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Why married men shouldn't go abroad alone
You are a successful, happily married IT professional. So far, so good. One day, you get this really exciting job offer abroad, which you just can't resist. After all, many of your friends work abroad, making tons of dollars; you've always felt left behind.
You decide to grab this opportunity. What about your better half? Well, she is also an IT professional, with her own career ambitions; you decide a long-distance relationship for some time is the answer.
Here is what happens afterwards...
You call your wife every day. It's good to begin with. But, over a period of time, you start finding something amiss in your personal relationship. There is not much to talk about; after all, you definitely do not want to discuss what you did in office that day. That would be more irritating than fun.
You start getting creative and try different ways of keeping the line of communication lively. Does it work? Yes, at times, if you are lucky. You can't be romantic and flirt every day -- after all, she is your wife, not your girlfriend. So what used to be hour-long chats on the Internet is reduced to few minutes of formal talk. Sad, but true.
Work pressure and personal life
You are onsite at a customer's location; everything you do is transparent to the customer. There are few opportunities of hiding project information. This leads to more work pressure. As a result, you start getting involved in work to the extent of forgetting, at least temporarily, that you have someone back home who is thinking about you. You can't even share this with her -- after all, you do not have any family responsibility abroad and yet you want to complain about work and lack of time?
In India, when you had your family with you, you always wanted those two days off. Even before the weekend arrived, a list of what you needed to do on those two days would be ready. Your plate was always full -- be it a visit to a family friend, a show at the nearby multiplex or getting the necessary household items. There was so much to do in such little time. And how time flew!
Now, however, the weekends that used to be so special after a week of hard work stretch endlessly.
As for her, what is she to do? Visit her friend? How many times? Not to mention her friend may have her own set of engagements for the weekend. Probably, she should sleep as much as she can and try to watch a movie. But how many weekends can she pass in solitude?
Most of us, after marriage, miss those golden days at college, the beer and the circle of friends. But now, when you are alone like all other 'singles', believe me you will hate it. Blame it on your age or the 'married' frame of mind, 'being single' is no longer fun.
Sharing your apartment with other singles becomes so problematic that you tend to miss your well-managed home.
Women are good at multi-tasking, they can work and manage homes at the same time. But we guys can't manage our beds, let alone the whole house. Believe me, a second innings at bachelorhood is definitely not hot, for sure.
While alone abroad, if you suddenly wake up in the night and start thinking about your family, or if you do not get sleep the whole night, don't panic. You are not alone. This is a common phenomenon. Is it too a big price for those dollars? You decide.
Thanks to your wife, you get used to breakfast, lunch, evening snacks and dinner. Once you are abroad on your own, it becomes normal for you to cook in large amounts and eat the same thing multiple times. In fact, it's perfectly okay if you have been surviving on just curd rice. Among all the issues you are facing, this seems to be the least problematic. You just want to eat to keep your stomach full. Right?
Men are not supposed to be too emotional. But, once you stay alone for a long period of time, you'll find yourself becoming 'philosophical'; you may even shed a few tears. You'll start questioning yourself as to what was lacking in your life that you decided to work abroad.
So how good is the deal really? If you change your mind about taking up that fabulous offer, after going through this article, please do not blame me. The decision is still yours.
Krishna Kumar works with Bangalore-based TechUnified, which provides software solutions to banking and telecom customers worldwide. He is also an alumni of NIT, Surathkal.
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