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My sis is about to disappear

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
I am 25. My sister is 21. She is about to leave to go to South Korea to meet a boyfriend she met online. They skype together but have never met in person, only seen online. She is also going to be an EFL teacher there, then they are both planning to move to Japan. Neither of them have any ties to either nation.

Before she gets to SK, she's spending 1 month between Oxford and Hungary doing teacher training. She's also missing her university graduation.

I am the ONLY PERSON that knows this. We have another sister and 2 parents. None of them know. She refuses to speak to our parents about most things, including all of this, to my knowledge she barely picks up the phone.

In summary: I don't really care where she goes or why. What I worry about are 2 things: first, the consistent lies+lack of truth+lack of trust+general outward family hatred. Second, that this boyfriend idiot is exerting a lot of control and pulling her to him, thus making her family look bad.

I don't know what to do because I am worried for her safety, especially if she doesn't keep in touch once she leaves, or in particular if she actually meets this guy and he pulls her further in. I am also worried about the lying and the secrecy. Essentially, if later she gets in trouble, I'm trying to keep a line of communication open but she may not share when she is in trouble, and then we may not know anything until something bad happens.

What I need: a small intervention. I would like to hear about any organisations that help people distanced from their families or in controlling relationships. I also heard it is possible to get people flagged at airports - nobody could stop her leaving since she is behaving legally, but I heard about support and advice and conversations provided. Although I can't find anything like this on google.

Happy to answer questions. With advance thanks for your help.

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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hi Bagelgirl,

    I'm sorry to hear about the situation with your sister thinking about moving away for good, I see this causing you some distress and hurt in some way.

    Sometimes when were close to someone we do everything we can to be there for them in anyway knowing that we got there back covered in any situation.

    When it comes to family it can mean a lot to us more then just covering someone's back, its more about protecting them with anything bad happening to them and making sure they are safe.

    However, when were put in a difficult situation the person whos the victim here can sometimes be the one who has to respect the person's situation in order for them to keep it a secret but that's not always the case.

    I say that because if we know someone who tells us something confidential which maybe a life changing experience for the individual there may come a time that we have to talk to someone about it.

    Therefore in your case I think you have every right to tell someone what's going on as this kind of confidentiality isn't something you can keep and if speak to someone about it there maybe a way of both of you helping them.

    It's up to you wether you want to tell your sister that this conversation she had with you about her moving away can not be kept secret forever and that you think telling your parents is the only way of you protecting her from any danger or harm.

    This won't be easy and your sister may not be happy at first but you shouldn't feel guilty by telling your parents about this. Your doing the right thing by telling someone in the first place.

    You may want to look at these sites which might help you go about this or just to seek some advice on what to do....

    www.relate.org.uk

    www.thesite.org.uk/familylife

    www.mind.org.uk

    www.supportline.org.uk

    www.bbc.co.uk/advicepages

    There maybe some of these sites what might be helpful and others not but it's worth to have a look and find out for yourself.

    You can also contact The Samaritans if you feel you need anyone to talk to or you can try the website Get Connected who arnt necessary a helpline but are a service who gets in looks at other organisations and helplines who may help further.

    Please let me know if you feel this may help

    Good Luck

    Crazy Cat x
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hi Bagelgirl,

    Sorry to hear that you're having difficulties with your sister. From what you've said, your sister is drifting away from your family and you're worried about her, which is completely understandable. Traveling around the world - without anyone knowing where you are - is indeed risky and your concerns about that make sense.

    Being the only one who knows about her trip might be a massive weight on you. Do you think that if your parents knew about her plans, they would be able to change her mind?

    It might be a good idea to meet her and try to talk. Even if she doesn't change her mind in terms of telling your parents, you could reassure her that she can always count on you if there is a problem. She probably fell for this guy, determined to move in with him and doesn't think objectively about her future. Sometimes the best we can do is to be there for someone and wait for the outcome.

    CrazyCat already mentioned Relate, they do provide family therapy in case your family would consider that. They also have a free online chat where you can briefly talk about your problems with a counsellor.

    Let us know how you're getting on. *hug*
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Hi Bagelgirl and welcome to TheSite :wave:

    Your worries all sound entirely valid and as you mention, the lack of openness about her plans also waves a red flag to me as it does to you.

    Perhaps on some level she is aware of the risks and has her own fears too but is so desperate for this relationship to fulfill her expectations that she is pushing all these fears to one side and perhaps knows that telling your parents could validate all those worries.

    Of course, that's an assumption and may not be the case but as edina says, finding a way to talk to your sister in a calm way sounds like an important step too - do you think she would be willing to listen? Another option might be to write a letter, that way she doesn't have to respond right away and has some time to take it all in.

    You clearly love and care for your sister very much, it would be good to tell her that at the start of any conversation you have - perhaps that you wouldn't feel you were being a good sister if you didn't tell her your concerns? Ultimately if you are really worried then you will have to decide whether or not to tell your parents which wont be easy as you may feel your are betraying your sister's trust but at the same time, her safety is important.

    In terms of intervention or support - there will be a need for her to have a willingness to talk. Women's Aid would be a good point of contact for advice and support, they deal a lot with domestic violence but also do a lot of work on being able to spot a controlling relationship: http://www.womensaid.org.uk/ They have a helpline you could call and a forum where you can post.

    We also have expert relationship advisers that you can speak to here on TheSite, you can ask them about this situation with your sister: http://www.thesite.org/relationship-advice/ask-about-relationships

    Let us know how things are going :heart:

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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I don't wanna play devil's advocate, but how well does your sister know this guy? I mean, if he wants to be with her so badly, why doesn't he come to her? When I read your story I couldn't help a bell ringing in my head, so I just had to say that I'm worried about your sister... The conditions that you describe remind me of a movie I saw a few years ago that branded my mind "Human Trafficking". One of the victims was taken in exactly the same way, met online, promised a nice future together and of course it had to be kept secret.... Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that this is the case of your sister, it just reminded me of her.
    In my oppinion you should talk to your parents about this.

    Yes, she will get angry. Yes, she will be mad at you. It might take time to re-establish your relationship, but you would do her a big favour by letting someone know what is going on. She might not be able to see it now, she might accuse you for telling on her, but she will understand - when her anger fades - that you where acting for her sake and not against her.

    I really really hope everything goes well!
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