Being a perfect expat wife is an art. Not everyone has that talent. I mean, once again, you need a big sense of humour to cope with the label -and the cliché that goes with it.
No matter what you did before and what sacrifices you made to follow your husband abroad, your past has instantly vanished the moment you became an expat wife. As well as your professional life and your ambitions. Expat wife is your new identity now -get used to it. Spoiled, boring, obedient wife waiting for her husband to come home all day -while sipping champagne and getting foot massages. I say if you have to live with the cliché, go all the way. Discover the art of being a perfect desperate housewife -sorry, expat wife- in 10 lessons.
The art of being a perfect expat wife in 10 lessons
It’s well known. Being an expat wife is a full time job. To master it, there are a few rules that need to be followed.
1. don’t you dare working
It’s a basic, really. A good expat wife does not work. Period. You stay home and take care of the kids -I mean, on Sunday, when the nanny is off. You don’t have kids? Get pregnant -it should keep you busy for a while. If you do have the balls to create you own business, bare in mind that in most people’s mind, you’ll always be an expat wife. Because really, who’s making the big bucks here? But if working helps you feel confident and pay for the nail polish and hair salon, good for you.
2. never miss a spa appointment
Talking about nails and hair style, get a membership at your favourite spa right away. As it will soon become your new home. Go there at least once a week, and don’t forget to mention your cluttered schedule during conversations “I cannot today, I’m super busy, I need to get my nails done then I have a massage at 3pm…”.
3. spend half your husband’s salary on decoration
That gigantic villa isn’t gonna get all fancy and Pinteresty by itself. And as I was saying, you need to stay busy while others are working. Go shopping with your colleagues -aka fellow expat wives- and don’t forget : there is no limit… it’s not your money anyway. So who cares?
4. Spend the other half in bubbly brunches
Why should we keep the champagne only for big occasions? Isn’t a Tuesday morning good reason enough to pop the bottle and enjoy some bubbles? I hope you like smoked salmon and lobster, as a good expat wife never says no to fancy brunches. Of course, don’t forget to take photos for your perfect-life-Instagram-gallery.
5. Complain about your staff
A truly gifted expat wife will always find something to complain about. If it isn’t the helper who put your white t-shirt on the pile of dark t-shirts, the driver who was four minutes late this morning or the gardener who forgot an autumn leave on the balcony, I’m sure you’ll find something. Be creative!
6. Make international schools your favorite topic
And bitch about your colleagues’ bad choices of school. As the one you chose for your kids is obviously the best -even though they’ve got only one I-pad per student. Which is absolutely ridiculous, I agree.
7. gossip. a lot.
If you’re lucky enough, you live in a place with a small expat community where everyone knows everyone. Which allows you to gossip as much as you can, to get some action! If there' isn’t any good story out there, create it. Did you know the neighbour was sleeping with her gardener? Let yourself be inspired by the Queen Desperate Housewives. After all, they’re your role models, aren’t they?
8. go to the gym and be pretty
That’s all you have to do, so be sure to always have the perfect tan and to never miss a pilates session. Oh, and don’t forget to sleep with your personal trainer, while you’re at it.
9. never talk about yourself. Always about him.
From now on, you only exist as “your husband’s wife”. When moving with him, you’ve given up your own identity. Forget surnames, business cards and nicknames, you are now his wife. That’s it. No even a woman. A wife. So when you make conversation, don’t forget to speak about him. His job, his professionalism, how grateful you are to be with such an incredible person... Most important : do NOT talk about you. Ever. What is there to talk about anyway, spas and brunches?
10. shut up, smile and be happy
You have the luxury of doing nothing while having tons of money. And we all know it’s always been your dream life. Do not dare complain to anyone. Ever. Even irony is forbidden -I’m actually risking a lot with that article. Shut up. And go prepare dinner for your husband instead of spending your time reading stupid blogs.