Daily Archives: January 10, 2012

My story Married to a Egyptian man

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Half the nineties, I traveled, together with my girl friend to Hurgada in Egypt. The first night in the hotel we were approached by 2 animators. They asked us if we wanted to go out with them. We refused. Every single night during our stay they asked us the same question, we refused every time again, until the last night of our stay. We visit a bar with them, that is next to the hotel. As soon as we arrived there, only one of the 2 animators was there. He was very courteous and used all his charme to seduce me.
Before we went back home he asked for my address and telephonenumber. He accompanied us to the airport. Two days later he called me and told me that he missed me so much, he was sick because of it. He asked me to return as quick as possible.

 

After a few months, I returned to Hurgada. At that point in time I just broke up with my boy friend and lived alone. I stayed in the same hotel as before and he was there as well. He did spent all his free time with me. I fell in love, it was a beautiful holiday and he made me feel like a real woman.
He wanted to introduce me to his family. This gave me the impression that he was honest and really loved me. We agreed, that when I would come the next time, we would go visit his parents in Luxor.

 

In between my holidays in Egypt we wrote and called eachother a lot.
As I arrived the next time in Hurgada, we’d known eachother for 10 months, he proposed to get married and sign the orfi contract at a sollicitors office. I didn’t really understand what he meant, but het explained me that in that way we could share a hotelroom as we were going to Luxor.
Later on we could get married in the official way, I agreed.
Two years later, I did visit him 12 times by then and he did spent 1 month in the Netherlands, we got officialy married in Luxor. Six months later he came to Holland. I paid for everything, because he had nothing. The last year he didn’t work anymore.

 

We planned to stay in Holland for several years to earn some money and then move to Egypt. He was studieing, I worked. After he had lived here for more than six months, he thought that renting a house, was a waste of money and he suggested we should buy a house. All this with the money I had from an inheritance and a small loan. Later on we could then sell the house and with that money buy something in Egypt. I agreed, and as we were officialy married, the house would be his property as well as mine.
After he finished his studies, he worked for a few years at different places, but it never lasted long.
In that period he spent more time at home, than at work. He prefered to be his own boss, so we started our own business. That means it was his business, a small barbershop for men. He’d been working like a hairdresser before and liked to pick that up again. As we were married, I had to sign together with him on all the paperwork; rent of the building, loans, etc. If things would go wrong I would bear the burden, but I trusted and supported him.

 

From that moment onwards he changed completely, he became a real horror. At first he had a staff working for him. After work he was going out with the staff. Late in the night he came home, then I was the one that had to fax the orders to the suppliers. I had to get up early every day to go to work, but he expected me to stay awake until he came home. If I was already in bed, then he waked me up and cursed at me. He claimed that I stayed up, until he was home. I was not a welcome guest in his barbershop, he felt as if I was checking on him. Nevertheless he expected me to do the book keeping, the billing, the rent and the loans. The shop was not really profitable, the staff was in charge and it turned out to be too expensive. Apart from that part of the revenue disappeard in the pockets of the staff.

As we were married for several years, he requested to have the Dutch nationality, which of course he received. In order to lower the costs, he wanted me to work in the shop. I didn’t want to stop working as an emplyee and requested to start working part time, the other days I’d work in the shop.
So I was working 7/7 days. Apart from that the housework, the upbringing and care of our children was my task. Everything that went wrong in the shop, became my fault, he treated me like a slave. I had to do all the work (keep the shop clean, book keeping, ordering, shopping, etc.), apart from hair cutting, that was his job. He worked 6 hours a day, I worked 12 to 16 hours.

 

When I finally came home at 3 in the morning, tired, all hell broke loose. He blamed me that I was going out with other men, that my book keeping wasn’t correct and that I stole money. He humiliated me in front of customers and friends. He yelled, threw everything he could find towards my head and brought up his best Arab terms of abuse. Every day the same scenario and the customers could enjoy the spectacle.

 

From the moment I started working in the shop, he claimed a percentage of the daily revenue. If I did not pay him that, he would no longer work in the shop. I should then hire a hairdresser, which would be more expensive. He would go search for another job. The salary he would earn with that would go to his bank account, so I couldn’t touch it and he would not pay for anything.

