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Women Who Migrated From A Conservative Country To A Progressive One Explain How Their Lives Have Changed

Women Who Migrated From A Conservative Country To A Progressive One Explain How Their Lives Have Changed
Image by press 👍 and ⭐ from Pixabay

Many of us living in the U.S. don't think twice about certain freedoms that aren't granted in other parts of the world.

Generally speaking, of course, we can wear whatever we want and behave without constantly walking on eggshells and worrying about consequences or judgment.

However, there are countries that look down upon women wearing suggestive clothing that aren't viewed as provocative in America. And when these women somehow find themselves here, it's fair to say it's quite the culture shock.

These are their stories.

Redditor blokesa1 asked:

"Women who migrated from a socially conservative country to a progressive country how significantly has your life changed?"

Having access to certain garments became life-changing moments for these Redditors.

White Socks

"I come from a very conservative Mennonite (basically Amish) family. Luckily for me, my parents left the faith when I was born. My mother tells stories of being jealous of the girls at school who could have white socks because her family was extra conservative so she could only wear black. Imagine being excited about white socks!"


Feeling The Air

"For the first time I wore something above my knees and felt the air! I know it sounds silly but that to me tasted like liberalization.Other than that I feel safe and can hope to make a better future for myself. My rights are protected and I have discovered my voice."


Happy For Sparkle Sneaks

"I had a friend who was so excited to see sparkle sneakers. She wanted them sooo bad but she could never buy them since 'back home' where she had to return after college they would get her in big trouble."

"She looked at them like they were a puppy but wouldn't even try them on."


Freedom of fashion was not an option for these women at one time.

Clothing And Mixed Messages

"My wife didn't leave Turkey until she was 18. She grew up having it hammered into her that anything that attracted attention was a sexual signal and that she was to blame for anything that happened as a result. She was 12 years old worrying about sending messages to grown-a** men with her clothing choices."


People Share The 'Dirty Secrets' That Their Bosses Don't Want Customers To Know

Having The Choice To Wear Anything

"I moved from PH to Singapore. Now I can wear anything I want in the streets."


"Filipino here. There are wealthy areas in Metro Manila where you can wear whatever and be fine. Like crop tops or sports bras when jogging. Not so much in less developed areas."

"It's not illegal or anything, but people will stare and some will catcall or grope. If you complain, people will say that you're inviting that behavior by wearing revealing clothes."


Praise Be

"My sister's mother-in-law is Persian. She says watching the Handmaid's Tale reminds her of how things were before she left Iran. It was very westernized while she was growing up but then things changed..."


Life Change At 17

"Moved to the US when I was 17, now 23. I was free to wear miniskirts, drink in public, and hang out with male friends without having my moral character trashed."

"There's an undercurrent of rape hysteria that's very real but seldom explicitly talked about. My dad would freak out if I spent any time in my male cousin's room, despite the fact that we grew up in the same house and were around the same age. Your movements are stifled because every man who's not your dad or brother is treated like a potential danger to your chastity."


Strengthening The Marriage

"According to my mum, it's the little things. After a couple of years in Canada, my mum started wearing skirts. Nothing too revealing, maybe knee-length or lower, and she loved it. She had her first sip of alcohol when she was 31, LOVED the feeling of being « tipsy » after 1 beer. On the more serious side, she got to fully express herself to my dad (after 20 years of marriage). Her Canadian girlfriends told her about couples counselling, the love languages, etc. And she communicated to my dad the things she wanted to change. I don't know the details, but they seem much happier now than they were when I was a teenager."


"Treated As An Equal"

"Being able to wear what I want without having to be scared for my security while in public. And being treated as an equal. Edit: Oh, and the word freedom has gained so much more in importance since I had lived in some of those countries where it doesn't exist in some aspects. I think many people, not only women, don't realize how lucky they are to be able to live the way they wish and say what they want without punishment from some authority. I really cherish my life as a woman in a truly free country."


These women were subjected to constantly worrying about perceptions.

Weight Off The Shoulders

"It's everything. I can finally go for a walk without the fear of strange men following me and passing lewd comments. I can finally do the things I like (eating meat, having a drink of alcohol) without the implications of 'what will the society say.' We have a saying in my country, 'A woman's body carries the pride of the family'- what an awful weight to carry for any young woman. I can finally just exist and breathe."


Everything's Wonderful In New Zealand

"I experienced most of that my whole life in Peru, i was so pissed that I couldn't wear dresses or shorts in summer because people judges you for your looks or catcall you ugh I have anxiety because of the harassment but finally i can enjoy my life and feel awesome 😎 because I moved to New Zealand, best decision ever."


