Migrant Tales – Polish girl moving out – I am so happy!

Eye of the Sea Lake Tatra Mountains

Poland’s Tatra Mountains: other countries also do scenery

Continuing in our popular Migrant Tales series – first hand accounts of the migrant experience of New Zealand.

Today’s tale was sent in by Justine, a successful woman who emigrated from the UK with her Kiwi husband. In common with many migrants Justine soon found the scenery wasn’t enough and she returned to Poland.

This is Justine’s story.

“Polish girl moving out – I am so happy!

First of all, I would like to thank you for creating this website and making such a huge effort to provide people with the genuine information about this ‘pure’ land! I have been in NZ once before me and my ‘Kiwi’ husband decided to move to NZ from the UK, where I was a successful woman. My first visit was almost, as drastic, as the following 6 months (because that was all I could handle) living in NZ. My husband is a half Maori, and I am from, of course, a country where we don’t have many majorities or minorities. I wasn’t aware of many things from back of my husband’s background, but I guess we all are getting know each other during the years. So we were together 3 years before he proposed to me. Just before that we traveled to NZ to pay the visit to his parents. OMG! The thing is that his father didn’t even want us to stay in his house, not mention that parents were separated and he has his entire house to himself. At first I didn’t understand why we are staying at my boyfriend’s (at that time) friend’s house! That was only the beginning.

I must admit I loved the mountains and the beaches and the access to the ocean, but when we were visiting the people, I had so strong bad experience I was just crying in the bed, as I knew I will have to hurt someone if I want to be myself. I needed to speak about my impressions. So we visited also the mother which was 1 of 17 children, the family was living in very basic houses, plus some of them, which were living in Auckland were so poor, that I was just almost having problem with my face, when I saw: 10 people in two boxes (homes) from wood, plus mothers with their beers and cigarettes while the children around or on their hands, this was all appealing the homes and the behavior. I must say, I am average looking girl, but I had this kind of impression from them – I don’t know why – woman looks on my like they would want to say, you stupid bimbo!!! The irony is that, it was me who was feeling intimidated because I have some kind of empathy, and I felt sorry for those people somehow. This very much gave me a mental shock, I would be than talking to my boyfriend at that time, that I am really sorry but I didn’t have the best impression on the all NZ. I am actually glad I did have the fast acknowledgement of the culture there. This probably contributed to my quick decisions after our movement there.

Anyway, each time I was trying to go back to the way I was feeling about the place, we would be arguing and he would called me a racist and superficial. I should leave back then, but I was feeling guilty for maybe my way of perception. I believe that in a healthy body lives healthy spirit, and I had so bad impression of those all people, moreover there were all fat (sorry to be so precise). They also almost all had cars and they would be driving for a bread five meters to some local shops (what I am trying to say here is that they were lazy or extremely lazy plus they don’t appreciate the nature at all)…anyway.

After three months from this visit he proposed to me and I seriously had a big heart to this person. We spent few nice years together and I loved him. I see in people good sides and I do believe in people in general, so I did decide that why not, we were happy back in the UK. I must point out here, that being in the UK I was on a higher wage, as I have an engineering background and I am highly qualified, so I have never been dependent on him in terms of finance.

We got married and he started pushing for the idea of going back to NZ. I had a mix feeling. Anyway I like taking challenges, so I said to myself if I won’t try I won’t ever know. I invested in all the transfer, all the visa and papers which probably all cost me around 1500 GBP, but this was only beginning of me spending my money. Thanks God I had so much savings. Once we arrived to this shit land, it appears that we will live in the camping, as we didn’t have any history record of renting in NZ and we didn’t have a job – yet. I got to know in the meantime that mother of my husband had some financial problems and he himself did not pay his loan from the University, and it came to me that he has around 64000$ debit and owns this to the gov WTF!!!!! Next it appears that there are no jobs in NZ especially for a woman with my qualifications and the background and thanks GOD because it made me want to go out of this place even sooner. I was unaware of so many things!!! My husband didn’t want to go to Auckland, as he said there are snobs living there, despite the fact I would have had probably the best opportunity there, but the worst was that he would force me to work physically because – you should work hard and get any job – what do you expect in NZ (when I am talking about this with him today, as I want to take divorce – he is claiming he recommended, not force me). So after three months of working (with some breaks, because picking kiwi fruits depend on the weather) with some criminals and losers which would tell me how their sex life looks like after for example a night work, because we were working night shifts in pack-houses as well, I had enough. I would just talk about this to my husband but he was even more accusative. He told me I am using him and I used him (????) and I am abusing him. I was so depressed at the end of these six months in NZ, that I was crying all days, while sitting on the internet and looking for some jobs.

