This study examined how returnees who experienced more adjustment difficulties (Bumpies) differed from those who experienced fewer (Smoothies). Three open-ended items from 512 returnees11By "returnees" we refer to Japanese who spent at least 2 years abroad between the ages of 5 and 18 accompanying their parents. In Japan, the term "returnees" or "kikokushijo" exclusively refers to individuals who lived abroad as children and does not include those who sojourned and returned as adults. were analyzed. Ward et al.'s [Ward, C., Bochner, S., & Furnham, A. (2001). The psychology of culture shock. East Sussex: Routledge] adjustment model was used as the theoretical framework for this study. Prior to examining the open-ended items, preliminary analyses were conducted to confirm that these two groups, in fact, differed from each other in their returnee experience. Results suggested that one function, which we named "Lack of Acceptance," differentiated the two groups; Smoothies felt more accepted by others compared to Bumpies. In the next stage, the open-ended questions related to the items that loaded significantly on the function identified by the discriminant analysis were coded and analyzed. Results suggested that the two groups' experiences were similar in some respects (e.g., being stereotyped as a returnee, language-related problems) and different in others (e.g., Smoothies felt more accepted by others compared to Bumpies, Bumpies reported more incidents of discrimination and bullying). Results underscored Ward et al.'s [Ward, C., Bochner, S., & Furnham, A. (2001). The psychology of culture shock. East Sussex: Routledge] assertion that adjustment is a result of a two-way interaction between individual and societal variables.
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