Marrying Young

"My mom is German, but her parents went to live in Bolivia in the late 50s/ start of 1960s. She wasn't married at 15, like most of her friends were and the whole town was putting pressure on her parents. Father's were literally trying to buy my mother's hand in marriage for their sons, so at 17 she had to run away and married her first husband out of despair."

"That guy tried to kill her because she wanted to leave him a few years later. In the 80s, she had to flee the country since her 2nd husband wanted to force an abortion on her and he could've easily done that."

"She always told me to not get married at such a young age and to never lose your independence to a man. I guess her life changed in so many ways, I can't write it all down."


Expressing Affection

"PDA between couples, holding hands, kissing. Seeing gay couples holding hands. Just made me feel happy to see people getting to be open and in love."


Wonders For Mental Health

"I grew up in a conservative family in South Asia and now live alone in Australia. The most significant way my life has changed is my sense of safety, both at home and in public places. At home, I live alone and being away from my conservative family has done wonders for my mental health. I don't have to face constant criticism for my choices. In public places, I still get sacred at night, but that has more to do with my triggers. I have the confidence to walk alone without anybody questioning/harrassing me. That's not to say it hasn't happened, but the frequency is much less. I have less fear and feel safe for the first time in my 22 years."

"I also wear clothes that I ordinarily never would in my home country. My clothes are still quite conservative (sleeves, no skirts etc), but I feel better knowing that I chose what I wore and nobody controlled this choice."


It's The Little Things

"I moved from India to Canada in 2017 at 17 years old. Freedom felt freaking amazing! I could stay out after 7 pm. I could call anyone I like. When I was in India i was only "allowed" to have calls from family. My parents would get mad if anyone else called me. I never had sleepover, I had my first sleepover here."

"It's the little things. Being independent and following your dreams is the best feeling in the world."


Cohabitation Issues

"Philippines: There seem to be plenty of things that people are only against because of societal pressures, not because they actually believe in the moral/ethical arguments against it. Clothing, gender roles, etc. Cohabitation before marriage was a big one for me - it's still often viewed as a scandal except among elites who can do whatever tf they want. My mom was among those fully against it and we had a few heated arguments, but several years after I left, I eventually moved in with my then-boyfriend, now-husband, she didn't even flinch - she was actually happy about the financial advantages even (she hadn't met him yet). I wondered if it was just because she didn't want to push me away, but 7 years later it's never come up as something that's bothered her. I guess she never really cared about it as much as she led me to believe."


Unless you come from the conservative countries mentioned above, it's hard to imagine life any other way than what you're used to.

Just imagine the reverse situation, where you find yourself suddenly losing clothing options and conforming to new customs in a country with uncompromising rules.

So don't knock sparkle sneakers. Because to some people, they represent a utopian society.

People Reveal The Weirdest Thing About Themselves

Reddit user Isitjustmedownhere asked: 'Give an example; how weird are you really?'

Let's get one thing straight: no one is normal. We're all weird in our own ways, and that is actually normal.

Of course, that doesn't mean we don't all have that one strange trait or quirk that outweighs all the other weirdness we possess.

For me, it's the fact that I'm almost 30 years old, and I still have an imaginary friend. Her name is Sarah, she has red hair and green eyes, and I strongly believe that, since I lived in India when I created her and there were no actual people with red hair around, she was based on Daphne Blake from Scooby-Doo.

I also didn't know the name Sarah when I created her, so that came later. I know she's not really there, hence the term 'imaginary friend,' but she's kind of always been around. We all have conversations in our heads; mine are with Sarah. She keeps me on task and efficient.

My mom thinks I'm crazy that I still have an imaginary friend, and writing about her like this makes me think I may actually be crazy, but I don't mind. As I said, we're all weird, and we all have that one trait that outweighs all the other weirdness.

Redditors know this all too well and are eager to share their weird traits.

It all started when Redditor Isitjustmedownhere asked:

"Give an example; how weird are you really?"

Monsters Under My Bed

"My bed doesn't touch any wall."

"Edit: I guess i should clarify im not rich."

– Practical_Eye_3600

"Gosh the monsters can get you from any angle then."

– bikergirlr7

"At first I thought this was a flex on how big your bedroom is, but then I realized you're just a psycho 😁"

– zenOFiniquity8

Can You See Why?

"I bought one of those super-powerful fans to dry a basement carpet. Afterwards, I realized that it can point straight up and that it would be amazing to use on myself post-shower. Now I squeegee my body with my hands, step out of the shower and get blasted by a wide jet of room-temp air. I barely use my towel at all. Wife thinks I'm weird."

