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TaterTot

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Everything posted by TaterTot

  1. I hope I don't get shot for saying this, but it's only based on my (admittedly limited) experience. As long as you aren't in the tourist areas (which you will NOT be!), then it's been my take that there really aren't that many other people in Turkey besides Turks- in GENERAL. But you are also Muslim, so you have that going for you. Just don't interpret stares of interest as judgment. And don't expect a friendly smile (like I would in the States). That would be too invasive. I'd not overthink it too much, considering I'd think Egypt would be a lot more of a switch compared to Turkey. Talk to Conan on here- he's Chinese (I think) and just relocated to Turkey. As for public transport, I agree- better than a car. As is anywhere. But sometimes the busses get VERY crowded and I'd get claustrophobic. Not as bad as Tokyo, but you get the image. And stinky! Any thought to the two places I suggested??? Konya might be good, since they see a lot of internationals... Also has a lot of rural areas, but public transport.
  2. Selam aleykum! My husband's from Izmit. It's 1 1/2 hours from Istanbul, but a small town. Modern and fully technologically functioning. My in-laws are very spiritual people and mommie even runs a prayer house. I think you would like it there. Many markets with local produce and such. If my in-laws feel comfortable there with their practices, then I'm sure you would, too. There's also Konya, where her relatives are from. There's much Sufism there due to Mevlana/Rumi. But since it's a tourist area, there's also the internet. I'm sorry you are considering having to leave your country, but I think you would love Turkey and I think it admirable that you want to do the best for your family. Best of luck.
  3. I never like having dessert right after the main meal. I like to give it some wait time... I also like COFFEE with my dessert- not tea. And while I love Turkish coffee, that's not what I like, since even THAT is sweet!
  4. Are you wishing it to a Turk, or just a Muslim in general, as they are different. Eid Mubarak would work for a non-Turk.
  5. Did you get the red book? I'm sure if you take that to your local courthouse, they can help you. Congratulations, by the way!
  6. That's why I did not post on the Istanbul Rising protest thread. I did not want to turn this one into another one of those. I just wanted to say that YES, Ataturk was a great man, but I feel that he'd probably be rolling in his grave if he knew what was going on today in his name.
  7. The US is NOT free from church and state. That's a huge lie. (Not you- our system!) Money washes the hands of many lobbyists and policy is decided beyond just what the constitution dictates. You obviously know more than me with your experience. I can only say what I think given my limited knowledge. One day, I plan to move to Turkey and will have a better perspective. I just know that the media does a very good job supporting the protester's point of view, but I see/hear many opposing perspectives and there's more than just one side to a coin.
  8. Yes, a little sensitivity goes a LONG way in a foreign country! Turks are very kind if they see that you are attempting to respect their culture. Always best to err on the side of conservative. I'm jealous! : D
  9. TaterTot

    Turkish Music

    I'll see if I can get my husband to give me a link to a music site. There also may be a facebook group.
  10. HobbitTR, you pretty much answered your own questions with the skewed perspective of the film. As for the protests, yes, that is directly to which I was referring. Everyone has the right to protest, but many were just looking for something to do. If the weather was not so good and they did it in February, I'm sure not so many people would turn to rioting in the streets. They make it out like it's to save some trees, but really, it's WAY more politically charged. There are plants in the crowds to incite them and they were drinking in mosques and iftar tents. It's clear that they distain their "religion" that's put on their ID. My husband has tried to debate with his friends over it, and you clearly can't reason with these people. "Erdogan's trying to make Turkey Iran... I can't even kiss in public... My girlfriend can't wear her miniskirt... My professor won't let me eat in class." Really? That's your complaint? How about the fact that my sister-in-law can finally go to college and keep her dignity by covering and hopefully, when she gets her degree in PR and social work, she'll be allowed to work for the government. Those are two rights Ataturk put in place: education and work for women. So in many ways, Erdogan is trying to protect the reforms of Ataturk! Think about it...
