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Apr 27, 2010

Another Scammer... Abby Update and Pray for Me Pray for Others

From Brent

I feel I should alert you… we got scammed by a woman in California, and know now that she has a history of using blogs and links to move on to new people… in this case, possibly some of you.

She hops around blog links, and get names (blog names, email names, personal names) then contacts them and says “oh, I follow Abby’s story over at the Riggs blog and they mentioned you and now I just love your blog. I want to donate some money to your [charity, organization, adoption, etc]”… or something like that.

Her name is Julianna Wiseman, sometimes “InternationalMom”, or email address:

She contacted us and said she was going to give us $15K for our adoption. After one of our friends recently had received a legitimate $20K gift, we just didn’t have that “too good to be true” reaction you might expect. We’ve received a generous gift for our other adoptions, so we weren’t suspicious about the amount. I failed to research her name before responding. We gave her our BOX ADDRESS (at the post office; not our physical address) to mail the check.

Then, today, just on a gut feeling, I started Googling her, and found out she has a long history of lies, fraud and internet stalking. I haven’t read anything other than it’s just via Internet, and basically electronic stalking/harassment (no violence, criminal acts or theft). Basically just screwing around with people and their emotions and good intentions.

Don’t want you to be fooled by her. I doubt she’ll contact anyone we know after the rather blunt and legally threatening letter I sent her but, I felt I should give everyone routinely connected to us a heads up just in case. I’d feel horrible if she contacted you and I failed to warn you.

We thought we had just gotten half our adoption funds in one gift, so on top of the huge disappointment this represents for us, we get to feel totally stupid for being so gullible. I SHOULD have know better and of course, my immediate respond from now on will be to investigate before responding. I’m pretty experienced and savvy about public life on the Internet, and I absolutely should have known better.

Just FYI… if you see her name in an email, or see comments from her, just delete them and ignore them totally. That way you don’t have to feel stupid like I do right now…

From Michelle:

The walls are closing in on us, with no real end in site. Abby's white blood cell count is still dangerously low. In fact, it is worse now than it was last week (ANC is now 200). School is almost over and Abby is stuck at home because and germ would be dangerous now. I really hope she can go back soon.

We all really thought Abby's bloodwork would look great this week. We had no idea her immune system was this low when she was meeting Garth, Trisha and Troy. I am actually thankful we didn't know. Abby had a ball and God protected her.

Abby had a great time meeting "Mr. Garf, Miss Trisha" and her NEWEST boyfriend "Troy" (I guess she knew better than to hit on Garf since his wife was hanging around!). If anyone knows Troy, you might want to inform him.

Her chemo is being held for another week. From a cancer stand point, this is bad because breaks from chemo can let the cancer gain momentum. I just keep reminding myself that God doesn't need chemo to heal Abby.

The collateral damage from the chemo is easier to spot now. Abby is shaky, tired and having a lot of trouble keeping up with her peers. Our prayer is that the damage will not be permanent and that she will have the strength to fight her cancer, learn AND to have some fun.

Abby fell from the top of the monkey-bars at the park today because her legs were weak and trembling. Tears poured down her face but before we left she was up on the top of the monkey-bars again. She is determined to be a kid. It scares me to death to watch her but I cheer her on anyway.

Pray for Others:

A friend, Vanessa, is in the process of providing the people of San Antonio Palopo, Guatemala their very first library. Educational opportunities are scarce there but the desire to learn is great. Please pray for this special lady as she gathers resources and prepares to minister to them. I can't wait for the day when Abby and I can travel with her. Please stop by her blog and let her know you are praying too.

Please continue to pray for Chrissie. Her story is amazing but far from over. Please pray that her newly repaired heart would heal and that her lungs would function properly. Please also pray for her parents who are by her side watching her fight to live.

Her Mom Lorraine will be on Brent's radio show again tonight, 10pm CST...

Pray for Me Pray for Others

It has been a while since I have posted a Pray for Me Pray for Others. I miss hearing about how I can pray for you. I would love for you to list your prayer requests and requests for others you know who need our prayers.


Denise said...

I can't believe that someone would do that, I don't understand people, thanks for the warning! I pray that Abby feels better and gets to go back to school soon! God Bless!

Meredith said...

I was just thinking a few days ago that I missed you "pray for me, pray for others" blog hop and the opprotunity to pray for others!

Thanks for doing it again.

Are These Kids All Yours? said...

PRAYING!!!! Just know we are surrounding you all in prayer- DAILY!!!!!!!

Jill said...

Thanks for including my daughter Jiliang on your list of prayers. I am praying fervently for Chrissie, Abby, and my girl as well as all of the other wonderful children listed. God Bless you and your family!

Its So Very Cheri said...

Don;t feel stupid--your mind is going in a thousand different directions and these people are hoping they catch you in a moment of weakness when your guard is down.

Prayers going out for everyone in your family.

Cheri from Its So Very Cheri

Annie said...

I suppose I would simply think that this is a poor soul who would like to do good in the least knows it would garner her the love and attention she probably needs...but can't really do anything. Mental illness. To be pitied.

Vanessa said...

Sorry she got to you guys!! I also received a letter in the mail from her, but thankfully I knew the name from the adoption forum. So sad to do this to people!!

Thanks so much for spreading the word about the library project in Guatemala!! We're praying and having faith it will happen!!

Our family is continuing to pray for Abby and your family as well!!

Laura said...

Thank you for posting about the scammer. I just received an email from her for my company's upcoming fundraising event. I googled her name and stumbled upon your blog.

I do not know you, but I am impressed by your transparency in faith and prayer. Thank you for a nice read to break up the monotony of the day!