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Friday, March 21, 2008

A Heated Response on One of my Posts

I remembered posting an article weeks back and I was surprised by the number and intensity of responses to it. I am not going to tell what post it was but it is still in my blog here. The reason? Simply t not broadcast the name of the person who made this reaction. It did struck me badly! I thought I am the only one who think this way but I have seen that most of the young Filipinos abroad have parallel thinking as of mine.

I’ll just post it here to see the real sentiment of some persons who reacted to one of my posts. I will never edit them. If I remembered it good, there are at least two of them. I see how some of you react to it and I will be happy to see the statistics what kind of reaction comes from who and from where..

Here they go..

I totally agree with you!!! I’ve often critiqued the Filipino parents’ mentality myself.

I am a 22-year old Filipino student in Canada about to graduate from university this year and youngest of two children.

What is bugging me recently is how my mom and her partner tries to manipulate the way I think regarding the financial and social responsibilities that I should keep in mind and should fulfill even after I move out of their place.

These financial responsibilities include:
1. Letting my mom retire early.
2. Give monthly allowance to parents.
3. Help them pay off their mortgage.
4. Send my OLDER IRRESPONSIBLE sister to school and pay off her $13,000 debts.
5. Pay for my own god-damn $30,000 student loan myself.
6. Sponsor at least one relative from the Philippines to Canada.
7. Send at least one relative to university in the Philippines.
8. Take over my mom’s financial responsibility by sending monthly allowance to her siblings, my cousins and other ‘poor’ relatives back home.

I am also expected to get a $40,000 salary right after graduation, my salary must be higher than their salaries combined. My boyfriend should also be rich and not someone who is also on student loan, which is the case (my 4-year bf is also expected to finish paying her mom’s mortgage and pay for his younger brother’s school; her mom also has a partner but he doesn’t pay shit for anything because he thinks her children should do those things for her).

I don’t plan nor intend to follow any of these traditional Filipino shit. I don’t mind helping my parents with household work nor giving them expensive gifts or even money on mother’s day, birthdays and Christmas, BUT it definitely should not go as far as the ridiculous monthly allowance nor the whole paying off their mortgage thing! What the fuck will be left for my own fucking mortgage, utility bills, food, gas in addition to the cost of raising children!?!?! Do they even think of how expensive the standard of living in Toronto is?! Or how about my own plans for my future children like sending them to prestigious schools, sending them abroad to study, and paying for their undergraduate, masters and postdoctoral education!?!

I hope to end this whole typecasting of Filipinos as socially and financially-disadvantaged race in Canada who only works as nannies or who are mostly found in retail, factory, hotels, and restaurants! Invest in your children’s fucking education for fuck sake. Send your children to PRIVATE SCHOOLS. Hire a tutor if you must. Help your children with their homework. Get involved in their school activities and find out about the school curriculum to see whether it is right for your kids. Send your kids to piano lessons, valet lessons, and what not. And most importantly, don’t have more than 1 child if you know you can’t afford it!!!

Filipino parents in Canada should also stop emphasizing the GREAT OPPORTUNITIES and the HUGE INCOME that their children will get once they’ve managed to graduate in this so-called land of opportunity. Can’t we have a better conversation that is more productive like discussing school-related things and plans for further education? A discussion on current problems faced by Filipinos for instance instead of always saying that their children are so lucky to be in Canada? Clearly, ideas like these penetrate into the minds of newcomers who find themselves working as janitors, earning an hourly wage that is perhaps higher than the wage of doctors back home, and will say to themselves, “yeah, this job isn’t so bad after all.”, and next thing you know you are a 65-year old who have not really accomplished anything FOR KEEPS. There are better things than working as a janitor in Canada. Filipinos should stop comparing their income to the income of those back home, because in the first world people can earn up to $300, 000 as professionals if they would only invest their time and money on education instead of the $30-$35,000 average income that you can get as nannies, janitors, etc.
I am not saying these things to make some Filipinos feel bad or to discriminate against my own race but I am simply stating what I think is wrong with Filipinos’ mentality. So maybe instead of trying to look on the “bright” side of things by comparing your situation to the situation of those in the third world, why don’t you compare your situation to those in the first world? Look at the filthy rich Jewish lawyers and doctors for instance. Let’s stop attributing our situation to our colonial past, corrupted officials, and to the financial obligations that we have to our relatives back home, because to some extent, Filipinos invoke these things as an excuse for their failure to go beyond what they are capable of doing.

