They Call You A Joint Venture, Not Just A Trailing Wife Or Expat Wife

In Japanese, my mother language, we have a word Chu-zuma (駐妻) meaning “expat wife” or “trailing wife” which, as is the case for these English words, is not always accepted positively by these women themselves.

All these words, English and Japanese, tend to depict these women as mere “followers” and someone behind their partners.

They too often need to give up their own professional careers and personal networks to follow their husbands or significant others who get assigned abroad or some new place inside the country.

While I knew there are many Japanese expat wives who are struggling, I got surprised to find out how many women from many different countries similarly grumbling about their lives as trailing wives over the Internet.

If you try to google “expat wife” or “trailing wife”,  you will find “depression”, “unhappy” or some other negative words in suggestion.

Putting myself in their shoes following my partner currently studying at Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University in the US, I have been really encouraged by the school’s culture to call student’s partners “Joint Ventures” or “JVs” in short.

I wish this culture prevailed across the world and hope this website can be a place where we can envision a better future for all of us (JVs!) and cheer each other up!

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