Vladimir Guriyev, blogger (Germany)
Since just yesterday my good friend, who could easily leave, said that she was afraid to go to Europe, because Russians are hated here and they are discriminated against, a small educational program.
It is mainly based on the German experience, but I think that most of the points are valid for most EU countries.
If you do not walk down the street with a Russian flag, no one understands that you are Russian and does not hate you.
If the fact that you are Russian is revealed in a personal conversation, then most likely there will be no hatred and even hostility either. In general, the Europeans do not care about you personally. They are worried about the operation in Ukraine and the rise in prices, but it is you who are unlikely to cause strong negative emotions in them.
If we talk about some hostility, then some Germans rather feel it towards those who do not speak or speak German poorly, regardless of nationality.
Citizens of the Russian Federation face discrimination in the banking sector. In Germany, it is expressed in the fact that some bank account holders with a Russian passport are asked to show their residence permit again. I read that one French bank froze accounts even for Russians with a residence permit, but I think that this is: a) an exception and b) illegal, that is, it can be challenged in court. Of course, this is very unpleasant, but this story got into the news precisely because it is exceptional.
In general, about news, even in relatively objective sources, one must understand that they do not describe reality, but deviations from it. Life, by and large, consists not of news, but of its absence, so any amazing news about what is happening in Europe must be divided by a billion. Most likely, this did not happen in Europe, but in one single place, and most likely once.
According to rumors, the next package of sanctions will ban the purchase of real estate by Russians. This ban, according to the same rumors, does not apply to people with a residence permit. In other words, if you live in Berlin, and not in Saratov, no one will stop you from buying a home.
So as not to get up twice, about gays. If you are annoyed by men who hold hands, then here they are. Sometimes rainbow flags can be seen on houses. This is where the propaganda ends. The notorious pride has long turned into a city-wide entertainment, and gays are in a severe minority (although the main movement, of course, is made by their forces).
In general, if you are willing to let other people live the way they want, then you should not have problems. But it would be nice to do that in any country.
If the Russian language is dear to you, there are Russian - or, more precisely, bilingual - schools and kindergartens here. Most of my friends are not eager to send their children there, because integration into society seems to them more important than the full preservation of the Pushkin legacy, but if you really want to, there is such an opportunity.
About refugees from different countries. They exist, and living next to a dense settlement of refugees, I think, is not sugar, because poor and poorly integrated people into society are always a source of crime. However, this is always a very local story - literally a block away, and already calm. In addition, European ideas about security are slightly different, and the most dangerous area of Berlin is much calmer than the disadvantaged area in a Russian city.
Actually, I know one kindergarten, which has a dormitory for teenage refugees from mainly Syria on the second floor. It sounds uncomfortable, but in practice these are completely ordinary young people who are trying to arrange their lives.
About conflicts with Ukrainian refugees. Of course, they will be, especially in children's groups. They will be dealt with case by case (English: in each specific case), conflicts in children's groups did not begin yesterday.
The overwhelming majority of those who were forced to leave Ukraine will have to solve many everyday problems in the next few years. Some of them will certainly feel hostility towards all Russians (and it is difficult to blame them for this), but, by and large, they will not be up to you.
In short, no one is waiting for you here, and this is rather good news.