– KingBooRadley


"In 1990 when I was 8 years old and bored on a field trip, I saw a black Oldsmobile Cutlass driving down the street on a hot day to where you could see that mirage like distortion from the heat on the road. I took a “snapshot” by blinking my eyes and told myself “I wonder how long I can remember this image” ….well."

– AquamarineCheetah

"Even before smartphones, I always take "snapshots" by blinking my eyes hoping I'll remember every detail so I can draw it when I get home. Unfortunately, I may have taken so much snapshots that I can no longer remember every detail I want to draw."

"Makes me think my "memory is full.""

– Reasonable-Pirate902

Same, Same

"I have eaten the same lunch every day for the past 4 years and I'm not bored yet."

– OhhGoood

"How f**king big was this lunch when you started?"

– notmyrealnam3

Not Sure Who Was Weirder

"Had a line cook that worked for us for 6 months never said much. My sous chef once told him with no context, "Baw wit da baw daw bang daw bang diggy diggy." The guy smiled, left, and never came back."

– Frostygrunt


"I pace around my house for hours listening to music imagining that I have done all the things I simply lack the brain capacity to do, or in some really bizarre scenarios, I can really get immersed in these imaginations sometimes I don't know if this is some form of schizophrenia or what."

– RandomSharinganUser

"I do the same exact thing, sometimes for hours. When I was young it would be a ridiculous amount of time and many years later it’s sort of trickled off into almost nothing (almost). It’s weird but I just thought it’s how my brain processes sh*t."

– Kolkeia

If Only

"Even as an adult I still think that if you are in a car that goes over a cliff; and right as you are about to hit the ground if you jump up you can avoid the damage and will land safely. I know I'm wrong. You shut up. I'm not crying."

– ShotCompetition2593

Pet Food

"As a kid I would snack on my dog's Milkbones."

– drummerskillit

"Haha, I have a clear memory of myself doing this as well. I was around 3 y/o. Needless to say no one was supervising me."

– Isitjustmedownhere

"When I was younger, one of my responsibilities was to feed the pet fish every day. Instead, I would hide under the futon in the spare bedroom and eat the fish food."

– -GateKeep-

My Favorite Subject

"I'm autistic and have always had a thing for insects. My neurotypical best friend and I used to hang out at this local bar to talk to girls, back in the late 90s. One time he claimed that my tendency to circle conversations back to insects was hurting my game. The next time we went to that bar (with a few other friends), he turned and said sternly "No talking about bugs. Or space, or statistics or other bullsh*t but mainly no bugs." I felt like he was losing his mind over nothing."

"It was summer, the bar had its windows open. Our group hit it off with a group of young ladies, We were all chatting and having a good time. I was talking to one of these girls, my buddy was behind her facing away from me talking to a few other people."

"A cloudless sulphur flies in and lands on little thing that holds coasters."

"Cue Jordan Peele sweating gif."

"The girl notices my tension, and asks if I am looking at the leaf. "Actually, that's a lepidoptera called..." I looked at the back of my friend's head, he wasn't looking, "I mean a butterfly..." I poked it and it spread its wings the girl says "oh that's a BUG?!" and I still remember my friend turning around slowly to look at me with chastisement. The ONE thing he told me not to do."

"I was 21, and was completely not aware that I already had a rep for being an oddball. It got worse from there."

– Phormicidae

*Teeth Chatter*

"I bite ice cream sometimes."


"That's how I am with popsicles. My wife shudders every single time."


Never Speak Of This

"I put ice in my milk."


"You should keep that kind of thing to yourself. Even when asked."

– We-R-Doomed

"There's some disturbing sh*t in this thread, but this one takes the cake."

– RatonaMuffin

More Than Super Hearing

"I can hear the television while it's on mute."

– Tira13e

"What does it say to you, child?"

– Mama_Skip


"I put mustard on my omelettes."

– Deleted User


– NotCrustOr-filling

Evened Up

"Whenever I say a word and feel like I used a half of my mouth more than the other half, I have to even it out by saying the word again using the other half of my mouth more. If I don't do it correctly, that can go on forever until I feel it's ok."

"I do it silently so I don't creep people out."

– LesPaltaX

"That sounds like a symptom of OCD (I have it myself). Some people with OCD feel like certain actions have to be balanced (like counting or making sure physical movements are even). You should find a therapist who specializes in OCD, because they can help you."

– MoonlightKayla

I totally have the same need for things to be balanced! Guess I'm weird and a little OCD!

Close up face of a woman in bed, staring into the camera
Photo by Jen Theodore

Experiencing death is a fascinating and frightening idea.