I appreciate your blog entry so much. I am glad to know that there are other Filipinos who think the way I do regarding the family structure and system of Filipinos. I hope blogs like this one are read by the many young Filipinos, especially Filipino parents.

This is another:

minsan alam nyo hindi "tulong" ang tawag dyan sa tinutukoy nyo eh, as this blog said "crab mentality" talaga. kasi minsan pag nagpapadala kami ng pera sa Pilipinas para lang i-abswelto kung ano mang' kataratuduhan ginawa ng iba naming kamag-anak don.

biruin nyo afford nga nilang mag-computer at mag-internet tapos pagdating sa sarili nila i-aasa pa sayo. ang mga taong tinutulungan ay yung mga: may kapansanan, lumpo, bulag, walang kamay at paa, na-aksidenteng tao, na-sunugan ng bahay at kung ano ano pa.

basta yung mga minalas sa buhay at hinde yung mga iresponsable at tangang tao na anak lang ng anak tapos i-aasa lang lahat sa mas masikap sa kanila. lahat naman ng nakatira sa ibang bansa ay may parehong access sa opportunity para baguhin sitwasyon nila.

pero magtataka kung bakit ang dami parin mga pilipinong kabataan ngayon sa ibang bansa na hinde nagsusumikap sa pag-aaral at pagta-trabaho. kaya tingin ko crab mentality talaga ang mostly filipino.

kapag alam kasi ng isang taong may maasahan sila, mas aasa pa sila at magpapahirap dahil alam nilang tutulungan parin sila kahit papano...at saka, kung narirealize pala ng mga pinoy sa pilipinas ang totoong hirap sa buhay, e bakit nagko-contribute parin sila sa hirap ng buhay nila? tulad nga ng pag-aanak ng madami at hinde pagsusumikap sa pag-aaral. madalas inaatupag pagba-barkada, inuman at pagso-syota.

ewan ko, masyado lang kasi tong' nakakapagtaka. ang taong alam ang totoong hirap, magpupursige dapat diba at hinde magpapahirap ng iba.

By the way,if one of these days, I cannot log here and wont be able to visit your sites upon each visit you make, simply buzz me here. When I can settle again and have a connection, I will be happy to visit your sites and read your posts or make comments. I’d love to return the effort and favor you make. Or, as I always do, I visit your blogs or sites but I am just having difficulties making a note in cbox or a comment with the mobile phone. It is very time consuming and a bit uncomfy. See you soon… Just leave a note here so it wont be lost. Because in my shoutmix, if in case many of you will leave comments, it tends to go away since I am not a premium member…Sorry for that.


  1. hi nice site.. care for ex link? tnx godbless.. www.umakchorale.blogspot.com

  2. wow youve done it comprehensively nice
    its wonderful that you really give time to appreciate those blogs
    gheeeh i went over the "ovguide" and a site like that is truly recommendable

  3. hwag i spoil ung family by sending everything they needed...let them learn to work hard too....

  4. @ UMakChorale: Thanks for the invitation. I would love to xlink with everyone. I have instructions for xlinkers in my sidebar. Moreover, this is the second time you have invited me and I have left a message already in your blog weeks back. I hope you take a look at it. Thanks again.

  5. Hi Blue! Honestly, i don't have any idea what you are commenting on! Hahaha! Maybe it's a wrong comment. Anyway, I will be asking you in your site what you exactly mean by your comment here. ^_^

    Take care.

  6. Hi Mica! Thanks for dropping by... Well, its a bad culture...

  7. hahaha mnaku mali nga kasi nagoopen ako ng maraming window nalito klang me nnaku sooryy ha hehe btw
    ang haba naman ng comment nya grabe
    it seems that naibuhos nya na lahat dito
    have a great day i love phil xenxa na uli hehe

  8. I have added yours already.Thanks for the visit!

    About the post, I can really feel the hatred of the author. I don't know how to tell her. I have felt that before when I had to pay my sister's condo rent (17,000 P) twice.

  9. ohhki doks!
    may i be given a space to express my thoughts about this issue.

