“It gets easy to lose oneself when lonely. Solitude often gradually transitions into depression and anxiety. Our souls naturally yearn for human interaction and support. When feeling down or blue, socializing can work like magic, replenishing, refreshing, renewing and fulfilling.” – Nailah Ansari
As expats, anywhere in the world, with mostly no family and loved ones to lean on, the transitional phase can sometimes take a toll especially psychologically. Under such circumstances, social media has proven time and again to be a boon, helping connect people of various backgrounds and interests on common platforms.
Several support groups on Facebook have proved to be a ray of hope for expatriate women trying to feel at home in Saudi Arabia. Many of them are exclusively for ladies only, helping create bonds for life. These groups have certainly been resourceful for many expatriates:
-Pathways to Human Solidarity:
This group’s mission, as stated by its founder, is to empower women, create hope, purpose, opportunities while providing them with a network of resources and to create a strong sisterhood in Jeddah. It is an informal and diverse support group that is actively involved in social events, educational seminars, fundraisers, community service and a lot more. The website affiliated with this group also provides support for women looking for help from female psychologists.
-Susie of Arabia Blue Abaya:
This group is immensely helpful in acquiring firsthand knowledge and assistance provided by expatriates and locals residing within the kingdom. It mainly provides a platform to people of different nationalities for sharing their experiences, participating in discussions and getting their queries answered related to the Kingdom and the Middle East in general.
-Jeddah Mom Tribe:
As the name denotes, this group connects moms in Jeddah to guide and support each other regarding matters related to motherhood. From homemaking, schooling, homeschooling, parenting, travelling with kids and everything else in between, it certainly helps and motivates a lot of mommies to navigate through this exhausting phase while remaining sane and juggling their social lives all at the same time.
-Gardening in Saudi Arabia:
Gardening is potentially quite therapeutic for a lot of people irrespective of how busy or invested they are most of the time. This group, too, is strictly for women only and provides hands-on information for acquiring a green thumb in various cities all over KSA. Anything and everything ranging from seed-plant-soil identification, guidance regarding ideal seasons for growing flowering/fruit bearing plants, pest control, creating a thriving and ideal gardening environment, where to find gardening tools and plant nurseries are widely discussed and experiences shared.
-Jeddah Crafters Club:
Being crafty in Jeddah is another adventure in itself. This group provides an amazing platform to crafty ladies mainly residing in Jeddah. You’ll find several multitalented artistic ladies helping each other with traditional as well as innovative ideas related to knitting, crocheting, sewing, embroidering, cooking, baking, scrapbooking, felting, décor, designing and other projects. A lot is shared that includes where to find materials for being creative in this city as well.
Life in Saudi Arabia moves at a steady and calm pace, which is delightful for many expatriates at first, but sometimes gets gloomy for those who were accustomed to a busy fast paced metropolitan life. My advice to ladies hailing from such environments – ‘Please reach out and socialize, ask for help and help others. There’s nothing that can be more fulfilling!’
Until next time, share your ideas of how you keep busy while living a fulfilling life in KSA in the comments section below. Who knows, you might end up helping someone out unknowingly…..
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