No matter where you emigrated from, when you arrived in Kentucky, you likely expected to encounter numerous challenges as you strove to overcome many issues that immigrants often face. Perhaps one of your greatest struggles, or one that a family member faced, is trying to master speaking, writing and reading in English. The good news is that there are many immigrant advocates who can assist you in your efforts.

Building a new lifestyle in the United States is definitely not always easy. In addition to the many legal obstacles that can arise, you and your children may simply have trouble adjusting to a new culture. You are not alone in your struggle; that’s for sure. If you know where to reach out for support when issues arise, you and your family may find that most problems are temporary, and with the right encouragement and support, you can accomplish your goals.

Be proactive

Merging with a new community of people may be easier if you step outside your comfort zone and try new things. Eating new foods is a great way to become accustomed to life in the United States. Kentucky has its own food traditions as well. Tasting new flavors and learning new recipes is a great way to help your family adapt to their new lifestyle.

Watch TV

While many non-immigrant parents advise their children to turn off TV and stay away from electronic devices in favor of more traditional forms of play time, allowing your kids to access such resources can help them familiarize themselves with media customs in the United States. When they learn about popular TV shows, music and current events, they can more easily integrate and participate in conversations with their peers at school, church or during visits with new friends.

Ignore your language barrier, talk anyway

By taking part in small talk, perhaps at the grocery store or with your next-door neighbor, you can not only become more fluent in speaking English, you may begin to feel like you are part of your community as well. Most people will be patient and understanding when they know you are learning a new language.

Addressing more serious problems

It’s one thing to feel nervous when trying new customs and quite another to face a serious legal problem regarding your status. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers take hundreds of people in Kentucky and elsewhere into custody every day regarding legal status issues. If this happens to you, try not to panic and know where to seek support to protect your rights.