    I can feel the outburst of that person from Canada.
    On issue of this Filipino culture- "being responsible to your family and relatives up to the tenth degree" (exaggerated) is good an can be bad. good in the sense that, family ties, concern and love is there. as what the second post said "TULONG". This is inherent in our culture and we are lucky that our ancestors have inculcated this to us. It is also Biblical and human's nature to extend help to the "needy".
    Definitely TULONG is different with ______ I guess i better call it "Spoiling" which is obvious in the first post. Tulong is good but when exceeded, it turns to be bad, sabi nga natin "kapag sobra ay masama"

    Helping has its own measurable area. "HELP" is used only to the NEEDY and NEEDY are those who are in need and is incapable, and at that time of need, is incapable of meeting his needs. .Going beyond will lead to abuse. In effect, you spoil the needy and in the process makes him/her slothful- now, that is where "ASA SYSTEM" comes in.

    As to the person helping, you have been gifted with free will. You know your capacity. I guess it's not wrong to explain the needy the extent of your responsibility. There is always a proper way for everything.

    It is also inherent in the culture of filipinos the thinking that "basta nasa abroad, mayaman" it's a thing i hated also. they perceive you as a person filled with $$$$$ signs and ask from you this and that. yung iba hindi makontento sa pasalubong, gusto pa nila yun at yan. makokontento lang siguro sila pag hubad ka na. if you fail them, it upsets them. But again, the decision and the TRICK is yours.

    i guess i've said much. got to close this before i rant out loud :)


    ingat lagi :)

    btw asan ka na pala ngayon?

  10. hi. i don't know what post they commented on but i sure would like to read it. :)
    i often am pressured to finish my studies on time with outstanding grades as a ticket to a good job here in the philippines or hopefully, abroad. also, my boyfriend (when i do get one,haha) must be someone who has graduated from a prestigious school, and holds a number of tickets to green pastures. the parents can say a lot really and often, as children they are misunderstood.
    in the case of helping out, filipinos help out when they can and helping out family members is a decent thing to do. i mean,if you're earning MORE THAN ENOUGH and a relative back home is about to go homeless, would you let that relative go homeless when you have more than enough to spend for yourself?
    one has to admit though, poverty is around the philippines and often, a person can't do anything about it. he/she tries to go above it but is still pushed down because of circumstances. say, i want to work but there are no jobs available. so i'll ask for help til i can find something that pays off.
    you, as a person who is enjoying more than enough CAN do a little sacrifice for the other. postpone shopping or eating at the fanciest restaurants or whatever luxury it is you're enjoying.you can give some assistance. and that never goes unappreciated.
    help out if you can give help.
    and i'm sure that your family members will do the same for you if you get sacked or fall behind with your bills.
    filipinos help out because they are beautiful people. they don't let go of each other especially when it's blood that ties them together. :)

  11. salamat sa comments, yes sa one day lng to..hoepfully araw araw na..hhehehe

  12. Wow, very good discussion on the issues that you highlighted on your blogs.
    These issues are brought up for people to think further what direction people should actually go.
    Of course the old mindset need to be changed gradually especially the new generation.
    I feel sad for the current situation but I hope times will change for the better, best wishes to all people.
    Have a wonderful week, I say again your blogs set people thinking.
    I have already nominated your blog as top five.
    Cheer it up, see you soon.
    From coolingstar9

  13. minsan naman kase talagang abuso na, i can feel her sentiments. kailangan talaga magtulungan para makaahon lahat. ang mga relatives dito sa pinas should also understand that life abroad is hard, lalo na at ibang culture yun.

  14. Kaibigan,kamusta ka na?
    Naglagay ka na pala ng litrato!Hehehe!

  15. To Bluedreamer:

    Don't worry Kid, it happens to me sometimes as well. I just wondered about that comment na hindi ko ma gets. Good that we are clear on this now. Keep in touch and take care.

  16. Hi Pinoysrock... i am adding your link as well...let me just see your page. Take care and well, i hope you are happy to help as what ,ost claim...hehehe.....joke lang po!

  17. Happy Easter to Mica. Take care and keep being sexy... ^_^

  18. Hello Gina my friend... Tama ka dyan. That is why I proposed sa previous link ko of mandatory educaion because I have seen that most of us, Filipinos, have really narrow minds... especially in what you have pointed out... we don't see beyond... we are really having this isang kahig isang tuka mentality... an dof course, the Bahala na. ost does not think of the future. Nanganganak, wala namang maipapakain!

