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Expat Advice: Culture Shock in Coastal Oaxaca, Mexico

Submitted by DOJ

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Coastal Oaxaca

Did you receive any cross-cultural training for your move abroad? If yes, was it before or after the move?


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If they speak another language in your new country, do you speak the language? If yes, did you learn the language before you moved or while abroad? If no, are you planning to learn the language?


Were you worried or concerned about culture shock before you moved abroad?

No, but learned.

How significant was the culture shock you experienced when you moved abroad?

It was so profound I am leaving the country.

Expats often talk about going through the "stages of culture shock." Examples include the honeymoon phase, the irritation-to-anger stage, the rejection of the culture stage, and the cultural adjustment phase. Do you feel like you went through these or any other stages as you settled into the new culture?

Yes, it was very hard to discover crimes considered felonies in my country were legal in the state I was living in.

What, if any, were some of the changes you noticed in yourself that might have been caused by culture shock? These might include things such as anger, depression, anxiety, increased eating or drinking, frustration, homesickness, etc.

Depression, anger, anxiety, paranoia

What are some things you appreciate most about the new culture?

Their unending search of HOPE through god.

What are the most challenging aspects of the new culture?

Being kidnapped multiple times by the police, having a friend killed by the same police. Unable to find any police agency willing to help in 5 years. Finally did discover some honest people but it was almost impossible and dangerous to process.

Did you "commit" any embarrassing or humorous cultural blunders? If you did and you'd like to share them, please do tell!

Yes, not listening tho the U.S. Embassy advice and leave the country for security reasons. I endured complete financial loss, physical injury and other kidnappings after staying after their advice.

Do you have any advice or thoughts about culture shock you would like to share?

DO not move to a country that has an army to protect its politicians from its citizens and has no enemy countries.

Spend at least five years visiting or two years living permanently before making a decision.

Pay any requested illegal money demands from police agencies and then LEAVE!!!!

They look for older women and single men young and old to commit crimes against. Be careful.

Almost everyone I know 75% in a 10 year period have had some financial illegal crime (extortion) committed by police on a reoccurring basis. Plan to have between 2 and 5 thousand dollars a year extra for these demands and be prepared to loose everything you own including your home in the worst situation.

Many websites for extranjeros are run by organized crime to obtain information on future victims. These websites run by organized crime will ban people warning you of this.

I have spent a lot of time in the offices of the PGR in Mexico City and you can learn from my experience.

Before doing any investments contact your local consulate to investigate the people involved in major business and real estate transactions. It may take a personal visit for them to divulge critical information. They do not like to talk to people whom they do not know over the phone, it is dangerous. It is easy to come across as high as 8 out of 10 transactions being questionable or outright fraudulent. Listen to this advice and do not have to go through the terror I and my family have experienced on a monthly basis for many many years.

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Comments about this Report

Jul 27, 2011 22:58

oh my god, are you kidding? i was in Mahunte Beach awhile back and it was nothing like that. do you know anything about the area of San Carlos in Sonora?

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