11 Signs You're an American Who Was Raised Abroad

United States Student Work
by Annabel LaLonde Mar 24, 2015

1. You can easily convert the Metric system into US Customary, or Celcius into Farenheit. For some reason, though, deciding on whether to put the month before the date or vice versa when filling out basic paperwork always leaves you sweating like a pig and breaking out in hives.

2. Your immunization record raises eyebrows every time you enroll in a new school. You’ve been immunized for everything under the sun, but the records are either nonexistent or are written in Thai on a piece of scrap paper.

3. There is no such thing as time-of-day-appropriate food. Chicken soup for breakfast makes as much sense as eggs and toast.

4. When people ask where you’re from, you either respond with a vague, “around…” or launch into a full-on monologue. Either way, things get awkward and weird and you will either be met with a barrage of questions or a blank stare.

5. You are always aware of the time in various cities, so as to keep up with your Skype dates. That being said though, you’ve gotten used to being reachable 24/7.

6. “That’s SO American” is totally an insult…that you find yourself dishing out to other Americans.

7. When foreign friends say, “You’re not like a typical American,” you take that as the ultimate compliment.

8. Dinner conversations can get uncomfortable when you don’t express the same outrage over how in some cultures it’s totally fine to eat dogs, not refrigerate cheese, or leave work to nap in the middle of the day.

9. All those years of being around non-native English speakers has allowed you to develop an interesting vocabulary as well as an unusual sense of syntax: “The langoustine — it is delicious, yeah?” At least now, your friends know that you aren’t being pretentious and that you’re not trying (and failing) at being British.

10. Whenever you go back to that States, you binge on cereal, mac and cheese, and all that junk food that you always make fun of Americans eating. And you LOVE it.

11. Whenever it was “International Day” at school, you’d never know what to bring to the potluck because you were always competing against the Europeans and Asians. Usually, you’d just show up in denim and bring a baked good that involved peanut butter and hoped for the best.

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