I had actually few interviews, two of which were in good companies, but they turned me down. I had also very ‘professional’ experience where the guy sent me an email that they actually rejected my application a minute before my interview, and he did go through this interview with me, only when I left I saw the email from him from an hour before!!!.

The attitude of people, while I thought it can’t be worse than in the UK when you are Polish 😉 it was so bad (this time not because I am Polish, because most NZ not recognise anything except UK, USA, and Australia or maybe Asia as whole, but because I was stranger!)! I had to escape, I told my husband I am not going to survive like this, and he anyway was sorting my food and just yelling at me that I am still not working, as I refused after those three months to go back to this shit work. I had 7 years of University education and 7 of work experience!!! Now I was just nothing. He would not let me go back; he said that I am crazy (again he is claiming he do not recommended me to go back)!. When I found you guys I was so happy. I was on an age of my strength, and believe me I have been through a lot being alone and starting from 300 GBP in the UK few years before and before that in USA when I was 24. I had many hard situations but I have never felt like in the prison more than in NZ. It was not only my husband attitude; it was everything around me.

It was very expensive compare to the UK and yes the houses OMG! We were sitting in jackets in the winter in the house! I couldn’t believe this. The houses cost fortune but they are so poor quality, almost like everything there. The ozone layer is another thing, you coming to this called ‘paradise’ for its lifestyle and then you actually can’t get out on the sun without 50′ cream on, otherwise you will have cancer probably soon or later. I had also pleasure to talk to the locals at ‘this’ my work. I heard stories of rape, killing by knife children, prostitutes, and gangs. I was just amazed (read extremely scared) for such a small society, how often people had those common experiences. The funny thing the family violence, it appeared now that my husband mum was molested while she was young (what a surprise) and it is not the end, and his brother is smoking weed everyday!!! Where the hell I came to!!!

Once I was driving to work it was late around 7pm, I actually wasn’t the driver, but my German friends from the same camping (as except travelers, and mentioned earlier losers and criminals no one else was working this way). We were driving while on a sharp corner (with the speed limit 40), someone pushed us off the road. We were lying on the side, and the car which pushed us off, was converted. We than checked if everyone is alive and get off to confront the idiot. The guy turned out to be drunk and he also was going to the same workplace. The thing was fortunately we took the pictures because he just drove off to work. We called the police and they took the report, but he never suffered any consequences and he was working there ever since, even though you have a HSE statement that it is prohibited to be drunk at work!!! Anyway I guess they are waiting for a killed victim.

To be honest I came back to Poland and I feel like in heaven, I am afraid so many people also in my country believe this propaganda created in media about the beautiful country. I want to share the story as this is good we can talk about our experiences, it is good to warn people before they will regret some life changing decision. I would never want to have kids in NZ and moreover I am happy on a way this all happened to me. It, at least, didn’t last for long. Now I am wondering if marring a white woman as a Maori man is something prestige because I could feel the misalliance in some circus of people (but I guess they were just curious). I know my bad experience is related with the person my husband becomes in NZ, but I am also aware he exactly doesn’t see anything wrong with all this society. Once we were on a rugby game and someone said a joke that if the All Blacks will lose there will be a lot of broken jaws tomorrow at work!!!! At the end of those months I was at the stage where it was just a simple little step from depression or worse, I knew I had to get out. Thanks God I had a lot of money on my account and I have never shared them with my husband, even though he persist before the arrival. That would have killed me, I would be stuck there and I think I will lose my mind.
Thank you so much for this website (I am not sure what drives you to create it, but I have an impression that we all shearing something as we want the true to be out there). It was you who also convinced me in those dark days I am not the one who is crazy!!! This was form of abuse and now I understand that, but it’s not so easy to get out if you are in the middle of the manipulation.

God bless.
Justine”

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27 thoughts on “Migrant Tales – Polish girl moving out – I am so happy!

