Credit Card Fraud - just when Life was getting better

Discussion in 'Community' started by Chip NoVaMac, Jul 13, 2005.

  1. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #1
    Thought I would share this latest news, since you all have been so supportive in the past year with my issues with my ex and I.

    Just when I thought that life was getting back to normal, the man "upstairs" has put another thing in front of me. When my ex left for Florida, I was concerned how he was going to make it - since he had been out of a job and had no money saved.

    Well the answer came in the mail - a late forward from the Post Office of my June Visa statement. Some how my ex got a hold of my credit card number and had the card cloned (cloned, only because the card I have in my hands is the only one sent by the card company since the old one expired. And that some of the charges are with an actual card, not just a phone in order).

    He has hit me to the tune of over $3000 (final totals will be known in a few days). When he left for Florida I expressed concern on how he was going to make down there without any real money. He responded that he was "resourceful". I was worried when his mom and I "tricked" him in coming back home from being "homeless" in Florida for a week and half. Come to find out he was not homeless, for he had my credit card. And that food and gas were no problem because of my credit card. I wondered as to why Sprint had not cut off his cell phone for non-payment - you guessed it - my credit card.

    Shame of the turn of events is that I had to agree to help in any way possible the credit card company to prosecute my ex for this fraud. I say shame, for my ex is terminally ill I found out. And despite the lies and all over the last 12 years, I wanted to believe in the good person that I met. For the Christian believer in me, wanted his possibly (I was taught to believe in miracles) last year of life to be as peace filled as possible.

    Now it may be spent in jail awaiting trial. His arrest will be hard on him physically. I find myself tortured, only because I had forgiven him for the $14K in his credit card debt that I paid off with equity in my home. And forgiven him for the $6K in debt from the same loan to cover his portion of living expenses for the past year. And in the end forced me to decide to sell my TH in order to get my debt under control.

    Thanks all for letting me have a moment here. Not quite sure of how I am to be feeling at this point. My own personal good and evil side are doing battle with each other. :)

    I posted this as a warning to others in a roommate or other relationship situation. You never truly know a person I have found out.
     
  2. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    #2
    Sort of sucks.

    But the credit card company will only forgive that debt with if you file the police report -- and you may have to agree to follow through to get it forgiven eventually.

    Otherwise without that, you'll be paying the bill ...

    And that's a really tough place to be in, since it usually is the final nail in any relationship -- whether family, friend, or ex. -- if you decide you don't want to pay that bill.

    Edit: There is always paying the bill and collecting in small claims, but it sound like that is a lost cause also.
     
  3. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #3
    So true on all your points. All of this was explained in basics to me. Will get the details in the morning from the investigator.

    What is so hard I guess is that I have forgiven so much so far, and can not forgive any more. Trying not be vengeful. But in the end I have paid too much in all aspects of my life.

    I had given and forgiven so much till this point. This is the straw that broke the camel's back for me. As those that followed my home sale thread, I closed on the 30th of June. I looked at hat point as closure of my past, and was looking towards a new, brighter, happier future. I am now angry that that the past keeps getting the way.

    I just hope that the past does not prevent me from opening myself to someone else in the future.

    BTW - I already gave the credit card company the name, address, and phone number to his mother. As well as the name and employer (his brother is a police officer with a county police department in the area) as possible contacts; and my ex's last know cell phone number.
     
  4. homerjward macrumors 68030

    homerjward

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    May 11, 2004
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    fig tree
    #4
    that really sucks man. i hope everything turns out all right for you in the end.
     
  5. runninmac macrumors 65816

    runninmac

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2005
    Location:
    Rockford MI
    #5
    I fell so sorry for you. That must suck having someone you once loved come back at spend all the money you earned. Hopefully everything will get cleared up. Best of luck.
     
  6. zelmo macrumors 603

    zelmo

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2004
    Location:
    Mac since 7.5
    #6
    Chip, I'm sorry that you have had such a challenging go of it these past months. Regarding your ex, it sounds like you are making the right call this time, and you feel like you are piling it on him by pursuing the legal actions necessary for you to get out of paying his bills yet again. Any good person would have those same misgivings.
    It's one thing to be in a relationhip and help your SO out with their debt. In any relationship, there's going to be a time when one partner is holding the other up, either financially or emotionally, but there's a give-and-take to that if the relationship is a healthy one.
    It's quite another to take advantage of someone, which is what your ex is doing. He may not be thinking clearly, considering what he is going through, but that's no excuse for him to clone your credit card. That action required a conscious choice to deceive you and leave you hanging, and I'm sure he relied on your giving nature to cover his butt yet again.

