Humans of Toronto: #Independence

By Rozi Kumas

My dad moved us from Hong Kong when I was 13. He decided that it was the best option for my family, since he didn’t like the political issues in Hong Kong, and wanted us to have a better life.

My mom, older sister, dad, and I all moved to Toronto during the summer of 2016. Initially, my mom objected to the idea of moving to Canada, but my dad said it was better than living in Hong Kong where everything was unstable. In the end, my mom was convinced and came with us. Before coming here, I was able to speak English, but not fluent. We all lived together for six months, until my mom decided to move back. She said that she didn’t want to come in the first place, and she had to go back to take care of her parents. I speak to her on the phone three or four times a week, and the last time I saw her was last summer.

My family was financially stable when we moved here since my dad owns a glove company in China, Hong Kong, India, and Haiti. Due to his job, he was constantly travelling on business, so I lived with my sister until she moved out for university. My sister and I lived alone most of the time. Her relationship wasn’t great with my dad, and she didn’t want to live at home anymore. Since my dad was usually away and my sister moved out, I went to live with my dad’s friends family, like a home stay student. My dad pays them for rent, and they prepare food for me and take care of me. I like the family I am staying with, and I get along well with everyone, including their two younger children.

My dad also recently opened his glove company in Montreal. So, the only time I really see my dad is when he is in Canada on business, which is usually once every few months. I think this living arrangement works better for me because I also don’t get along well with my dad since he is overbearing and controlling. I’ve learned how to live apart from my family, which has made me more independent. At first, I wished that everyone in my family lived together and all were in one place. After a while, I guess I just stopped caring. #ImmigrantStruggles #FamilyProblems #Independence

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