University Post
University of Copenhagen
Independent of management


Excerpts from the spouse panel

Our spouse panellists commented on mothers' groups, language and meeting friends

Betty, a panellist from Canada, was pleasantly surprised by the family-friendly Danish culture.

»I was automatically put into a mothers group for my child, and then subsequently, very helpfully, put into a mothers group of internationals,« she said.

Mothers’ groups are a peculiar Danish institution, where new mothers are automatically placed in a neighbourhood network for mutual support.

See related article ‘Partners of internationals speak out’.

On language barriers:

All four panellists clearly spoke excellent English, if only as a second language, just like many people in Denmark. But the language can be a barrier anyway, according to Catherina from Italy, who followed her husband’s job to Copenhagen.

»In my case, I sometimes only have the simplest way to say things, and this is not necessarily the best way. I find it hard to express myself in the same way as I would in Italian,« she says.

On husband’s network

Coming to Denmark because of your husband’s job, automatically makes you a part of his network of friends, Betty explains. But being the ‘author’ of your own network, and meeting your own friends can be more difficult.
»Couldn’t his colleagues just become your network?« suggests Ela.

»Sure, I don’t mind this at all! But I would like to meet other people too,« Betty replies.