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Single mother's life 'a mess'



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June 30, 2010 | 07:30 AM
Dear W.C.,

I am writing to ask for help with my rent and utilities. My life is a mess and I have lost my job. My ex-husband abducted our two children over a year ago. We were just finished with a very painful divorce and I received primary custody. My ex-husband was very unstable and that was the main reason we got our divorce. He had a girlfriend even while we were still married and she said she wanted the kids.

He threatened me during the divorce if I didn't give them primary custody he would take the kids and I would never find them again. I guess he was right. I have exhausted my search and have not been able to find them. I lost my job due to the amount of time I took off. I have not been able to pay my rent or utilities for two months now. The laws seem to not be able to help me. My children are only two and three so they will not remember where they live or their name if they have changed it. I am at my breaking point and the only thing holding me together is my faith.

Distraught Mother

Dear Readers,

This is such a painful letter. The mother had followed all the legal guidelines and proper procedures. She tried to protect her children from a mentally unstable, possibly abusive parent, only to have it turn into her worst possible nightmare. The father had the children for a weekend visitation and never dropped them off. He had two days to get somewhere else before anyone would be searching for them. He could have taken them anywhere.

When I met the mother she was obviously distressed and distraught. The dark circles under her eyes told the story of many sleepless nights. Her shaking thin frame told me she had not been eating properly. She admitted the inability to pay her rent and utilities was the last thing on her mind but she did not want to lose the only place the children knew as home. I told her it was important for her to also keep her apartment rent up to date for her own well being and to be prepared for their homecoming.

She talked about the many events leading up to her divorce and then abduction of her children. She told me about the many times her ex-husband had raised his hand to her and threatened to take the children away if she didn't do what he said. There were many instances he demonstrated how mentally unstable he and his girlfriend both were. The mother told me she never slept when the father had visitation because she had known what he was capable of. Even though she voiced her concerns the courts insisted he have overnight visitation rights.

The mother explained she had a good job before this happened and always had been a good employee. She admits she fell apart and her job suffered. She took off many days to speak to law enforcement, legal counsel, and look for her children. Her bills began to pile up. Her employer was reluctant to let her go but he could not do without a dedicated employee any longer. He did tell her to call him when she was ready to work again.

I had to contain my emotions and really try to lift this woman's spirits. I could not imagine living with the uncertainty of not knowing where your children were or how they were faring. I told her it was time she get her life back in order to enable her to be the best mother she could be when they returned. I asked her if she would be able to support herself and children in the financial condition she was in. She looked at the floor and said, "I am in no condition to have my children living here. The lights are off and the rent is unpaid. I am about to become homeless." I told her it was time to turn her life around. I told her to pull herself together and try to get her job back. She agreed to call the next day. I told her The Time Is Now To Help would bring her rent up to date and get her utilities reconnected if she was ready to keep up with her financial responsibilities. She said she was eager to get her life in order and prepare for what she hoped, and prayed would be the eventual return of her children.

The Time Is Now to Help did as we said and helped this mother to get her life back in order. She returned to her job and proved to her former employer that she would do her best for them. She began to pay her bills and started to take care of herself again. She still checked with law enforcement as often as she could and did her own research on the internet. I told her I would pray for their safe return and to be sure to call me when she received word about her children.

Several months went by and she got the phone call she was waiting for. Her ex-husband was picked up out of state on a traffic violation. He had been driving drunk with the children in the car. When they ran his license it led to his arrest and the return of her children. She called to tell me the wonderful news that her children were to be returned to her and her ex-husband and his girlfriend were in custody. We cried together, overjoyed with the good news. She told me she would never have been able to wait for that phone call without the assistance, guidance, and prayers she received from The Time Is Now To Help. Thank you for allowing us to provide this most deserving mother with a home for her children to return to.

Please consider donating at this time as every dollar you donate will be matched by another, doubling your donation by the Richard Driehaus Matching Grant. Thank you for caring and sharing. Together we make a big difference helping our fellow creations of God.

Health & Happiness, God Bless Everyone, W.C.

Please Help: Make checks payable to: The Time Is Now To Help, P.O. Box 70, Pell Lake, WI 53157. The Time Is Now To Help is a federally recognized 501(c)3 charitable organization licensed in the states of Wisconsin and Illinois. You will receive a tax deductible, itemized thank you receipt showing exactly what every penny of your donation provided for the poverty stricken.

Gage Lake Geneva Cruise Line Helps: We have been offered another wonderful fundraising opportunity by Gage Lake Geneva Cruise Line. They are offering every Thursday evening a Cocktail Cruise to benefit The Time Is Now to Help. This cruise is available every Thursday boarding at 6:15 p.m. and returning at 8 p.m. The cruise features a highlight tour of the lake shore estates, entertainment, and a complimentary boarding beverage. When calling for reservations you need to mention code: TIN for Time Is Now and we will receive $10 of each ticket sale. Individuals, groups, or your organization will be honored for caring and sharing. What a great way to enjoy the beauty of Lake Geneva and give back to those less fortunate in our area. Call (262) 248-6206 for reservations.

A Very Special Thank You: Paul Ziegler, Badger FFA, Teacher Tom Sheeley and students of the Badger High School Automotive class, Tom & Mary Johnson, Dick & Jean Honeyager, Martin O'Brien, Donald & Mildred Carl, Rueben & Leslie Blum, Margarie Egger, Linda Burkart, James & Janice Batten, W.C. Family Resource Center/Food Pantry volunteers, ALL of you who support The Time Is Now To Help donation boxes, and the businesses that allow our donation boxes. Anyone who would like a Time Is Now donation box in your business, please call (262) 249-7000.

Memorials: Andrew & Maureen Gilchrist in honor of the following family members' birthdays: Betty Gilchrist, Peggy Gilchrist & Nancy Gilchrist.

We Desperately Need Cars: Please donate a used car to help our fellow American's get to work and other daily necessities.

Goodsearch for The Time Is Now: Search the web with www.goodsearch.com and help to raise funds for The Time Is Now To Help. Just make www.goodsearch.com your homepage, pick The Time Is Now as your charity and the rest is simple.

Please visit: www.timeisnowtohelp.org.

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