“God gives you only so much that you can handle.”
That’s what most people say when you’re going through a rough patch. But is it really true? Does it calm your anxiety of the unknown? Does it give you hope? May be, it does to some.
But will a profound saying like this calm a mother’s fears after she has lost her daughter? To her very own husband? Will it give her hope to see her once again?
This is the heart-wrenching story of Nadia Rashid, a woman from Amsterdam who fell in love with a man from India. The two had a beautiful daughter, who she named Insiya. What seemed like a happy marriage full of love, soon became a violent one. She took action but he got their daughter kidnapped from Nadia’s house in Amsterdam and fled to Mumbai.
Humans of Amsterdam shared Nadia’s heartbreaking story with us so that we could all help her get Insiya back. We urge you to read on:
“I met him while I was volunteering at the International Indian Film Academy Awards in Amsterdam. He seemed friendly and through the organization he got my phone number. He texted me and every now and then we kept in touch. I don’t think you can call it a friendship but we were acquaintances. He was a businessman from India and he traveled a lot. In 2010 he was in Amsterdam and he came by my house. To my surprise he asked me to marry him. I barely knew him so I kindly refused. I don’t think he understood my no and so he kept sending me messages and kept traveling to Amsterdam to come and meet me. He made me feel special and he kept putting me on a pedestal. He made me feel special and he was very nice to me. At some point I was in love and he took good care of me. He loved me and it was picture perfect. I started to fall in love with him and when he proposed again I said yes. We got married in 2011 and that’s when everything changed…”
“The day we got married everything changed.”
“Our wedding was big and many people were invited. I noticed a change in his behavior. He acted differently but I couldn’t really pinpoint what it was. After the party he left and he disappeared for our wedding night. He slowly changed from a loving man into a dominant husband. Before we got married he would tell me I was beautiful and give me compliments but once we were married he told me I dressed terribly and slowly started tarring down my confidence. I love meeting new people but he made sure I didn’t become friends with his friends. He would tell me they were using drugs or that they were cheating on their wives. That way he made sure I didn’t mingle with his friends. Later on I found out that he would tell his friends that I was an abusive wife and that I only married him for his money. He was slowly isolating me and I was getting more dependent of him. During our marriage he was living in India. Our plan was to move to London at some point. In the meantime, we kept traveling back and forth from Mumbai to Amsterdam. Later on that plan shifted and we decided we would live here. He would keep his job in Mumbai but our home would be here.”
“After 3 years of marriage I got pregnant. It was not an easy pregnancy. When our daughter was born I named her Insiya. When I gave birth to Insiya, he left after four days and he left me alone with the baby. 6 weeks after our daughter was born the traveling back and forth started again but it was almost impossible. Traveling with a newborn is exhausting and by the time she was 6 months old we had traveled to India over 6 times. I was taking care of our daughter. I remember one night Insiya woke up in the middle of the night and we could hear her cry through the baby phone. He got really mad at me and when she woke up for the third time he said I had to go sleep in her room because he could not sleep. He did not have much patience with her. He never fed or changed her diaper. I felt like a single mother in a marriage.”
“After we got married he also became physically violent. Here I was, a highly educated woman from a Western country with an abusive husband. I never told anyone because I was too ashamed. From the outside we looked like the perfect family but it was a nightmare. 8 months after Insiya was born we both agreed on the fact that the traveling wasn’t working out.”
“Every time he would be abusive he would tell me the next day that he was sorry and that it was all his fault. He promised me he would change. He would say that I was a better person than he was and that is why I would be able to forgive him. I still wanted to believe in our fairy tale and so I kept giving him chances, but a man who beats you once will beat you again. “
“When I stopped traveling to India with our daughter we agreed that he would visit us in Amsterdam every two weeks. I hoped it would improve our situation but it didn’t. He came by often but he had not lost his anger. He was still violent. This time I couldn’t take it anymore and I stood up for myself and said that it was enough. I want to be an example for my daughter. It was the first time I told him enough is enough.”
