Saturday, 13 October 2012

Bringing Up Brits Guest Post: Standing Out From the Dutch Crowd

Meghan Fenn, author of "Bringing Up Brits", a book about the cultural aspects of expats raising children in Britain, has a blog of the same name. She shares the cultural issues she faces as an American raising her British born children in Britain. Her husband is British, and she's finding that her children fail to identify with her American background and culture, seeing everything from a British perspective.

It's a fascinating topic. How, as an expat, do you share your own birth country and culture with your children when they were born elsewhere? It's an issue I've written about before on this blog. It's not easy to instil a sense of foreign identity into children when they come into so little contact with the culture, people, language and traditions. She also gives a great insight into how the British come across to a foreigner. It's quite eye opening.....

So I was delighted when Meghan asked me to write a guest post for her blog. You can read "Standing Out From the Dutch Crowd, British Style" over on the Bringing Up Brits blog, and check out lots of other great posts and join in the discussion whilst you're there.

How do your children stand out from the crowd in the place that you now call home?


  1. Amanda, First off, I like the look of this new blog (haven't visited for a while). Your question makes me think not of the present but the past, and how in 1963, I stood out up north in the Netherlands as a transplant from Amsterdam. Back then a two hour drive away from your a familiar stomping grounds was akin to emigrating to Australia.

    1. I can imagine. As a kid I moved from near Manchester to the Home Counties. My northern accent didn't go down well!! I lost it quickly.....

  2. Hi Amanda, just stumbled across your blog and am reading up on older posts with interest. I am Dutch but live in the UK with my Scottish husband and 5 month old daughter. Already we are trying to work out how to incorporate Dutch concepts such as Sinterklaas into our British life, and we're both really keen to raise our daughter bilingually but expect this to be difficult once I go back to work. Will continue to follow your Dutch experiences with interest and just a touch of jealousy!

  3. Hi Sanne,

    Love to hear from those doing the expat thing the other way round. It's much harder for you to impart Dutch traits to your daughter than it is for me with English things here. For a start speaking English here is commonplace whereas I am guessing the Dutch influence there is minimal....... Would love to hear how successful it all is... and curious to hear how it goes celebrating Sinterklaas :-) We do Christmas the english way and I'd love to hear in the future what you tell your daughter when she asks why all the other children have never heard of Sinterklaas..... I have it the other way round here where Father Christmas is not so common and the whole idea of coming down the chimney and putting presents in stockings is not so well known.....Sinterklaas I have now embraced since we had children!