How can it feel to sit tight for quite a while, to get a green card in USA, as an Indian on H1B?

How can it feel to sit tight for quite a while, to get a green card in USA, as an Indian on H1B?

I’am not in this boat, but have a couple of friends who are presently pretty close (~4 – 5 years away from actually getting their green cards). Here are some of the pros and cons of dealing with the wait which they’ve described.

Pros:

Save a lot of money if in the Bay area/NYC: During the time that they wait for a greencard, they usually don’t have any big expenses (ie. the tuition of a child, a house etc..) so they end up saving A LOT of money from income, bonuses, stock grants. If their partner/spouse is in the same boat then it’s a surplus. Once they finally receive their greencard, they claim that they’ll move out of the Bay area/NYC and buy a big house in a less expensive state, take a break from the workforce, and eventually re-enter after some time.

Cons:

Unable to change employers: If they’re in an unfavorable situation at work, they’ll try to transfer internally and if that doesn’t workout they’ll just stay in their current team because moving to a new employer could mean starting the Green card process all over again.

Burnout: Some of them work in companies with really poor work life balance. Thus, it’s hard for them to have a social life, date, take vacations etc…In this group, there’s those who deal with it and take it in stride. Others become depressed/anxious.

Limited partner choice (if they’re single): I don’t know how common this is, but some guys/girls have claimed that their pool of matches for dating mainly consists of girls/guys who are also waiting for a green card. They feel that American citizens don’t want to date an Indian guy/girl on a visa due to cultural differences. Matches from India are risky to pursue because, once they get married, the spouse might struggle to find gainful employment in his/her field.

I’am not sure how they’ll feel once they actually get their greencard (happy and victorious or as if the trade offs weren’t worth it).

 

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