“In April we went on a family vacation to Dubai and when we returned he went back to India. I called him the next day but he didn’t pick up his phone. I didn’t hear from him in days and when he did pick up his phone he said he was busy. I asked him what he was busy with he said that he was watching cricket. He couldn’t call us and talk to his daughter because he was watching cricket. I told him that if he wouldn’t make us a priority he would also no longer be a priority to us.”
“A few days later he had send all my Facebook friends the same message. In the message he asked if he could meet up with them to talk about me. He wasn’t picking up his phone so I texted him and asked him what he was doing. He said that I was a loser because I didn’t dare to file for a divorce and that he would sue me. He had written my brother and said that I was going to pay for this and that he was going to shame my name. He said that he would tell everyone in Amsterdam and the rest of the world what a terrible woman I was. He ended his message with: ‘This game has just begun..'”
“From that day he made our lives impossible. I filed for divorce but I always made sure he still got to see our daughter. Even after what he had done I still wanted Insiya to be able to have a relationship with her father. One day he came over and while she was sitting on his lap he said that he would send his friends over to have me killed. I walked up to him and took Insiya and ran to the police station to file a complaint against him. The threats kept coming from his side. He said that he would kidnap our daughter and that he would take her to India. He kept messaging me and my family. The messages were so detailed about my whereabouts that I got the feeling I was being watched. And then I found a GPS track and trace device under my car. I went to the police immediately and we had to go into hiding. We were no longer safe. The police attached an AWARE system to my body in case of emergency.”
“The following months he couldn’t see us because of the threats; we were legally not allowed to have direct contact. On a Wednesday in January two policemen knocked at our door. They spotted a suspected vehicle and my ex-husband was in it. It was a rented car with a child’s seat in the back. The first thing that went through my mind was, he is going to take Insiya.”
“It was very clear that he had worked out a plan to kidnap her that day. Again we had to go into hiding until we were sure he had left the country. In the following months we were in heavy lawsuits but meanwhile I kept finding track and trace devices under my car. He kept losing the lawsuits and the judge decided that I became the primary and legal custodian of our daughter. It damaged his ego and as a response he started telling people that I was mistreating our daughter. I was scared all the time. His goal was to destroy me. During the summer it became quiet and I hoped it was over but I was wrong.”
“It was an early morning on the 29th of September and I left the house early. I was at my mother’s place and while I went out Insiya and my mother were in the kitchen having breakfast. Right before I left the house Insiya said: ”Bye mama, see you soon.”
“I was in my car on the highway when my nephew, who was staying at my mother’s house, called. I picked up the phone and he screamed: ”Sister Nadia, Men! Men! They took her, They took Insiya.” My heart stopped.’”
“Right after I had left the house few men had come to my mother’s house pretending they were working for the municipality and were government officials. My mother didn’t believe them and my sister, who was also present at my mother’s house, didn’t believe them. When one of the strange men saw Insiya, he grabbed her and took her to his car. She was not even dressed and only wearing her diaper and undergarments. My mother and sister tried to stop them but they had already fled with their car. My mother got beaten up and my sister got shot down with a taser. With the help of a neighbor they managed to catch one of the kidnappers.”
“While all of this happened I was on the high way. I made a U turn and I pressed my AWARE button but I got stuck in traffic and when I got home Insiya was already gone.”
“Ever since that day my life has been a complete nightmare. In life sometimes you have a bad day but then you go to sleep and there is a new day waiting for you. For me this bad nightmare isn’t ending. For two weeks after the violent kidnap, I had no idea where Insiya was. Later we found out that he had traveled to Germany with her. From there he went to India. As far as I know she in Mumbai with her father whom she barely knows. He has said that if I will go to India he will have me arrested. He is a wealthy and powerful man and he easily buys people off. He has hired one of the best lawyer of The Netherlands to defend him. I haven’t talked to my daughter since she has been kidnapped. Despite my countless efforts, he will not let me talk to my 2-year-old daughter. Together with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Dutch government we are trying our utmost best to get Insiya back.”
“Every day from morning until night I am working on this. I will not stop until I can hold my daughter again.”