It was a HUGE culture shock when he moved here. I had spent a significant time in Morocco both visiting and working so I knew just how different our societies were and definitely anticipated that. But it was overwhelming for him for awhile. What helped was that I took him very quickly to a local mosque. He made friends quickly with people from various countries, including Morocco, and that helped to give him perspective about Canada that didn't come from me. I also have Moroccan friends in various parts of the city so I quickly introduced him to them as well.
Working in Canada is also much different in Morocco. The expectations are different, they way people communicate is different, even the length of time people take for a lunch break is very different! It didn't take him long to find a job, only about 3 weeks, but it was an adjustment for him fitting in to Canadian work culture. Also, he was surprised at how much our lives in Canada revolve around work. Most of us live quieter lives here. We work, go home, eat, relax for a few hours and then go to bed. We have quieter social lives than in Morocco where friends may drop in on a work night and stay for hours. This is a regular thing in Morocco but definitely not the norm in my life in Canada. Socializing is left for the weekends if there is enough energy left after the household chores are done! I think it's rude if my phone rings after 10 pm on a weeknight! I go to bed early and wake up early. I'm on a schedule. Hubby had difficulty adjusting from "Moroccan time". In Morocco, if someone tells you they will meet you at 1 pm they may show up at 2 pm or not at all. Nobody really takes offence to that. In Canada, that's rude and a big NO NO. He learned that pretty quickly. He also had to learn how to say NO and realize that people won't take offence to it. It was so frustrating to have him skirt around an issue because he didn't want to just say no. That was a hard lesson and one that will still come up now and then.
A big struggle for us was the division of household work. He never washed his own or a dish in Morocco. It's woman's work. It didn't mean that he didn't love or respect me, just didn't realize there was an expectation that he do his share around the house. I let him in on that news pretty quickly and still get frustrated that I have to ASK him to pick up after himself. Had to find some creative ways of making him "get" that but it continues to be a bit of a struggle. He now knows how to do various things and does a pretty good job but just doesn't "think" to do it.
The biggest and most difficult issue for us is jealousy. Moroccan men have a very different way of viewing how their wives should behave, especially in public. This is partially a personality trait of my husband but my Moroccan friends have also told me it is quite common. Hugging my friends, especially my male friends, was/is a big issue for my husband. He sees it as a sign of disrespect and I think he's crazy. This is one thing that REALLY causes us problems and where I've compromised as much as I'm gonna. He's trying to finid a way to make it ok for him but he really struggles with it.
Food is also an issue but one that we solved. He will only eat halal meat so we had to find a good halal shop that sold quality meat. It took a couple of tries but we found a few that we quite like.
Religion became a bigger issue for us as well. Actually, this was never an issue for us in Morocco but it did become one here. I am not a Muslim and will never be one. I have great respect for his practice and certainly support him that way. I'm friends with many people from his mosque and the Imam and I get along great. I've even done some volunteer work for them. But for some reason, hubby decided that he should start preaching to me. That got old quick. We solved it after both the Imam and I talked to him about having respect for the beliefs of others and leaving them to choose their own paths. "There is no compulsion in religion." It helped that I have read the Koran and can discuss religion with him. And also helps that the Imam likes and respects me. We just had to find our way around it and it only took a couple of months and didn't really create big problems. My husband is quite gentle and reasonable about most things.
There are certainly other good and bad things we deal with daily. It's normal for all married couples. But the culture difference and varying expecations do continue to offer up some problems now and then. But for the most part, I would say it took about a year for it all to calm down.
My husband has been here for 1yr 6mths he has adjusted fairly well however he worked in the larger city and travelled to many cities in morocco so he has pretty much seen it all..As for dressing fully dressed barely dressed he has no problem he says it their choice as pertaining to my dressing he doesn't care what I wear unless I am next to his muslim friends he prefers me covered up but if we r out and run into then np ( however I myself prefer to be covered up ..and that's out of respect only for them or when we go to festivity at the mosque I go again dressed cuz of respect..)
He helps with house work and cooking he lived on his own so he is good that way .
.As for work though my husband is finding it hard we live in a smaller city so not much work here..He has found English is very important here not many have a tolerance for ppl who can't speak it and work here in our town is mostly needed to speak english ... .. Thankfully it is now summer and his work load has picked with his small business he started up he also does courses to get his gr 12 credit and better his english grammar
As for time he runs on arab time always an hour or 2 late and hasn't got to bed any earlier than midnight.lol... I think he still on Moroccain time .. and yes saying NO is a big problem also with him but we are workin on that ..
For you woman who are bringing children into ur new marriage and relationship.. I have 2 childern both teens from another relationship we run into many issues with this and what he thinks is required from them .. He feels that the kids should do nothing but study eat and sleep odd time clean ..Not work or not pay for somethings they want .. but that's bein worked on ,,, but the BIG thing is the kids disrepecting he can't get over and that's from ALL of our Canadian kids.. Young and old .. He says if that was me he would have got knocked out..lol.. So make sure you discuss on kids and what to expect
But the BIGGEST thing is how the Canadian government works he don't understand that but heck me bein canadian myself I don't understand it either .. hospital waits .... cheques to ppl who can work.. He says Canada just makes everything more complicated and stressful.. When it's easy to fix... I told him to run for PM when he becomes Canadian cuz he'll have my vote..lol...
As for family he misses them very much he is working very hard to help pay for his plane tkt back home and he is guilt stricken by not being able to bring expensive gifts back for everyone.Some are expecting gifts they do think he would be good and rich here ..His mom Dad and sibilings just want him to come but he feels it necessary to bring gifts for all family (Aunts Cousins Friends).. Especially since he had a good job over there and did all that for everyone before he came here..However rumors also got back to his hometown that he drives a hummer and has his own business.lol.. At last one thing got back correct..
He works little more right now here in Canada ..He doesn't want me to pay for anything and hates to ask .. He did tell me if he wasn't married to me and loved me he would go back to Morocco ... He dislikes it here...
So all u wives be compasionate help where u can even if says NO ... It will get fustrating at times but if it is true love it is worth it ...talk and work it out ... When I wake up every morning still, I still have that same feeling I had when I was next to him in Morocco.. I LOVE HIM THE SAME AS WHEN WE FIRST MEET !!
And dair2dv8103100 I think it's a fench european man thing about knowing all things cuz mine got that too..lol .. hope to get together soon my friend...
Take Care All