Thursday, May 17, 2007


A few months ago, most of you know, I had to shut down my old blog. I'd never worried very much about privacy because the kinds of stuff I post are too boring for anyone to care. Knitting a new pair of socks or seeing a new movie are not likely to generate outside interest from creepy strangers. What I didn't factor in was it might make it very easy for creepy relatives to find me.

On my old blog, I talked a few times about being an adult survivor of child abuse. As far as those things go, my situation wasn't as bad as many. I wasn't ever sexually molested and the outlandish stuff like kids being starved, locked in cages, etc. didn't happen either. But my house was full of violence. My parents were violent toward each other and my mom was terribly violent towards me. She is mentally ill and used me as a place to vent her rage for years. I was beaten, stabbed, choked, bitten, smothered with a pillow, cut, pushed down in the bathtub in an attempt to drown me, had guns pointed at my head, etc. This went on right up until the day I married Bill.

So why am I blogging about this now?

When we moved home, I didn't give my parents our new address. We made sure all of our phone numbers were unlisted too, and I felt kind of safe. My parents were able to get Bill's number at work, but there's a limit to the trouble they can cause from that. He's on a federal facility and the laws about how things are done there are very clear. Even crazy, I don't think my mom wants to mess with the feds. I know for sure they could never get any information about where we live from Bill's work.

Then, last night, a Mother's Day card arrived in the mail. It was from my parents. How did they get my address? Every few months, I search online phone books, etc. to make sure we don't show up. Even though they know we are in Houston, it's a city of more than four million people. So, how did they find us? I'm so freaked out about this. My son goes out to play in the cul-de-sac every afternoon with his friends. They could just drive right up. I guess that an unlisted phone number doesn't keep people from being able to find an address, but how? I'm also totally freaked out by them sending a Mother's Day card too. Of all the things to send, why would they send their daughter a Mother's Day card? It said something about my kids being their "little angels." The last time I let them near my kids, my mom beat M. with a coat hanger. We called the police, and it was a whole horrible thing. Now my kids are their angels?????

I don't want to over-react or scare my kids, but I feel so weird about this. Any of you with stalker suggestions?


PJ said...

Oh my....that WOULD be very scary. First thing that came to mind was restraining order to have on file? I know that doesn't prevent stuff, but to have something legally on file? scary... I know buying a house is public record and seems like everyone knows your number and address even though it's not listed. I'm emailing you.

Rebekah said...

I would also suggestion an ORder or Protection or Restraining Order, whatever they are called in your state. That's very scary, do you have any contacts with people thatk now them or other family members. Bill's family? I think you have every right to be freaked out. It's a natural reaction and what sounds like a justified one.

Rebekah said...

Oh and just a side thought, since you purchased your house, those documents are public records, they may have been able to get ahold of your address that way.

JessaLu said...

I bet your house purchase was how they found you - as a public record, knowing you live in the Houston area was probably enough to go on to find something.

One option you have is to form a trust with a name they couldn't trace and transfer your house into that trust (talk to a lawyer about that one). Once the transfer is made, circulate a rumor that you've moved again...

Also, I think that letting your children know what is going on will not scare them, it will empower them. I am going through a child support battle with Dobby's dad and I keep her updated on what is going on so when he calls her to scream at her she is prepared (and most times doesn't bother to pick up the phone and therefore avoids the verbal abuse).

Good luck - I hope it doesn't go any further than a creepy card...