  11. Just the fact that, given all the media spin on all the protests, the anti-Islamic behaviors and criticisms of Erdogan, the edification of Ataturk's gotten on my nerves. Yes, he did a lot for Turkey. But that's not a reason to do what so many are doing right now. The film in general made it look like Turks were just a bunch of ignorant people and he came along and "fixed" them by Westernizing them. Yes, he did a lot of the country and he's celebrated. Erdogan has, too, yet he's criticized. Just because he's making it easier for people to worship if they CHOOSE to do so. Nobody can argue against the fact that their economy has become stronger with him. But no- they're just freaking out because they're afraid that it my become more difficult for them to get their alcohol.
  12. Yes, he was a great man. But many people mistakenly think he was anti-Islam. This is not the case! In fact, he was a religious, practicing man, but wanted to secularize the state as a way to PROTECT the image of TRUE Islam and not have Turkey associated with the oppression of the Middle East after the fall of the Ottoman Empire. I was at the Ataturk Museum (can't remember which city in Turkey) and while it wasn't that large, I spent the better part of the afternoon reading all the plaques. I came to realize that he's VERY MUCH misunderstood and praised for things he never intended. Turks use Ataturk as a way to justify/hide behind their non-practice. They think that anyone who has Allah in his/her life is some backward person, like you can't be modern AND faithful. The two are not mutually exclusive. In fact, Ataturk PROVE this! Ataturk took drastic measures for Turkey in 1923. People say Erdogan is "undoing" Ataturk's vision. But people forget that the reasons WHY Ataturk did what he did. Situations now in 2013 are very different, so the reasons WHY Erdogan is doing what he's doing is based upon different circumstances. You can't compare the two. It's apples and oranges, historically. I bet if the two were together today, they'd agree on a lot more than you think. I am tired of Turks -- who have ID cards with "Islam" on them -- put down the faith and use Ataturk as their pedestal. Come on, people. You're really going to praise a 1950's xenophobic, revisionist history propaganda film? I don't mean to offend but this really hit a nerve with me.
  13. I had my boy a year ago completely natural and I had to fight tooth and nail to have the birth I wanted here in the States. I know in Turkey, it's even "worse." But you're having twins, so you're "high risk" anyway, so I don't know if there'd be much difference. I'm VERY crunchy granola about the natural birth experience, so I'd do whatever I can to minimize interventions. Let the cords stop pulsing before cutting, put the babies right on you as soon as they're caught, etc. And if you don't want drugs (I was so happy I didn't!), then don't let them strap you down- you NEED to move around. There's so many risks involved once they induce or medicate. It's linked to autism and the inability for the babies to latch with breast feeding. It also contributes to post partum and low milk production. I could go on and on, but suffice it to say that I'm very passionate about keeping medicine out of what's the most natural experience in the world. I'd hate to have the odds stacked against you in Turkey. I bet they never even heard of a birth plan. In doing what's best for you, try to also keep in mind what's best for your babies. Good luck!
  14. It's got to be difficult being a single mother. You probably see this man as a way to a happily ever after insta-family. I really do get it. My husband accepted me and my daughter unconditionally. Yes, I found my way to Islam and I've been VERY happy. But here's the thing- he's NEVER been controlling. Only supportive. Yes, I did make certain lifestyle changes, but they came from me, not his demanding them. I realized that I wanted to change in order to have a strong family. As a result, I converted, changed how I dressed, stopped drinking, etc. Yes, it was a big switch, but I can't say sacrifice, as I have gained so much more. That said, ANYTHING I want to do, my husband supports me. He actually encourages me to go out with my friends, go to the gym, work on my writing... do whatever makes me feel good about myself because I deserve it since he recognizes my value as a loving wife and mother. (BTW- he's also a stay at home dad at the moment, so we've complete role reversals and he is the most manly man because he embraced it.) I know I've found a rare, precious breed. I don't know if you found the same, but do ask yourself this- when does his green card expire? And does he seem to be in a hurry? Mine wasn't. That told me a lot. In fact, it was me wanting to rush things, as my bio-clock was tick tock and I knew I wanted a child with whomever I'd marry. It seems a bit odd that he'd meet a woman who's got SO much baggage and stay around. He's either a real saint or he's after something, know what I mean? Have you been to Turkey? Have you met his family? I know you're probably nervous and excited about the prospect of this man, but you must be very careful. In retrospect, I took a HUGE leap of faith in marrying him BEFORE I went to Turkey, but I always knew I wanted to live outside the US as I got older and I did meet his family on SKYPE . I was VERY lucky and it's been all good, so it CAN happen. But look at your circumstances from all angles.
