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Old 01-21-2011, 12:58 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,437 posts, read 41,696,241 times
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No I would never say "You can't go" we just don't work like that here in this family. I'm not sure if my doubts are selfish and only for myself or if I'm afraid for him.
He has loved traveling in the past, yes it would be a good experience. It's not his being away which bothers me, just that part of the country but I admit I don't know too much about it other than media.

If he was married without kids I would say go for it. But he's single and horny---well that is the truth and I wonder how he could handle that. Probably too much info but we are close and I know him well.
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Old 01-21-2011, 01:11 PM
 
3,842 posts, read 9,248,179 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
When I was young and single I loved to travel and probably would have considered a big move too but Saudi Arabia? In this world of war and strife?
I've always been a free bird.
Some of the most highly targeted areas...London, Edinborough, Thailand...are some of the most frequented by young, single expatriots.

I was stationed on the outskirts of Seoul, Korea for a yr. That place was & is still packed w/ young, single Americans. I gotta tell you, they were having the time of their lives. As I did.

Saudi Arabia is definitely a "whhhaaatt?" moment, but it is still relatively safe.

The issues w/ Saudi Arabia definitely stem from how the Muslim religion dictates the way of life. He will have to be know the rules of the society very well & understand what he is getting into.

Yes, he needs everything in writing & may even need to consider a human rights lawyer to read through the contract to verify information and to make sure he understand his rights if he does live over there! Bear in mind, the US has a very strong presence there right now but that does not mean he has the same rights there as he does here. They do not follow the laws of a free society, so a contract needs to be a must & also needs to be well understood by him.

I think the most amazing thing a parent can do is give their child wings.

"I" wouldn't pick Saudi Arabia but am eternally grateful for all the travelling & world experiences I was able to gain prior to children (some of the trips much to my folks chagrin!)
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Old 01-21-2011, 01:23 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,437 posts, read 41,696,241 times
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I'm all for travel. Best education there is.

I am/was an Army brat myself and could speak Japanese before I spoke English as my father often tried to have us live in the local economy and community. I also traveled extensively all over the world as a single woman. Wouldn't trade it for anything.

I guess if he was with other western folks for some socialization he would do ok but I know he would be miserable without sex for too long (more than 24 hours )- Ok I joke, a little bit. I know - not my concern but we have talked about it.

Thanks all for your comments. I will find out a little bit more about where in Saudi Arabia he will be and other details. He just got the offer last Friday.
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Old 01-21-2011, 01:30 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,437 posts, read 41,696,241 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheOriginalMrsX View Post

If there was a war I would assume his company would allow him to leave the country immediately.
He would be employed not by American company but university there.
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Old 01-21-2011, 01:46 PM
 
1,933 posts, read 3,139,360 times
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Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
He would be employed not by American company but university there.
I think regardless, they would have to let him leave. I believe that if war is imminent the US Embassy would make provisions for him to leave immediately.

If he does go he should register with the US Embassy there to let them know he is an American living there should any thing ever go wrong like him getting down and dirty in the dunes ala Samantha in Sex in the City 2....

I think he should do his research and really consider the pros and cons of it all. 121804 stated best that he has to know the rules of society and understand what he is getting into.
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Old 01-21-2011, 01:52 PM
 
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I have a brother who was stationed in Saudi Arabia during the Gulf War. (Service.) And he spent a lot of time in the Middle East in general. Your son's living situation and his will be totally different but I can tell you a few things.

He said the heat was tolerable. He's been here to visit us in the desert and has said S.A. is hotter. It gets up above 115 here for days at a time but I think it's up in the 120's there. He said what drove him nuts was the dust. Micro particles that get into everything. He said there is nothing here that compares with it.

We used to censor everything we sent him. Newspapers, magazines because we'd heard how strick the moral code was. (We'd black out the ads for "male products" even.) He told us to stop. On the base, at least, it wasn't a problem. And he said when he was "out and about" he was never overly aware of their attitudes. (The attitudes towards women were another matter.)

I've known a pretty good number of people and families who have worked overseas for extended periods of time and have never heard anyone say they regretted it.
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Old 01-21-2011, 01:57 PM
 
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One thing to add - if he is indeed, um, "horny" - and who isn't - it might be a good idea that he understands the seriousness of a woman's place in that society. More for her sake than his. They are very very serious about the hierarchy of women vs men and would not take kindly to him breaking the rules in that regard.

Apart from that, it seems like a fantastic opportunity.
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Old 01-21-2011, 01:58 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
It's not his being away which bothers me, just that part of the country but I admit I don't know too much about it other than media.
Saudi Arabia is one of the best places in the Middle East for expats. The government corporations and government really go out of their way to accomodate the needs of people from freer societies via compounds. Compound sounds like such a negative word, but they are really like gigantic gated communities with Western amenities like swimming pools. They can dress normally within the compounds, even wear bathing suits, etc. I highly recommend he try to negoatiate housing that is within a compound. It's easier to find friends and socialize within the walls of a compound. Google some Saudi Arabia expatriate forums to learn more about what it's like for westerners to live in the country.

Quote:
Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
If he was married without kids I would say go for it. But he's single and horny---well that is the truth and I wonder how he could handle that.
You've never struck me as a mother who raised privileged children who thought their parents could rescue them from anything. That's the type of young adult that I would fear living in Saudi Arabia. He's a smart guy. (He has a smart mother, afterall!) If you make sure he understands the laws and the dire risk of breaking the laws as they pertain to interacting with women, I'm sure he will control his horniness until he meets a single western girl to date.

Ask him to ensure that he is provided with cross-cultural training before his move or immediately after his arrival.

I think it's a great opportunity is many ways. Just make sure he is well informed of the laws.
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Old 01-21-2011, 02:01 PM
 
623 posts, read 1,390,589 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by no kudzu View Post
My son is finishing up his advanced education in a very narrow field. There are few job opportunities which he has known all along but he loves this subject.

He has been offered a job in Saudi Arabia. His salary would be tax free, generous allowance for housing, 1 trip per year home, paid way to seminars, conventions elsewhere in the world.

He is single, straight and healthy young man. Saudi Arabia is very strict about alchohol, pornography, dating, etc. don't think he would like it. Plus it is extremely hot there.

How would you react if it were your son? I don't think he will base his decision on what his parents say or feel but right now we all are kind of laughing and joking about it but I think he is seriously thinking about it.

When I was young and single I loved to travel and probably would have considered a big move too but Saudi Arabia? In this world of war and strife?
Why would you laugh and joke about it? Your job is done. He is grown and will make his own choices. The only way I would ever be dissappointed in my kids if they started doing something illegal or immoral. Otherwise its their lives to lead. My job is to teach them to fly and then let them.

Too many parents teach their kids to fly and then put a leash on them so can't fly to far. Sad really.

Encourage him and discuss it. He needs support and help making a big decision like this not laughing and joking.

You should be so proud to have a son feel confident you prepared him to move to whole other county.

My 2 cents....
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Old 01-21-2011, 02:05 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,437 posts, read 41,696,241 times
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He tells me it is in southern part, near red sea and close to Yemen. Extremely hot like average 115 in July and 88 in January. He had painful kidney stones when he lived in Hawaii for 6 months and he thinks it's becausehe perspired so much but I say it's because he drank pineapple juice all the time. Anyway he is in N.C. and it is way hotter here than Hawaii and no kidney stones.

He has a good friend from India who has traveled there and he is talking to him about it. He is aware of how Muslims regard women and knows he will have to respect that culture. We'll see. I'm just hoping some other responses to his applications will come in before he has to make up his mind.
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