A letter and then possible biography

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Experience Level: Intermediate
Hi Amanda,
I'm looking to get help with writing a letter asking for help. It's a very complex situation and don't know where to start. I'm at the very end of my tether and I suffer from mental health conditions that affect my ability to not only relate to people but to work and make a living. The letter is to a friend of my late ex husbands asking for help. Asking for help is something I feel very uncomfortable about but realise now that I really have no choice left. Life has become unbearable and I'm struggling to cope so much that it's affecting my physical health and I'm becoming bed bound as a consequence.

I found my ex dead last Christmas at his home in Lewes. The morning I found him I was at an emergency appointment with the mental health team in Brighton as I was suffering from suicidal thoughts and depression. I was asked by a family member to check on him as he wasn't answering his phone. My daughter had messages from him days earlier to say that he was on deaths door with the flu. He was a heavy smoker for many years and an ex alcoholic but had recently got sober and was studying Buddhism and practicing lots of yoga. I hadn't been to his property before as he had recently moved, there was no answer at his door but when I looked through the letterbox I could see him lying dead on the floor. He was surrounded by squlour and filth. I had no idea of how bad things had become for him . This was a man who five years ago was a million pound a year hedge fund lawyer and started his career off as a successful barrister and senior partner of various London law firms. I cannot get my head around how much he had fallen.

We divorced ten years ago but remained close friends. I hadn't moved on and remained single, he had a girlfriend who always seemed quite distant.. We had two children 19 and 17 who are amazing in many ways. He supported us financially. He paid for my maintainenance and living costs, daughters school costs, sons uni fees, exotic holidays, phones and pocket money. I had never been employed thtoughtout our marriage but had ran several small businesses to keep me occupied and busy. Five years ago I was diagnosed with ADHD and mild autism. I also have an anxiety and panic disorder. I'm also self diagnosed borderline personality disorder and I'm struggling with the menopause and recently diagnosed with osteoarthritis which is progressing quite rapidly from my hips to my knees. So working has always been a challenge for me.

A few years ago I qualified as a holistic massage therapist and volunteered for two years for the clock tower sanctuary in Brighton administering Indian head massage to homeless teenagers. Just before my ex died I started a massage room in a hotel in uckfield but in April I had to close due to exhaustion and aching joints.

Since his death overnight we went from well off to poor. His payments to me stopped. I was overdrawn and in financial difficulties at the time. I had no savings. My daughters school bill will stand at £45k. My son has mounting uni costs. . I have a largish mortgage and bills to pay. To make ends meet over the summer I have had to rent out my house on airbnb and my children and I would have to sleep on friends sofas. It's been very unsettling. I am currently living off my credit card. I have been looking for jobs but due to my health conditions this is very difficult. I took a part time job in a casino but had to quit as the pain in my hips was too severe as I was standing a lot. I have equity in my home but downsizing right now whilst my daughter is in tht final year of a levels is too much for me to bear emotionally. I'm at a hopeless situation and I'm srutggling so much. I'm very sad and cry much of the time as I'm trying to sell my exs clothing which is very triggering as I think I'm struggling with the ptsd. Although he hadn't remarried it's been left to me to sort out his estate and it's looking like it could be potentially insolvent but I'm struggling to even find the right lawyer to deal with his complicated and messy financial affairs. It seems to me that he was suffering from mental health disorders too. . Although I still loved him very much I had endured years of abuse and was falsely accused of child abuse back in 2013 which he later apologised for. . He took me to court 8 years ago for sole custody of the children I lost my son but was to keep my daughter. A year later my son came back to live with me when my ex was arrested on animal cruelty charges and was drunk whilst picking my son from a train station. This was the sledge hammer to the family and totally destroyed me. I still hadn't recovered when I found my ex dead. I feel dreadfully guilty that I didn't do more to save him.

So now I am so desperate I just don't know what to do. My ex comes from a very priveledged background but was estranged from his family and he didn't have much contact with them. They are very disfunctional and his parents were alcoholics too. They have offered no help or support since his death.

I was thinking of writing to one of his close friends who is the billionaire philanthropist David Ross. Nick and David went to Uppingham school together and David attended our wedding. I've met him a couple of times and he always seemed like a very nice man. I know if he knew our situation he would want to help. In fact I've received very little help from anyone. I'm very alone and find it difficult to maintain close relationships, I often push people away probably due to my mild autistic traits. I can be introverted and I isolate myselF from the world. I have friends but they don't ever get to see the real me. They see a different side because I mask my problems very well. I feel emotions intensify and get very lost in how I feel.

So I was thinking to write to David. I dont think I have much to lose. I am so desperate I don't know else to do. I feel that I really need to heal myself from trauma but I have to somehow make money to survive and that is the problem and all I'm doing is worrying and stressing and that is causeing my arthritis to worsen.

I am looking to write a letter to David but I struggle with what to say. I know he has given an awful lot to charity and perhaps would help out my children with their mounting costs as my daughter is a talented artist and wants to study fashion at uni in London next year. I have no idea how i can afford this and I'm so guilty of her suffering financially because of me.

If you need more info please do let me know.

Kind regards

Michelle Terras


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