    I think you are doing the right thing, and that is really tough to do sometimes. Stay strong.
     
  7. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    Apr 24, 2003
    Location:
    Colly-fornia
    #7
    Oh man... that's terrible. Just when things were looking up after so many rough days. I'm sorry to hear that Chip.

    You're doing the right thing though, at some point you need to draw the line, and this seems like a good time for it. I know it's tough to have to do that to a person you've been so close to, but YOU don't deserve this kind of treatment.
     
  8. wdlove macrumors P6

    wdlove

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2002
    #8
    I'm very sorry to hear about your latest situation Chip. At least you are able to speak about the situation. Your Christianity seems to be a very strong faith. You have been very forgiving with turning the other cheek. It sounds as though he needed some tough love sooner. Just remember that all this testing is only to make you stronger in your faith. God won't gives us anymore than we can handle. ;)
     
  9. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #9
    Chip, I know you're way over your quota of difficulties in the past year. I'm so sorry this one got added to the pile. You are very compassionate toward your ex given the circumstances, and that's something I admire. I hope that the things you need to get you through this will fall into your path at all of the right times.
     
  10. mcarnes macrumors 68000

    mcarnes

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    Mar 14, 2004
    Location:
    USA! USA!
    #10
    Unless of course you're raped and murdered, which happens once every 34 minutes in the U.S. :rolleyes: Kind of hard to rebound from that...

    I'm not anti-christian and I do believe in God, but I wish people would quit using that saying. It assumes that God is the one dishing out the punishment, which of course is not true. The big guy is probably as sad as anyone when bad things happen.
     
  11. anonymous161 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2003
    Location:
    Where the wind comes sweeping down the plains
    #11
    I hope that I don't sound callous, but here goes. I have to agree with powermac, he took advantage of everything that you and others offered him. Any excuses made for a person like him are just that: excuses. We all walk a path in life, with every choice bringing consequence. His choices have caught up with him. Whatever you do, do not feel guilty. He made these decisions and now he must accept these consequences. It is not just that he broke a law because he was desperate. He betrayed someone who cared about him dearly with no concern for any desires or needs outside of his own. I know you wanted to help him, as any good person would, but he didn't want your help and he has now made that perfectly clear. This life is too short to spend effort and emotion on those who aren't willing to do the same. Easier said than done; I understand.
    I wish you the best in getting your life back and know that there are many "strangers" here who would do whatever they could to help you. You only need ask.
     
  12. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #12
    Thanks all for the warm wishes and thoughts. Did not get a call back today, but they did say it might take two days. Any ways, I will be giving them a call in the morning to indicate my desire to move this forward.

    My pain is due to my Christian/Religous beliefs. I thought I had forgiven my ex for so many things. And that I was on the path to a new and productive life, witness my upcoming trip to SF on Wednesday this coming week.

    I hate the feeling, but I woke up this morning to seeing so many things that we had collected together. Small things, like models of cars that we once dreamed of owning. The Pooh and Piglet "collectables". I have always been known as Pooh with my friends, due to my optimistic view on life. Piglet however had a dual meaning for us, little did I realize that this had an even deeper meaning.

    I have opened my heart and soul here, only to help others that might find themselves in similar situations. To be totally honest, there is so much more that I may have to face in the future, because of the 12+ years that he and i spent together. And regardless of that out come, I know that I can weather that storm, as long as I have good people like you all around.


    Again many thanks,

    Chip
     
  13. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2004
    Location:
    On the Left Coast - Victoria BC Canada
    #13
    Hey Chip - I want to comment on your title - "just when Life was getting better" You are right! - life continues to get better.

    Today, life is better than yesterday.

    Why? The reality of $3k existed yesterday, but you didn't know about it. Today you know more and have a choice of what to do. Not an easy choice to be sure, but hard choices are better than no choices.

    Tomorrow, today will be in the past, and life will be better yet.

    So I say, YES, life is getting better. You are handling things as they come, you are actively deciding and making your own life. I applaud you.

