Emily’s story

My name is Emily and I am 22 years old. I graduated last year with top marks, I found a full-time job fairly soon and all the while have been supported by my wonderful boyfriend of 2 years.

My life now feels like I’m stuck in a nightmare. This is our story.

As I am half British, half Italian, I grew up in Italy, visiting the UK regularly as I have family here. In the summer of 2010 I got a job at my local Burger King here. It was there that I met and fell in love with Pukar, a Nepalese student from Kathmandu.

We got on right away, and when I moved back to Italy to continue my studies (I was currently completing my bachelor’s degree in Milan) we continued our relationship through social media like Facebook. I returned regularly to the UK to visit him, and he came to spend Christmas with me and my family in Italy in 2011.

It never bothered me that he was from Nepal and in an admittedly weaker position than myself, due to his visa status and ineligibility to have a full-time, higher-paid position. I loved him and he loved me, and we both stayed strong during those times when we were separated. We told ourselves that soon we would be together, and finally in September I moved to the UK to be with him. These months have been bliss, to be finally close and in the same country and to be able to have a “normal” relationship.

We made plans, we dreamt of our future, travelling, going out, living together, marrying, having children.

Two days ago, our application to extend his visa as unmarried partners was refused on the grounds of us not having lived together for at least 2 years. We knew this and we intend to move in together soon; we explained this to the UKBA but there seems to be no compassion or human understanding in their decision-making.

If he has to now leave the country because of his student’s visa expiring, what will happen to us? What will I do in this country without him, my reason for being here? How will we ever be together?

I am at my wit’s end. I am 22 and he is 24. This should be the time of our lives, not a horror movie. Our only crime is having fallen in love when he is not a British or EU national.

This is my mother’s country, but I had never realised how cruel a country it could be. What country is this, where two people in a genuine and loving relationship cannot be together because of the nationality of one of the couple? What place is this where people’s lives are ruined and destroyed over their choice of partner? I have read so many stories similar to our own, all equally sad and terrifying.

Why is this allowed here? What about the right to love whoever you wish to love?


3 Comments on “Emily’s story”

  1. steve says:

    I abandoned a Master course in Manchester Metropolitan University in 2003 due to injustice and unfair use of the word globalisation. Globalisation is only used by the developed world like UK when they want to siphon goods from the growing economy. However, when it comes enabling people of different races, gender and colour to consumate love and life, you are struck with the start reality of Global visa restriction? The injustices meted out by the rich to the poor, the strong to the weak, the advance economy to the growing ones is tantamount to the pain you are going through. I hope UK and other restrictive economies would search their conscience and ask themselves that the world did not ask them to come to India, Pakistani, Nigeria, Falkland island to give them ‘civilisation,’ and did not obtain any visa to visit these countries and were never invited. After having plundered these nations in the name of colonialism, they are not restricting others from from falling in love with other people and living in their choice of country. This is one of the ongoing injustice in today’s world.


    THIS INJUSTICE NEEDS TO CHANGE, my husband and I are going through a similar crisis, he’s American, I’m English, we have been married 4 years, but haven’t seen each other since I came back to the UK last November, we are in our 50’s, how am I going to earn £18,600 a year to sponsor him? my emotional state is in tatters, I am now on antidepressants for the first time in my life….God Help Us All xx

  3. Preethi says:

    I am really sorry to hear of your situation. I too am in a similar boat, my husband who is on a student visa and I got married last Friday and now i am struggling to make that £18,600 because he is not allowed to work due to his visa status so I must work and try to earn this amount. I am only 19 with dreams of going to university and he is 22 we should be enjoying our married life but we are stuck. If I am unable to make this money he will have to leave the country and neither of us are able to manage this kind of stress. I don’t know which is the greater crime, me being a British born girl or me falling in love with an Indian boy from back home. The wedding was beautiful but we haven’t had a chance to enjoy our life because of me trying to make this money . I fear for what will happen but can only pray. Good luck to you both though, stay strong through these tough times. Xx

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