It was pointed out that I should include a TL;DR version of this, which is totally correct, sorry guys
Here's a quick synopsis of the journal: Due to the immigration laws in the UK, British people are unable to marry and be with non-EU spouses unless they meet a financial requirement that 47% of the country is unable to meet. Because of this, my British fiance and I (an American) and roughly 20,000 other families are unable to get married and be together until they start making more money, which is very difficult in this job climate. Now that this financial requirement is in place, families are being torn apart, including children being taken away from mothers because of where they come from. This affects me personally because in America I have nowhere to live but on a couch in my aunt's house, and I want to return to the UK to be with my fiance and live closer to my mom, but while this law is in place, we can't be together. Please consider signing the petition at the bottom of this journal that asks the British government to lower the financial requirement and allow us to get married and live together.
I hope the short version is sufficient, but if you want more information, read on for my personal story, and please be sure to check the link at the bottom of the journal for the petition
I took a long time to write all this out in a journal. I've spoken a little about it in the forums or in conversations, but I guess it was paranoia that kept me from writing a journal about it - paranoia that someone might stumble upon my page who I didn't want to know about what was going on with me. But at this point I don't care as much as I used to -- I hope that the family members I care about will understand why I've decided not to tell them everything about this someday.
I am an American engaged to a British man. We met in 2011 in university. We began dating a year later and have been together ever since. We fell in love utterly naive to the laws of immigration in the UK, which prevents us from getting married unless my fiance is making over £18,600 a year in wages. As we are only university graduates, finding a "real" job that pays enough to meet the financial requirement has been very difficult, and at the moment I'm stuck with my art commissions and he works full-time at a pub that pays £5,000 less than the financial requirement.
Due to these laws, we have had to endure a long-distance relationship -- 5,000+ miles apart with an 8 hour time difference. Buying plane tickets to visit has been hell, but it's cheaper than meeting the financial requirement and is the only way we can be together, if only for a few months at a time. And when those months are up, I return to America, where I live on a couch at a relative's house. Due to reasons I don't want to get into, I'm effectively estranged from my father and will never be returning there, so this is the only option I have here aside from homeless shelters. As for my grandparents, although I love them and owe them a lot, I have tried to keep this from them because I'm desperately afraid of my father finding out about this.
My mother lives in the UK. My fiance lives in the UK. All of my friends, happy memories, and possessions are in the UK. Over the past few years I have built a life in the UK that I am not allowed to keep, and in comparison, America does not feel like home at all. I feel trapped, isolated and increasingly hopeless. The British government has admitted that the law for British citizens marrying non-EU foreigners is unfair and abhorrent, and yet they refuse to do anything to change it. In the meantime, my fiance is learning to drive and applying for better-paying jobs, but in this job market, I have trouble feeling confident. We have been looking into alternative methods of immigration such as the Surinder Singh route, but as they would require him quitting his current job and both of us uprooting to Ireland for a year or so, with only the hopes of him finding a new job and both of us getting a place to live, this route is equally frightening.
I don't know what I expect by posting this. I don't expect anyone to comment, since I've been pretty abysmal at commenting and replying to things lately due to how low I've been feeling (and I'm sorry for it). I'm not begging for anything or asking that a fund-raiser be started (although I'm in no position to refuse anything either). I don't know what I'm expecting.
One thing I will ask is that you consider signing a petition. I don't know how well petitions work these days, but this one needs only 473 more signers before it reaches its goal. The least it will do is raise awareness, which won't hurt. I know it's a big ask, but I have 969 watchers -- I know that probably only a fraction of you pay attention to journals (let alone long, whiny journals like this), but I thought it was worth a try. I guess you never know what good might come from just being open.Here's a link to the petition:www.change.org/p/the-home-offi…
Please let me know if you sign so I can appreciate you. And if it's not too much trouble, any advertisement of this petition or my story would be appreciated. It may sound silly to say this, but this is truly and literally life-or-death for me.
If you have any questions or anything -- especially if you are British and want to know more about or argue about immigration laws for non-EU spouses, then fire away.
On an end note, commissions are open as usual, and soon I hope to open up my Patreon.