In spite of some red flags here and there, she was blind
I am divorced. After my divorce from an abusive man I was devasted but I was free. I work for the Health Dept. in my country and I was busy enough at my job to allow me to have a full life. I was not looking for another relationship.
One day, I make the greatest mistake of my life (I know it now)! I posted a profile on a PenPal site (not a dating site) which seemed innocent. I didn't want to date, I just wanted someone to talk with - from a distance*It was the summer of 2001 and I forgot about it because I got no responses. Then in January 2002, I had one e-mail message, saying something like "I am an American citizen, currently living and working in Germany and if you want, you can write to me. I'm 49 years old and widowed."
I read this but I didn't immediately reply. A week later, the same person wrote again saying "well you must have so many e-mails that you don't have the time to write me" (I think now this was some kind of trap). I wrote him back saying that I was busy with work and that was the reason I couldn't reply before. To make a long story short, we eventually started to write each other.
He told me he was a widower. He told me his "wife" Felicia, died of cancer some years ago. He had three children (one daughter and two boys, all grown up). According to him, his daughter (Cindy) was in the military in Korea and the other two sons were in the US. He told me he had grandchildren. He presented himself as deeply suffering from being lonely and still broken up about his "sainted wife's" death.
I am a very big hearted and trusting person and I felt huge sympathy for this man. He told me he was in Sttutgart (Germany), in the military. In March 2002, he told me he wanted to meet me personally because (his words) I "seemed very nice and beautiful." He told me my "eyes in my photo were really beautiful. Your face could be on a magazine cover."
That April, he came to my country and we met. Like what he presented online, he was a real gentleman! Intelligent and caring at the same time with a vast general background. We were just friends and while he was here nothing happened between us other than talking and getting to know one another as friends.
Then, a second meeting came and this time was different: I got emotionally & romantically lured in by this man! Afterwards, we met a lot and he always treated me like a gentleman; very caring. He was spending a lot of time and money to be with me. He gave me several presents. One of them was really expensive: a laptop computer!
This happened over a period of three years and in spite of some red flags here and there, I was blind enough to give him my trust, heart, body and soul
Many times he told me: "I don't know how will my daughter react if she suspects I have found someone in my life. She is still very "stuck" to her mother's memory." His "late wife" was supposedly perfect. She "was Puerto Rican and very beautiful." One day he sent me "her" photo, and, oh boy, she was really pretty! Very well dressed and charming. Once, he told me a story how she cried when he had to leave her for so many months. I still remember his words saying she couldn't hold back the tears and how it broke his heart. "In some ways you remind me of her. You're so alike" - he said.
During this time, there were things he told me that didn't make sense. One of them was about his job. He told me he was working for the CIA and military intelligence. In November 2002, he told me he went to California to train people to prepare for the U.S. the invasion of Iraq. *But I made excuses for him and thought perhaps, not being American, I didn't understand.
When the Iraq war started, he told me he was going to be there. I found it strange when during that time he was supposedly in Iraq he was always in touch with me, by e-mail and phone. I found it strange because in the middle of a war and doing lots of "undercover missions" it would be difficult for an active military person to be in touch. I was surprised but at the same time very happy because he presented it as me always being in his thoughts. He made me think that "he really loved me." Then, my Godmother had a strange feeling one day and she suggested I call him. I did it and to my surprise he calmly answered his cell phone. Yet when I told him it was me, he started to say "hello, hello, who's on the phone? I cannot hear you..." and he hung up" *as if the telephone connection was bad*. His voice had a nervous tone! My Godmother looked at me and told me "I hope I am wrong"!
That night he wrote me saying "I couldn't talk to you on the phone because I was waiting for a call which was going to be monitored! I had to ask my men to cut it off." Lots more love words and he apologized. I kept believing him.
He was always sending me photos when we were not together. Photos from Heidelberg and lots of castles in Germany. Pictures of himself in Prague, Switzerland and Austria. He also sent me one photo taken outside by a lake in Chiemsee (Germany). He was dressed ceremonially with a medal of decoration. He told me it was the "Saint Barbara award". *One of the things I didn't notice in that photo, is that on his left hand he was holding a lady's purse (it was necessary to use special software to see it later).
We were together in Paris and I can say my "red flag alarm rang" went off big-time there. He usually had his cell phone off and from time to time he turned it on, to check messages. *One of those times, he had a voice message. He was close to me and I could hear what seemed the sound of a woman's voice, very nervous and angry. He called this person back and I remember he said "I don't want to listen to that crap again"* and suddenly he started to speak an unknown language, maybe creoule or similar. I know English, French, Portuguese and Spanish and I can spot the other western languages by the sound and phonics. This one was unknown to me.
While he was on that call I said to myself 'I need to go home because this man is lying.' I started to think to myself: why did he rent a car to be with me in Paris if he has his own car? It sounded strange and after hanging up on his call, *he turned to me and said he was having problems with his men working on the ground and he had to return one day sooner. I asked him if he was sure it was related to his work and obviously he answered "yes". His "undercover missions with his men" were, according to him, very stressful and dangerous, etc...
His stories got more & more outrageous: one of his men was killed and that he was feeling guilty for not being there. In the meantime, his daughter was supposedly sent to Iraq. Another time, one of his men was supposedly bitten by a sand viper in the desert, etc... I could add a lot more of his lies).
Then, in November (our last meeting) he told me it was going to be hard to reach him, as he was going to Afghanistan! He told me not to be worried, to live my life normally and keeping writing. As soon as he could, he would get in touch and then I could send him all the letters I had.
When Christmas came (without news from him), I decided to call him. It was Christmas Eve. His phone was on voice mail and I left a message. He never answered me back. I found very strange that the phone was on VOICEMAIL while he was supposedly in Afghanistan! I left another message on New Year's Day. Nothing! (BUT The phone was STILL WORKING!!)
In the middle of January we could finally talk and he told me he was living with the tribes of the desert and talked about unveiled women in front of him and the ethical codes of those tribes! He had lost 10 kgs. and they wanted him circumcised *and a lot more unbelievable, outrageous things!
By that time I didn't believe a word and from that moment I started to search for records and I payed for background checks. I wanted to know everything I could about this man.
I found some answers:
He asked me not to harass him!!
One of the times I was confronting him online, he pretended he was his son, just to not answer! He doesn't admit the truth even when its right under our nose. At *least* he could have said "I'm sorry" but he didn't because his lack of feelings and regret.
To sum up
I was cheated, conned, betrayed by this predator (as is his wife)! He faked being a gentleman, helping old ladies, giving money to beggars, faking religiousness & spirituality, morality and being ethical but its all an act.
I will never trust anyone else after this. My heart is closed now and I think I don't want to get to know anyone else. That's enough! I am a honest woman and frankly I didn't deserve this.
This man lives in fantasy world. He made up Felicia. Who is the model for this fantasy woman? Is she his children's real mother? The children are aged 32, 29 and 24? What is the truth and what is fiction??
He apparently has a personality disorder and is a pathological, compulsive liar. His wife needs help, if she is still with him! How can anyone live with a man who fakes love, tells stories about being a spy, about his workand at the same time having lots and lots of online, foreign girlfriends? Heis always traveling for his "high level meetings" and I am pretty sure he tells his wife he travels for work! An impostor!
I feel so used! A million showers won't clean my body from this snake's touch! A widower? His wife is alive and well and he just got married in 1995!!!!! He is retired and not active military!
This psychopath is in his fifties. Where is the decency? It was three years of my life and now he is probably doing it to more women while I'm here trying to recover from the devastation of wasting three years of my life by doing nothing more than loving this man and the subsequent anger of being lied to and manipulated.