Who doesn't want to know what is waiting for us on the other side?

But so many of us want to know and then come back and live a little longer.

It would be so great to be sure there is something else.

But the whole dying part is not that great, so we'll have to rely on other people's accounts.

Redditor AlaskaStiletto wanted to hear from everyone who has returned to life, so they asked:

"Redditors who have 'died' and come back to life, what did you see?"


Happy Good Vibes GIF by Major League SoccerGiphy

"My dad's heart stopped when he had a heart attack and he had to be brought back to life. He kept the paper copy of the heart monitor which shows he flatlined. He said he felt an overwhelming sensation of peace, like nothing he had felt before."



"I had surgical complications in 2010 that caused a great deal of blood loss. As a result, I had extremely low blood pressure and could barely stay awake. I remember feeling like I was surrounded by loved ones who had passed. They were in a circle around me and I knew they were there to guide me onwards. I told them I was not ready to go because my kids needed me and I came back."

"My nurse later said she was afraid she’d find me dead every time she came into the room."

"It took months, and blood transfusions, but I recovered."


Take Me Back

"Overwhelming peace and happiness. A bright airy and floating feeling. I live a very stressful life. Imagine finding out the person you have had a crush on reveals they have the same feelings for you and then you win the lotto later that day - that was the feeling I had."

"I never feared death afterward and am relieved when I hear of people dying after suffering from an illness."



The Light Minnie GIF by (G)I-DLEGiphy

"I had a heart surgery with near-death experience, for me at least (well the possibility that those effects are caused by morphine is also there) I just saw black and nothing else but it was warm and I had such inner peace, its weird as I sometimes still think about it and wish this feeling of being so light and free again."


This is why I hate surgery.

You just never know.



"More of a near-death experience. I was electrocuted. I felt like I was in a deep hole looking straight up in the sky. My life flashed before me. Felt sad for my family, but I had a deep sense of peace."



"Nursing in the ICU, we’ve had people try to die on us many times during the years, some successfully. One guy stood out to me. His heart stopped. We called a code, are working on him, and suddenly he comes to. We hadn’t vented him yet, so he was able to talk, and he started screaming, 'Don’t let them take me, don’t let them take me, they are coming,' he was scared and yelling."

"Then he yelled a little more, as we tried to calm him down, he screamed, 'No, No,' and gestured towards the end of the bed, and died again. We didn’t get him back. It was seriously creepy. We called his son to tell him the news, and the son said basically, 'Good, he was an SOB.'”



"My sister died and said it was extremely peaceful. She said it was very loud like a train station and lots of talking and she was stuck in this area that was like a curtain with lots of beautiful colors (colors that you don’t see in real life according to her) a man told her 'He was sorry, but she had to go back as it wasn’t her time.'"


"I had a really similar experience except I was in an endless garden with flowers that were colors I had never seen before. It was quiet and peaceful and a woman in a dress looked at me, shook her head, and just said 'Not yet.' As I was coming back, it was extremely loud, like everyone in the world was trying to talk all at once. It was all very disorienting but it changed my perspective on life!"


The Fog

"I was in a gray fog with a girl who looked a lot like a young version of my grandmother (who was still alive) but dressed like a pioneer in the 1800s she didn't say anything but kept pulling me towards an opening in the wall. I kept refusing to go because I was so tired."

"I finally got tired of her nagging and went and that's when I came to. I had bled out during a c-section and my heart could not beat without blood. They had to deliver the baby and sew up the bleeders. refill me with blood before they could restart my heart so, like, at least 12 minutes gone."


Through the Walls

"My spouse was dead for a couple of minutes one miserable night. She maintains that she saw nothing, but only heard people talking about her like through a wall. The only thing she remembers for absolute certain was begging an ER nurse that she didn't want to die."

"She's quite alive and well today."


Well let's all be happy to be alive.

It seems to be all we have.

Man's waist line
Santhosh Vaithiyanathan/Unsplash

Trying to lose weight is a struggle understood by many people regardless of size.

The goal of reaching a healthy weight may seem unattainable, but with diet and exercise, it can pay off through persistence and discipline.

Seeing the pounds gradually drop off can also be a great motivator and incentivize people to stay the course.

Those who've achieved their respective weight goals shared their experiences when Redditor apprenti8455 asked:

"People who lost a lot of weight, what surprises you the most now?"

Redditors didn't see these coming.

Shiver Me Timbers

"I’m always cold now!"

– Telrom_1

"I had a coworker lose over 130 pounds five or six years ago. I’ve never seen him without a jacket on since."

– r7ndom

"140 lbs lost here starting just before COVID, I feel like that little old lady that's always cold, damn this top comment was on point lmao."

