(Feedback) 7 Things Every TCK Should Know


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TCK Academy is an online learning and education community to support the needs of ATCKs and the expatriate community co-founded by Dr. Paulette Bethel and Brice Royer.
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If you would like to leave us a feedback for TCK Academy’s “7 Things Every TCK Should Know” with Ruth Van Reken, please answer the following questions in the comments:

1. How, specifically, did Ruth Van Reken’s Teleclass HELP the way you understand the TCK experience previously?

2. What would you say to a friend who was thinking of sigining up for a Teleclass – but wasn’t sure?

3. If you feel it is warranted, feel free to leave us a testimonial in the comment box below:

Thank you.



  1. Ruthanne Burch says:

    1. I don’t think it changed my view but it does help to hear other’s expereinces as i try and work with TCK’s for my job.
    2. the teleclasses are a great way to hear other peoples experiences and process your experience by understanding that you are not alone.

  2. Liz Crittenden says:

    Helped me understand more the unresolved grief and the various faces it could take. I would recommend the telecasts to others as it can help in processing some of the confusion.

  3. Priyanca S. says:

    1.It helped me understand what I’m going through and that I am not the only one. I didnt know about the fact that I had unresolved grief. I dont generally feel like I have grief, but I do have bouts of depression and I dont know where its from. Ruth hit the root of the matter and gave me methods of dealing with it. It was more of an “ah ha!” moment!
    2. I would suggest this to my tck friends, that way they would know they are not the only ones going through those issues!

  4. Sherri Hufnagel says:

    1. I didn’t learn anything really new today, but it was helpful to have the concepts kind of cemented as I heard them again, and this time out loud. It was a good reminder as I heard things in a new way. It’ll be helpful as I anticipate working with TCKs in the future.
    2. You learn more about yourself and others and it enables you to learn how to better understand and relate to other people, both TCKs and non-TCKs.
    3. When I read part 3 of the miniclass last week, I thought that I didn’t really need to talk about grief because I had dealt with mine. Just days later I was faced with a new grief (long story), and I feel like God has brought this teleclass along at the right time to help me deal with this grief.
    Thanks TCK Academy!

  5. Margie says:

    For a first-time teleclass, I feel this went very well. Congratulations to Ruth and Paulette – the class part of it went smoothly, and the interaction with those who called in was clear and easy to hear.
    Way to go!

  6. Angela Gunn says:

    It helped validate a lot of things that I do, simply by hearing Ruth’s ways of dealing with her own issues.
    I would definitely suggest the class to a TCK who was interested in learning more/dealing with TCK issues simply because I think it is helping us bring our community closer together in ways that the internet cannot always allow us.

    The TCK teleclass with Ruth Van Reken is enabling TCKs to find their voice and focus it more strongly in an important time for TCKs with the prospect of a TCK becoming the president of US. It is wonderful that we are willing to build our community and lend each other support in ways many of us have never had before. The beginning of great things to come, I feel.

  7. Bethany says:

    1. I am familiar with the TCK experience, having studied it for some time now. I typed down some fabulous quotes that I’ll mull over, and some of the practical application ideas.

    2. Even if you think you know all this stuff, it is *always* encouraging to hear it again, to be validated again in your experiences. Also, Ruth Van Reken is an expert in this area, so you’ll be hearing the top-knotch info about our lives and backgrounds.

    3. Today was my 4-year anniversary of being in my passport country, a bitter day to remember. I thank God’s sovereignty in having this class today, allowing me to process yet again my background and experiences through a positive viewpoint.

  8. Cati says:

    1- The most important thing this class did for me was gave me a sense of how TCKs are influenced by their experiences throughout their whole lives, both positively and negatively. I don’t have any experience yet beyond moving around while living with my family so I appreciated the chance to understand what my future holds and how to make the best of it.

    2- I would recommend this class for two major reasons, first, the amount of information there is, which all TCKs will learn from, and second because there is a good and supportive community in the class which it feels great to be a part of.

  9. Maira says:

    1. It helped me understand what she means by “normalize” the experience.
    When she said “every transition is a loss as well as a gain” this reminded me that there are good things in my culture-crossings too, because I’m still so caught up in problems and in “dealing with grief” that I sometimes forget what a great person I am because of the moving/travelling.
    It also helped me when she said “each person deals with it differently”, meaning that not everyone has to read the book and rationalize about their feelings in a website like I do; because when I first heard about TCK I felt an urge to tell this to everyone I know who is one and get them to read the book, join the site, etc; but I found many bumps on the road and now I know I don’t have to convince anybody.