    Thanks for sharing your views my Amiga.

  19. To Chinny:

    Thank you so much for sharing your views gurl. Take care always and keep in touch ^_^

  20. hi friend, i know you're quite making adjustment because you're leaving for Germany. Enjoy your trip and God bless you always.
    thank you for keeping in touch. do you have companion going to Germany? enjoy your every stay there ha and take all opportunities available to explore more knowledge, experience and of course wealth.
    Muchos ka pala sa online money making ha! unlike me, im quite ignorant in making money online hehe just trying those i heard but did't worked. cograts you made it.
    yeah today is Earth Hour, it's ok you've extended so much support besides i know that you're not one among the polluters of this world :)
    i pray that God will guide your decisions and will keep you safe wherever you may go. Just don't ever forget to pray to Him.
    sana din mura lang ang internet sa Germany so we could keep in touch always so you could continue blogging and earning money of course because you have the potentials.
    yeah, i saw your picture you're youthful and pretty. sa mga ideas mo kasi parang you've been through age LOL joke of course but i admire you for having a wide horizon about the Philippines culture and socio- economic problems. keep up the good work.
    i apologize for late reply, just that i'm trying to fix all things before leaving my present company ill be moving to a new one, new work, new challenge, new peers, new pressure as in brand new lahat hehe and im ready for it.
    just keep me posted ha.
    nobela na naman, ill be missing this.
    God bless you always and take care :)
    love ya friend :)

    ill regularly visit you here as long as im online

  21. hi Mica, thanks a lot dear for the undying support and click ons...hehehe... i highly appreciate it...take care.

  22. Hi Friend... It's around three pm here and mamayang gabi na alis ko from here to Milan.... With the Easter Daze here, wala talagang masasakyan kaya am here, will suffer back aches for fiteen hours coz only bus is available... all the rails/tains are full na and also the flights... even yung first class! mama mia! I am going to stay in Milan for a day or two before proceeding to Germany. Don't worry friend, I have a pure Italian blooded companion and can sae me for life if anything happens so i always feel sure and safe... hehehe

    Congrats for the campaign and I do hope it will be a success over there. I hope TV and radio stations put awareness as well but i am not really sure considering the media there are all vying for money, which means, an hour of electricity off is a million of pesos loss for their networks, kaya, i am not so sure about the media campaign in ph for the earth hour.

    About polluting the envisronment, well, i guess if i breath, that is the only way...hehehe... i also don't eat so much in fast foods with styro and i do not smoke. i keep my candy wrappers in my pocket so i guess i am not polluting the earth much...

    As for the image, i was astonished when anino told me that he saw my picture... hehehe...accident lang yun.. i kept it back but i did not know na yung comments ko while i had the profile pic stiill shows pa rin until now. Anyways, i always look young and feel young and act young outside. It's inside that I understood all. I grew out independently kasi, without parents since 11 and i am 23 now... see? hehehe.. anyway, balik nobela ba ito?

    Cge, just leave any message.. I guess i can still log with phone even in germany but cannot make new posts so i can still see my blogs and at leasrt visit friends' blogs... and i hope i can email soon.

  23. I like your insight sa topic na to. Masakit man sa iba pero totoo naman talaga na may ibang pinoy may ugaling "crab mentality". About expectations- depende sa magulang din yan. I know the feeling being taken advantage of. I've had enough of it. I learned how to say NO when not to help and when to help out. Great job sa post na to :) Oo nga pala salamat sa pag visit ha. Ingat lagi!

    Ate Anah

  24. Thanks poate anah. Proud naman ako sa comment nyo. Tx alot.takecarepo. Ù

  25. hi! so you're in Milan na wow ha, ang ganda ganda ng place na yan. you can make a review for cosmo. it's sad to know that your gmail is not working pano na yan dito na nga lang tayo sa comment section nag uusap, open to all haha, anyways nothing confidential naman eh, in fact they can join- joke.
    so after a day you'll be in Germany. new images new experiences new people to be with but fun right? hala i know Germans are handsome hala you're hearth might fall for a German haha- not bad.

    hope you can have your own laptop so you could continue with your blog because many regularly visits your insights. many will definitely miss you.

    ok until here muna. be back after how many days.

    just take care always and God bless!