– mr_remy

Drawing Concern

"I lost 100 pounds over a year and a half but since I’m old(70’s) it seems few people comment on it because (I think) they think I’m wasting away from some terminal illness."

– dee-fondy

"Congrats on the weight loss! It’s honestly a real accomplishment 🙂"

"Working in oncology, I can never comment on someone’s weight loss unless I specifically know it was on purpose, regardless of their age. I think it kind of ruffles feathers at times, but like I don’t want to congratulate someone for having cancer or something. It’s a weird place to be in."

– LizardofDeath

Unleashing Insults

"I remember when I lost the first big chunk of weight (around 50 lbs) it was like it gave some people license to talk sh*t about the 'old' me. Old coworkers, friends, made a lot of not just negative, but harsh comments about what I used to look like. One person I met after the big loss saw a picture of me prior and said, 'Wow, we wouldn’t even be friends!'”

"It wasn’t extremely common, but I was a little alarmed by some of the attention. My weight has been up and down since then, but every time I gain a little it gets me a little down thinking about those things people said."

– alanamablamaspama

Not Everything Goes After Losing Weight

"The loose skin is a bit unexpected."

– KeltarCentauri

"I haven’t experienced it myself, but surgery to remove skin takes a long time to recover. Longer than bariatric surgery and usually isn’t covered by insurance unless you have both."

– KatMagic1977

"It definitely does take a long time to recover. My Dad dropped a little over 200 pounds a few years back and decided to go through with skin removal surgery to deal with the excess. His procedure was extensive, as in he had skin taken from just about every part of his body excluding his head, and he went through hell for weeks in recovery, and he was bedridden for a lot of it."

– Jaew96

These Redditors shared their pleasantly surprising experiences.


"I can buy clothes in any store I want."

– WaySavvyD

"When I lost weight I was dying to go find cute, smaller clothes and I really struggled. As someone who had always been restricted to one or two stores that catered to plus-sized clothing, a full mall of shops with items in my size was daunting. Too many options and not enough knowledge of brands that were good vs cheap. I usually went home pretty frustrated."

– ganache98012

No More Symptoms

"Lost about 80 pounds in the past year and a half, biggest thing that I’ve noticed that I haven’t seen mentioned on here yet is my acid reflux and heartburn are basically gone. I used to be popping tums every couple hours and now they just sit in the medicine cabinet collecting dust."

– colleennicole93

Expanding Capabilities

"I'm all for not judging people by their appearance and I recognise that there are unhealthy, unachievable beauty standards, but one thing that is undeniable is that I can just do stuff now. Just stamina and flexibility alone are worth it, appearance is tertiary at best."

– Ramblonius

People Change Their Tune

"How much nicer people are to you."

"My feet weren't 'wide' they were 'fat.'"

– LiZZygsu

"Have to agree. Lost 220 lbs, people make eye contact and hold open doors and stuff"

"And on the foot thing, I also lost a full shoe size numerically and also wear regular width now 😅"

– awholedamngarden

It's gonna take some getting used to.

Bones Everywhere

"Having bones. Collarbones, wrist bones, knee bones, hip bones, ribs. I have so many bones sticking out everywhere and it’s weird as hell."

– Princess-Pancake-97

"I noticed the shadow of my ribs the other day and it threw me, there’s a whole skeleton in here."

– bekastrange

Knee Pillow

"Right?! And they’re so … pointy! Now I get why people sleep with pillows between their legs - the knee bones laying on top of each other (side sleeper here) is weird and jarring."

– snic2030

"I lost only 40 pounds within the last year or so. I’m struggling to relate to most of these comments as I feel like I just 'slimmed down' rather than dropped a ton. But wow, the pillow between the knees at night. YES! I can relate to this. I think a lot of my weight was in my thighs. I never needed to do this up until recently."

– Strongbad23

More Mobility

"I’ve lost 100 lbs since 2020. It’s a collection of little things that surprise me. For at least 10 years I couldn’t put on socks, or tie my shoes. I couldn’t bend over and pick something up. I couldn’t climb a ladder to fix something. Simple things like that I can do now that fascinate me."

"Edit: Some additional little things are sitting in a chair with arms, sitting in a booth in a restaurant, being able to shop in a normal store AND not needing to buy the biggest size there, being able to easily wipe my butt, and looking down and being able to see my penis."

– dma1965

People making significant changes, whether for mental or physical health, can surely find a newfound perspective on life.

But they can also discover different issues they never saw coming.

That being said, overcoming any challenge in life is laudable, especially if it leads to gaining confidence and ditching insecurities.