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Elliott, LPCC, NCC
Elliott, LPCC, NCC, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 7662
Experience:  35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
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Thirty years ago, I met a wonderful man at college, and we

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Thirty years ago, I met a wonderful man at college, and we began to make plans to marry and have children. My family loved him. His parents thought we were too serious and arranged for him to have a semester abroad. When we said goodbye, he asked if I would be there when he got back and I said yes.

The week after he left, a mutual friend came to my home and assaulted me. I did not report it to the police. Six weeks later, the same man offered to take me for a doctor visit. When the pregnancy test was positive, he said that he would not sign papers to make way for an adoption and would never terminate his parental rights. He gave me the choice of turning the baby over to him when it was born, or marrying him and raising the child with him. He told me that if I tried to run, he would hunt me down, prosecute me, overturn any adoption order I might have gotten. I married him.

My poor boyfriend came back to a crime in progress and I could not tell him what had happened. I always hoped he would realize that I was the victim of an ongoing crime of extortion, but he did not know. He stayed in touch with me and with my mother for the next ten years. After seven years, I divorced my husband. I should have said something at that point, but the ex husband was still threatening to disappear with my daughter. i did not want the ex boyfriend to think that I was suddenly showing interest again because I was a newly single mom, so I showed no interest.

At the end of three years, the ex-boyfriend, now living in another city, was calling me every Friday night. He said that he had a job interview in another country. He said he would not take the job because he wanted to develop our relationship. I acknowledged that I wanted to do the same. He said that he would call when he got back.

He did not call. After four months, when I had called him twice with no response, I realized that it was over, so I called to leave a goodbye message. The next day I was sick. I developed a long-term neuro-immunological illness, which lasted over a decade. I still deal with the effects. He did write to me ten months after we last spoke, to give me his address in the new country and to say that he wanted visitors. I was too sick to hold a pencil or drive a car, so I did not get to respond. My family took me home to live with them and his letter went into a storage box. Years later, I read an alumni announcement that he had married and had a son. My daughter left me behind to live with her father because I was disabled.

He had bought bonds for my daughter's education, but when they matured, he had moved to yet another country and I did not have his address. I tried to forget him, but the illness was always a reminder. Doctors began to say that the illness was rooted in my grief and in all the things I had left unsaid. I spoke to the stockbroker who told me that my ex-boyfriend and his wife had lost a child ten years ago. The other is in college. My ex boyfriend did not mention the loss in his email.

Recently, I found an email address for him and wrote to him. He responded quickly and happily, saying that he had thought of me often and had tried to find me. I wrote a second time to ask what had happened when he left. He did not answer those questions, but expressed the hope that he could introduce me to his wife. I now remember that I had a dream when I was 19, before his semester abroad, that I met him many years in the future with a woman who had a foreign accent. She now goes by her maiden name. She appears to live in her home country while he lives in the second foreign country. I am not sure of the arrangement.

I feel more and more depressed and wish that he would answer why he left me behind sick years ago, without even bothering to find out what had happened to me. I am afraid to act out the circumstances of the nightmare, but i think he will not exchange emails about what happened unless I first meet his wife - a courtesy to her. I get the sense that he has said to himself that since it is not appropriate for him to know anything more than superficial about me until after his wife meets me, he will simply not acknowledge the questions I have asked, which are not superficial.

Is it appropriate for me to send an email or card of condolence? Do I meet them in the hope that he will speak to me frankly about why he left? Do I ask him in his wife's presence why he left, or do I hope that he emails me about it afterwards? How do I ever get past so much sorrow? It seems to get worse every day.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Elliott, LPCC, NCC replied 1 year ago.
Seeking expert testimony is a sign of strength. A personal relationship with a caring professional is proven clinically effective

Dear friend,

Your life reads reminds me of an epic tragedy, and evokes the feelings of Boris Pasternak's "Dr. Zhivago". My heart truly goes out to you.

It seems that you are destined to be re-united if only as friends.

I strongly urge you to reach out to your friend and his wife, with a carefully written letter of condolence. I would include the story that you have told her because it must be told,because it will be therapeutic for you, and because in telling your story to him, he will feel safe to fill in the blanks for you, and give a completeness to your story.

You desperately need closure. You must begin with a letter first, one that will set the truth straight. Your story will surely touch his heart for you were a great love in his life.

Your story has touched my heart and I gently urge you to write that letter. If you are invited you will know about his wife's nature when you meet her.

I believe that in writing the letter, you may get answers without asking a single question.

This is the proper course to end your grief and your mind/body illness stemming from your several, deep tragedies.

If there is any way that I can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to get back to me.

Warm regards,

Elliott Sewell, LPCC, NCC, CCMHC
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

ELLIOTT,


 


Thank you very kindly for your response. I appreciate your kindness. However, I am not sure how to proceed.


 


After our first two emails, I did write the letter you recommended, minus the condolences because I had not spoken to the stockbroker. I received no acknowledgement of the more serious letter. Two years have passed.


 


This past weekend, I wrote a second time, and expressed myself more succintly because my perspective was more clear. I explained that my illness began before he wrote his letter giving me his address, and that I had remained ill since. I explained that doctors blame my grief for the illness. I asked him to give me relief by telling me what happened after we spoke the last time. So far, I have no response.


 


Now, I have the option of sending a handwritten, hard-copy letter, addressed to both of them, expressing condolences, or expressing condolences and repeating what I have already said by email, or....what? It is actually difficult to go to work these days. I dread Christmas. I keep thinking that he has not acknowledged the more serious letters because he believes it is not appropriate for me to share so much information when I am a stranger to his wife. He is an investment banker from Colorado who now lives in England, sits on the boards of several companies which he has founded, and number among his board members several of the British peerage. He was always the most compassionate and family-loving man I ever met.


 


Any further advice?


 


Many thanks.


 

Expert:  Elliott, LPCC, NCC replied 1 year ago.
Dear friend,

Thank you for broadening the picture. You have done the right thing. You should allow another week or so before beginning to lose hope.

Your friend has worked his way into very comfortable position and, due to the nature of his associations, appearances are everything.

The events of your life are just tangential to his life, at this point, but a man in his position must be on guard all of the time for any past or present events that may be twisted into whispers of scandal that can bring down generals and kings and those in other exalted positions.

This MAY be a factor. Perhaps he doesn't want to have any of these revelations get to his wife. His marriage be be one of love, but there mayo also be economic ties that he is afraid of putting in jeopardy

Men in high positions often get there by virtue of their willingness to claw their way to the top, even if there are white gloves over the claws. Such people (narcissists) are characterized by their lack of ability to feel empathy for others.

I am not STATING this, but merely speculating about two possible reasons for his behavior. Empathy but fear of showing it an getting involved, or LACK of empathy.

Judging from his history, as you knew it, he may just have chosen to not open any Pandora's box leading into the past.

My advice is to give it a bit more time. If you feel that writing one more letter or card will bring you closure (or bring you contact), then by all means do it. A Christmas care with letter might be most appropriate and blend in quietly with the rest of the cards.

I wish you great success in getting the contact that you want, and may you recover your health as you move into the next chapter of your life. Please try to write a happier one.


God bless you,

Elliott
Elliott, LPCC, NCC, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 7662
Experience: 35 years of experience as a Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor, National Certified Counselor and a college professor.
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