“I have no memories of: how difficult it was,” Anna says of the time she was in asylum centers as an Iranian refugee. “I think he left his mark, but when you were a kid he kind of passed you by.” In the third episode of the four-part documentary series, Anna and her mother visit thirteen Dutch asylum seekers’ centers where they have resided.
Once in Aalsmeer, where she and her family were living when they received a residence permit, Anna and her sister often had to make ends meet at home alone. Anna was eleven years old at the time. “My sister and I were alone. We took care of each other, but not out of love or anything else, we were just companions suffering.”
About her father, she told the YouTuber in the newspaper that he drank her and never hit her, but that her sister and mother did. “I had a privilege that I didn’t want.” The influencer tries to understand her father rather than get angry with him. “In Iran he was one with his environment. He was a judge, and he had status.” According to Anna, the Dutch thought he was “stupid”, “because he took a little longer to compose a sentence.”
She further explains that as a result of her childhood Anna suffers from anxiety and sometimes panic attacks. “If I don’t feel comfortable in a group, I’ll start to have bad breath, and if it goes on for too long, I’m having this panic attack.” She also writes sometimes absent, and then there is “physically”, but not with her head Norwegian Refugee Council† The series director, Nikki Badedar, sent her to a psychiatrist. “I had to talk to my mother and sister about what happened to us.”
Anna describes the documentary as a “holistic cure”. “I understand the outside world is thinking: Why in the name of God with the cameras? The main reason was that I promised Nikki full cooperation, I wanted to keep it. And I trust her completely. It forced me to figure out things that I had been putting off all those previous years.”
“Unable to type with boxing gloves on. Freelance organizer. Avid analyst. Friendly troublemaker. Bacon junkie.”