  1. I have a general question: is it normal in NZ that the proposal ring going from mother to daughter, because this my called ‘husband’, when he was proposing, he requested my mum’s ring, as he said it is the tradition in NZ, which is probably one big lie but I am wondering…so my mum give her ring, so he could get it to me (Jesus I even never ever thought I will be suspecting someone of such a thing, but now I think he didn’t want to spend money).

    • Thanks for that, I just need to make sure, as he not only lied to me but to my parents too and this is just totally wrong…:( he said to my mum it’s tradition in NZ and requested a ring, what a joke – how blind I was, anyway is just making me sad 😦

    • Sounds like a loverboy to me.. In Europe mostly marroccans do that to European girls. Only to use them for sex and as a slave. Sometimes even prostitution. Just horrifying ! So sorry that happened to you. Hope you’ll find an real nice guy !

  2. Just wandering if the Polish girl is the girl I had a “NZ is no paradise” chat with at the check-out of a large supermarket in NZ.

    • 🙂 I am not the one…but I guess there is more and more people from Pl in NZ (poor people, as there is this ‘paradise’ image of NZ back in my country, and until they will get there they won’t know…). I am sure some of them will give up everything they own to get there and this makes me sad, as later on it can be drastic for them, not being able to go back or move.

      • She could have easily been you 🙂 The Kiwi woman behind us in the isle was getting a bit grumpy hearing us having this little ra… conversation about the negative sides of NZ, as EU girls among eachother 😀 She was also not planning on staying here forever.

  3. I am so glad you are safe and happy now Kristine. We have many polish folks living in my home country and they are the hardest working people around in Europe ! Believe me I have never cried as much in my whole life as in New Zealand ..even as being from an abusive background.

    So I totally understand what you have went through here. I have heard and seen more couples having tensions in their marriages just because they are living in New Zealand and many of them have ended. While before they came to New Zealand they were very happy and stable couples. And the ones that stayed married to the kiwi’s and stayed in New Zealand failed to be happy clearly while we stayed with them for a longer period. In fact we have never seen so many divorced and unstable couples as in New Zealand. I guess that’s what this aggressive and abusive society does to a person… NOT TO BE RECOMMENDED FOR ANY HAPPY COUPLE TO MOVE HERE if anybody is considering it !!

    • Thank you for saying this. I am so happy to be back in Poland now. It is not perfect here it is true, we are working so much more harder than those Kiwis ever could imagine. It is making me generally sad that some people could have a paradise on earth and they just simply devastating their own environment and mental heath. I am back on track now got a good job here, even I haven’t been in Poland for ages now. I am happy I made friends already. I know it will still take time to recover fully from this NZ terrible experience but I am happy I was able to leave.

  4. Hi Justine, Sorry to hear about your troubles…It seems you are safe now and by reading your story I only sense a deep empathy in you which, by the place Kiwis have created, I do believe they are unable to show compassion or deep empathy which only adds to the trouble of living In New Zealand. Obivously, criminals have no empathy or they would not commit crime. Its a god awful place and I put up with the kiwis rather than embrace them. My story will soon be posted on here. I currently live in ChCh. glad you got out girl. i understood all you said 🙂

    • Thank you YK I was living in Chch for three months and that was three months too long. I must admit even though my country is not perfect and people have much less money – they are still so much more interesting with their activities. Once I went for a walk – 4h walk on a beach only later on I got to know that some of the areas are not so safe, so later on I was even afraid to walk there…I sticked to the main park and that was pretty much all entertaining for me 😉

  5. If a kiwi moved to the States, their eccentricities would be embraced [accent, different names for things…].
    In nz, you are EXPECTED to abandon all of you previous knowledge, experiences… and CONFORM.
    A huge difference of migrants to and from nz.

    • So true, I was living in USA before and I loved it. I had such an amazing time, if I could only get a H1B visa I will be off there right now, but each of us has own paradise on earth…meaning there is no perfect place. I miss my time in USA….totally different story than NZ

  6. My story is only an example and it is also a warning…

    I knew I will be subjected to racism, but it’s not about Maori, the story is about the way people living in NZ, you could replace word ‘Maori’ by ‘Kiwi’, if you like to avoid it. I agree perhaps we should focus on behavior not on the race…

    During the time I was so upset about the way NZ disappointed me, I researched a lot on this topic, and the conclusion is scary and it is nothing to do with race but all human beings. I am aware it is to do with the power and those who obtain it, the same people are creating the ‘paradise’ image of NZ, and the same people created hell for Maori and prison for British criminals in NZ back in the old days.

