Tuesday, June 13, 2006

tearing her hair out!

when i was a young girl, prob in the 7th or 8th grade, me and one of my cousins would get into hair pulling fights. it wasn't fun but it got out a lot of aggression. i usually won and she'd cry, and i feel bad for it now, and did then too. but it was always out of anger and usually because she was mean and would say hurtful things.... so i always thought she deserved it! ;)


day before yesterday, i think i could have done the same (w/out feeling an ounce of sympathy) to the housemaid. i wanted to hurt her .... make her feel pain. because after everything, she sat there expressionless, motionless and didn't shed one tear. matter of fact, when she boarded the bus to go to the airport, we heard that she complained the entire way that we hadn't given her a salary for a year, which is a total lie. but, she lived for lying.

i surprised myself really..... i've never experienced such anger and complete, full blown rage. all this time, i felt like i was going crazy, but knew she was behind it. i'd say things but there was no proof. i don't think anyone truly believed me for the longest time. there were times when i doubted myself... i thought i was imagining things. i will admit, that's an awful feeling.

she was manipulative and evil. pure evil. she tried to present herself as such a sweet little thing, and you know, she was good at it. when she first came to our house, i adored her. she was so sweet and busted her butt even when it wasn't necessary. i wanted to show her a better life... i even started trying to teach her English. we took her places, out to eat, swimming, gave her a TV, cable, DVD player (yeah it was old but it worked)... all the works. i was told to make her sleep on the floor outside... which is something i would NEVER do. i always treated her like a person, like a human. i abhor abuse... but... i can now understand how someone could go to that extreme. i hate to say it, but i can undersand. maybe later, when i'm past this experience and over the pain of it... i will prob not understand it... but right at this moment, i can understand it. but, in saying this and before i get ppl saying crazy things to me... i do not recommend it nor do i think that what is happening in this country and elsewhere is a good thing. i personally feel that these ppl/housemaids/help should leave this country and not be involved in ppl's lives or be allowed to work here... but that's just me.

this girl, the housemaid, wore a hijab and covered herself from head to toe. she prayed 5 times a day... to someone/something... but it wasn't for goodness.

i blame myself a lot for the things that happened. i keep going thru the couldhave, shouldhave's. yeah, i know, she's out of our house, and i'm really happy about that. the weight has been lifted, the animals are even relaxed (they were scared of her) and the house just seems more calm. even still... the memories remain, and i was told that it could take a good couple of weeks or more to not feel so helpless and depressed about it. i talked to that lady that Strav (comment from my earlier post) recommended to me... she's a kind woman. she told me that we're not alone. this happens a lot. the indonesian housemaids are really bad, especially when it comes to lying and doing bad things. and... they do DO black magic. wonder why it is that you hear this but when it comes to this stuff taking place, ppl want to ignore it and pretend it isn't happening. i didn't even believe in this stuff. i had soooo many ppl around me telling me that she was prob doing black magic... and when i actually started believing it and seeing things, no one wanted to do anything about it!

i told the housemaid what i thought of her after it all happened. i screamed and yelled at her... i got in her face, pointed my finger a breath away from her... all the while, she looked off. at one point, she said "sorry", but i told her that sorry doesn't cut it. i wanted to take and shake the life from her... i did (meaning i wanted to but i didnt). and i'm not sorry for it. i didn't touch her though, except when she was upstairs and wouldn't leave her room.

it first started when she wanted to lock her door and i told her she couldn't. she had just gotten buzzed by the other housemaid to come downstairs to go to Ramas. she kept stalling for time, pacing in her room. i knew something was up. i stood there and wouldn't leave. she then went into the bathroom and started brushing her teeth. after she finished, she came from the bathroom carrying two big garbage bags. she said it was trash. i told her that she couldn't take them. when i saw these bags, all i could think was, "what's inside those bags?!" when i told her that she couldn't take them, she insisted. i told her again, "NO"... she still tried to bring them towards me. this is when i went to her and said "NO!, you are not taking them out of this room". at this point, she yelled, "OKAY". but she wouldn't move. she then bent down and rummaged thru the one bag and pulled out a letter for the post. she then walked around like in a daze and then said she needed to get her mobile. i'm like... "what mobile, you don't have a mobile" she told me it was her friends. i'm like, "oh no, you aren't taking any mobile" (she had stolen the battery from mine months ago.... that's all i could think about.)

she stood there and wouldn't move. i told her to go and she wouldn't move. i grabbed her arm and forced her from the room. i took her down the stairs and out of the house. after locking the doors, i went upstairs and proceeded to go thru the bags of "trash" and the rest of everything in that room.

i have never been so shocked. i found the battery to my mobile! i knew she had it... even when she said she didn't. i found so many things..... things that were missing, things i had thrown away (she took from the trash), underwear, my clothes, hair things, make up, plastic from the kitchen, towels, hand towels, dish clothes, good pens, jewelry, film... all sorts of things. i had never gone into her room searching for anything. i respected her privacy and tried to treat her like an equal and as a member of our house.

i will NEVER do this again. i do not and will not ever trust these ppl. the last girl we had stole from me. a gold ring my FIL had given to me. she denied it. we got rid of her. this time... it was all under my nose but i didn't see it. she was smart.... i was naive.

but never again.


