What is like being a Host Mom?
Mary, an experienced American host mum, shares her story of hosting two exchange students simultaneously from Italy and Norway. She discusses the initial concerns they had as host parents and how the students adapted to each other’s cultures and American culture.
We hosted 2 international young ladies at the same time, one from Italy (Milan) and the other from Norway (Asker). We were somewhat nervous at the beginning, wondering if they would get along, how they would adapt to each other’s cultures and then to American culture as well. We made the BEST decision of our lives. The year with them was INCREDIBLE. We learned both of their cultures; they learned ours. They also became very involved in school sports, studied hard and maintained excellent grades. They became our daughters. They became part of our entire extended family as well. We celebrated Thanksgiving and Christmas; we taught our customs and traditions while we were taught theirs.
We all went on a Caribbean cruise for Spring Break. They went to Prom, they experienced American high graduation and all the festivities that were involved. Their parents were all able to come for graduation and also became part of our family. Our Norwegian daughter has come back to visit, and our Italian daughter was cancelled due to the pandemic. We are all very close and keep in close contact with each other. We also keep in touch with the parents.
It was indeed the best decision we have ever made. We had an incredible experience, and we miss those girls every single day. The memories we have are priceless.
We also hosted a student from Japan. The experience was just as great. She is also now our daughter, and her parents are also part of our family. She experienced all the same actives as the other girls. We went to Florida for a spring break trip. Her culture was very different from ours, but we all quickly adapted and learned and appreciated each other’s cultures. We stay in close contact with her as well and her family. She is an amazing young lady, and we love her. We miss her every single day as well. She has been back to visit us at least 3 times since her graduation.
This was also one of the BEST decisions we have made. We love all of our international daughters and look forward to the day when we can all be together again.
– Mary C.
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