    And I thank you for trusting us MR-ites with your thoughts.
     
  14. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #14

    mcarnes, I hope that I can provide some insight as to what wdlove and I have been sharing. At least from my point of view.

    I used the word "Christian" to denote a core religious belief that many can share in.

    I can only speak from the "beliefs" that I was brought up in. The foremost is that God puts "tests" or "obstacles" in our paths in order to test our Faith. These tend to deal with day-to-day issues, not the rape and murder that you mentioned. There are those of that try to hold to the belief of "turning the other cheek", that such violent acts may get our forgiveness. We can only look to the "forgiveness" that some families have given the the rapists or murderers as a possible guiding light.

    Regardless of your own belief system, most any religion has the core of doing unto others as you would have them do unto you. We are not talking here of the protagonist in "Les Mis" that stole bread from a faceless unknown.

    In this case I expressed concern and interest from the point of his needing to move out, and the ability to make it it good. In the days preceding his trip to FL, I expressed concern about his ability to make the trip down. His response was that he was "resourceful". Little did I realize how "resourceful" he was. Based on initial conversations last night. he found a way of cloning my actual credit card and found a way of being "resourceful" .

    The shame of the situation is that he will may never know of the 12+ hours that he and his mom spent on the phone in trying to get get him back home. All because I was deeply concerned about him personally. Not that I had any hopes of a complete healing of our issues. Only because I hoped for some peace in what days that he might be granted.

    For regardless of ones sins, I was taught that they should be filled with forgiveness. The events since last night has pushed me to the limits on this.
     
  15. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #15
    Thanks RAM, your word are those that I try to live by. It is just hard some times when you think you have turned a corner in your life to be faced with a brick wall.

    Never in my dying days would I ever expected my ex to do this to me.

    For those that followed my previous thread about his mom and I trying to get him safely back to the DC area, I made calls to Sprint and OnStar in order for us to have contact, Only to be betrayed in that at least at this point that the Sprint bill was paid on my credit card without my permission.

    I now feel like the fool. I even went as far as telling his mom that I would wire one of her sisters money to insure his safe return to the DC area.
     
  16. Balin64 macrumors 6502a

    Balin64

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2002
    Location:
    In a Mauve Dream
    #16
    Chip:

    You're a great guy: I have always loved your posts. Thank you for being so open with us members and strangers: it shows a trust in the fundamental goodness in people that not many people posess.

    I have also been experiencing financial and relationship-related turmoil in my life lately... although not nearly in the scope you are: stay good, and stay strong.
     
  17. munkle macrumors 68030

    munkle

    Joined:
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    Location:
    On a jet plane
    #17
    So sorry this has happened to you Chip. Keep yourself strong, our best wishes are with you. I'd just like to say I think you're dealing with this horrible situation admirably, you are indeed one of the good guys.

    munkle.
     
  18. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #18

    Thank you balin64 for the kind words. You put best why I have been so open. In some ways to get support, which the MR members have given. But also a lesson to others.

    That goodness can come back to bite you. But at the same point if some can learn from from my life experiences, then I might have done some good. For those that have followed my life, my ex and I considered leaving the US after the last Presidential election.

    There is a bright side to my being forced to sell my TH of 13+ years - and that is the ability to consider to moving to other part s of the US, or even Canada.

    What I failed to share is that earlier this week I met up with service providers that knew of the long term bond that he and I had. I felt on the defensive in describing what led to the break-up and the "lack of concern" on my part.

    Their support has been great, but does not lessen the personal guilt that I sometimes feel. From what I have felt here so far is that after 12+ years, it is not impossible to feel the mixed emotions that I am feeling.

    Rest assured that with all that I have given financially and emotionally, I will do what I need to to protect that small amount that he tried to take in the end.

    The problem is that I am a scientist at heart. I want answers. Even if it is dealing with emotional issues.Every communication that I ever got from my ex was dealing with issues that no longer mattered - his Xmas dinner ware, the expresso machine, and the such. Or even this past week that he would stop at nothing to get Chewey our dog back, even though he abandoned Chewey with me and that Chwey had found a better home.

    Let me share that it hurts a bit that he has only ever called me with comments or demands that center around him or Chewey. Never about the issues that I might need closure on as he meets his "end of days".