  26. hello i love phil how are you now have a great day

  27. HI! maybe you're in Germany na. hope you are ok and in good shape.
    take care always and God bless :)

  28. hello i love phil quite busy do yah///
    have agreat day hope to see you soon again have a great day

  29. Fil culture...? hmn.. tsk tsk tsk.. its not really on the culture.. its being "unselfish"... it just so happen that we are more fortunate.. and yung mga taong tamad nman ay lalong tumatamad...
    even me.. im donating money to my relatives.. eh meron pa ba tayung magagawa..? kamg-anak na nga eh.. sino pa ba mgtutulungan..? its hard, but im not saying it that i dont want to follow fil's tradition.. that is just so selfish and unmerciful.. can we juz stop blaming them for their laziness, instead help them and encourage them to earn... sorry.. i jus opposed... errr.. its stereotyping... :-/

  30. hello! how are u? kinda miss yah... kauuwi ko lang from my lola's house in lake sebu.. hehehe... u in germany now?

    so this is the comment you are telling me? hmmm... lain tana gnamean ko kay sa google search ko nangita..hehehe...

    i smell anguish in her comment. it's really irritating/annoying when some oblige you to do something when in fact you are NOT.it's good to help your relatives and other people but but they must understand that you have your own life too and they should not depend on you all the time. they should make efforts also to make their lives better.
    yan ang problema satin minsan eh... inaabuso natin ang kabaitan ng ibang tao satin... hayyzz...

  31. hi there ^__^ I've been so "entertained" with this entry. hehe.

    totoo talaga yung sinasabi nila through their comments. I have observed that from my relatives. even though we're just here in the Phil., my parents have the same situation in regards to helping some of our relatives. some are getting so dependent... inaasa na lang lahat sa parents ko, and what really bothers or make that annoys me is naaalala lang nila ang parents ko during christmas, kasi "giving" time eh. every year that's the only chance that we'd get to see them... yet they only have one business, to receive "tulong".

    I could never forget what they've done to my mom. mama ko pa ang tumutulong, siya pa ang sinisiraan... pero sino yung nasasandalan nila everytime me financial problems sila? yung parents ko...

    anyway, parang nadadala na ako. :D

    I really appreciate your blog. :)

    see you around. have a great week ;)

  32. Hi, As a foreigner married to a Filipina, I can sympathise with you, the young guy in Canada. I know Canada to be a place of relentless work for low pay, and cold-hearted company policies driven my the N American corporate moral-lacking ethic.
    -It is not those who are in poverty that I mind helping, it is finding out that the Phil family medical bills were based on ailments that were never treated, despite the med money sent over.
    -It is the spending of cash sent over, after a desperate plea for medical help, on a phone bill that is ten times what I pay in N America.
    -It is the second request for med money after the first has been spent on the phone, or other items, and the medical situation is used again to extract money.
    -It is the assumption that as I am a foreigner, I am rich, and therefore a bottomless pit that is used for money.
    -It is the guilt trips put upon my wife to get her to send her earnings over there, instead of paying bills here. In a 12 year marriage that has been a delight in all other respects, I have seen the following:
    -A $200 a month budget for family assistance exceeded by up to $400 a month as a regular thing.
    -The Phil family quit work of any kind, then manipulate to get the $200 budget increased by regular "emergencies" to maintain their retirement
    -My family here in N America increase its debt load by over 50,000 bucks, then file bankruptcy.
    -My personal pension fund get ransacked to the tune of over $30,000 dealing with bills created by budget overruns.
    -I have seen photos of DVD players in the background, when they were $400 items, and I could not afford one.
    -I have seen photos of parties, at times when I cannot afford a birthday gift, or even flowers, for my wife.
    - I have had a miserable Pinay individual who works at a local Walmart and who is a drug and alcohol user accuse me of being unreasonable as I married a Filipina, and part of that is that Filipinas have to send money home.
    -I have had the same individual accuse me publicly and at her workplace of being unreasonable for not liking the small of burning fish, and complaining about it, this being when relatives paid me the continual insult of selecting fish as a toasted offering inside my house at times when I had a day off, yet never when I was away at work.
    -I have today heard of a Filipina friend who currently on a visit home has had to go to her sisters house away from the city to avoid the relatives demands for money in large amounts, like amounts enough to buy cars, and then they get annoyed when refused.
    -I can with all honesty say that in the years I have been involved, there has not been one single transaction involving money that has been honestly presented.
    -Every demand or request for help has been later found to be based on a lie.
    -About a year or so ago I attempted to assist with finance for the starting of a business, and all that transpired in the end was that a PC was purchased, and then the relative involved informed me that the Internet Cafe business was no longer any good, and so he would not be going ahead with it. This was coupled with a photo a few weeks later of the same relative working at his PC, a dual-core Intel processor with illuminated Neon case. Meanwhile, I am STILL using a PC that is 7 years old.
    -This was followed some weeks later by the father of that same relative crowing about how well his son has done, and how his son has a better computer than we do.
    - We some years ago paid for a university course on computers for the same individual, in order to qualify him as having had continuous education since high school, and he decided it was better to take the course money and spend it. He then needed to pay the course (another 700 bucks the wife sent that I advised was throwing good money after bad) to get the paperwork, but by that time had been refused immigration. Tough, Eh? It would be interesting to contact the university and see how much the 700 outstanding tuition really was. Probably another theft of funds from the rich americans
    -I hate to say this, but if I had to do my life over again and went for a similar deal, I would make it clear: There will be no funds sent over at all, not a single penny, not for Christmas, none at all. No gifts that others, the recipients, decide what they are either. There would be a fund that will buy a second house in N America, and the rent once the house is fully paid for the rental income will be providing all sole funds after rental expenses. That way, right now, my wife would own a spare house that she can later rent out for her own retirement.
    -We borrowed the airfare from a friend so that the family could come over here to live, against my advice and judgment. I was wrong on one thing. They do actually work now that they are forced to, having come out of the Philippine retirement that I (my wife even more so) financed for all those years. But they find the work in North America hard, and so they will be returning. Not on my money they won't. They now have a problem, they owe a load of airfare money for getting here, and drink and smoke too much to save for their return. And no doubt I will be left maxxing out my credit card again, and taking more pension out to pay it down, just to pay off the airfare that was spent getting them here. But the goose has laid it's golden egg, and will lay no more.

