In Silicon Valley, marriage and love are more worrying

  ”Did you say I want to go back? I finally let go.” Every few months, Xiao Qiao would whisper a few words about returning to China in our high school girlfriends group.
  ”Don’t make trouble! What are you doing back home? I still want to go back to the United States. Singapore is going to be so hot.” Zi Qi has always been the most opposed to Xiao Qiao’s return to China.
  ”You don’t have a baby, you don’t know, I just want someone to help me now, how expensive is a babysitter in the Bay Area.” Xiao Qiao sighed helplessly.
i just want to be able to afford a nanny

  Xiao Qiao was the first of our bedmates to go abroad. She applied for a full scholarship to go to the United States as an undergraduate, and received her doctorate at the age of 24. The teachers always look proud when they mention her, saying that they can see from high school that she is a good seed for academics. But in fact, Xiao Qiao had little interest in academics, and went to work in the Silicon Valley industry after graduation.
  As for Xiao Qiao’s parents, they have always been 100% assured of her study and work, and the only worry is her choice of a spouse. In the first few years after graduation, her parents who were far away in China sent Xiao Qiao a boy’s WeChat every now and then. Whenever someone around her mentioned that her younger generation was in the United States, Xiao Qiao’s parents felt that it was fate.
  Xiao Qiao was overwhelmed, and it was not until her American-French boyfriend J proposed to marry her that she mustered up the courage to tell her family. Sure enough, the whole family didn’t like it—from their parents’ point of view, if the only daughter, Xiao Qiao, married a foreigner, she wouldn’t come back in the future; besides, after giving birth to a child, she was a little foreign devil, and communication was difficult.
  But Xiao Qiao identified J. She thought that J had the same interests as her. She said: “J respects women very much and has family values. He will be a good father.” Xiao Qiao soon got a license and bought a house with J in the San Francisco Bay Area. . In the first year of the epidemic, their mixed-race son was born. Unexpectedly, it was the birth of the child that made Xiao Qiao and his wife want to go back to China—the babysitting fees in the Bay Area are too expensive! How easy is it to balance family and career?
  Although Xiao Qiao works in the Bay Area, she is not in the high-paying technology industry, but in a non-profit organization. According to her description, her salary is “the kind that can barely pay a nanny’s salary, and she doesn’t do housework.” . On weekdays, the husband and wife have to work at home, and the nanny can help look after the children. After get off work, the two have to take care of the two cats and two dogs at home, cook, do housework, and take care of the baby. They are so busy that they are dizzy.
  J is also a Ph.D., but his research direction is “more profitable” than Xiao Qiao’s. Although J insists that housework should be shared equally, sometimes when both of them are busy at work, Xiao Qiao is willing to take on more by herself. “After all, J is more enthusiastic about scientific research than I am, and there is a lot of room for promotion and salary increase. If his income increases, we can ask one more aunt to help.”
  J once had a very good opportunity to go abroad, but Xiao Qiao couldn’t work in the place because of visa issues, so J refused without hesitation. He knew that his wife also had her own pursuits, and he didn’t want her to give up her career for the sake of the family. After repeated discussions, returning to China together is also an option—Xiao Qiao’s parents are willing to bring their baby, and the child can also lay a good foundation in Chinese. Xiao Qiao’s research direction is also an emerging field in China. As for J, he can apply for an assignment to China. company.

  It was the birth of the child that made Xiao Qiao and his wife want to go back to China—the babysitting fee in the Bay Area is too expensive!

San Francisco, USA, March 9, 2023, a couple standing on top of a hill looking at the city skyline

  Unfortunately, due to the epidemic, this plan has been delayed again and again. Until recently, seeing many friends returning to China complaining about the pressure of the domestic workplace, Xiao Qiao hesitated again. Moreover, she also noticed that J didn’t like the business of the Chinese branch that much.
  Occasionally, Xiao Qiao chatted with us in the group, and would also sigh with emotion: “You said, if I had listened to my parents and found a domestic one, would I not have these troubles?”
Sasha, a liberal arts student forced to transcode

  The first time I saw Shasha was when I was in my second year of graduate school. We took a class on poetry together. She is gentle and generous, with an orchid-like temperament, and her eyebrows and eyes are a bit like Liu Shishi, with a very classical beauty.
  Shasha has a boyfriend Q who works in the Bay Area. It is said that she was her senior when she was an undergraduate. After graduation, he went to the United States to get married.
  When I asked Shasha what her plans were for going to the United States, she smiled and said, “I’ve been preparing to apply for a Ph. If it wasn’t for her boyfriend in the United States, she would prefer to stay in China to do research, but for the sake of love and the future of the two of them, she has been a graduate student for three years and has been preparing to go abroad.
  Unexpectedly, in her third year of research, Sha Sha gave up her plan to study for a Ph. The friends around me were all very surprised. Shasha explained to us: “I also went to a professor during the summer vacation. There is no teaching job suitable for my major, and the competition for teaching positions is fierce now. Q said that there are many programmer positions in the Bay Area. , the salary is high, he can take me to transcode.” Although her tone was calm, she still couldn’t hide her helplessness and unwillingness.

