Photo Credit: Photo Courtesy | Chrissy Rocha
Black Expat: 'We Left The U.S. Because The American Dream Felt Unattainable'
Chrissy Rocha was fed up with racism in the United States. That set precedence for her decision to leave in September and move her family to Senegal.
“The American dream felt unattainable, and the type of racism [in the United States] can cripple your entire livelihood,” she told Travel Noire in an interview. “I wanted my children to grow up some place, where they are only seen as human beings.”
In an interview with Travel Noire, Rocha discusses how she planned her move:
Travel Noire: How long did it take you to plan and execute the move?
Rocha: I decided in February 2020 that I would leave the United States. I gave myself until September to work and save at least $6,000.
That plan, however, didn’t pan out due to Covid. I ended up having to exhaust my savings and ended up leaving on Nov. 25th.
Travel Noire: Why did you feel moving was the best decision for you and your family?
Rocha: I wanted to stop working for a living and start working at living and the only place I saw this possible was in Senegal. Life is much slower and family life is valued.
Working 40 or more hours weekly and barely seeing my children to pay bills was physically and mentally jarring in the US. Besides escaping the rat race, it was important for me to escape the constant social terror we’re subjected to in America.
Travel Noire: What is one piece of advice you would give to our readers who want to Blaxit from the U.S.?
Rocha: One piece of advice I would offer is if you’ve made the decision to leave the US, then leave. Don’t wait until you’ve saved 20k.
Life will always come at you; something will always come up. Yes, plan, but if you think too much about your move, you’ll end up talking yourself out of it. Trust your gut, go with confidence, and not fear.
Travel Noire: Is there anything else you would like to tell our readers that’s important that I didn’t ask?
Rocha: Don’t try to take American exceptionalism wherever you go. Don’t try to turn wherever you are into America: leave that behind you and go with an open mind. Different doesn’t mean wrong.
The last thing is to learn the language. If you’re going to a non-English speaking country, not being able to express yourself will make life a ton more difficult than it has to be.