    I have done peer counciling before. But none of my training has equipped me to to try an deal with all of this.
     
  19. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #19
    I am too proud to seek any "big" help. You and everyone else have provided me with a shoulder to lean on. And that is all that I can truly ask of you all on MR.


    I have been bothered by the aspect that my life seems to be out of control. That only bad things seem to happen to me. Though I have tried to look at the positives also. On Wed. morning I wing my way First Class for 5 days to SF.


    There are blessings that I can count. My sister and I have grown closer than ever. The good Lord blessed me with a quick and profitable sale of my TH. He surrounded me with those that supported me in my time of need - from the cleaners, to my real estate agent, to my boss, and all of you on MR!

    It just bothers me that with the blessings that I should celebrate, that I have been new tasks to weather.

    In the end I know from experience that the members here would and will help in any way possible. This witnessed by the job change I had at the beginning of the year.

    I am not alone in that. MacDawg also went through a rough patch at the same time. And the MR members came to provide what ever support they could.

    Yours and others kind words are enough at this point in my life. It gives me hope that not everyone is out for their personal gain.

    May the road rise to meet you, and may the wind always be at your back.

    And may blessings be bestowed upon you ten fold. For the blue of the the sky shall give you hope for a new day. And the green of the grass give you a new life.
     
  20. wdlove macrumors P6

    wdlove

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2002
    #20
    Just don't be too hard on yourself. Even though you have been counseling, when it happens to you then perspective tends to be lost. You just need to seek the help of others. It is your faith that can now take you through. Prayer is very important.
     
  21. Supa_Fly macrumors 68030

    Supa_Fly

    Joined:
    May 30, 2002
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    #21
    @Chip,

    Some things I'd like to mention that I hope I can help.

    1) You dont have to be a Christian to have good morals or principles of how people should treat one another. You'll find even some Jesuits (is that the term for those of Jewish faith?), have the same qaulities. All in all keep this no matter what you go through in life, and you'll never half to wrestle with your conscience.

    2) More importantly, and dont take this the wrong way, you mentioned that he was terminally ill. Is this from unsafe sexual practice? If so I'd take this very week and find out if this will affect you and check again in 1 month & 3 months from now JUST to be safe!!!

    3) I've been hurt as well, very badly, many times in the past. This could happen again to you or me or anyone in the future, the compassion of your heart being hurt I mean. I've learned that time & reflection is the best healer. Taking the time to feel the pain, to look deeply at those moments, places, things you and your ex shared remembering good times and bad times; thinking of good times that really didnt cause doubt - compliments mentioned outta the blue with nothing to gain by ur ex - ease's the pain. Now it seems that this trend of having you pay for his repeated financial mistakes went unnoticed. Its natural, you were in the thick of BLISS. In any event dont spend the time reflecting on past moments or memories shared always alone. Sometimes getting out with your true friends can help. Remember that I said that this can happen again, being used. But this time around you'll be better prepared and will notice the hints before it happens and prevent it.

    4) You'll never love the same way twice, no matter what. You can love more than one person, in an intimate level, just as deeply, but how you feel & love them will be on a different plain; not a different level. Ur human after all.

    5) you seem to be like me in that you give so much of yourself to others. Even if it doesnt gain you anything, anything more than to see them accel or shine or smile. If you really feel this is a part of whom you are .... a WARNING! Guard it carefully, and dont let anyone abuse it. They really have to earn it, fully. Remember there are only a few diamonds in the ruff! But many more than 40 theives.

    I do hope you understand this how I intended and wish you well in this ongoing saga; stay strong.
     
  22. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #22
    The EAP program at work has been a great avenue for release also.

    I am bothered that I have seem to become one of those that has this dark cloud over their head all the time. That is why I try to also mention (and think of) the positives in my life also. The quick sale of the home, of being debt free once again, a trip to a city that I absolutely love as my birthday present to myself, the planning for my first trip to Europe next year.

    wdlove, you and I know (and others either accept or reject) that there is a master plan that God has for us. With each of the "tests" that I have faced in the past year, I learned that I can weather almost anything; and some how they fit in God's master plan for me. It could be as simple as my writing of the trails and tribulations providing insight for someone else in similar circumstances.