    We all are similar and in dangerous situation we will develop a defense system. There was a good example of human behavior called ‘Stanford prison experiment’, I think NZ is very specific and who knows maybe the same factors were in place as in this experiment (or similar), one thing I know for sure NZ is not for everyone and there is something very wrong with the society. I can only be sorry for some sensitive ones who are forced or trapped to live in NZ. On the other hand maybe those who not seeking anything more in life are the most happy people on earth.

    Every country has their good and bad side, no place is perfect. But that doesn’t mean we can’t change that.

    A lot of us tell ourselves that we are only one person and we can’t change anything. That’s not true. If everyone as an individual made an effort to change themselves and be a better person by treating others with love, kindness and respect; society will slowly start changing. Stop with the bigotry and try to understand where people are coming from. Make an effort to look at things from a different perspective instead of judging immediately.

    This is why I tried to communicate with my husband as a human being, I tried the best I can, without judging, just telling what I feel, but this met the immediate attack. I’m not giving up easily and I believe that sometimes it is worth fighting for someone, but I couldn’t do it any longer…Maybe I failed the mission to save one soul, but if someone can’t admit how bad it is, you can’t help him (I guess all interactions changing us and I hope for better)….

    Preach love instead of hate!

  7. Justine, your experience is not unusual and so many unsuspecting have been caught out the same way. I spent 18 months in the country and could not wait to leave. It is such a raw downright rude ignorant place to live.
    I invested a lot of money in Christchurch which was an exercise in futility. It has taken time for me to rebuild again and try not to remember the dread I encountered.
    Anybody who reads my comment, please take heed and give serious consideration before moving
    to NZ ….you could be severely swindled out of your savings.

    • As mentioned you will not find rewarding employment here ,the Maori have been put up on some kind of weird pedestal here even though they are super violent and do not value education.The entire country relies on succouring tourists and migrants then ripping them off for everything they have or Dairy farming which is damaging the environement and therefore damaging tourism revenues by the terrible damage to the waterways and ecology,stay away from rip off N.Z

        • It is healthy that this site talks about things that seem to be brushed under the carpet in New Zealand . I would say near the top of that list of taboo topics is poverty and it is stating the obvious that Maori bear the brunt of that. I agree that some comments appear to be racist and when really the intention should be to have a truthful dialogue about the propaganda that exists.
          As far as weird sites go, go on a mainstream NZ social media site and you will see that anyone who others an opinion that doesn’t fit it in with desired perception that New Zealand is Utopia get a lot of abuse. I think this site is providing a forum for people who want to say what they see here without getting shouted down.

        • With all due respect, you speak as if Europeans encountered the ancient Athenians upon landing in New Zealand. Incidentally, ancient Greece was riddled with wars, but Western culture and a higher consciousness emerged amidst it. New Zealand was rife with cannibalism and violence before the arrival of Europeans who added to the violence in the south Pacific.

          I tend to think of New Zealand as an amalgamation of two violent groups lacking in culture. The Maori, who practised cannibalism, mixed with the hooligan/chav class of the UK and Ireland that comprised the British army. The British have been experts at stealing and pillaging around the world and the only difference between the British and the Maori is that the British had better weapons and seemed to have systematised the thievery and oppression (slavery in the US, colonialism in Africa and Asia, and the installation of an absurd treaty in New Zealand).

          • SafeFromNewZealand,

            I don’t live in NZ and the following comments are not directed at Maori specifically. There appears to be a widespread trend to romanticise indigenous cultures, actually, they like humans anywhere modified the environment, within the limits of their technology, to suit themselves. European colonists initially assumed that all the landscapes they encountered were ‘natural’, often they were not, fire stick farming had a devastating effect on the environment.
            Also the arrival of humans in Australia, NZ and the Americas coincided with mass extinctions of the local megafauna, interesting.

        • Make friend? Justine was married to one 🙂

          You may not fit into the category but people here are sharing their (life) experiences and there’s no point to shun them down, after all not everyone should burn their hands to know if something is hot.

        • Hi Ben.

          Let me try and respond to your post as respectfully and honestly as I can.

