Hello from Margaret & David, your flight companions from London to Dubai on 3rd December 2018.
Hope you had a lovely Christmas with your family and may we wish you and yours a Happy, Healthy and Successful 2019.
I have taking the time to read your book you so kindly gave to us, (hope you didn’t get into trouble with your publishers), and I have found it enlightening, troubling and uncannily helpful regarding my own marital history.
How did you know, did you have an inclination that I might be one of those to whom you wrote your book? Whatever the reason you cannot realise how helpful it has been.
I served in the Royal Navy and in 1975 I discovered, by a “Dear John” that my then wife had gone off with a mess deck colleague and taking my three boys with them. After the divorce in 1976 I was given ‘reasonable’ access, whatever that means, so easily manipulated.
I was told that the middle boy was wetting the bed when returning from being with me, their schooling was being affected, they were being bullied because the other kids were saying ‘why is your step dad’s surname different from yours?’ How would they know? The final straw was that I received a A3 deed poll document allowing the legal changing of their surname to the one I was cuckolded by and of course I consented because I believed, (wrongly as it happened), that the boys were being harmed. Letters and birthday cards with money were never acknowledged and then they changed address without letting me know.
All this time I was serving at sea and ashore, I met a 19 year old girl and married her against a lot of advise not to, I was 34 at the time. I know now that I was trying to restore my life to when I married my first wife. Within the space of a year she was off with an American sailor and even went to Denmark where his ship was next visiting. I got a letter from her with a very cryptic few words, “I think I have made a mistake”. I foolishly took her back and you can guess the rest, we were divorced within a year after she just couldn’t keep from straying and using my money to do it.
I met Margaret in 1980, she had also been through a very acrimonious divorce in 1977, although we were attracted to each other we were very very wary and didn’t marry until 1985.
I met up with my two eldest boys after 36 years, by now grown men and very successful, that was a relief because I was so concerned that what their mother had done would have harmed them. The eldest is estranged from his Mother and the second eldest sees her very occasionally. The youngest was too young to really remember me although he has also been successful.
Regarding your book, the third and last paragraph on page 76 and paragraphs 1,2 and 5 on page 77 are particularly poignant and revealing and have helped me come to terms with my history, far more than before I read your book.
So, thank you Matthew, and if you have got this far with my emotional bullying saga, thank you also for taking the time, I sure you are a busy man.
I have found the writing of this email a very cathartic experience.
My very best wishes”