First, my family is a tad complicated. Nothing to unusual in today’s America, I know. I’ve been wanting, needing really, to write about this for a long time. It’s a story that I think might help a person or two, or at least be interesting. This will take a while to write and I don’t think it will come out in order. To start dad’s first two wives my mum, and a woman I could call step mom were both named Patricia Ann. To avoid confusion we began to call them Pat 1 and Pat 2.
So my dad had just split up with Pat2. He’s bipolar and he was in a deep depression and calling me every morning early and would talk for an hour or more. It was the first time he’d lived by himself. It was hard for him. I was convincing him how important it was to be able to live and be happy within himself. While he was diagnosed he’d never accepted his illness. I think I was slowly convincing him that his problems were related to his illness and talking him toward medication.
Then things changed. My dad was planning a trip to Europe. He loved to travel so that wasn’t unusual; but he wasn’t taking my little sister, who was still in her early teens. My dad didn’t like to travel alone. It took a while for him to admit that he had been on a dating site and that he was meeting a woman there. He made a few trips to meet different women. I was worried, but I didn’t know how worried I should have been until it was too late.
Before I knew it my dad was working on a “fiance” visa for a woman name Yuliya. She was from the Ukraine. Even before I met her I knew something was off. I was with my dad when he filled out her paper work. I was not happy. It was happening to fast. The way the U.S. does it you have 3 months from the time the fiance arrives till you marry them or they go home. That alone is concerning. It was more unsettling as I watched my father trying to figure out what year she was born. From the papers she had sent him there were three possibilities. I tried to talk him out of it. He didn’t even know how old she was and he had only spent two weeks with her. I had to back away I could not stop him and I could not be part of it. If I had to do it again I would have pushed harder. He said she had faked papers in the Ukraine to get extra benefits. It was wrong and probably illegal. I hoped the INS would deny the visa. I was wrong.
It was after she was here and they were married, after she had gone out and had prostituted herself after they had a fight on their honey moon that he finally admitted that she was a mail order bride or an email order bride. The message of this post is that friends don’t let friends (or fathers) marry mail order brides. I’ll tell much more of this crazy story in days to come.