Cousin's Runaway Girlfriend Living with us

by RunAwayDaughter 48 Replies latest jw friends

  • RunAwayDaughter

    I owe everyone an apology. I apologize for the deception. I'm not JW. I don't know who to trust and I am terrified. I'm actually the mother of the girl who ran away - not the cousin of the boyfriend.

    My daughter ran away with her boyfriend from the East coast to the West to move in with his mom, her husband, younger child, the grandparents, an aunt and four cousins. (twelve people living in the house) My daughter would've graduated in May, was accepted to several colleges, and her college was paid. She and the boyfriend told his family that she was a slave in our home, that I was a drunk, and that she had to get away. None of it is true. She didn't like my rules - do chores, get good grades, etc. and I know believe he convinced her that she had a miserable life. (EX: When I did not buy her a $300 pocketbook, he bought it for her.)

    They left almost exactly a year to the date that my husband - her father - died. She woke me up on a school morning and announced that she was leaving right then. No opportunity for discussion, etc. She left her two brothers, who are both in high school, and grandmother. We've always been a very close family. We stayed in touch - some of the conversations were rocky. Last week we finally had a conversation that was like the daughter I knew. We talked an hour. Later, she FaceTimed her brothers and grandmother. It was normal, except she is thousands of miles away. Now, all of our calls, text messages, etc. have been blocked. She deleted her Facebook account and blocked us from her social media.

    Now that she has totally blocked us, I'm concerned that she has entered an abusive situation. The boyfriend was shunned for beating up someone at the temple. (He has also beat up his stepfather and another person.) He owns five guns which he hides at his uncle's house so him mom and grandmother will not know. I'm concerned he is mentally and emotionally abusive (even though it is very subtle). He pushed for a quick commitment. He is excessively jealous, which I discussed with my daughter numerous times. (As soon as they got to CA, he bought her a new phone and set up the VM to go to his phone. She thinks she doesn't have VM, but she does because you can leave a message.) He is controlling - she is totally dependent on him. She has no money, no identification, etc. She only spends time with his family and him. And, he has isolated her from family and friends. I know that his mother is a strong JW, even though - according to him - she was shunned for have premarital sex with her current husband. When I reached out to her as they were driving across the country, she told me that she would not let them live together under her roof and that she would call me when they arrived so I would not worry.

    She didn't call and they are living in her house. The sunroom/den is their bedroom. The mom is getting permits and paying to convert the garage into an apartment for them. This week I reached out to the mom and told her about not being able to reach my daughter - who lives with her. All I get is that she will try her best to get her to contact us. If she truly cared, she would do more. She said her son was a jewel and any girl that got him would be lucky. Also, they were adults and to be patient because my daughter would not forget us.

    Easy for her to say. She is not living through this emotional hell. Also, she now has some additional free help in the home.

    My daughter - who was complaining about chores at home - is now washing dishes by hand, grocery shopping, cooking, doing laundry and looking after the three year old brother of her boyfriend. I don't know if she will finish high school - she said she will graduate in CA in June - but I don't know if that is true. She is TOTALLY dependent on her boyfriend and family for EVERYTHING - from money to transportation. But that is okay because she is "in love" and has told us not to say anything bad about her boyfriend and family. (Yet, it is okay for him - and her - to trash her family.)

    My fear is "What will happen when she realizes she made a mistake and wants to home?". He is so jealous and his mom just wants him to have whatever makes him happy. If my daughter wants to leave, I'm afraid he will hurt her. He owns five guns. I can see him killing her and then himself. Would the church elders be upset if they knew that the mom, grandmother, and aunt are condoning these two living together in the house? Would the JW ignore me since I'm not JW and since the boyfriend's family believe we are monsters? Any guidance/advise regarding how the JW works would be great. How can I make sure my daughter is safe? (What I really want is for the JW mom/grandmother to tell my daughter that she is not welcomed and to go home.)

    Again, please forgive me for my earlier deception. I just didn't know what kind of response I would get. Heart-broken mom

  • scratchme1010

    What should I do?

    She is not JW and they are allowed to sleep together. I don't understand why my mom, grandmother and aunt are allowing this to happen.

    What should I do?

    Personally I don't feel comfortable with telling people what to do. I don't know her or you, and the information you provide is rather minimal.

    That said, I do feel comfortable with suggesting to follow universal precautions, and basic family rules (pay rent, get a job, no criminal activity, no disrespecting anything or anyone).

    Good luck.

  • millie210

    Hi RunAwayDaughter,

    You are living a parents worse nightmare and I am sorry you are having to go through this.

    I read through your first posts and the one above where you state it is your daughter.

    I am assuming she is 18?

    If not then she is a minor but since you havent invoked the rights of parents of minors, I am guessing she is over 18.

    I know it is not what you want to hear but usually in these situations, ANYTHING you do will result in her digging in more.

