Bilingual: Caught Between Two Worlds

The word “bilingual” -surprise surprise- means two languages, two mother-tongues and two worlds that you find yourself struggling between.

You see the guy in the picture right above you smiling with no care in the world while two languages are coming out of him simultaneously? I can guarantee you-as a person who’s everyday life, speech and mind consists of exactly that-it may not be as simple and carefree as it seems. 

Now, even though being from two different countries and having two mother-tongues instead of just one may sound fascinating to outsiders-if you’re like me and happen to be one of these people, you’ll know very well it comes-like a lot of things-with certain strings attached, struggles that only fellow bilinguals will ever understand.

Lets just say we do things differently. You know it, I know it and the world knows it too.

In the meantime, enjoy the following video about things only bilinguals do and get ready to relate. If you’re not a bilingual yourself, I am sure that you will relate to the friends of the characters if you happen to have been in a similar situation. For me, welcome to my life. All of this is simply too true:

Having had these “struggles” myself in the past and continue to have them every day, I have decided to create this blog that will feature everyday struggles that I just need to put out there. Don’t think this blog is just a 22-year old whining about this privilege that she’s well aware she has, but it will also provide tips for fellow bilinguals, many personal stories and-yes-even benefits, because trust me-through all the struggles-there are many benefits to this mind as well.

So join me in between our two worlds and know that I understand. For me those worlds are Greece and South Africa-two countries that could not be further apart in their culture, people and everyday lives. I am both though. I am both Greek and South African, “half-Greek and half-South African” as I’ve gotten used to saying. But as the South African comedian Trevor Noah says: “I hate the term half, why half? Why not double? Or twice as nice-I don’t know”.

For you they may be any other two countries. The principles and everyday struggles remain the same. At the end of the day, we are all caught between two worlds.

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