    2. Even though I already knew a lot of what was said, I was glad to *hear the voices* of the people behind the emails/websites/msn. It gives a very nice sense of connection with other people. Probably only an in-person meeting can make you feel more connected than that.

    3. Oh, it’s definately worth it. Like I said above, you feel even more belonging to a REAL group.

  10. laura says:

    thanks for making these webcasts available. i teach at an intl. school full of TCKs and i have two of my own. I am in the process of reading Third Culture Kids and all that i have read from the site and webcasts. Thanks! I will recommend this to my students and their families.

  11. Paul says:

    1.It helped me to gain a better understanding of being a TCK, just hearing so many varied backgrounds and experiences but being able to relate to many of them at one level or another makes me agree with Ruth that it tends to be more on the emotional side that we often relate, as we share different experiences, it seems the emotion of dealing with them is what we share.
    2. The classes enable you to understand yourself better and evaluate just what issues you may need to tackle and hear different ways of dealing with those issues.
    3. I think there was little coverage of the online questions posted via the website, whether Ruth can answer those seperately or perhaps use them as a basis for another teleclass? Perhaps the ability to upload some audio questions or testimonials? But the callers managed to cover many of the issues that concern us as TCK’s. Thanks to all the work that went into making this teleclass a success.

  12. Heather Foley says:

    As a new expat I have concerns for my four young children as they become TCKs. Today’s conference was eye-opening to the issues I will be facing. Hopefully I can avoid many issues by facing them head on. I appreciate all the information everyone gave. To anyone who is thinking about taking a teleclass, I think it was very helpful and easy. I would like more information on “how to use the gifts”. Thanks to all!

  13. Just wanted to generally say congratulations for a success! Well done, well organized, and thank you Ruth and Paulette for your sterling advice. And thanks again Brice, for your variety of skills.

  14. Lily says:

    1.) While I did not learn too much new information, it just really helped to hear so many people verbalizing what I have felt for so long, and I have felt isolated. It was great to be part of this “community” event. Also, she made one comment with regard to relationships that kind of hit me–that we need to make more effort to get close to others rather than always expecting them to understand us. This has been one of my challenges as a single person–not being able to find a ‘soulmate’ that could relate to me. But perhaps I need to make more effort to relate to them on a different level?! Also was good to hear that there are others out there who have not been helped much by counseling simply because the counselors did not understand where the issues stemmed from. I experienced this myself as I sought counseling a few years ago. It helped somewhat but I left feeling like there was still something big and unresolved going on. Now I know what it was!

    2.) If a friend is thinking of joining the teleclass, I would definitely encourage them to do so. It could be very eye-opening for some; it could give them the words they need to explain their situations to others (esp. counselors, etc., who might be in a position to help better if they understood the issues) and if nothing else it is a wonderful feeling to know you are not alone out there! I definitely plan to tell a coupe friends about this class and perhaps they will be interested in joining next time.

  15. Aris says:

    The teleclass helped to remind me of who I am. That may sound odd, but during the rat-race course of my everyday life, I am often too busy trying to make ends meet to sit back and reflect upon my life story. Some would argue that’s a good thing, but I strongly disagree. In our day and age, people reflect far too little in my opinion. There’s a difference between reflection and self-absorption.

    I would strongly recommend the teleclass to anyone thinking of joining in. It was a both a joy and a relief to listen to others who really CAN understand, and most of all, are actually willing to work through the challenges we have all faced as TCK’s, instead of refusing to look at what’s blatantly staring at them in the face.

  16. Michelle says:

    Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to attend the first teleclass as I was at school that day. Nonetheless, the emails are very helpful, and I am looking forward to examples and techniques that could bring TCKs out of this ‘relationship-phobia’ if it hasn’t already been discussed. I agree that while we need to find ways of brining ourselves back into the community after feeling the hurt and the pain from moving, it’s a lot easier said than done, and I am not entirely sure how to move on.

  17. Krista says:

    Thank you so much for the teleclass. As a parent of TCKs-in-the-making it was eye-opening to hear from ATCKs and their experiences. Thank you Ruth for your book, your talk and your insights so that we may proactively parent our TCKs through the changes & transitions they will experience as they mature, and we won’t think either of us is “weird or crazy” because of it. Really looking forward to teleclass #2

  18. Jonathan says:

    These classes are great ideas! I found out that I am a TCK years ago and but it never hit me till years of moving and restlessness. Naming my condition has given me relief and something to work with/work on. I am looking forward to teleclass #2.