          Maoris and white New Zealanders are as bad as each other. I’m not racist and don’t hate Maoris more than white kiwis. But using the Treaty of Waitangi is a huge cop out and no offence, I’m sick to death of Maori using it as the race card and scapegoat as an excuse for any negative action of Maori. Why blame todays pakeha generation for something that happened on 6 February 1840??? That would be the same as any black african american hating on all whites for the segregation in the 1950s. Or me hating all Japanese or German people because of the war. Move on mate. Is every bad thing a Maori did since then the pakehas fault? Wheres the personal responsibility? I use to hear it alot when I worked as a bouncer on the doors and denied a drunk/violent/disrespectful Maori entry (I have denied the same amount, if not more white kiwis for the same thing in case you accuse me of being discriminate) “Yous fukin white c***s think you own everything”. No I don’t, at all, shit, I was on a visa and thought nothing negative towards any Islanders until I was constantly accused of all sorts of crap that had absolutely nothing to do with me. What did I ever do to these people? My ancestors were evil to yours? I’m sorry about that but i wasn’t alive then and its nothing to do with me. Please beat me to a pulp or kill me to avenge your ancestors. I’ve also had trouble from Samoans, Tongans and guys from the Cook Islands. I’ve also had problems with the Irish and other nationalities. It just depends on who hasn’t handled their liquor very well that night or who wants to take their personal shit out on me because they have a crap, horrible character. Chip on their shoulder as I say. My boss was Samoan. Easiest guy to get on with. I’ve worked with humongous Islander blokes who were the nicest people ever. That was until some moron wanted to challenge them. Then things got very heated haha.

          I’ve no reason at all to, say, go out today and do some Maori bashing. Or tomorrow, or the next day.The thought of adapting a neo nazi attitude and hating on one race of people never enters my mind at any point. Neither do i want to do some asian bashing. I just honestly dislike the majority of Kiwis as a whole. But if i interact with nice decent people who are nice to me…hey…guess what…I’m nice back.

          Be a dick to me, I’ll be a dick to you. It’s a worldwide thing really.

          I’m not so sure why you get so defensive when people mention Maori. This website clearly doesn’t have a maori hating agenda. Nor do i recall anyone mentioning maori more than pakeha. I’ve had more issues with redneck and ‘middle class’ white kiwis to be honest.

          I thought the term ‘pakeha’ was deemed offensive to most white kiwis? Just from what I’ve heard in my time living in New Zealand. Or white kiwis don’t like being called that.

          Anyway Ben, chill out man lol. I remember one guy from England, (where im from), getting shitty at a Samoan bouncer for not letting him in, say “I thought you maoris were supposed to be cool?” Since then I used to quote it to the guy every time i worked with him because we both thought it was funny what the English guy said. No idea why he said it but it made us laugh.

          • I agree with you. Because Justine had a difficult marriage with one Maori guy , does not make her a racist..

        • Hi Ben,my statement was not well worded,I apologise and should not have referred to all Maori as being violent however in my belief the Maori culture is very violent and it’s very likely that this kind of violence and aggression was necessary for survival six generations ago.I do stand behind my comment that Maori culture is put up on a pedestal here in N.Z,it really isn’t much more than a hunter gatherer culture that’s not a bad thing but neither is it deep magical or incredibly interesting .We live in a society where we should all be moving forward together as N.Zers ,not creating further societal divisions based on race ,the govt here hands out billions of dollars to Maori tribes supposedly in order to right wrongs which were committed 200 years ago yet nothing changes and the Maori are still over represented in all the crime statistics .If you really are concerned about racism in N.Z I advise you to watch Margret Mutu,s interview in which she claims all citizens of N.Z are guests of the Maori ,she also advocates doing some kind of tests on new immigrants to check that they are not racist,she also singles out South African immigrants for more intense scrutiny claiming that those people are more likely to be racist than anybody else.Margret Mutu is head of Maori affairs at Auckland university.As for meeting a Maori ,over half my extended family are Maori.

          • Do good and good will come to you new Zealand. Please before you’ll get more behind on the rest of the world..I suggest you break the visious cicles of corruption and rasicim. Do yourself a favour and for the rest of the world..DO MOVE ON ! Stop making more expat victims..

        • Gosh do you have any idea what this girl went through ?! This doesn’t have anything to do with the rascist issues in nz. her situation with her husband and in-lawfamily is critised on her circumstances and not on her racial views…

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