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This forum offers parents the opportunity to voice their own experiences of international parental child abduction, and related issues, and to share useful information with others in a similar situation.

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A message of hope and love to all parents

by samantha / Posted 10/04/2012 / Updated 04/07/2013

I am a mother whose two sons were abducted to France by their father in December 2009. Despite French and British Hague orders, the french authorities refused to return my two sons. I had always had a close and loving relationship with my children. So close that upon their non return I felt like my heart was literally bleeding with grief. With France refusing to return my children,and with no contact with my two sons, and the knowledge with clear evidence that my children were being brain washed to hate their mother in order to appeal to their fatherīs needs, I decided that I needed to find ways to help my children remember the real me. I knew that deep down they were missing their mother and were having to simply cope and find ways to survive the situation they were in. I sent them a cuddly toy each doused with my perfume to remind them of our cuddles. I sent christmas boxes with memories of our christmases together (crackers, their own stockings filled with the kind of funny little trinkets i would normally put in). I found an organisation in France who help parents whose children are being parentally alienated and they put me in touch with a French journalist. This journalist was doing a documentary based on 4 families with similar problems. I knew that if I participated, my children may see me and know that I was trying very hard to secure their return. I wanted my children to smell, hear and see me. It happened, the father sat both boys down to watch the documentary, which showed their father installing false thoughts into their minds. I then sent a birthday card and gift to my youngest son. In the card I simply wrote "it would be lovely to see you again, all my love, mummy". My youngest son managed to get onto facebook, register, and contact his two best friends here in the UK. My son had managed to secretly plan and organise his return. He asked his friends to contact me and go to his fatherīs house and wait at a specific time. I went, and he came out of the house and got into the car with a packed suitcase and we made the long and journey back. In my sonīs bag, was the teddy doused with perfume, and the birthday card. In the car on the way home he explained that he saw me on the documentary. My eldest son is too brainwashed, and was being used to put pressure on the youngest. It may be that he has made a life for himself in France by now, he will be 18 soon, but I will never lose the hope and love for him. All this to say, that all the little things we have had with our children do count. The cuddles, the stories we read to them, the silly little surprises we offer (pound shop stocking fillers) the way we say I love you, all this counts and possibly more than the bigger things like past holidays, birthday parties and activities. They do remember us fondly.


From cheryl thomson / Posted: 29/10/2012
i am so happy for you and your story is inspiring and gives me hope that one day my daughter will have her children back in her life we constantly send them things but they are only 3 and4 so i think we have a long road ahead untill they can speak out for them selves but we keep hope alive thats all we live for and hearing your story has given me that thak you for sharing this x
From tr / Posted: 06/11/2012
I just cryed reading your story. I have lost my 15 month old son to Sweden in 2010. My was only 4months old when his father threw me out on the streets. I had to go most part of my childs upbringing on the back bench treasuring every tiney hug. I used to cry myself to sleep thinking of the time when i just gave birth to him and his father who doesnt even care for him left us there alone for 3 days. I thought of how my son held my hand the whole night adter he was born and how i promised him when i was pregnat i would get him away from his abusive father. I have failed my son with this hague. Now i am one of the lucky ones who managed to get support in sweden to stay and see my son as i have joint custody with the father. Its heart breaking every week when i have to hand my presous little boy over to his abusive father.
This story also gave me hope and i pray that my son will not be brain washed and able to say how scared he is of his father and run away with me.
I look up to you for being able to go through this and it gives me some hope. Thank you for sharing your heart recnhing story
From kerry / Posted: 20/11/2012
Wow this is a lovely story although you didnt get your eldest son back it is a story of hope :) im acing a decision weather or not to take my son to turkey to see his father but i fear he wont let me back here with him. xx
From Emily / Posted: 28/11/2012
I remember reading an article about your story (Iīm sure itīs you) a few weeks ago and it touched me deeply. I have to say though that despite the heartbreak in the time you were apart, at least the age of your children was on your side. What I mean is, they were old enough to try and make contact with you. Iīm in a no-win situation where sooner or later my little 2 year old will be taken off me through the lies of my husband, or Iīll be constrained to leave him because I canīt afford the continuing legal fees. Heīll be too young to even remember me and is already being brainwashed. Iīm sorry for your oldest son, I just hope one day he can think for himself and contact you.
From stepanka / Posted: 06/03/2013
I wish I could participate in a film like yours and hope that I could tell my son my side of the story....and perhaps I could see him after 4 years of not know where he is and if he is OK.
From Rita Panchal / Posted: 04/07/2013
Can you please give me details of the French organisation that helped with children being alienated by a parent? My brother is in a similar position whereby he is being refused ANY contact with his children when she moved from UK to move in with her best friends husband! He has free access with his children, but yet denies my brother anything! Please any pointers welcomed! Going through ICACU but incredibly slow process...

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