I met my boyfriend three years ago at a house party that my step sister convinced me to go to. I was very weary of going because I didn’t want to be in an environment that had alcohol. My parents were alcoholics and I was starting to realize that I could inherit their desire to be drunk most of the time. Unfortunately, I learned the hard way that I had developed some of the same alcoholic habits my parents had when I first started high school. Although I was nervous about going to this party, I’m grateful that I went otherwise I would have never met Pablo. I’m so fortunate to have him in my life because I probably wouldn’t have graduated high school, stopped drinking and smoking, or have been able to overcome the struggles in my life. He inspires me to be successful and embrace who I am as a person. No matter how much we have accomplished together and how much we’ve grown as a couple, we still have a huge dilemma that affects our lives entirely. Pablo is an illegal immigrant. His illegal status takes a huge toll on our relationship and it makes life a lot more difficult to manage. Regardless of the sacrifices I have made, I am still willing to make these daily sacrifices because he means everything to me. My relationship with Pablo has impacted my personal, family, and academic life in a way that affected how I view Immigration in this country. Immigration needs to be reformed because it has the potential of helping the struggling students and families reach their dreams here in the United States.
Pablo migrated here from Brazil when he was 17. His family was struggling financially and they knew the only way to survive was to migrate to the U.S. Unfortunately, his family did not have time to wait months or even years for a green card or work permit. Therefore, he and his brothers and sisters had to migrate here illegally. The stories he told me about his journey to the U.S affected me emotionally. He went at least two days without food or water and had to walk miles to find a safe place to stay until he got to New Jersey. Not only did he suffer hardships migrating here, but he had to do it all on his own. I could never imagine how difficult and frightening that must have been. Before I met him I never really thought about immigrants and how hard it must be to sacrifice everything, and face the worst conditions just to make a living for your family. My father was born in Peru, but he and his family were fortunate enough to be able to wait and migrate legally. On the other hand my boyfriend did not have time. If he didn't come when he did, his family would be homeless. After listening to the struggles he went through, I was and still am determined to help him and his family. Their stories make me feel blessed to be born and live in the United States. I grew up in Newton, a safe, wealthy, and quiet town. I always thought I had nothing because I didn’t grow up in a house with a yard, two parents, and brothers and sisters. I grew up in an apartment building with my mom, and most of the time we struggled financially, so I thought I was unfortunate and had nothing. In reality, I had everything I needed to live a good life compared to others. My boyfriend had little to nothing in Brazil, no car, no school bus, poor education, hand-me-down clothes, and no privacy due to the lack of extra space in his house. The three years that I have been with him, he has not once complained about what he didn’t have and what he doesn’t have now. He inspires me to appreciate everything in life, not just items but relationships too. His hardships and admiring personality motivate me to be successful and one day help his family and other struggling families live a good life.
Hearing first-hand about Pablo’s family’s struggle with immigration has changed my perspective on immigration law. I know that there are so many other families who are working hard in the U.S. but do not have legal status. Elizabeth Warren is a senator who