I’m not sure if this is visa advice or relationship advice for Australian Filipina couples. I try to keep this BLOG for visa information, and the two FilipinaWives sites (filipinawives.wordpress.com and www.filipinawives.com.au) for the relationship advice. But for now this seems relevant, because a lot of you are apart at this time of year. There have been a lot of tourist visa grants during this week, and I would expect more right up until Christmas Eve like what happens every year.
What I want to warn you all against is letting stress, worry and distance get to you. Distance and absence can be a real relationship-killer, as can the uncertainty of a visa grant that appears more like a dream than reality. And the longer it takes, the more ethereal it appears. We at Down Under Visa are in the privileged position to see visas granted one after another, but to those of you who are waiting you’ve never seen a visa grant come through the email like we get to see every week.
I’ve already said a few times about how nice it is when people don’t take it out on us, and most of the time our clients don’t. We had two during the last week, which wasn’t too bad for this time of year. More importantly I’d like to ask that at all costs you avoid taking it out on each other. You’ve fought long and hard to get to this point in your relationship, and you’ve invested plenty of time and heart into crossing cultural boundaries and many thousands of kilometers to build a loving and committed relationship. Please think twice before stress and misunderstandings cause you to damage this. Distance and absence means you only get a limited view of everything you hear and read, and it’s easy for negative thoughts to fill in the blanks. And before you know it a small issue takes on a life of its own. Be very aware of this.
The saddest emails we ever get are the ones where clients tell us they wish to pull the pin on their relationship. Sometimes the partner visa hasn’t been granted, and they want to withdraw their sponsorship. Other times it has been, and they want to know how to get the visa cancelled. We’re obliged of course to follow the instructions of our clients, but we always ask them if they are absolutely sure. Mostly I’ll ask them to wait a week or two before confirming their instructions, and I’m happy to say that MOST of the time they sort it out and they stay together. Sometimes they don’t and yes sometimes the best thing they can do is to break up. Not all relationships are good relationships. However the fact that most of them sort it out is a message to me that couples should take some time to reflect before making life-changing decisions.
I’ll give away a couple of themes to reflect on, which I credit as being part of the reasons why Mila and I have always hung onto each other……..
Firstly, a wise man once said that only he who has committed no sin should cast the first stone. Whether you are Christian or not, it’s common sense to realise that none of us are perfect. My wife is riddled with faults, and no one could be happier about this than me. If she was more perfect, why would she put up with me and all my faults? I don’t deserve anyone flawless, and I suspect neither do any of you. Find someone who loves you truly despite all your faults and you are truly lucky.
And secondly, I believe that couples who are truly in love have been given a special vision….one I call a “golden vision”….of your beloved that no one else has, where you see their goodness and their true beauty as a human being in purest form. There was a point where you saw this very clearly, and that vision moved you to decide you must have this person in your life. I see it as a gift. Your friends and family no doubt like him or her, and they can see the happiness in you, but they will never see what you saw and hopefully continue to see. Sometimes stresses and various problems can make this vision go dull. Some will say that falling in love is a limited psychological/hormonal event which will run its course and then that’s it. I disagree. I think if we were better people we would have that same golden vision of every person who crosses our path, because I think we all have a beauty in us and are all deserving of being loved. It’s just that most of us have our limitations, so we only really see it in one person.
I would ask you that when times are tough you think back to that moment where you first had that golden vision, and believe with all your heart that it was real and worth hanging onto. I hope that none of you will toss away that gift, and will swallow your pride and get past your anger, stress, frustration and limited-understanding and fight tooth and nail to hold on your gifts of each other. One day I hope you’ll be as happy as we are.
Have a wonderful and blessed Christmas, and may the New Year bring you closer to all the people whom you love.
(Please note that this is a scheduled post written before Down Under Visa’s holiday break. We will be back in the office on 5th January 2015.)