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Snippets of life

Why We Created Diasporia

If you follow me or my friend Christa, you’ve probably heard about the joint project we recently launched, Diasporia. Essentially, Diasporia is the space where Indonesian women share their personal experiences living in other countries. The highs and lows, the struggles and the success.

This project had been a year in the making before we finally launched it (the reason, life get in the way, while overused, is unfortunately true in our case). Christa shared her side of the story on why and how we started this on her blog, so I guess I’d also share mine and why I feel so passionate about Diasporia.

What started it: The struggle in the new place(s)

Christa and I share similar timelines when it comes to moving to a new country. I moved to Sweden just a few months after she moved to the US. My first year in Sweden is marred much struggle and anxiety. First, it was the bureaucracy that got me frustrated. Then there was the job-hunting that put quite a severe dent in my self-confidence (there’s nothing like countless rejections to make you start doubting yourself — ‘Am I not good enough?’ was probably the question I asked myself at least once every day during that dark time). The hardest struggle though, is the ever-present loneliness that I’m still struggling with.

I talked with Christa somewhat regularly during those times, mainly because we coordinated a project called Stories from the West, where we share our experiences as a newcomer in our respective country. At that time, it was also my effort to discover something, anything about Sweden that I could love, that could make living here a bit easier. It wasn’t a successful effort in that regard, but what it did was bringing me closer to Christa, united in our struggles as migrants in the new countries.

We talked about this, and realized the problems we had were quite common for fellow migrants. Everyone who moves to a new country is bound to struggle, whether in their career, social life, or something else. Chatting with Christa always left me feeling a lot lighter afterwards, and I guess it was similar with her. We thought, what if we create a place for fellow Indonesian women to share their stories and struggles?

And so Diaspora was born.

About Diasporia

So what is Diasporia, actually?

Right now, it’s a blog where Indonesian women can share their stories, experiences, and tips about living abroad. We want this to be the space where Indonesian diasporia can share their experiences, be it about social life, career, culture, relationships, language, or any other aspects of living abroad, in the hope that they find consolation, support, or insights in reading similar stories. Living abroad is not all roses. There’s so much to learn, things to adapt to, and you always have to put an extra effort to build a life in a place that’s far from your homeland. We want to highlight how these women strive and thrive.

For our first features, we approached a few friends, and there are 4 stories so far (6 if you count mine and Christa’s):

I love how we get a glimpse into their challenges and effort, but also the lives that they’ve built thousands of miles away from home. It’s truly inspirational and motivating. And as we continue this, I’m expecting to see more stories from other parts of the world, from Indonesian women from all walks of life.

With these as well, I’m hoping to highlight how Indonesian women strive and work to create a good life abroad (and succeed at it!). All too often we see/hear the stereotypes of Asian or Indonesian women being ‘bule hunter’, materialistic, submissive, or something else that makes me feel deeply uncomfortable. And here on Diasporia, we get to see those stereotypes being broken by Indonesian women who are independent, aspirational, and nothing short of amazing.


I have a lot of fun working on this with Christa (even if it took a year to launch this!), and I hope you will enjoy it too. If you’d like to follow the stories, you can find them on the website and Instagram:

Website: https://diasporia.blog 

Instagram: @diasporiablog

See you there! 🙂

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8 Comments

  • Reply Christa

    Awww love this! Cheers, partner! <3

    July 18, 2020 at 2:55 am
    • Reply Dixiezetha

      Cheers! <3

      July 22, 2020 at 6:19 pm
  • Reply aggy87

    Such a great initiative from the both of you! We need more spaces for Indonesian women to be able to show their experiences and expertise. Looking forward to read more stories 🙂

    July 19, 2020 at 9:24 am
    • Reply Dixiezetha

      Thank you Aggy!

      July 22, 2020 at 6:20 pm
  • Reply Bama

    I’m sharing this with my female friends who have been living in other countries for years, so they can share their stories too.

    July 21, 2020 at 2:45 am
    • Reply Dixiezetha

      Thank you Bama, very much appreciated 🙂

      July 22, 2020 at 6:20 pm
  • Reply Ayu Widya

    This is a very nice initiative from both of you. I’m really happy to find this.
    Many people think living abroad is a sweet ticket of life. It does for some aspects, you get to know new culture and find new places. But, it’s not all just about that. Your self actualization will be very much challenged. Especially during this pandemic situation, will be harder to get a job or study.
    I’m living abroad now -moving from one country to another, every few years, and I can feel the struggle. Making friends through this forum will bring some sense that you are not alone. So thank you for providing this and we can stand together 🙂

    July 22, 2020 at 6:21 am
    • Reply Dixiezetha

      Hi Ayu, thank you for your words. Yes, there are a lot of challenges that come with living abroad, and it can be difficult and isolating at times. I’m glad that you find fellow Indonesian women who have been/are going through the same thing through this. Hope this can help you in some ways 🙂

      July 22, 2020 at 6:25 pm

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