British / German dual citizenship -- how does it make you feel?

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After extensive searching through "German themes", it seems that the majority of postings related to Brexit and German citizenship focus on the procedure and timing of the application process--I have not found any postings that reveal how successful applicants feel after they have been granted German citizenship. With this in mind, I have created a thread to address this topic (apologies if one exists already--please move this there). To explain something about myself, I was born, raised and educated in the UK and worked there for a number of years before moving to the continent where I have since worked in seven EU member states over a period spanning more than two decades. Along the way, I married (a German) and started a family (outside of Germany). As the holder of a British EU passport, I felt quite European and the thought of applying for citizenship in those seven EU countries never crossed my mind. This all changed with Brexit when I recognized the advantages of German citizenship over permanent residency and thus completed the application process, successfully. Having recently received my Staatsangehörigkeitsurkunde should I feel that is somehow more than the result of having successfully completed a necessary formality?

 

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I think many expats feel kind of like they do not really have a home anymore. I also relate to being "european". Even though I have both, I do not really feel "British" anymore and when I go back it does not really feel like going home. On the other hand, I do not feel "German" either, despite my family here being German and being fluent in the language. I still have my British sense of humour and love the food etc etc... It is like being a hybrid, so yes "European". Sometimes I joke I am "Denglish" or "Eutsch", but it is a weird feeling indeed.

 

There is a really interesting article here about it.

 

https://www.bbc.com/worklife/article/20161024-the-problem-with-being-a-long-term-expat

 

 

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It's a bit odd.
I've been here 10 years, my wife is German, my kids are German and there is literally nothing and no-one back in the uk which matters to me anymore, but still if it hadn't been for Brexit I probably wouldn't have bothered to apply.
German citizenship per-se has no real value to me.

European citizenship on the other hand is a HUGE deal for me and for my whole family.

I studied in Germany under Erasmus and met my wife during my year here. 
My sister studied in France under the same scheme and met her husband under the same programme.

My mother and father moved to France when they were made redundant in the UK and because of free-movement they could take  part time work teaching English and supliment their income until retirement meaning that they are now happily enjoying the retirement they deserve after a lifetime of hard work.

When the UK voted for the Tories in 2015 I was worried that my whole life was going to be torpedoed by this crap. 
I started taking whatever steps I needed to make-sure I could stay.

As a highly skilled, well paid and well educated person with strong family and property ties to Germany it seemed unlikely that I would have any difficulty getting a visa to stay, so I started to plan in that direction, but I didn't push too hard. 
After the referendum vote made it clear that the UK was leaving I decided I had to do something a bit more urgently.
However the fucked up nature of Brexit meant that I couldn't actually apply for a visa until the UK actually left.

At that point I started to look at ways around that and it was clear that applying for German citizenship was the one concrete thing I could do to make sure I had the right to stay, the right to work etc.

At that point I thought about what German citizenship meant for me and about if I should give up my British citizenship at the same time.
Watching the UK rip itself apart has been sad and revolting in equal parts, some days I am so ashamed of the country that I would give it up in heartbeat and never go back.

On the other hand, given how selfish and unpleasant the UK has been about this, I feel no guilt at keeping my UK passport just to make sure that long term I have exactly the same rights as I have now.

So I'm a German citzen because it gives me European citizenship and I live in Germany. 
I'm a British citizen because I was born in the UK and I'm not letting some petty assholes in the Tory party take away my rights just because they have a different agenda to mine.

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Very eloquently put. Thank you. A post which many of us with a good chunk of their working lives ahead if us can resonate with. 

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I got German citizenship recently due to Brexit. After living here for >20 years it feels like home now but I was born, grew up and lived in the UK the first 35 years of my life and the British side of me is not something that I think I would ever lose. I have dual citizenship and feel like I belong to both, although whenever I visit the UK these days it feels like a foreign country because it's not the UK I grew up in. That's something you notice when you have been out of the country for a while - it moves on but your brain stayed where it was when you left.

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On 16.11.2019, 23:50:13, Cystrin said:

I have not found any postings that reveal how successful applicants feel after they have been granted German citizenship

 

Elation mixed with relief were my initial feelings.

 

As time has passed (it is 8 months or so behind me) I think mostly I feel quite pissed off that the whole thing was necessary - in my case I cannot go back to the work I was doing now I have dual citizenship, so that is a particular bummer, but aside from that, I was happy being a European Brit, and it should not have been necessary to become German to retain the European identity, and although my home is here, and my hometown is here, and I am happily an Einwohner of Here, I am only really a Brexit Deutscherin.

 

This sounds horribly ungrateful, and this is not true - I am most grateful to have been afforded the opportunity to gain dual citizenship, and glad I have it, but the plastic feeling remains.

 

My town is very good in pushing the 'becoming a citizen of the city' rather than 'becoming German' presumably because they know that this is much easier to get your head around than a whole new nationality.  

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39 minutes ago, AdHa said:

I got German citizenship recently due to Brexit. After living here for >20 years it feels like home now but I was born, grew up and lived in the UK the first 35 years of my life and the British side of me is not something that I think I would ever lose. I have dual citizenship and feel like I belong to both, although whenever I visit the UK these days it feels like a foreign country because it's not the UK I grew up in. That's something you notice when you have been out of the country for a while - it moves on but your brain stayed where it was when you left.

I know how you feel, AdHa. Culture shock for me is when, very occasionally, I go back to the UK . I was brought up in the UK but moved to Germany in 1989-ish. I´ve been in Greece for five years now but sometimes go back to Hamburg. I don´t feel this culture shock there.

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Hi Everyone, 

I am the product of a German Refugee and an English social worker. So I am 50% German, 50% English but 100% European. 

Unfortunately my father refused to teach me German quite understandable when you learn his personal history. Forced to leave school aged 16.Then forced to leave his home and luxurious lifestyle. His brother was arrested and taken to Sachsenhausen. When my father arrived in Southampton with a suitcase he had signed away right he had to German Citizenship. His father died a broken man then his mother and sister were transported to Terezin where they both died. Although I have applied for German Citizenship under Article 116 it took almost 3 years to get all the necessary documents and I have to wait another 18 months to know if I have been successful. 

Currently I am living between Germany and Britain.

 

Already I have marched with over a Million protesters against Brexit to Parliament twice but that made no difference. 

 

On Brexit Day 31st January I plan to join any pro EU British people to protest about Brexit at the largest gathering. 

 

Does anyone else want to protest against Brexit? 

 

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