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Nematollah Osmani


I constantly feel the need to prove myself in order to be accepted. And this is only because I am a foreigner. I constantly have to be just that little bit better than the others, I have to smile a little more, and work a little harder. Every morning it is as though I have to take on a mask, which I cannot remove till I return home.

When I was in the 9th grade, my father took my sister and me on a holiday in Iran. But it was no holiday. Instead he sent us on to Pakistan, where we were supposed to stay with his family. My father had full custody of us, so there was nothing our mother could do in this situation.
He was convinced that we had become too Danish, and he refused to let us return. My mother had previously lived in Pakistan, and she was in touch with a family there, who agreed to help us get to the Danish Embassy. One night my sister and I managed to escape. We did not have passports, as our father had confiscated them, so we were afraid that we might be caught by the police. We did however have our Danish National Health Service cards and we hoped that they would be sufficient. The Danish embassy took really good care of us, and when my mother told them that we had been abducted, we were returned to Denmark. Back in Denmark we ran into another problem. As our father still had full custody over us, we were not allowed to live with our mother. We were placed in an institution in Jutland, until some months later when our mother finally got full custody. It took me some time to get over my turbulent teenage years, but now I finally feel at peace. I am focussed on my job and I have chosen to have a positive outlook on life and on my future.

27 years / male / single / sales manager in Netto / Copenhagen S / from Afghanistan / came to Denmark in 2002 / residence permit same year

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