    It sounds like you have limited communication with her. Let her know you will have a ticket (NOT MONEY) at the gate anytime she wants to fly home and then drop any and all efforts to "reason" with her.

    When you talk to her share your love and mirror (validate) her feelings.

    This will be the hardest thing youve ever done but its worked for other moms.

    There is a saying "If you find yourself in a tug of war, lay down your end of the rope."

    If you can think of ways to effectively do that it will let her see her situation in her own time.

    Remember that half of all marriages end in divorce, in relationships that are not marriages, the demise rate is even higher. In 5 years she wont even be with this guy but based on how you handle things now, she will know she always has her mother to turn to.

  • Vidiot

    Ok, so the family she's moved in with claim-to-be-slash-are JWs?

  • RunAwayDaughter
    Millie 210 -

    Thank you for your response. I've never heard the saying "If you find yourself in a tug of war, lay down your end of the rope." I'm going to post it above the coffee pot so I read it every morning.

    Yes, she is 18. I've told and texted that I love her and will always love. The door will always be open to her. She is adopted from China and is beautiful - inside and out.

    She left without her passport, driver's permit, birth certificate, adoption papers, social security number. She asked me to send it to her. I calmly told her that both Brian and she said they planned the trip and had thought through everything. She would need to return home to get it (drive back). If she wants to come home for a visit (she said she was never returning to stay), I will fly out there and meet her at the airport and fly home with her.

    She told me to "swallow my pride" and send it. I asked her to put herself in my shoes. If I send it to her, that means I'm condoning what she did. Also, I was afraid I would never see her again. (She did not deny that statement.)

    I hope one day she will talk with me again. Since last week, I've continued to reach out to her via I-Phone text. All the messages are that I love her. I hope Bryan and she are well. I am here for her if she wants to talk or need me.

    I've lost my husband, father and grandmother. This pain is greater than their their deaths combined. I can't stop crying and don't know why his mother is allowing this to happen. I know it will end, but I'm scared that it is going to end in physical violence. I can't tell my daughter that because it will push her further away. But, you are right, this is a parent's worst nightmare.

    Receiving the posts from everyone on this site today has helped. Thank you.

  • Pete Zahut
    Pete Zahut

    Something doesn't seem right about your story. The mother is supposedly a JW but is letting her son and your daughter sleep together in her house, even though she herself has been disciplined in the past for the same issue. If she is a JW and doing this, then she's a JW in name only.

    You said that they've made up a lot of lies about you so how do you know if anything you've heard about his family and the goings on in their house is true? How do you know if this business of him owning guns and being violent is true? Who told you that they were sleeping together?

    If your daughter is 18, there's not much you can do except behave rationally and maturely. The tone of your post makes it seem as if you are (understandably) indeed being a bit hysterical and controlling (sorry), which will only drive your daughter further away.

    I certainly wouldn't go running across the country after her if she hasn't asked you to come. If she wants her papers, then send them to her. In addition to her getting what's legally hers, she'll have to give you her address so at least you'll know exactly where she is (if you don't already).

    If she's doing chores and taking care of a child, maybe that's a good thing. She'll get to see that being away from home isn't the picnic she imagined. If her boyfriend is being possessive and controlling, maybe she'll tire of it and contact you about getting her out of there.

    If she doesn't graduate...that's her problem. She'll have to get her GED or go to High School again next year. If she looses out on her scholarships....too bad. She'll have to apply again. She must be a smart girl so she'll have to figure out what to do. This is not your problem.

    It seems to me you're working harder at this than she is. You've given her the idea that she can come home anytime, which is nice of you but I'm guessing that (like most teens) she doesn't appreciate what she had or how much you did for her. It sounds as if she's got the upper hand here and has the idea that she's doing you some kind of favor by contacting you. If you are as freaking out about this as much as you say, it may be that if you've been overly involved or overly emotionally invested in her live, you've given her the idea that she's pretty special and she may be a bit spoiled.

    If it were me, I'd let her know that you are there to help her if she's in trouble and that you MAY be open to the idea of letting her come home but now that she's moved out in this manner, things will be different from now on. It may shock her to see the change in your tone go from desperation and panic to one where you've "dropped your endo of the rope" and handed it all over to her.

    If she actually asks to come home, I'd lay out some ground rules. Make sure she knows that it's not a done deal and that if you do allow her to come home, you're doing her a big favor , rather than the other way around.

    You've had some big losses and are quite vulnerable at the moment so you're probably letting her walk all over you. She'll appreciate you more if you stop being somewhat of a doormat.

  • moreconfusedthanever

    If you are concerned for her safety I would notify the authorities.

    Millie210 has some very good advice. At some point your daughter will realize her mistake and need you to be there for her. In the meantime try to be as supportive as you can so you do not look like "the bad guy" and cannot be accused of being controlling.

  • RunAwayDaughter

    Thank you for your response.

