2 hours ago
I am Asian, Korean Born, NZ citizen since 2005
Growing up in NZ wasn’t easy, it definitely got better over time. I still sometimes struggle with it, and still to this day get shade thrown at me just because of my race.
I did a story briefly yesterday in regards to how growing up in NZ was for me. I’d like to elaborate on this further. After everything that has happened recently in NZ, I feel that it is about time this topic is talked about.
I moved to New Zealand in the year 2000 with my family. We decided to move to Tauranga, and build our new home here.
My parents decided to move to New Zealand in the hope of providing us a brighter future.
We moved in with a family friend, who are kiwi teaching English in Korea (how we heard about NZ). Within the first couple of months, they had theft our family of all of our money. Because we had so much trust in them, my father decided to allow them to be in charge of our financial situations while he focused on finding a job in NZ. They theft us of all of my family’s savings, left us with nothing, and kicked our family onto the streets.
My family had to rebuild from nothing. My father was a champion and did all of this for our family. He studied the language after work, before work so that we could call ourselves a citizen of NZ.
During primary school was the toughest years of my childhood. We knew no one in Tauranga. The only people we knew were people who took advantage of us. Our family had little English, so meeting new people was hard. And at time, there weren’t many other Asian families living in Tauranga
I struggled at Primary school, I tried to practice my English and get better at speaking the language here in NZ. I just got racist comments thrown at me, about the way I talked and the way I sounded. I was mocked and ridiculed. The bullying got so bad that I had lost all confidence in myself. I made the decision to not talk to any one for my whole primary schooling (I arrived here when I was in year 3/4, so this is about 3-4 years of not speaking at school). These kind of comments were not necessary, and definitely not okay. It saddens me that it took such a horrific event for the nation to address this