 

All costs for the shop and the household of our family were payed by me, because I received the whole budget of the shop after reducing his percentage. So that had to be sufficient for the expenses on the shop and livelihood. If it was not sufficient, then that was bad luck for me.
The money he claimed, he spent on buying property in Egypt, which was all purchased in his name and his travelling to Egypt. Money was also sent on regulary bases to his family in Egypt.
He bought an appartment in Egypt and had to pay that off on monthly bases. If his payement was not on time, he would lose everything he said. If his money for the monthly payement was insuffient, he forced me to pay the rest. He worked less and less and the shop was often closed, because he didn’t feel like working. Bankruptcy was approaching. Because of this he had less money and was afraid not to be able to meet his monthly payements. He decided to sell some of the equipment from the shop, to pay for the remaing part. After he sold the equipment and he received his money he left for Egypt, for at least 4 weeks. There was no money to buy new equipment and without them the shop could not be runned. He left for Egypt and I had no clue whether or not he would come back. He told me that he was fed u with the shop and with me, I was the nail in his cofin. In order to prevent a bankruptcy I stopped the shop and started working full time as an employee again. This allowed me to have a loan to pay for all the debts.

 

As he returns after 4 weeks from Egypt, he promisses me that he shall work with me to pay for the heavy loan. He searches for a job, but want to have financial matters seperated, he wants his own bank account on which his salary can be paid. From this sum he will pay me a fix amount every month. What can I do? What he wants, he will do it anyway. I only can hope that he will stick to his promis. But of course in vain, he pays whatever he want and it’s far less than we agreed or nothing at all. He puts his money on his savings account. As soon as he has sufficient money he leaves for Egypt and takes his money.

A few months later, during an escalating fight, he starts hitting me and throws me out. Moments later he lets me in again and is very sorry. I tell him that this is the limit, that I had enough. Before we got married I told him that I would leave him, if he ever hit me or had affairs with other women. I had no proof of the other women, but there were plenty of signs that he frequently had another woman. But physical abuse, like it happened this time, was beyond all my limits. I could not leave the house, because renting another house and the loan would be a burden far to heavy for me. So I told him to leave. He wants to go to Egypt, so I buy him an one way ticket. Two days later he leaves. But he doesn’t want to leave me. The house is still there, and that belongs to him as well and he has the right to have his share of that and he has the right to live in that house, until it is sold. Three months later he returns from Egypt.
I propse to sell the house, if he wants to he can return to Egypt afterwards. He agrees, but he wants too much money for the house. After a year it is still not sold. Finally he lowers his price and we find a buyer. He moves as soon as possible to an appartment near by. Given my financial position, I stay in the house until the contract is signed at the notaries offfice, 4 months later. I’m on my own now.

 

All costs that are coming, payement of the loan, final settlements of gas, water and electricity, cleaning of the house, real estate taxes…….are on my account.
He announced to me that I will not receive one euro from him. The notary hands us over a cheque with the remaining sum. He wants to go to cash the cheque immidiately, because he doesn’t trust me.
We still have a joint account, which we use to cash the cheque. His share is transfered directly into his saving account. What’s left is my share. As I expected, this share is almost completely used to pay for the remaining costs, he didn’t contribute at all.

Now I’m living with my children in another place, but he still want to come back to me. I have a nice, well paid job and with this money we could have a good life together he says. Everything he earns could be saved on his saving account. This money could be usted later one, to invest in a business in Egypt. When he has saved enough money he could leave and I could join him, so I can work there in his shop. I’m still married to him.

 

Fortunatelly I didn’t move to Egypt and that will never happen, because my position there is far weaker.
From a financial perspective I’ve lost everything, I can start again from zero and what about him?
He came here with only the clothes he was wearing, he didn’t have more. Now, after 15 years, he owns property in Egypt and has a large sum of money on his savings account. I don’t have any proof of his property, because these documents are carefully kept by his family in Egypt. But I did visit the place.
This story shows broadly the financial side of my marriage. Emotionally I went to hell and back, physical abuse can be proven, but psychic abuse can’t. It was his word against mine, so he chose psychic and emotional abuse.

 

In the worst years of my relationship I kept a diary and wrote down everything.
I’m not yet there, because he still lives here and still want to keep in touch.

 

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