The Absurdity of Brexit

WARNING: Political rant ahead.

I will try and not make this a habit, but this rant was too long for Twitter and most of my Facebook friends are French-speaking Canadians with a very limited idea of what Brexit is and what it entails for foreigners living in the UK so… here I am.

Yesterday morning, I stumbled upon a Twitter thread where foreigners currently living the UK – mostly EU nationals but also some American and Australian citizens – were sharing their plans to move back ‘home’ before 2019. The thread was born after a Dutch citizen tweeted about having to leave his wife, kids and dogs and move back to the Netherlands to find work since British companies refused to hire him. This man has lived in the UK for over 25 years.

I can’t put in words how much this angers me. It shows just uncertain and out of hand this whole Brexit thing has become, and how badly the current political climate is affecting the UK (and other countries members of the European Union).

Why is the British government so set on making life harder for all of us, foreigners?

I was detained for over an hour at the airport a couple weeks ago. I was entering the country on a perfectly valid visa so they had no reason to arrest me, but they still confiscated my passport and residence permit, and told me that I was liable to being brought into detention for an undetermined period of time…

All of this because I wasn’t born in the country I chose to live in.

I suspect the Entry Clearance officers only let me go because I boldly rang my solicitor right in front of them and my British citizen of a husband was ready to pounce on the phone had they decided to take me away.

As most of you know, I was recently refused a visa for the only reason that Edward and I hadn’t lived together for exactly 24 months so our relationship was deemed not ‘genuine and subsisting’. We have lived together for a little over 23 months and have been together for nearly three years, but none of this matters to the Home Office. So we got married** and reapplied as a married couple.

[ ** I’d like to point out here that Edward and I didn’t ‘marry for the visa’. Our wedding was planned for later in the year but we had to change our plans at the last minute to allow me to remain in the country whilst our application was being reviewed. This is not how we had imagined getting married, but we are very happy of how it turned out. I’ll write about this more in detail soon.** ]

In the meantime, we started looking at other avenues in case I was refused again and it only highlighted how unfair the British immigration system really is. After filling a short online survey on the Canadian immigration website, Edward was invited to apply to become a permanent resident; he could also benefit from an express entry visa and a work permit – all for a modest $800, so about one fourteenth of the amount I have spent since December to remain in the UK.

So why don’t we move to Canada?

Why should we have to move to a foreign country (because of language requirements we’d have to exile ourselves to one of the English-speaking provinces), lose our job stability, financial security and support network? Our life in Canada would be a very difficult one; where here my skills (I speak five languages and work as a translator but have a background in social care) are appreciated and even sought after, I could barely work as a cashier back home.

My case is not unique: millions of skilled foreign nationals will be either deported or chose to leave because of the pressure put on them. Of the people sharing their stories on that thread was a hotel manager who worries about losing his employees after Brexit because there are not enough British workers to fill in for them. I’m fairly certain that this case is not unique either…

In my humble opinion, Brexit is totally absurd. We have to do something to stop it, or at least make it less of a mess regarding economy and immigration.

There is not much we can do, but there are still a few things worth trying:

16 thoughts on “The Absurdity of Brexit

  1. Agreed. Really sorry to hear about how hard it’s been for you. It was tough even before Brexit (a few years ago a Canadian friend of mine was detained at customs, locked in detention over night, and actually sent back to Canada the following day for no reason other than the officials thought she might overstay her visa!), but I have no doubt it’s even worse now. I thank my lucky stars I got started on all this before it got this bad. I really hope from here on it goes more smoothly for you. And I’m glad you don’t want to let the evil blighters push you out of the country.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! It really hasn’t been an easy journey and I could probably just have given up… I think I’m just too stuborn for that! ;) It was their fear I think, that I overstayed my visa… But at this point really, it would be my problem since I wouldn’t be reallowed in the country? I managed to convince them (the lawyer thing probably helped) that I had a new application being sent to the Home Office before the end of my current visa so thankfully, they gave me back my passport and BRP! The final paperwork is being sent today so I should hopefully write again soon with good news. Fingers crossed!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Good job being stubborn (😊) and also, in that moment, making the call to the solicitors – like you, I’m sure that helped. Stressful times (I remember the feeling too well!) Fingers firmly crossed for you!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Hello ,

    I saw your tweet about animals and thought I will check your website. I like it!

    I love pets. I have two beautiful thai cats called Tammy(female) and Yommo(male). Yommo is 1 year older than Tommy. He acts like a bigger brother for her. :)
    I have even created an Instagram account for them ( ) and probably soon they will have more followers than me (kinda funny).

    I have subscribed to your newsletter. :)

    Keep up the good work on your blog.



    1. I think it might be easier for you, as I assume you’d come here on a working visa? The paperwork is still shit to fill but I have the feeling that a ‘working immigrant’ has more value than a ‘spouse immigrant’ in the eye of the Home Office… Hoepfully, either the Brexit won’t go forward or when it does, people’s minds will be appeased and immigration from outside the EU will be slighty easier!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. My partner is from the EU as well. We discuss this a lot. I would like to add though, if the vote was the general election, it would have been too close to call but, for some reason the Government has this annoying saying ‘the country decided’, no it didn’t, just over half did, and the half that voted to leave the EU, I’m pretty sure looking at the vote statistics, they had no idea what they were voting for. We are both looking at leaving a country that feels individualism and self-gain are more important than working as part of a bigger entity. As one of those vote links say, Brexit into Regrexit.

    We both strongly believe this is going to be the biggest fudge up Britain has done in a long time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree with you 100%! I feel Britain is isolating itself instead of working with the rest of EU to get what they want (reducing immigration for example; closing the doors to the country will not work). Most people had no idea what they were voting for and the governement has yet to tell us what will happen exactly…

      We’d rather stay here but if it’s no possible for us, we’ve considered other options, including a few EU countries.

      I hope it all works out for you and your partner… And if you do leave the UK, good luck with the move! I know how much of a hassle international moves con be! ;)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Slowly the other EU countries are offering residency permits, Belgium and Austria being the top two so far. One of the options is getting in one of those places. I can’t see how the UK can survive on its own with the current world economics. Besides, I think the oldies in the Government are still living in the colonial days 100 years ago. I think one of the best options would be allowing people dual nationality with the EU and maintain free EU movement. But, unless the powers realize that a referendum that was based on lies and ignorance is not the way forward, then I can’t see the silver lining yet.
        Thank you Frede

        Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m afraid we’re seeing the markings of the same over here in your homeland’s southern neighbor. Ultra-nationalism, isolationism, and protectionism are bad seeds to plant, and we’re growing the same tree over here in the States that they’re growing in the UK. Funny how closely our roots still intertwine.

    I hope your journey forward is easier now than the long journey behind, and I hope our nations come to their senses.

    Congrats on the recent nuptials!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, those seeds seem to be growing worldwide, unfortunately… I’m hoping it’s just a short-lived trend and that people open their eyes very soon.

      Thank you for the well wishes and the congratulations. :) The news came in earlier this week that my visa has been granted so have two more years stress-free before I need to go through the same process all over again. Fingers crossed it will be easier the second time!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. With you 100% on this. When the vote came through I actually grieved like someone I loved had died.

    I CAN NOT get my head around the absolute mind numbing utter stupidity of the whole thing

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was two years ago and I am still lost for words… I just can’t understand it. Especially now that we see all the trouble it’s causing with no good outcomes from it…

      I guess we can only hope it won’t be as bad as we fear it will be.



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