  19. Laurie says:

    I appreciated this teleclass so much. Thank you, Ruth and Paulette, and thank you Brice–it is comforting to hear my own thoughts and concerns being voiced by others. I am a restless, rootless adult TCK and the advice I heard really hits to my core. I definitely look forward to the next teleclass!

  20. Francoise Merry says:

    As the mother of 2 TCK young ladies born in Thailand, it has been so much fun but has also raised up many emotions listening to everything that was shared. I am also the TCK Care person for our Mission families on the field and on furlough. So as I meet with returning MKs and kids who are leaving for the field for the first time, this class is going to be a tremendous help for me. Thank you so much. Do speak to the parents as well…Looking forward to the 2nd class very much

  21. Betty Byrd says:

    I was SOOOO sorry to miss the teleclass on Monday. I thought that I would be able to work it into my work schedule Monday afternoon; but, in the end, it proved to be impossible to do. Hope to join in the next one so that I can better understand and help TCKs. The topics that I am very interested in are belonging, identity, and working through the grief process.

  22. Stephanie says:

    1. How, specifically, did Ruth Van Reken’s Teleclass HELP the way you understand the TCK experience previously?

    It was really helpful, during the teleclass, to hear more about unresolved grief, and to start processing how that was affecting me when I came back to the USA at age 12, and how it has continued to affect me since then. I realize there has been a kind of chain reaction, that the unresolved grief has caused pretty significant depression, that in its turn has caused a series of other losses that I have yet to grieve… It’s kind of overwhelming, realizing how deep this goes…

    2. What would you say to a friend who was thinking of sigining up for a Teleclass – but wasn’t sure?

    There’s no harm in doing it! It’s worth the time!

    3. If you feel it is warranted, feel free to leave us a testimonial in the comment box below:

    Thank you so much for caring about me and “my people”!

  23. V.S. says:

    I find it funny that I discovered the teleclass just before it started and that depression was discussed since I myself was afflicted with it for 4 years and then spent an enourmous amount of time trying to figure out just why it had happened. I dont know whether it was a coincidence or not but this past weekend, I came to a realization (out of the blue too) that it was because I was mourning for a lost home/identity.
    It is still hard for me too grasp the idea that it is sonething I am allowed to feel emotional about… or should be allowed to.
    You cannot imagine just how much the conference has helped me understand my situation better and open my eyes on some things (I won’t be too specific since I’m short on time) and all I can say is thank you…
    for the first time, I don’t feel like I am crazy or alone in this
    and even though you don’t know me and I don’t know you, I feel that all of you would understand me better than any of my closest family and friends… After all, I am the only TCK I know personally.
    so to conclude: this teleclass is simply amazing… And I definitively will try to persuade some friends to listen to the next one

  24. Gary Caton says:

    We are missionaries from Japan. We have been back and forth to the States with our family of five children many times. I, the father of the family, signed up to be able to hear the telecast as a family together. We still have three children at home. For some reason we did not get the web link in time to listen as a family together so I called in and listened for a little while and then gave the telephone to my daughter who listened for a long time. I am not sure of how it may have helped her and some of the adjustments she is going through right now as she prepares for college. I am hoping to learn more about my own TCKs so I will be more sensitive to them and their special needs.

    I don’t know yet if I would reccommend someone else to sign up or not. I hope to receive the transcrips and recording so we can listen to it as a family together. If I think it is beneficial, I will reccommend it to our two older children who are already married.

    Thank you for your efforts in putting something like this together.

  25. lauren says:

    1. Although I had read about TCKs quite a bit before today, it was not until hearing an actual person talk about tcks that the topic became truly alive. I was hearing about the rituals that people did each time they moved or started a new home and realized that I to do similar things. Also the comment about the college moving boxes, really hit home for me. I went through a similar stage last year and never really though about the grief that could have caused such reactions.

    2. I would recommend this to other Tcks, because if nothing else they will realize that they are not alone in their thoughts.

    3. This telecast was really wonderful, up until now the TCKID was almost seamed unreal for me. Thank you so very much for making the surreal, real.

  26. Nicola says:

    I am gutted that I missed the first teleclass and I hope to be able to listen to the recording of it if this is possible – and I am ready and waiting eagerly for the second one!

  27. Amanda Sheldon says:

    I have just listend to the recording of the first teleclass. I had not realised that I have so much unresolved grief, and could relate to the over-reacting to situations. I also struggle with relationships and now see that I need to move forward in them and not let others come to me. I can see that I have a lot to learn, a lot of grief to deal with and hopefully can begin to move forward in my life. Thank you and looking forward to more. It was helpful to know of ways to deal with the grief as that is something I have not come accross at all.
    I would and have recomended this to friends.
    Thanks again.

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