5 Ways To Tell if You Are a 3rd Culture Kid

First of all, a third culture kid (or TCK) is someone who was raised in a culture that is different from their parents culture, or the culture of the country on their passport. They assume a new third culture that is influenced both by their parents and where they’re raised.

Here are 5 ways to tell if you or someone you know is a TCK:

1. It’s really hard to answer the question “Where are you from?”

This question triggers anxiety. There is no way to answer this question short of telling your whole life story. Technically you were born in one country, but grew up in another and possibly claim citizenship to a third. 

2. Planning holidays is a stress dream

When you have family spanning between two or three different countries, making a plan on how to spend the holidays can be like playing a game of sudoku. This gets especially hard as you start to get older and have more responsibilities. Can’t we just Skype each other for Christmas? 

3. You’re a food snob

A TCK has tried the best possible and most authentic version of any type of food. Street tacos from Mexico, Pho from Vietnam, the spiciest curry from India. Once you’ve had food that authentic, it’s hard not to judge all other attempts.  

4. You hate going through immigration 

Guys, nothing is worse than going through the passport kiosks after a long flight only to have that dreaded ‘X’ get printed on your immigration slip and have to go through the long customs line. Not to mention having multiple passports and visas. The struggle is real. 

5. You mix up your languages, a lot

All TCKs speak at least two languages and at any given time our brains subconsciously switch between them, especially when we’re either stressed or excited. Watch the movie Spanglish, you’ll know what I’m talking about.


Jose and his wife did their DTS in September of 2015 and have been a part of our family ever since! We actually met them before them on Summer trips to Nicaragua. Jose’s passion for excellence and worshipping God with his whole being challenge our whole community.