Olivia said...

This is just awful, Tooners.
Next time, pay attention to your pets. They are the best judge of character, don't you think?

I cannot imagine what goes through the mind of someone like her, and black magic, now taht's just beyond the pale. But thankfully it is over.

Enjoy your life, your family, your house, your new freedom ;)

Sabra said...

Hey, Tooners - the whole thing - but lets concentrate on the Undies, shall we? I did it, too. Didn't want to belive that SOMEONE - ANYONE would want to wear my underwear! Yep, it was just a roommate then - Deb - but still. More later. We're headed that direction, I think tomorrow, please e-mail me privately - SabrasStilettos@Yahoo.com - I'll call you! Regards, BT

Angelo Embuldeniya (Strav) said...

Hey Tooners! it's wonderful you got in touch with Marietta :) Never knew about this black magic stuff.. and I don't know if the lady mentioned this or something.. but not all Indonesia domestic helpers behave this way.. its just some... I'd be really surprised if she generalized :D

Did you guys get her through an ageny in Bahrain, is yes you folks should be entitled to a damage claim or something of the sort... it's usually the agencies that are the crooks here.

The feelings you've had, the pain you wanted to make her feel and the hurt you wanted to inflict but didn't.... well ... it wouldn't have made things any better... worst case scenario would have been she tripping rights activists and the law against you and getting away with it...

After reading your post, I hear it that you folks gave generously and she abused that generosity... ;-)

What's needed is training for domestic helpers before they take up employement in the country, if they can't have it done at their country.. then it should be the recruiting agency here in Bahrain to shoulder the responsibility of training.

As much as I like some of the work that the MWPS does... I strongly believe that there should be some sort of consumer body dedicated to protecting the rights of employers of domestic helpers as well.. now this is something that the MWPS could do as well.. but considering they're mostly volunteer-driven though dynamic.. it would help for others to step up to the plate. The rights society is still new.. with only 4 years down the line... so Im really hoping they come up with stats, guides for new domestic helpers in the country, a kind of information booklet for employers of domestic helpers (arabic and english with contact info on who to contact when something goes wrong), outreach here is the most important factor... I've yet to see that happen though.

the other barrier is that the laws governing the rights of domestic helpers and their employers workers here is pretty much grey area... something that the authority is working on I guess.

still breathing said...


OMG that is soooooooo awful!!!!

i'm really sad it had that bad impact... i wish i have that giant eraser to remove all those bad memories..

i hope u get over it soon :)

Chris in MB said...

Hey, olivia was here! small world!

I've always wondered why so many people in other countries have maids. It's unheard of here. It must be a cultural thing?

I lived in Rio de Janeiro for a couple years and my family had one simply because everyone else did. She practiced a type of "black magic", actually a sort of cross between Christian & Haitian Voodoo beliefs. It never bothered us & I don't think it was really evil, she kept it private as a personal belief. She was actually very nice.

Personally I would never feel comfortable having anyone but myself clean my house. They would find the skeletons in my closets!

BTW, she took your UNDERWEAR!!!
That's just wrong on so many levels.

MoClippa said...

Good riddance, at least its over now tooners, thats terrible... I've heard of similar stuff hapenning in a number of cases.

-missed replying to your last post so this is a bit of a reply into that as well-

One of the problems with these live in maids -for all the good- is that when situations like this pop up its often a really tough to take a stand against them, because of how long they've been there, or your own (and i share them) idealist efforts to integrate them into the family... It's a good thing you didn't let her keep taking advantage of you on that fact, and maybe even a good learning experience... hopefully though you won't subconsiously take out your anger against her on the next one.

Have you considered purchasing a small inexpensive safe for your jewelry? As for the clothes though, well... I haven't heard of any maids going so far as to steal unddies as well, ahahah... my this woman sounds like a heart attack waiting to happen!

Speaking of black magic, I had a friend once whose family fired a maid (can't recall if she was Indonesian or Philipino) but the next morning after she had left, they found (and I hate saying this because I know your attachment to animals) a few dead stray cats skinned and strung up on their clothesline in the garden... I don't know what that was all about, but suffice to say, some of these people have serious issues, and its better to have them out (and you have peace of mind), then to keep them aboard hoping for the best (and cause you to end up tearing your own hair out, let alone hers)

tooners said...

it's been a long week, that's for sure! the undies... well, my relatives told me that they take these to do stuff w/... i don't want to get into it, but it's not to wear them. she had my husband's too!

one of my fav little cats outside, that always stayed in our yard, went missing weeks ago. i think she did something... maybe gave her to somebody, i have no idea.

