The trials of life, of this foreign bride, who was LIED to by her husband’s side of the family, with NO way out, translated…
As the Attorney Walked in, My Father-in-Law Became Nervous, He’d Called All of His Married Daughters Back Home, and Even Called the Younger Sister of a Certain Member of the City Council that Lived in the Community, All, for the Sake, of Showing Me Who’s the Boss…
The Diminished Hope
From before when I’d thumbed across the article, “The Filipino Mom Who Refused to Become a T.V. Mascot”, it’d touched a deep part of me! I was so in awe, at that woman who’d migrated here to Taiwan to marry, for speaking her mind, to refuse to keep on being the T.V. mascot that kept everything held in.
aaawomen, looking for a better life, and yet, not all of them were able to, find it…photos from online…
I’d recalled that the writer, Yo-Xun Chu mentioned in his essay “Why Do They Always Write about the Grandparents?” that from when we were younger, the teachers asked us to write on topic with our essay assignments, so, we always see what’s positive, happy, and encouraging tales in life. But, life is multifaceted, with the darker, the more sorrowful times that existed in real time too, but, nobody spoke on these.
By the same token, a lot of the T.V. shows for the migrated foreigners, the FB fans page set up by the government, described how the migrated people worked very hard, to assimilate themselves into the society here. All of these success stories seemed to be telling the public that look, how happily the migrated people are living! I don’t deny, that there are those, cases that are of good endings, but, those less fortunate’s cases of abuse, of divorces, and other awful endings, who will, write and report on? Those unseen tears, hadn’t made it to the top of the page, and thus, never received the attention they’d, needed to.
I am a victim of marrying from across the straits, you can say, that I was, tricked, to marry over to Taiwan, my father-in-law painted a portrait of my idealistic life, deceived me, on how Taiwan is a haven. Of course, I should carry part of the responsibility too, I shouldn’t have married, because I wanted to help out my family’s economics, and ruined my own life’s happiness. As I came to Taiwan, I’d learned, that other than my youngest sister-in-law, almost everybody else in the family was, illiterate, and they were, poverty stricken, my husband didn’t have a stable job. And what’s worse was, the whole family treated me like an outsider, like I’m going to, steal from them. Once as I was cleaning the house, I’d found that my husband installed a voice recorder on the phones, I’d gotten angry and confronted him, he’d said, “If you didn’t do anything bad, then, what are you, afraid of?”
There was once more, I’d gone to visit with my husband to his friend’s place, I’d heard him bragged to his friend, “How many times did I do it a night? I’d bought her, and I’d, used her to the fullest.”, at the moment, I’d heard, that loud bang in my mind, so shocked, I couldn’t, say a single word. Turns out, this man had, always seen me as a commodity he’d, bought, so insulting (and actually, my dowry was only about $30,000N.T.s).
The Freed Spirit
Just like that, this hellish marriage lasted, for a couple of years. Once we got into an argument, and, I’d, thought about getting divorced, thought, that I will, leave, get myself settled down, then, send for my children. But, in this foreign place without a single friend or relative, I’d not even known, how to file for a divorce, I’d saw an ad in the papers, with the attorneys who would make house calls, to help with the divorce proceedings, I’d called them up, the individual told me, that if the divorce was successful, he will charge me $3,000N.T.’s, and if it wasn’t, then, he will charge me $1,500N.T. for his cabfare and time.
As the attorney showed up, my father-in-law got nervous, called all of his married daughters home, and called on the younger sister of some city council, to show me who the boss was.
The younger sister of city councilman threated me, that if I dared divorce, she will get my national identification canceled, so I can, get my ass back to China. Thinking about it, how funny it was, who can, cancel my identity? But back then, my husband’s side of the family had a lot of people, I was, all alone. And, as the attorney saw, that a divorce wasn’t happening, he’d rushed me to pay for the cabfares for him. And so, I’d told my husband, that if he didn’t sign the divorce, then, he should, pay the man. My husband remained silent, I’d turned to my father-in-law, I’d expected him to say, “It’s just, a quarrel between the husband and wife, no big deal, go back to your office.”, then, smile and pay the man, to get rid of the attorney. I think, that if my father-in-law still cherished me as his daughter-in-law, maybe, I’d be, willing to, give this marriage, one more last shot, after all, my children were still, quite young.
My father-in-law stared, but what he’d stated was, “This money, we shan’t pay for her! She’d called on this man, she’d needed to, pay for it herself!”, he was so forceful in stating, it’d, shocked me, totally, destroyed by beliefs about how he’d promised to my mother, that having his son marry me, he will make sure that I live a good life! Back then, I didn’t have a job, let alone any money in my name, I’d had to, use the money from my kids’ red envelopes, to pay up the attorney’s charges.
As the attorney left, so did the sister of the city councilman, as well as, everybody else, faced with this, empty home, I’d wanted to laugh suddenly, also wanted to, cry aloud too. As I laughed and cried, I’d, hit myself, for making such a family circus out of all of this! That how foolish I was, to lose everything so thoroughly, how I was, treated, so awfully! My tears came down in the silence, couldn’t stop, and nobody saw either………
This was, from a little over a decade ago, and now, I’m still, married, two separated souls, lived under this same roof. My husband had, refused to divorce, there was no records of domestic violence, so, if I go to court, it would be unsuccessful too. As I grow older, I’d become, more and more timid.
This bad marriage had caused me to have a lowered self-esteem, I’d even, started doubting myself: is it because I’d been an awful woman, that the heavens gave me this, awful man to marry to?
I’d once saw a post online by my sister, who’s also, married to a man in Taiwan, that there should be laws set up, for men looking for a spouse in China, or southeast Asia, to prove their economic capabilities, to have what it takes, to carry the household economics on his shoulders, that way, no more lives will, be ruined. I think, that this government, should care more about those less happy stories, in the darkened corners, where the sun couldn’t get to.
So, this, is a tragic case, of a woman’s dreams getting shattered, she’d come here, in search of a better life, and instead, she got something that’s the exact opposite, and, there’s, nothing she can do, because she’s a foreigner, and, the law doesn’t work in her favor at all!