    Yes, the family she moved in with are practicing JW except her boyfriend and his grandfather.

    You said that they've made up a lot of lies about you so how do you know if anything you've heard about his family and the goings on in their house is true? Everything I know is what his mother, my daughter and he told me. So, I've got no idea what is real or not. Since I don't understand JW, I'm trying to learn about it to see if what they are telling me is passes the "smell" test.

    How do you know if this business of him owning guns and being violent is true? When they left, I researched who his mom was, called her and introduced myself. She confirmed that he had beat up his stepdad and was shunned for beating up another JW member. Regarding the guns, he told my son he owned five guns. While he was here, he purchase a gun and $900 worth of ammunition that he took back to CA with him. He made the purchase a few days before they left. Originally, he told me he purchased it to ship to CA.

    Who told you that they were sleeping together? The mother. She said they are living with her and I have the address. My daughter told me there are 12 people living there. Here is a quote from the mother, "Understand that sexual desires in young people is stronger at this moment and they don't care about anything else and they don't understand that they are hurting us. I can not force her to leave but I will speak with her." The mother owns the house.

    I am hysterical - but wow has this forum helped me today - and that is why I'm trying to educate myself. I can't force her to come home and trust me, I'm not going to California. She told me she was graduating June 13 if I wanted to come. Her brother and she were suppose to graduate together this year. I had already planned a surprise trip to Wales to spread their father's ashes (he was British) and to visit their grandmother, aunt and cousins in England. I told her that the family would be in the UK at that time and that I was proud she is going to graduate. Even if we were not going to Britain, I would not go to CA to see her graduate. They would be an indication that I approve of her decision to leave and move in with her boyfriend.

    I agree with you, not graduating or going to college is her problem. We gave her the opportunity. When we adopted her brother (RMI) and her (China), we set up the prepaid college fund, so it would be covered totally. She told me that she was going to go to community college in CA and that Bryan is going to pay for it. My husband and I could not set up a fund for my youngest son, so I've transferred her plan to his name. If she returns and doesn't have a degree, she will have to figure out how she is going to pay for it.

    I agree that it is a good thing that she is doing chores. If she had a job, she should pay rent, so at the very least she should help.

    I am devastated (hysterical) and I'm working hard to get to a place of peace. I've accepted the fact that she is not coming home. I'm struggling with the fact that we were close and have gone from seeing her everyday to hearing her voice 1-2 times a week to now nothing. I've never been a helicopter parent, but I deeply love all three of my children. My husband and I could not have children. We adopted all three late in life and told them everyday that we loved them. They are special because their birth parents loved them enough to place them for adoption - as opposed to an abortion, buried alive, etc... They did not get everything they want and had learned to save their money to buy big (and small) ticket items. Over the last few months when I refused to buy her stuff, take out to an expensive restaurant, etc, the boyfriend would pay for it. His mother - who still manages his bills - told me she was upset because he an $8,000 American Express bill (On it, he bought a diamond ring, designer pocketbook, etc....)

    You make a very good point that "it sounds as if she's got the upper hand here and has the idea that she's doing you some kind of favor by contacting you." Yes, because I've been like an abused dog wanting its abuser to toss it a bone. Ouch, you are right and I'm glad you pointed that out. I finally stopped crying when I read that. If a friend would've told me that, I would've bitten their head off. Coming from a stranger, it had an impact. I'm changing my tone going forward.

    I've told her repeatedly that we love her and that we will always be here for her. Yes, the rules would be different if she ever comes home, but there is no need to tell her that at this point. If she comes back, she will have to go through cognitive behavioral therapy, get a job, pay rent, and have chores around the house. She will have to earn back our trust and respect.

    Yes, i've had some big losses and am quite vulnerable. No more, these conversations today are helping me drop the rope. Thank you.

  • RunAwayDaughter

    an hour agoan hour agoan hour ago

    More confused than ever - Thank you for your post. I have notified the authorities both in my state an in Arleta. The Arleta police said that they could do a wellness visit, which they did. Otherwise, we have to wait. They can't do anything unless he hits her and she reports it or someone in the household reports it.

    She said during one of our recent conversations that she wanted to talk with a psychologist. We had an appointment set up for this week via FaceTime and she was excited about talking with someone. Then, she decided not to participate.

    I will be here for her when she needs me - whether it is to come home or not. I love her and always will. Thank you for your support and for caring enough to help a stranger.

  • Listener

    It's good that you are listening to the advice of others and you should consider getting some professional therapy to help you both deal with this and to understand what has gone on now and in the past.

    Having been in an abusive situation, it is much better that your daughter is living with 12 other people. An abuser, particularly one that is possessive behaves much worse if in an isolated situation. If this boyfriend is dangerous, he has others to answer to and that includes his own mother, which in all likelihood, would mean that he tries not to do anything to make her think badly of him.

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