I get quite a few private messages from readers, many who know me and Rob. I don't share many of them but sometimes I feel the need to. This one came from one of Rob's friends who's been around for a long time. They dive and fish together and I always liked him a lot. He knows Rob very well (as much as anyone really knows Rob). I asked this guy if it was OK if I reprinted his email as long as I kept his identity private. He said yes so here it is. (Hey, I know you're reading this- thank you!)
Reading your blog is really hard. I'm a big tough guy and even I find a tear or two. Sometimes I can't finish your article and have to try again later. Your health is most important so make sure you take care of you first. If you need to cry or see a therapist, I hope you do. No shame in that. I hope you have love and support around you to get you through this. You're a beautiful, smart, amazing lady and I'm sure you do. I even thought you were probably too good for Rob. Keep that a secret between us! Rob can be a good guy but I always wondered how you were doing with him. I always saved a big huge hug for you whenever I saw you because I thought you probably needed it. Right now I want to see you and give you an even bigger hug. No excuses for Rob. Boy's got some big issues and he needs help. He's a fun guy but everyone knows he's a lot of fast talk. That's just the way he is and it aint right. You be strong and you stay healthy and good. I'm keep a reading your blog because I expect great things from you.
I wrote him back.
Thank you! I always liked you and now I know why. Your hugs were THE BEST and I remember them well. You made me cry and your words give me strength and courage. Just so you know, I sometimes sound really sad and pathetic. I'm working through the disappointment. I saw great things in Rob once. He rarely lived up to it but I knew it was in there somewhere. I'm doing my best to work with the girls through their deep pain and sadness. I don't know if you know but Rob has cut off all contact with the girls. Shocking and devastating. In an attempt to punish me, he's gone after the girls. Unfortunately, two innocent little girls are caring the weight of that decision and it's just sad and wrong. I can't change him. I had hoped and prayed that he would change. He even cut off ties to Siena- Siena who he adopted with me and who is her father in every way. Many of my friends and even a few attorneys are trying to convince me to file a paternity suit. There are some very strong legal arguments that lead me to believe I would have at least a 50-50 chance of winning. It wouldn't be about winning but, rather, showing Siena that I am truly her advocate and I did my best. That might mean something to her later on. And Morgan is hurting. She loves Bob, he's her dad, and she misses him horribly. Well, what can I do but pray and hope and love. I am not a victim anymore. I am an advocate of other abused women and children. We survivors need to stick together. But the only way I know how to be an advocate is to share my story and try to give others support, courage and hope for something better. Thanks a million for your email. Please stay in touch and keep reading. I hope you'll enjoy on some level the transformation you'll find. Some time when I'm in Southern California (truth be told, we're there many times a year), I'd love to meet up for lunch.