I hear often how others advise moving partners away from family. But the truth is it all depends on the family I have had issues with some family members like most expats. But I also have other family members that life would be difficult without they’re help. The thing about families like every family on this planet is there are always saints and sinners.. people you can trust and people that would rob you blind. But most of the problems come down to poor communication. Your partner already knows the issues within the family as no doubt the same people have abused other members of family over time. She will be aware of which family members can be trusted to operate a business or why a business failed in the past. The problem you will likely come across though is that your partner might think the problems are none of your business as the problems in the past were family or sibling rivalry. The key to any of the issues is communication just asking is likely to not get you an answer but a discussion and explaining why you are asking will put your partner at ease but also help both of you find out any issues before they develop into hard cash disappearing. Don’t get me wrong not all families are going to be out to rip you off in fact there might only be one member of family that could give you problems the issue is people might not tell you until its too late unless you do your homework first.
Would i move my wife away from family? Simply no.. there are a lot of positive reasons why to stay close one of the important ones being that with small children and working abroad its good to have family to help with the day to day routine things as its not easy getting about in the Philippines with young kids especially when my wife doesn’t drive.
Then if you look at political problems such as getting vehicle registrations or issues with neighbours for example living in an area where we have a lot of friends and family most issues can be resolved before they become a problem. Also having family nearby stops you becoming isolated. A recent event occurred with an expat that is seen as a “stupid Kano” although he has a partner she doesn’t come from the region leaving the two of them in quite a serious situation as they have no one to intervene in a situation they cannot resolve most things in the Philippines are resolved or done by using contacts. If you don’t have that network everything takes a lot longer or in many cases become much more expensive to resolve if they can be.
Also don’t think being in a sub-division keeps you safe as it often can actually mean your enemies are living amongst you. Life isn’t easy in the Philippines and having a good family can be a real blessing.. but a bad family can be your worst nightmare.. Best advice.. is take everything with a pinch of salt and listen to expats but don’t always believe what they say. Often they have little or no experience with a lot of things that go on.