    It is said that time heals all wounds. For back in '92 I never thought that I could get over losing my Dad a week after my birthday, and losing my uncle - a man that was a second father to me - just days before Christmas. Yet some how I was able to overcome the grief.

    I am reminded of the song Memories from the movie The Way We Were:

    For me, I have to believe in the good times that my ex and I shared. Even though it might have been all a lie. To be honest, the trip to SF is a risky move on my part. For it was in '96 that I was taken there for my birthday by my ex, and it was one of our happier times. But I need to do this.

    For I will be able to do so much more that I did not get the chance to do the last time. And it will give me the chance to deal with my own demons of the past. Learning that some memories can be enjoyed, without lingering on what could/should have been.

    Right now my co-workers are telling me to just get to the damn airport already! That Wednesday morning will not come soon enough for them. I am bouncing off the walls. :) Believe it or not, my carry-on bag is already packed and ready to go. :eek:
     
  23. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #23
    I think the term you meant was Jew or Jewish. Though I understand the had time with the simple word of Jew, since the Holocaust has given the word a negative meaning.

    Jesuit is a religious order within the Catholic Church and some what fitting with my Catholic upbringing and my personal Faith.

    I mentioned my Christian belief system as a point of reference. wdlove may not like hearing this, but I do accept Jesus as the salvation for my sins. But I place a greater importance to God as my guiding light.

    But more importantly I believe that God does exist under other belief systems. For if you look at any major religion, the core belief of "doing unto others" exists.

    Thank you for the concern. I already have been doing so for the past four years, since I first found out that he had cheated on me during the week prior to 9-11. He refuses to talk to me honestly as to what is happening. And the last conversation with his mom two months ago was that he was terminally ill with cancer (which does run in his family). It could be denial on her part to the truth.

    I just had an HIV test run a month ago. Negative (sigh of relief). But you hit on one of the issues I am trying to deal with, and that is the ability to trust anyone at this point.

    Some co-workers have been teasing me that my upcoming trip to SF is for me to sow some oats in my "Motherland". It is tempting, but I am not ready to be open emotionally or physically with anyone at this point. Not that I don't want to feel the warm embrace of another person - even for just one night. But I am not ready to make that personal move.

    I would/will rather take that time and go out with my tripod and camera and get "personal" with the scenes around me at night in SF.

    LOL. Friends of mine have said much the same thing. My answer has been that the hand of God could tap at my door with the perfect lover, and I would slam the door shut on them both at this time in my life.

    If there is one fear, that is that I will never be able to trust another soul again. For 12+ years my ex played me like a fine musical instrument. So many instances, but the core is that I loved theater, and he played that to the hilt - painting that he and I had crossed paths in many shows that I had seen that he was in. Only to find out that the only way I might have seen him was in the lobby before or after the show as a patron.

    Been through the "love lost" routine before. The difference is that this is the longest relationship that I have been in. And despite what I have been told or found out on my own, I do believe (or want to believe) that there was something there despite the lies.

    I do understand. And welcome your words of support and wisdom.

    As I have said before, I am not sure that I can ever return to be being the loving and compassionate person that I was before all this. The issue that pains me is that my ex took a long time to build his own life around my being to dumb or blind to see what was happening. He may have lied about his life experiences, but his actions towards me indicated a deeper feeling.

    In the past couple of years he pushed me to develop my skills as a desktop publisher and photographer. He seemed to be genuine concerned with my bout of Bell's Palsy or my nearly taking my finger off in the kitchen.

    Of course now I wonder what his true motives behind the concern were. Right now I have chosen to believe in my "fantasy world" that there was a deeper love there, than his recent actions have shown. I guess that is my coping mechanism going into action.

    In the end you are an example of the good in mankind. And what I will strive to be with my last breath on this green earth.

    Peace be with you.
     
  24. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2003
    Location:
    Colly-fornia
    #24
    Shoot, I bet you'll have fun in SF. Weather should be fantastic, and a few days in The City should give you plenty to do. Enjoy...
     
  25. Chip NoVaMac thread starter macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    #25

    That I will! As a "large" person the prospect of being in the high 60;s during the day, and the mid 50's at night is the most appealing aspect. I am looking forward to eating my way through Chinatown while I am there.

    When I travel I am one of those that will strike up a conversation with whom ever will listen. Drives friends of mine crazy. But I have met some very nice people that way.
     

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