she had all this stuff written down on paper, like she was memorizing stuff that we said. phrases and such... maybe it was just to learn english, but i find it very odd that she didn't ask and the words/phrases aren't the typical trying to learn english stuff, i don't think.

she also had many many boyfriends and such, or guys she was obsessing over. she had all sorts of stuff written about that, but in her language.

chris, i wasn't raised w/ housemaids either. i don't like anyone in the house, i've realized. i don't like ppl looking at my private things or even knowing personal stuff about me. everyone has a housemaid here, but i don't think it's a good thing necessarily.

moclippa, i'm glad she's gone. the house has been so different w/out her here and it feels good, finally!

thanks everyone for all your positive thoughts and words. you don't know how good it feels to have her out of our house. and... it feels good to actually be doing housework again, i enjoy it. gives you a great sense of accomplishment.

oh yeah strav, no, the lady didn't say that all indonesians practice black magic or are bad... but she said they do see a lot of it and most of the problems are w/ indonesians. but maybe it's just the season.

i do agree... something seriously needs to be done about the housemaid situation in this country. some type of regulations need to be put forth, agencies need to be held accountable as well as the agencies in these foreign countries. ppl need to be screened and have references checked, i believe. and, since this was my FIL who provided this housemaid, it was sorta hard to complain and hold them accountable for anything. we had a hard enough time finding out who she worked for in qatar.. and when we did, we found out all sorts of lies she told there.

The Moody Minstrel said...

She practiced a type of "black magic", actually a sort of cross between Christian & Haitian Voodoo beliefs.

Are you talking about Santeria?

That's weird. The maid who practices Santeria almost seems to be a stereotype in and around the Caribbean. These people sure get around! Then again, it seems odd to me that a hijab-wearing Indonesian would be practicing black magic. Doesn't Islam frown on pagan practices?

This whole situation sounds like something from a late-night TV movie...poor Tooners!

Lisa said...

Thats so horrible!!! Its amazing that there are so many countries where having maids is normal, not a sign of wealth, and part of the culture, but they all have the same stories!!! I saw in Mexico, my husband has his stories from growing up in South America, and all the other stories I've heard, its tradgic.
I wouldn't like having a maid. Too much hassle, i think its just easier to clean the house myself!

Chris in MB said...

moody, Yes I think that's it! It's common in Brazil. Most people did not seem offer any animals. They tended to set up little offerings along the beaches on placemats with candles, wine, & bread.

I highly doubt that it is also an indonesian practice.

tooners said...

moody, yeah, black magic is against islam. she prayed every day, at least 5 times a day... but even when i believed that, my husband told me not to be fooled. a lot of them pray and say bad things or pray for bad things, from what i hear.

this whole story even gets worse. she had a fling w/ a guy we know. she stole his mobile and told me it belonged to a friend of hers... and, when he wouldn't marry her (she's married in indonesia also), she threatened him and told him that her mother was saying prayers for bad things to happen to him. i've heard stories where they take your hair and do black magic w/ that, and pictures. being muslim doesn't mean anything to them, i don't think... or some of them - it doesn't mean anything.

there are muslims here that do fortune telling. the MPs were all up in arms about it last year, but nothing ever happened. i know some girls that frequent thse muslim fortune tellers frequently - some even tell your fortune by the Quran. not that this has anything to do w/ her practicing black magic and such!

this guy we know that she had a fling w/.. she was obsessing over him big time and we didn't know it. she had things written all about him and swore that she was pregnant by him even tho it wasn't possible - she believed and wrote about how God would give her a baby - make it happen - and such. very weird stuff.

lisa, yes, cleaning my own house is something i prefer, i've realized. i'm even starting to see that she wasn't cleaning as well as she should have been. her room was filthy, filthy, filthy!

for all of you wondering how all of this started - well, i think she got upset when i stopped allowing her to kiss and hug me. a friend of mine and myself included thought she was a lesbian but i think she was anything to anybody in order to get what she wanted. her kissing and hugging stuff got to be very weird for me and when i stopped allowing it, all the bad stuff started. she wanted to hang on to me all the time and not having ever been around this or having help, i allowed it for a while, which wasn't a good thing. it flattered me somewhat, to be honest, and i felt sorry for her - thinking that she prob haven't been shown any love and such, so i tried to be kind to her - obviously too kind. but, i've learned a huge lesson.

even still today, i'm finding things that she took. for as religious as she acted, she wasn't a good person. but i'm sure a lot of it comes from their culture and what they have to do to survive, i guess.

Olivia said...

Well, it's just like how voodoo in the West Indies and southern US conflicts with Christian beliefs.

Converted populations the world over see no problem mixing their original animistic religions with Christianity, and as I now see, Islam...

BTW, Tooners, thanks for coming by to catch up ;)

Greg said...

tooners: I'm just wondering...You metnioned you had animals. I absolutely adore animals of all kinds. Pleas let me know what kinds of animals you have.