  33. Oh my, what a discussion. Whoa! Im one of those who sweat out blood and tears just to reach my ambition. Its true its frustrating that some parents in the Phils really don't think/care of their children's future. Just sad that the first one used a lot of f word which is very vulgar to me.. Anyhow, I also help my family in the Phils but I set my limitations, although my husband is willing to give, I'm the one that controls it because I know how it works in there.

  34. My mom's entire side of the family (in the Philippines) are like this..dependent on her. From an older brother and his wife and family..and now to her other many nieces and nephews (most who are older than me with families of their own). You can't begin to imagine the numerous long distance phone calls or mails we recieve from them asking for money because of personal problems. Actually, with my mom's brother with his wife and family, my mom's been financially sending him money for like the longest time now. Maybe like 20 plus years. But it recently stopped, since my uncle passed away. Now, other relatives are asking for financial help now. It's these neices and nephews of hers who have began writing or calling my mom. My mom is reaching her 60s already and some of these cousins of mine are asking for her help to put their kids thru school elementary thru college I guess..I mean how long will that be for my mom to financially help them..til she's really old? I had secretly read that letter from a female cousin and I don't know if my mom is sending money for it, but I think she is.
    Actually, I've tried so many times to advise my mom to not spoil her relatives back home, but it just doesn't get to her mind that she's got a life, a house, bills and a family of her own as well here in the states to tend to. Honestly, my mom's the nicest person but she doesn't know how to set the limitations of sending money. Let's put it this way..whenever those people back in the Philippines call or write to send for money, my mom sends it right away with no hesitations or questions asked of them. Who knows if they're really using the money for good purposes? She does not even lecture them at all that.."Look, life here in the states is hard as well. Hopefully you guys back there will do something to improve your lives also, so you won't always depend on me because money doesn't grow on trees here". But my mom doesn't tell them that. She just sends and sends.
    Honestly, I've gotten into a fight with my mom several times already about this..but it just doesn't get thru her. Personally, there's nothing wrong with helping relatives back home if they need money for emergencies and stuff like that. But to send money to them like it's their allowance is totally unfair for us here in the states, who work our butts off while they sit on thier a**es waiting for money to arrive every month. Buti pa sila ano pa easy easy lang..

