This is a true case and it is sad to know that this is just one of many others occurring in Israel today. Many facts were changed to protect the real characters’ identity and privacy.
In the 10 years since coming to Israel Mrs. White has not had it easy. She made Aliyah with her husband and three sons. They all adapted very well but “something was wrong” as she later told me when we first met.
Alan, her husband, was distant and not very interested in anything. With the passing months he became taciturn and impatient. Many mornings he would simply disappear, claiming he had to go to work or had urgent errands. Mrs. White took him to a doctor who found nothing wrong, as Alan told her later when the results of the tests arrived.
Finances were not bad and the children were happy. Still … something was wrong.
Six years ago, Alan did not return home. He had recently deteriorated physically, losing a lot of weight and became almost incapable of focusing on anything. Mrs. White was very worried; therefore she called the police and hospitals. Alan was in the hospital but they would say nothing by phone.
Alan had been very sick for a long time but would say nothing. Nobody knew he was actually dying. He died a few weeks later leaving three children, all minors, and his wife. Alan had no other siblings.
It took Mrs. White quite a while to recover. She had to struggle with the “bureaucratic side of life” for the first time in her life. Finances were now in shambles because the family had depended mainly on Alan’s salary. His insurance was really small and after a year the money was all gone.
Mrs. White began to despair. She had no family she could depend on, the children had so many needs and she was very lonely when she met Mr. Chon, a very polite, educated “foreign worker” from Thailand. He had come to Israel on some kind of delegation to learn about new techniques in the agricultural field. He actually got a legal position for one year in the same company he was trained in.
They were good friends and partners so why not move in together? In the end of their first year together, Mr. Chon moved in – the worse decision they could have made. The children were wild; they could not accept “that man”.
Mrs. White broke up with Chon after he lost his position in the company. Mr. Chon had to leave the country because his visa had expired after losing his job but he didn’t want to go back to Thailand.
A few days after they broke up, Mrs. White found out that she was pregnant! She was devastated, sobbing for hours every day but would not consider abortion. She finally called Chon. This was Chon’s rope; he would be granted a visa if he married her.
He promised her he would take care of her (he had a good salary now), try to work it out with her children and many more promises. She accepted the deal and they married in Cyprus.
They were married for a few months when Chon lost his position again, this time for good. He had to return to Thailand because he could not survive here without a decent salary and a good job. He had no doubts that Mrs. White would never move to Thailand and it was a general understanding that even if a permanent visa was granted to Chon in the end; it was not known if Chon would find a good paying position in Israel.
More time elapsed; Chon was “illegally” in Israel because they were always postponing the process in the Ministry of interior. The baby was a blessing but he was drying up the family savings. Chon was making a small but normal salary working in a restaurant kitchen, but the work was very hard and the long and early hours he was working were not adding any good to the family’s delicate balance.
The “family” was not a family anymore; Mrs. White did not have a normal life, Chon was never home and when he was home he was not the same nice guy.
Mrs. White made her decision – Chon had to go. She would find a part time job and start all over again. What about child support? Chon knew he was in trouble but claimed he could not provide for the child because he was now living alone with a small income.
In the Family Court, Mrs. White was represented by a young lawyer, very bright but not very experienced. He advised Mrs. White not to compromise on Chon’s offer. Chon would send her $1000 dollars every three months from Thailand; the child would be able to go visit him once a year (he even agreed to pay the mother’s air fare as well) but this would be all. No more extra support.
Chon lost in court, of course, but before a ban on his leaving the country was issued – just a few days before the court decision – he disappeared.
Mrs. White found out that he went back to Thailand leaving her and the child with nothing but a huge debt from the legal expenses.
Chon is nowhere to be found, cutting all connections with the child and the mother. He will be back and ask for the child in the future. I am sure of that.
Mrs. White is a fighter; she is working two jobs to support her family. She is seeing a psychologist from the social services and coping well with the situation. Her kids are not very forgiving and yes – they are hurt and giving her a hard time claiming she “always makes the wrong choices”.
Life is what it is:
Make your choices wisely because life is not a short event. The decisions you make have a long influence on your life.