle, many work in tech and most of those Americans came from different states. With kids, everyday is struggle for them as well. I felt people don’t seem affording to get close each other. Some immigrants like Canadians seem more interested and open at making friends but they probably have their reasons. They also feel they are newcomers in this world and are willing to sacrifice some uncomfortableness. For Americans, they don’t need to do that and can select friend group. I feel that they were trying to avoid any potential conflict with you. Or perhaps you are in a neighborhood where people make less than half of your money. You would have so many differences that conversation may not turn out great.

    I keep the distance with certain group people from my country ad well. We have different political or religious view. People from different area of my country are in general not a good fit with me. Knowing that, I became more selective at making friends of my country while living in US. It is not just me. People are not as close to each other as they were in home country. This is something we know and sacrifice as we determined living here outweighs the benefit we get by living in home country.

    However, I will give you this. My very socially active Asian friend made a ton of friends when she lived im south. She was a preschool teacher and Zoomba dance teacher. After moving to Eastern Washington, she is finding being discriminated for real. They even mention how happy they are that all neighbors are white despite my friend standing right there. Contrary to people’s belief, I found that white people in south dont seem discriminating (maybe a few). I had some bad experience with other colored people there but thought they were just unfortunate people with poor educational and family background. I feel people are hostile towards non white when I travel to Lake Chelan and such area. People in south seem very well educated at home even though they don’t make much money but eastern washington felt like they are still living in the past. OP could be living in such a neighborhood. Then, I would say give up. Most of white kids in mixed neighborhood seem very well educated. I actually feel they are better educated than Indians or Asian kids in general in this area. Not academics but home education.

    My question: how do I get close to Indian neighbors? During weekends, I can’t find Indian dudes when kids are playing outside. That is when I become friends with my neighbors. I hardy can’t find any Indian dads just moms. I chat and got to know some Indian moms but not the dads. I feel they want to avoid any friendly gestures as well. Now that I moved to a neighborhood where most are Indians. They look very close each other. I am fine not making friends but I wish my kids can hang out fine and make good friends.
    Aug 29, 2018 0
  • Dell k7$9+oV
    Do your kids a favor and move to a more diverse suburbs. I was the only white kid in a Mexican neighborhood and I received death threats from other kids everyday. I was dumb and didn't tell my parents. One day inside a bus, some kid made me decide if I wanted my neck or my finger to be sliced by a scissor. I told him none and he cut my shirt/jeans instead. That's when my parents realize that I'm being bullied and did something about it.
    Aug 29, 2018 0
  • Amazon Geervvr
    OP
    One of the houses in my community is available for sale and I was seriously considering if I should buy it and rent it out to an immigrant family for diversity but return figured out that it isn’t legal. I will lose 60-70k if I sell my house.
    Aug 29, 2018 1
    • Amazon / Eng
      6" Indian

      Amazon Eng

      BIO
      Slightly above average with 6 inches.
      6" Indianmore
      Why illegal?
      Aug 29, 2018
  • EMC 69E3
    Why are you forcing yourself to make friends with them? If you can’t watch Fox News all the time and debate things that spill out of it in poker games, do you think that invitation is worth it?

    I am sure not all neighborhoods in India one can go mix easily and be friends., of course, Kids get bullied in those kind of neighborhoods - where there is a mismatch. I bet if one of those kids end up in wrong school/neighborhood they get bullied too.

    Point is, live where you like and research before you buy. Sorry to say, sell that place and move on to other location.

    Also, I don’t get your point of wearing Seahawks jersey, putting lights but not celebrating etc., these all seem like you don’t enjoy but mentally forced to do when no one asked you so - fake can be noticed even though your intentions are good.
    Aug 29, 2018 0
  • Salesforce / Eng
    Byebyee

    Salesforce Eng

    PRE
    Amazon
    Byebyeemore
    They don’t deserve your kindness, move to a more diverse neighborhood. Not all Americans are like that buddy, those have ganged up on you. You only live once, so free yourself and your family and go to a place where they enjoy your friendliness.
    Aug 29, 2018 0

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