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Dubai OFWs, are you living the Dubai dream?

Dubai OFWs, are you living the Dubai dream?

I came across a blog pertaining to stereotypes to OFWs or balikbayans from fellow Filipinos when going home for vacation or for good in the Philippines. Most of the points were valid and then I wondered, what if I take the other side of the boat?

OFWS are thought to be 'boastful' as seen in the way they dress up, they act (mannerisms), pa-'conyo' (accent) and so on.

There should be some reasons why such things happen and we, OFWs, should be watchful of what we do whilst living and working abroad. Here are some points which might hit our ego or so...

1. Social Media Show Off

Once there was a time we had no MySpace, no Friendster, no Facebook. Life was very simple back then and if you were one of the guys who already were working abroad, you got your family to talk to over messenger or skype only. Sometimes, we communicated through emails.

Now, every single moment of our lives are posted on the social media platforms we are very much inclined to- Facebook, twitter, etc. I'm not saying it's a mistake to express how you feel, what you do and show where you are. Sometimes, this is one of the reasons why our friends back home think that we are living the Dubai dream. You name it, night-outs every other night, restaurant reservations with one friend to another, mall-hopping the entire weekend, cashing out on new gadgets when released and so on. It has become the OFW-effect we are experiencing whenever we come home in the Philippines. We cannot blame our hometown friends if they think we are earning well in Dubai. We should change this lifestyle.

2. Jumbo Cargo Shipment

A close friend some months back used to do this to her family. She will send loads of 'buy 1, get 1' stuff from leading supermarkets and pile it up for shipment to her family in the Philippines. Apart from this goodie cargo box, she sends all her money while not leaving few allowance to spend for herself just to satisfy the always-needing relatives and family.

This phenomenon is worrying in a way the family back in the Philippines are not aware off. The struggling-OFW is having a hard time saving for himself. Imagine this, eats very little couple of times a day only, commutes from work to home so bad, rents a bedspace and sharing with loads of people in a room. These are the conditions we are all aware of if you are in Dubai. How about our families back home? Do you remind your families of your everyday living conditions? Do you let them know that there are times you are just breakeven so you will miss out on the monthly 'padala'? Think about it. We can learn to say 'no' especially if the things we send or things they ask are not 'needs' anymore.

3. Chain Debts

A bit related to the previous point, when a random relative calls you all of a sudden and asks for money for a sick family member, do you instantly give in?

There was a lady working in a small grocery in the same building where my office is located. She came to me and ask if I could lend her some money as she's short of the amount her family is expecting to be sent for a sick loved one. I refused politely as I have payments to make as well and I have no extra fund. I asked her, 'why don't you send the money you have now and just tell them to look for other resources? That's what you have now and you can't give anything that you don't have.' She immediately responded, 'mangungutang muna ako para may maipadala pa.' It took me awhile to realised that she desires to send a huge amount of money to sustain hospital bills and all while making herself debted for the next couple of months and years. I suggest we should learn how much we can give while not allowing ourselves to suffer in a long run. Loan dito, loan doon. If you can manage your finance and save more, it would be easy for you to give and not break the bank.

I know there are other things that should be put on this list. As I go along, I will keep adding points for everyone to know. I know it takes a lot to swallow this ugly truths. This is just a gentle reminder for us OFWs. Feel free to comment below.

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