San Francisco, USA, September 24, 2022 Concentric lock fence next to the Golden Gate Bridge

  In the past ten years, “how to transcode” has been an extremely hot topic in Chinese circles.

  In the past ten years, “how to transcode” has been an extremely hot topic in Chinese circles. Thanks to the gathering and prosperity of the high-tech industry, code farmers (programmers) in Silicon Valley have always been synonymous with “high salary”. A large number of outstanding Chinese science and engineering students came to the United States through studying abroad. Although there is a lot of investment in the early stage, if you successfully “go ashore” (find a job as a programmer) after graduation, the starting annual salary is usually millions of RMB, and there is a lot of room for future increases. As for liberal arts students, not only is it difficult to find a job, but their income is often only 1/3 of that of a programmer. Many liberal arts students with strong self-learning ability will choose to “transcode” when they face such a disparity and cruel comparison after graduation.
  ”Shusha, your learning ability is so strong, and with Q tutoring, I believe you will definitely be able to go ashore. But do you really like writing code?” I asked Sasha.

  After being silent for a long time, Shasha replied: “Q said, if I don’t transcode to find a job, we can only break up. The long time of Ph.D. means that I have not contributed to the family income for several years. No matter how high his income is, the average Let’s see, we are the poverty line in the Bay Area. He also said that even if I am lucky enough to find a teaching position in the liberal arts, it is still far behind when compared to a peasant family with two yards. What he needs is a wife who will work side by side with him.” “
  But He already has a house, and you also have a scholarship, so you don’t have a lot of pressure in life…” Q and Sha Sha are both only children of a middle-class family in Beijing, and they don’t have the so-called family burden.
  ”Yeah, but that’s the Bay Area, there are too many rich people. Everyone wants bigger houses and more stocks.” Shasha smiled and sent me a link to a Chinese forum: ” You see, those who are in the same industry complain in the forum that their wives are science and engineering girls who don’t know how to dress up. Such a person.”
  After another few months, Shasha finished the online class recommended by Q, but gave up. She stayed in China to study for a Ph. D., and Q broke up extremely indifferently, and even calculated with Sha Sha their summer vacation expenses in the United States. Without saying a word, Shasha transferred the account and blocked all his contact information.

American drama “Silicon Valley” stills
Border lift

  While Xiao Qiao has been struggling with returning to China, Zi Qi, who works in Singapore, has always wanted to return to the United States.
  Ziqi in her early twenties is a girl who loves love first. At that time, her boyfriend did not get an H-1B visa and could not stay in the United States, so she accepted an offer from Singapore; when we all thought that the two of them were going to have sex, she actually quit the United States. work, followed to Singapore. The two loved each other vigorously at first, and they broke up after a few years, which was also full of turmoil. After the breakup, Ziqi put all her thoughts on her work, and she was doing well in the workplace, but when it came to marriage and love, she was always almost unlucky.
  ”How many people can there be in this palm-sized place? One time, my fitness trainer said he would introduce someone to me. When I opened the other party’s circle of friends, I saw an ex who had gained 30 pounds…” Ziqi complained every time Xiao Qiao and I were overjoyed at the blind date in Singapore. Ziqi even spent money to attend an expensive marriage counseling class, and when she came back, she greatly admired her instructor’s “border lift” theory.
  According to the tutor’s analysis, a 30-year-old girl like Ziqi who has a master’s degree ranked among the top 50 in the United States, can find a job with an annual salary of 100,000 US dollars, and looks good can match a 200,000-30-year-old girl in the Bay Area. A boy of the same age with tens of thousands of dollars and tens of millions of domestic assets, and the communication process is not strenuous, and the boy is willing to provide emotional value. In Asia, especially the first-tier cities in China, it is difficult to find one or two grades below, let alone a match.
  Although Ziqi complains about life in Singapore every day, she is more afraid of returning to China. After all, in her hometown, the blind date arranged by her elders is already a divorced civil servant with a beer belly.
  Encouraged by her mentor, Ziqi also started to browse American social networking sites. Sure enough, the conditions for potential targets are much better—after all, the most indispensable thing in the Bay Area is young programmers with rich money and no targets. I looked at Ziqi who was enthusiastically planning to return to the United States, and I couldn’t help but think of the helpless look on Shasha’s breakup a few years ago—if Ziqi really married a programmer, would she be asked to “transcode”? Is Joe also considering returning to China because of the cost of childcare in the Bay Area?
  I communicated this concern with Xiao Qiao in private, and Xiao Qiao scrambled to coax her baby, while laughing at my unfounded worry: “Now that Silicon Valley is laying off employees, how long do you think these programmers can be proud? Stocks and housing prices are falling, unemployment Maybe I still have to rely on my wife to support me.”

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