“Can you please sign this Stat Dec for immigration for us verifying our relationship.” It’s the strangest thing to have to go outside of my own relationship to have justification that it exists and is viable and continuing. It’s almost like with immigration that you are guilty until proven innocent and there isn’t anything I can do about it. They just assume that the relationship is not genuine and make you go through so many hoops, years, and money, to finally get the stamp of approval to stay. It’s a heartless process for something that is supposed to be about love, about partnership, about sharing cultures and values.
This process of applying for Permanent Residency has been heart wrenching for me. It doesn’t matter that I am married to an amazing man. It doesn’t matter that we have a child together, who was born here. It doesn’t matter that we have been in a relationship for over 5 years now. At this stage, I can still be asked to leave at any time, even though I do have a current Partner Visa. It sucks. It’s so hard to not have that base security. It’s so hard to always feel on edge about whether or not you might have to leave the life you have built.
Most recently I’ve had to ask friends, some for the second time, to bear witness to my relationship. Not only that but I need them to then get it certified and prove that they are a citizen themselves or at least have PR. It’s a hassle, it’s all a hassle. The thing is that if it’s only me having to be the one going through this hellacious process, that’s one thing, but it’s not just me. It has to extend to family on both sides, it has to extend to people who know us both. It’s such an invasive process of asking for someone else’s okay about the relationship that normally wouldn’t be any of their business. Not only that but normal relationship rules don’t even apply to my husband and I. Since I was not born here, and I am in the process of immigrating, we have to go through so much more effort, and more authority based things than normal couples would even go through, like having a joint bank account, or both of our names being on the lease, or doing either of those two things literally the day that you decided to have an exclusive relationship. No one does that. Not normal couples. So to then be judged as a normal couple when our standards are already so much higher, is crazy, and redundant to me.
A positive in this process, is that I have gotten back some of the statutory declarations and they have been heart warming. Where friends have written how they can see the love between David and I and that we try to make everyone else’s lives happy. This makes me cry even writing it. So a strange twisted positive is, that I actually get to have feedback from friends about how I operate in the world, and how my husband and I as a family operate in the world. That isn’t something you’d normally get, and it’s endearing. It has shown me that I really do extend my love to those around me, that my husband and I really do show loving affection for one another and that we are a connected family unit. I always want to do my best to help improve the world and share love, and oddly, in this process, that has been confirmed.
Now, I’d just like to have my PR granted and move on to citizenship and be done with all of this. In the end we all want to be loved, and I know that loving myself and loving others, is the way that it circulates around. Even with having this heavy burden of loving someone foreign and wanting to have a family who gets to live and have all the same rights as everyone else, it still shines through, my love, our love still shines through.