Sunday, September 28, 2003

Battered Women 3

Dear Mouse, She is beautiful and smart. Except for occasional blurts due to clients’ unreasonable demand for attention in that small law office, she appeared to be normal. The pay was not that high but she was given other amenities such as lodging accommodation and flexible hours. She wanted to augment her income so she enrolled and finished her two- month course in caregiving. Soon, she was working part time as caregiver during the evening and as a secretary during the day. It was in the facility for old people when her disorder was observed. She would talk to herself relentlessly . It worsened when she had a spat with a fellow worker. Her eyes were full of hate as she screamed when the guards tried to pacify her. No one could touch her. She was transformed into an animal fighting her predators. Her employers, a kind couple committed her to a hospital for proper medication. She recovered and went back to her daily routine as a secretary after a few months. No more extra work for her. Less stress. It did not end there. She went home to the Philippines to visit the ailing father. Then she learned the truth. A dying man would not bring the secret to his grave. She was not their daughter. She was their granddaughter. Her mother is her ‘sister’ who begot her when she was fifteen. All those years, they bonded as sisters but when she got married, the illegitimate daughter was left alone with the uncanny feeling that somehow, something is wrong with her life, with their lives, with her family. She became a rebel and at a tender age, she too was involved with a married man. They planned to make their relationship legal. He has to get a divorce that was not allowed in the Philippines. So off they went to the United States. He got a divorce but could not marry her if they wished to legitimize their residence. He married a US citizen. She too should get married. Then they are going to divorce their respective spouses once they got the greencards. That was the plan. Then the unexpected thing happened. The man decided to stick to the Citizen wife. The woman married a good for nothing bum who abused her whenever he got a chance. Aside from physical abuse, she was constantly threatened to be deported. He claimed he could easily tell the authority that the marriage was a fraud. The toll of years' abuse did not manifest until she had the guts to leave him when she became a permanent resident. She relocated to a state where the husband cannot reach her. But her boy was left under the care of her in-laws. Her separation from her boy did a lot more harm to her emotionally. Upon her return to the Philippines, the tell tale signs that she was back to her old self became more evident. No amount of medication can save her. Now she lives in a world that she made up for her own. May be it is a lot saner than the insane real world that she came to know since she reached the age of reason. There are no more welts and bruises in her arms... Only in her memory. If she only knew that there was the –so-called self petition for battered spouse, she could have avoided being a punching bag of a blackmailer/abuser/ husband. But then there were other emotional issues that need to be addressed...the betrayal of her lover who she trusted her life coming to America and her mother who obviously left her on her own. The CAT Dear CAT, There is no family to support her emotionally and financially. She could have availed of the battered women services. Kris, you and me against the world live journal best suit her. The Mouse


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