What is an “MK” or “TCK”?

Hey again! It’s me!

This post will now be filed under the top part of my blog that says “My thoughts”. This is a new feature I have added that I am very excited about! This is a section where you can find the real me: Things I like, things I don’t like, what I think about things, rants, personal experiences, and stuff like that. Just a fun thing so I can share loads of thoughts with you guys and we can feel even CLOSER!

Today I just wanted to sit down and talk to you guys about what it’s like to be a missionary/mission kid. Being on the mission field there are a few different labels that you have to learn to accept. As a missionary kid you get the label “MK”and sometimes “TCK”. The label TCK means Third Culture Kid. I still have trouble accepting them both…

The First time I heard these terms was when my family was in colorado for mission training. I was only twelve, but still went to class with the teens. Well class, it was just somewhere for us to go while our parents were in training and it was for us to learn about the mission field and what it is like to be an MK. Being with the teens was more talk about how we REALLY felt about the mission field. There was a day that our teacher started talking about what an MK is. This day changed my view on missionaries forever.

Our teacher talked a lot about a TCK (Third Culture Kid), even more than an MK.

I’m getting a little off track so let’s break it down!

MK- Missionary Kid

TCK- Third Culture Kid

A missionary kid is simple to explain (and really just self-explanatory), it is as if you were a “pastor’s kid”, except in a mission family. But I really cannot think of any other examples like this.

A Third Culture Kid is a kid who grows up away from his/her own country and therefore makes a third culture of their own.  After being on the mission field they don’t fit into their original home, yet can’t fit into their new culture .

Both of these bother me a little. Here are my thoughts on the matter:

An MK is a not very needed label that kids get because of their parents jobs.  I feel that kids do not need an individual name because of their parents career, but at the same time I understand why it exists.

A TCK is a very rude awakening to a new missionary kid. Being given this label is an odd feeling. The way I learned about this was basically being told I was never going to fit in anywhere again. Which may be true, but is definitely not what teenagers want to hear.

If you’re still reading, thanks so much for sticking around!! This is the end of my little late night rant, hope you enjoyed a little glimpse into the life of an “MK”!

Here are a few articles I found about being an MK that you might enjoy:




As always, thanks so much for reading. It means the world to me! Without you guys I would just be some weirdo who writes about her life on the internet for no reason XD

I am trying to expand my audiences and grow my blog and I would really appreciate if you wanted to hit share if you came from Facebook, or share with any of the buttons below!

– Abby


P.S. I realize the cover photo really doesn’t have anything to do what I talked about, but I just liked the picture of me!


13 thoughts on “What is an “MK” or “TCK”?

  1. Hi my name is Livia Schacter and I just wanted to send you a quick note here instead of calling you. I came to your What is an “MK” or “TCK”? – Mission Abby website and noticed you could have a lot more traffic. I have found that the key to running a successful website is making sure the visitors you are getting are interested in your subject matter. There is a company that you can get keyword targeted visitors from and they let you try the service for free for 7 days. I managed to get over 300 targeted visitors to day to my site. https://lil.ink/4q


  2. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and feelings so openly. It helps to better understand what being on the mission field is really like especially as a teenager. I was familiar with MK, but was unfamiliar with the label TCK. In a small way, I can relate to TCK because I lived in 4 different states and 6 different homes before I turned 18; people often ask where I’m from. It must be difficult to feel like your life is reduced to a label in some observers’ eyes. Know that you and Olivia are held up in prayer here at “home” without labels.


  3. I’m 48 and still don’t feel like I fit in to my surroundings. I moved in 4th grade and never felt like I belonged in my new town. The Valley is my home, but no one really knows me if I went down there. Now I live in the Northwoods. People know my name, but if you weren’t born up here…you just don’t really feel like you fit in with others. So why am I blathering all this to you? You’re not alone and I think what I’ve discovered is that ‘fitting in’ is more of a state of mind. I have my husband and with him, I fit in… everything else is just an adventure! So as long as you have your family in your heart, you will fit in wherever you go…and the rest is just a really fun adventure! 💗


  4. Jesus said, Foxes have holes and birds a nest, but the Son of Man has no place to lay His head. So if you ever feel homeless, know that you are in good company.
    There’s a song that says, This world is not my home, I’m just a passin’ through. – so your real home is in Heaven.
    And, of course, there is always Aunt Marcie’s basement.


  5. Abby I believe you will always belong here. America is your home. It is so nice that you can stay connected to us thru the internet. We all miss you! Thanks for keeping in touch with us


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