  15. You can defer if you go to college and then once you get out, you only need to do 5 months. At least that's what my husband did. But he's was only a full Turkish citizen. Why do you want to get out of it? We're considering what to do with our son. He was born in the States, and my husband wants to apply for our son's Turkish citizenship. What are your thoughts, Tako? Do you resent your parents or your situation? I'd like your perspective. Are there any benefits to Turkish citizenship in your eyes? I have my opinion, but I feel that I must also respect my husband's, especially since they are both male. Thanks!
  16. What do you mean by vegetarian? Do you eat cheese and eggs? When in Turkey, we had lots of veggie dishes. Dolmas are the biggest.
  17. Some want to "rush" it for religious reasons. If you are attracted to each other, then some feel it's bad to be together unless you're married, lest your tempted to do "bad" things...
  18. Yeah, it all depends... I remember one time, it was about two weeks since I thought I had meat and I was craving it. Well, lo and behold, a cousin had a BBQ and I was meated-out for about another two weeks!
  19. Perhaps she was waiting for the "Eleyna Salik" (pardon the spelling if it's wrong!) complement? I found if when I am finished, I wipe my mouth, put my silverware where suggested and say this phrase (literally "health to your hands") then it shows I am officially finished and satisfied. It also compliments the cook. Maybe she kept trying to satisfy you because you didn't say this??? Try it next time. You say it "el-LAY-nah SAL-lik." Oops- just read Ahududu's post. Sorry for being redundant. And a horrible speller.
  20. I could say so much... I'm married to a Turk and his family is WONDERFUL and also very religious. We live outside Phila and he was here to improve his English. LONG story short, he's still here with me and we've been married over two years with a precious little boy. (Mashallah!) Anyway, I converted and have been gloriously happy ever since. It's as if I was blessed that day I gave my life to Islam and I haven't looked back. Just the fact that she said to her dad that yes, she does have an American BF is HUGE, if she really did that. (Not that I'm suggesting she's lying.) Traditional families like the one I married usually introduce the children to their potential spouses so they are in it from the start. The fact that she's gone out on that limb and that he's only sad means that he's open. That's really good!!! Have you Skyped with them??? That could be a start. Or start saving up to visit. Or just put it on a credit card, knowing that you'll pay it off with all the gold you'll be getting at your wedding! : ))) If you have more questions, I'd be happy to answer them.
  21. You're lucky to have Ken! Marriage is only paperwork- it's the life you have once you get married! Where would you live? You might have mentioned that, but I missed it.
  22. I've noticed that gifts are not looked on the same- neither are birthdays. The only "bad" reason would be that you're a secret and he has no real intentions with you and he would not be able to explain the gift to his family.
  23. Hobbit- I believe you, but why would it be easier to get a teaching job at the university level rather than grammar school??? How about criminal record/fingerprint/child abuse clearances?
  24. This is just me being nosey, but it sounds like you're willing to make a lot of changes for this woman- different career and country. How "close" are you? For how long? Is she aware of you plans? What if she didn't pan out? Would you still want to be teaching English in Turkey? Just throwing that out there.
  25. You want romance??? Rent a movie!!! Trying to keep it light... But seriously, I'm almost 40 and you know what's 'romantic' to me now? A man who's honest and does what he says he's going to do. I complain to my husband that the light over the stove went out and a few day's later, I found it replaced because he went online and purchased a bulb the next day. Or that I mention we're out of TP and the next day, there's a fully stocked cabinet under the bathroom sink. May not be roses and poetry, but it's real.
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