Life is not easy in Tunisia.


I’m new here, I have been married to my husband for 8 1/2 months now, and I have been living here for about the same amount of time.  We have our own apartment in Sousse, and I have found it very hard.  I find myself asking how do people deal with no water for long periods during the day, without warning.  How the housing do not have heating or cooling systems unless you put them in, we have a small gas space heater and in the cold months we have it on full blast in our cold home, you can feel the wind blowing through the uninsulated windows and doors, it’s hard to shower or bathe my children and I because of the cold, but we get by.  Besides that, something seems to always be breaking inside the home, and we have to fix it at our expense. 

Everything is dirty here, the public transportation is insanely dirty, so forget about wearing white— it will be brown from all of the dirt and unclean people riding around the cars and buses.  They also don’t clean the vehicles.  Trash is everywhere outside, from clothes to candy wrappers, plastic bags, dirty diapers, to pieces of furniture.  Resteraunts are usually not something you would consider very clean, even the more clean restaurants.  Doors are usually left open so cats walk around inside the restaurants, bathrooms rarely have paper, and some don’t even have soap to wash your hands.  Usually the condition of the bathrooms are dirty and not cleaned well.  Flies circle the food and land on the food and people see that as normal.  Tables are generally wiped with a dirty greasy rag and it’s called clean. 

The fresh produce is seasonal, and that’s fine, in the summer there is a wider variety of fruits, but there is a huge limit on what you can eat.  It’s nothing like the more developed countries where you want to make something and then just go find the ingredients at the store, and even if you do find the ingredients here— it’s poorly made or prepared.  The cheeses are not good to horrible tasting, the mozzarella does not taste like mozzarella should.  The main produce you can find is parsley, tomato, potato, onion, garlic, mild to hot peppers, spices are low in selection (curry, hot pepper, cumin, oregano if you’re lucky) bananas, apples, and I wouldn’t even think of buying strawberries, we’ve went so many places to buy strawberries and spent a lot of money to buy a lot of them to only find that they were putting the edible ones on top and the ones below were moldy and inedible, Tunisians typically will do anything for money.  The fruits sometimes have chicken poop on them, usually you have to pick through the whole lot just to find a few that aren’t bruised. 

The products are extremely cheap here, the toys bought break easily, everything breaks easily.  It’s like shopping at the Dollar store when you go to the large market. 

Does anyone deal with this easily?  Or I am being a crybaby westerner?  I feel like I’m going crazy here.  Not to mention the fact that my husband is heavy handed and it’s condisered normal to slap your wife in arguments.  I’ve heard neighbors (we’ve moved from two different homes) and you could hear neighbors spatting, the woman crying, the husband screaming and throwing things, slapping.  My husband has even slapped me in front of his friends, brother, and mother and father.. no one really tried to stand up for me.  I feel so depressed here.

And the bathroom section... I meant no paper as in toilet paper... if you want that, you’ve got to carry it with you. 

Also, if taxi drivers see you in a tourist area and you don’t speak Tunisian arabic, they’ll hike up the prices and charge you around 6 times more then a Tunisian pays.  I just told the man I’m not paying and I know how much taxis cost, so I grabbed my things and left out the door.  He rolled his window down saying I owed him money for being in his car for three minutes while he spoke to me about where I was going and the price... after he told me the ridiculous price, I told him to stop and I got out.  I eventually gave him 20 dinar for three minutes when it should have been 1-2 dinar...

I’m just tired of this place.  I’ve invested all my money into a business here that my husband runs, and I have nothing to go home to... especially while pregnant.  I used to be 110-115lbs, ran everyday, skin, hair, nails glowing, drinking green smoothies and eating a very healthy diet of fresh vegetables, fish, fruits, Asian cuisine... I did weights and had sculpted abs and strength in my body, loved nature... now I get to live in my personal hell... natures been shit on by the Tunisian people, my diet consists of eating a lot of bread sometimes, not a large selection of fruits and vegetables... mostly bananas and apples, and raw cabbage... so my health and weight are looking horrible... I don’t even see the same person in the mirror anymore.  Everyone smokes cigarettes here, and I must admit, I see why!  It’s a hard place to live... a lot of stress.  From people and family fights, to everyday problems. I didn’t smoke before and now I’m looking like the pilsbury dough boy, I smoke 4-10 cigarettes a day just to keep myself from going crazy...

I would honestly not recommend any Westerner or anyone from a decent country marrying a Tunisian and living in Tunisia, as it’s a very hard thing to do and it will definitely change you.

Welcome to Tunisia I’m afraid that is the country that you have married into and now living in I was Engaged to a Tunisian guy for four years  I done everything for him I’m from England he hit me once in the third year of our relationship thank God I did not marry him things started not adding up and to cut a long story short he went off and married a Tunisian girl I was devastated the fact that your husband has hit you in front of his family is really a no-no and that will not stop I don’t know what country you’re from but all I can say to you is get out because it’s not going to stop and the l Life is not going to change and for goodness sake don’t have no more children sorry to have to put it like this but this is going on such a lot I’m happy to say I’m in a relationship with a lovely lovely guy would we get married now because at the end of the day its only a piece of paper

i would personally say that you are being a 'crybaby westerner.'
You are complaining about things getting broken etc inside your home...well compared to many people first of all you should be glad you have something which you can call home, you complain about water to bathe etc and a lot of the world out there dont even have basics to water for drinking, you complain about not being able to wear white color clothing and people out there cant even cover there body with any sort of garments of any complain about the quality of food etc when there are people dying of starvation in the world and in regards to Tunisian people and their greed towards money well that could be said about any nation but you are prejudice to them cos you married one and not happy in a relationship which is totally another matter and i can go on but i think thats enough to point out that you are in a better place than majority of the people where people who are far less off than you dont even claim but your complaining due to the fact you think you should be entitled to the best of everything but sorry it doesn't work that way...also in regards to your health etc well you do have a choice to change that but instead you chose to moan about it rather than action it....being in a domestic is another story which shouldn't be tolerated by anyone but not my place to comment on that so honestly your take on life is so negative and your complaining about things you already have which some dont even have.......this is coming from a westerner who spends months on and off in sousse as my wife and baby reside there so very familiar with life out there which the only thing i will complain is not spending enough time with my family which has greater value to me than materials etc...hope you see things from a different prospective in future.

Excuse me, i'ts that difficult to be  a bit, I mean a bit, cleaner? It's not a matter of money, just you don't care- Soap is not expensive... I like many things of this country, but just I can't understand why to be so dirty.  I apologize for my criticisms and hope things will improve with the time.

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