  35. This is a great discussion. Many comments here have given me a new perspective on the Filipino-Foreigner dynamic. It's nice to hear other points of view. Posted this on my favorite news site for you. :)

  36. Hi.
    whoa! great discussion here..intense.
    I can really relate to the sentiments of others here. In my experience, our family's been helping our relatives since I was a kid. At first I thought it was okay, for the sake na relatives sila pero lately I've realized di na tama. Now that I got a family on my own I have to prioritize my family first before anything else. Alam mo, nasa abroad ka man o hindi ganun talaga ang mentality ng ibang pinoy. Ewan ko ba..sana magbago naman. Di biro ang pgpa hirap sa trabaho. Di naman masama ang tumulong eh pero may limitation.
    Have a nice day :]

  37. Just gave this some more thoughts.
    I have no doubt in my mind that it is originally poverty driven, a need to survive. Like getting a rich uncle take you out to dinner, you eat all you can, then hope that he takes you out again. Then maybe setting things up so he does! At the same time I feel like someone who has donated to a charity to treat people for leprosy, only to find out the money was spent on a long distance phone bill.
    Just to get back onto the subject, in which was I was responding to a young guy from Canada who had a bad experience, I perhaps should make it clear that I do not think that in my case it was a systematically planned scam. It was just totally increasingly opportunist on a day-to-day basis. Nor did I meet my wife in a bar, it was through a mailing agency, and involved many months of letter writing and phoning.
    As for me rushing in to this without knowing what I was getting into, and me being responsible for finding out everything first, I don't believe that is possible, as it would mean having a private detective with CIA skills befriend the future in-laws, and see how they let things slip once they are comfortable, and reveal that they are actually happy to tell laughing stories about how they have stolen/tricked money from people etc.
    I think in any marriage, there is a gamble. In my case, I didn't know my wife well, but even if I had spent longer courting her, I would have been initially checking on the wrong person.
    I have lots of friends, both 'foreigners' who are married to Filipinas, and Filipinos as well. In no other case has the resolve to lie in order to extort money been so pronounced. Many don't send anything, their relatives in the Philippines work hard for their money the same as I do.
    There are crooked people in the world, whatever country you look at, so all you Filipinos/as shouldn't feel that this reflects on you on a national level.
    So, I suppose my advice would be to try to check the family for some signs before proposing. The signs might been seen by asking the questions:
    1 Where do the current living expenses come from?
    2 Have the family prospered or declined over the years?
    3 How many of the family are of working age?
    4 Do those who are old enough actually work for a visible employer?
    5 If the family run a business, take time to watch it. Is work being done every day?
    In my case the answers would have been:
    1 They appear to come from a business, so I am told.
    2 Declined
    3 5
    4 No They all run the business I am told
    5 No None is being done for many days at a time.

    And that is the key. Ask that in any country, and if you get the answers I would have got, then there might be trouble. In the west, they would be obviously on welfare. With the general lifestyle in the Philippines, it is hard when going there to judge what is 'normal', as the whole place is so noisy and busy and culturally different.

    Also, I could have grilled the fiancee:
    1 At what age did you start the cooking and housework?
    2 Does anyone else do any cooking and housework?
    3 When you had a job away from home, did you keep the income?
    4 What work do you do to help the family business?
    5 How come that the business never appears to be running?

    And the answers I possibly would have got:
    1 7
    2 No I do it all, my mother is a businesswoman.
    3 No I sent it home.
    4 None, the others do the business work.
    5 We have no work right now.

    The next mistake I made was sending money over to 'supplement' the business income, not realising that it was not kept by my wife, but handed over to the family to buy San Miguel, cigarettes, Tanduay, and long distance phone bills for calls made to other distant relatives for no other purpose than to prove that they could be made.
    In short, I enabled the system to prosper. If asked for 100 bucks with a good reason given, I would hit the credit card and send it. The thing is, those good reasons always got more compelling, proportional to the acting skills and imagination applied by the perpetrators.
    Next, I should have researched the cost of travel, and when told that 300 bucks was needed to go to Manila, realised that I was paying for the family outing courtesy Cebu Pacific. I should also have insisted upon paying for items such as med exams for immigration directly, by transfer to the doctor involved. This would avoid the 300 peso bill costing me 100 bucks. But at the same time, there has to be trust. Yeah, right. The 'good' child will do as the parents say.

