Me, Moi, Ikke

re•me•di•al (rɪˈmi di əl)

1. affording remedy
2. intended to improve poor skills in a specified field

When you are branded “a lazy wife” by a complete stranger just months after your wedding (because you do not rise each dawn to make fresh chappatis for your new husband, sheesh), there are two options: vow to do better, or inwardly, gleefully agree.

I chose option two.

This blog started before I was married, when our expat life was brand new and we were finding our way; when Mr B used to joke about sending me to “Wife School” in order that I might “learn” to be an expat wife, whatever that is.

This is a collection of travel tales, tips and reflections on life as I navigate time overseas and what it means to be a wife.


Remedial Wife hails from the UK and has lived in the US, Belgium, India, Indonesia, China and is now in Belgium again.

“Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

Why am I a Remedial Wife?

On Being a Remedial Wife

On Being a Remedial Wife (part deux)

17 responses

  1. Hi there,

    What a great blog.
    Just to let you know that we organise language exchanges, especially French/English in Brussels. It’s called Franglish ( and it’s a great to practise your French with locals and of course meet new people.
    Might be useful for some of your readers.


  2. I’d be so excited to meet you this Sunday at the LDN bloggers tea. I fell into becoming a trailing spouse and have just moved to London last week. Your posts are encouraging, I look forward to following on to see what kind of life (Wife) I’d have(be) in London.

    • Brilliant, looking forward to meeting you too! 😀 I’m not sure very many people choose to be a trailing spouse, most of us seem to fall into it. Takes a bit of adjustment though!

  3. Is there anywhere I can enroll to this Wife School ? Granted, being a man I may need to start off in remedial class, but my ambition in life is to become a trailing spouse – something for which I am currently training for intensively, being unemployed while the missus brings home the bacon 🙂

    Great writing, I look forward to reading some more !

    • Hmmm. Is the equivalent Man School? Spouse School? Husband School? I see what you mean, none of these have the right ring to them. I think attitude is more important than titles so well done you on the intensive training. You never know when it might come in handy ;D

  4. Hello,

    My name is Laurence Van Liedekerke and I work for the VRT, the Flemish Broadcasting Company. I’m currently researching a new tv-program, Fans of Flanders, that will go live mid-september. The idea is to make a television program about Flanders for all the expats living here in order to let them know just how wonderfully quirky this little piece of Belgium can actually be. Together with the program, we are also working on a website that will go live mid-september as well… that is, if we can find some expats who would like to blog for us about their life in Flanders. And that’s why I’m knocking on your virtual door…

    Seen as your blog caught my eye, I wondered if you would be interested to blog for us on a regular basis (like for instance once or twice a month (but more often is possible if you would want to)). What you blog about, would be up to you… whether it’s about the good, the bad, the bold, the ugly, the delicious or the unexpected; we want to know your views about it all, as long as it’s about your life in Flanders!

    We plan to put the blogs on a specific page on our website (as well as on the homepage when first published), where all entries will be kept and links to your own blog will appear with your blog post if you want. In other words: we can offer you fame, but alas no fortune.

    If you could let me know if you’re interested to work with us, I would very much appreciate it, because we are putting together the blogteam as we speak 🙂

    And if you need any more information about Fans of Flanders, who we are or what we do, please feel free to contact me (you will find my contact information below).

    Kind regards and hope to hear from you soon!

    Laurence Van Liedekerke
    Editor Fans of Flanders
    VRT – Boondoggle – Borgerhoff & Lamberigts TV

  5. Hi,
    I would like to invite you to join my Global Expat group pages on Linkedin and facebook. We are dedicated to assisting the expat family in their years abroad as well as the trailing spouse (STARS) in maintaining a career. Also, check out our website,

    Please feel free to post links to your blog in our groups and increase your audience.

    Best regards,

  6. Hi,

    I was doing some research online and came across your website. I hope you don’t mind me reaching out to you. I’m a casting assistant in New York for a popular show about people relocating outside North America. It’s called House Hunters International and airs on the Home & Garden cable network (HGTV). We are casting people for this show right now and I was wondering if you or anyone you know would be interested in participating.

    Our show consists of a family or couple who has relocated in the past few years and the property they live in. The purpose of the show is to demystify the process of moving and living abroad. You can learn more about our show and watch episodes here:

    Putting together an episode with you would be a real treat for our audience and it’s a lot of fun for you too. Contributors to the show get a nice keepsake shot in HD video and also receive compensation for your time and efforts.

    If you or anyone you know is interested in learning more, please contact Thank you in advance for your prompt feedback on this. Have a wonderful day!

  7. Hi there,

    Thanks for your blog! It’s been a great resource for me as I’ve actually just moved out here to Beijing from the states and have found your blog very enjoyable, as it provides a glimpse of Beijing from another expat’s perspective (though I can’t necessarily relate to the ‘Wife School’ aspects of your material, I still find it all a very fun read!).

  8. Hi there,

    I’m an Australian called Alex and we are moving to Beijing from Germany in a week (30th July). I will also be a trailing wife and I’m a bit nervous about the culture shock etc. We have a 2 year old daughter and a 3 month old son, which on the one hand should enable me to meet more people but on the other hand will limit my ability to be independent and get out and about I’d like I’d like to. Any tips? I hope my husband’s emplyer is helpful, but advice from someone else who’s ‘been there, done that’ recently would be great.

    Looking forward to hearing from you,


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