    Here are a few ideas for anyone contemplating an arranged marriage with a Filipina:

    Avoid city girls - the upbringing might be too much dog-eats-dog to be comfortable.
    Vet the parents really closely, and if feeling uncomfortable, put the marriage thing on the back-burner for a while. If you then get dumped, then you just saved yourself a whole load of cash that you might have yet to earn.
    10 bucks a month is plenty for pocket money.
    A ferry is as good as a plane.
    Phone the doctors offices for verification of fees. Even if the bill is, say, 10 bucks, and the phone call costs 50, it is money well spent if you are being asked for 30 or 100 for the doctors fee.
    At any sign of a ripoff exceeding 10 percent of the real price, move on. 10% should cover things in case something is a bit more, or she needs an extra meal etc. But that extra should be your choice to give, not their choice to take first, then have you add more on for safety after that.
    Do as one of the responders mentioned, set an agreement with your fiancee on the amount to be sent over, AND STICK TO IT, making it known that it will be a divorce issue, not because of the money, but because of the deception. Filipinas will send money home, with or without your approval. But you have to have respect shown for your judgement (including discussion) on how much is reasonable.
    Good Luck. As for me, this will either hold together, or not.

  38. I don't agree with foreigner on "Filipinas will send money home, with or without your approval. But you have to have respect shown for your judgement (including discussion) on how much is reasonable." I think it depends on the person buddy, my wife is a filipina too but she is actually the one saying no to her family if she feels that the need is not appropriate. Even if sometime's I told her that maybe we really need to send them, my wife would tell me that she know's her family very well so she knows what's an urgent/important needs are...

    Too bad that you married a filipina who don't know the real meaning of respect... As for me, I a so thankful that my wife really knows how to set limitations to her family's caprices..

  39. i am so sad to read this things still happening. I just want to say that not all filipinos are the same when it comes to money and stuff you mentioned here, pls do not generalize it.

  40. A Foreigner again (the same guy) I have some updates.

    I have figured it all out. It is a correct comment that sez not to generalize.
    The father-in-law is a thief, and actually is proud and amused of his thieving activities against others, especially US military when in the Phils.
    The offspring are brought up to compete for any food or money, generally by grabbing it first.
    The family finances are run like the Canadian provincial system where the 'poor' provinces get funds transferred from the 'rich' (as in having oil) provinces.
    In the family system that I have the misfortune to get involved with, the funds are always transferred in the same direction, of course.
    This is done by stupid decisions being made by those in the Phils, such as a purchase that cannot be afforded.
    The debt in such a case is then hidden until the gains are impossible, and there is a need for bailing out that will result in total losses, as the situation has been hidden too long to allow recovery.
    Medical expenses are a favorite. There is no way any reasonable husband can deny his wife sending over money to pay for a medical emergency, even where it is self-created.
    My advice to any foreigner thinking of getting involved with someone from the Philippines:
    1 - Try not to.
    2 - If you must get involved, run your finances completely separate from your spouses, and keep your details hidden from her (or him), maybe by using a different address for statements etc.
    3 - Be prepared to be heartless in your decisions, as most 'needs' are created by those who decide to be in need.
    4 - If making donations, try to do so secretly, so you are not identified as a donor. This could be done by setting up a secret email address, and sending Western Union money and giving the pick up number from there.
    5 - Never ever break down on this advice.
    6 - If you are setting up a monthly assistance amount, think in fewer rather than 'reasonable' amounts. If you give too much, it will serve only to indicate that you have lots more.
    7 - Never make arrangements assuming normal commonsense will be used. Assume at all times that nothing will be done the 'proper' or 'normal' way, and all 'clever' shortcuts will be used to minimize the work done by those in the Phils., these shortcuts will often cause the whole project to fail, and need bailing out.
    8 - Never, ever, try to set up a proper business involving the Phils. There is a reason that things are made in China, despite the language barrier, and that reason is that it is just about impossible to do business with anyone within the Philippine culture, where appearances are far more important than reality.
    9 - Get the family of the intended spouse checked by an independent agency (private eye) before committing to marriage. They should be checking the activities for a few days after you send over a largish amount (as a test) such as, say, 1 or 2 hundred bucks. Watch out for partying, and alcohol and drug abuse in particular. Be aware that it might be normal for a gathering for food to be shared.


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