Brasilmagic\’s Weblog

Venting to the World

The Sean Goldman case

This is a very sad story. Dateline made a story on it, showing the father in a favorable light. Here is a summarized version of the story:

1) Male model meets nice girl from a well to do family from Brazil during his modeling stint in Italy;

2) They get married and have a son; former male model settles down in New Jersey and becomes a loving father and husband;

3) Husband thinks everything is all right. In-laws from Brazil come to visit and wife and son go back with them for a 2 week vacation. Husband takes family to airport and plans to join them later;

4) A few days later, he receives a phone call that shocks him. His wife is saying she is saying in Brazil for good and wants full custody of the young son. She also tells him to not even try to prosecute her criminally or else;

5) Wife gets a divorce in Brazil and gets remarried. Later, she dies. Father tries to get son back and the grandparents and the stepfather, protected by the slow and inneficiant Brazilian judicial system, stall the possibility of father and son being reunited.

5) David Goldman, the father, has been in a 4 year battle with Brazilian authorites to recover his son. 

This is a sad and unfair story.  My opinion, as a Brazilian and as a mother, is that Sean should be returned to his rightful father as soon as possible! He will adapt well to his new life, will have his father’s attention and love and he can have visitation with his grandparents (say summer vacation).

My analysis of what might have caused Bruna to do what she did:

Young woman from wealthy Brazilian upper middle class family, raised with maids and privilege, goes to Italy to study. Falls in love with handsome American male model. They come to America and she soons realizes that the handsome male model is just a regular guy. The glamour and glitz are gone. She lives in the suburbs, feels possibly isolated and homesick. She has to take care of her son and do housework, whereas in Brazil she could have maids. She misses the human warmth and warm climate of festive Rio. She decides on impulse, or maybe planned with her parents, to go back to Brazil.   She possibly felt disillusioned by her marriage and no longer wanted to be married to David, so instead of urging him to move back to Brazil with her, get a civilized divorce with visitation and vacations, she decides to run. Apparently she met the second husband during her trip there and fell in love very quickly, or maybe he had even been a former boyfriend. Since he was from an influential family in Brazil, her parents might have approved the relationship. For Bruna,  the new guy represented a great opportunity to live the good life, since he was a successful lawyer from a well to do family himself.

This decision was the worse possible. If she was afraid of losing her son (she might have heard stories of American citizens being granted custody of children when a foreign parent decides to move back to their original country), why did she decide to do something so cruel to her husband and to her son? Why did she decide to do something illegal? Why didn’t she try to get a divorce and settle on a visitation pact with the father? Was she wrongly influenced by her parents? Was she ignorant of the law? Was she just plain selfish or clinically depressed? The more I learn about Bruna, the more I see a selfish woman who had no empathy or respect for the man who clearly was a good father and loved his son.

I hope this case resolves soon, and Sean goes back to his father. After all, Sean was born here, so he is an American citizen first.

President Lula, you’ve got to do something about this! This is not acceptable and a shame for us Brazilian internationally! I also hope Obama tells Lula very firmly to stop Bruna’s family from being so dishonest!

See here for details and videos:

http://www.bringseanhome.org/dateline.html

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February 28, 2009 - Posted by | Being a mother, World Events/News

17 Comments »

  1. This is the story in the truest form. Please continue to help us bring sean home. There is a website: bringseanhome.org for more details, photos and forums.

    President Lula,
    Bring your powers to the front and allow Sean Goldman to be reunited with his biological father. We (friends of David Goldman) will not stop. Larry King Live, Dateline, congessmen, Secretary of State Hilary Clinton, Oprah next…

    João Paulo Lins e Silva: you are wrong! Sean is NOT your child; now or ever. This child is an American, and in case you did not know…we will not stop until this Sean is back in New Jersey, USA where he belongs.

    Thanks for this article.

    Angie Rose
    Houston Texas

    Comment by Angie Rose | March 6, 2009 | Reply

    • Angie, we will not stop. Tomorrow I will be in front of the White House. I will report on this afterwards. Thanks for your comments.

      Comment by Grace Farrell | March 14, 2009 | Reply

      • WE DID IT!!!!!!! WELCOME HOME SEAN AND MERRY CHRISTMAS TO YOU AND YOUR ENTIRE FAMILY…YOU ARE ONE OF “OUR” CHILDREN AND YOU ARE NOW HOME!!!!!

        Comment by Angie Rose | December 26, 2009

  2. Thank you for telling the truth about this sad story of an abducted American child.
    My mother was from a wealthy South American country too. When she traveled to the US, she gave up her old life and embraced the American life. She’s very sad to hear how badly Brasil is treating David Goldman.
    We believe the US government should place an Embargo against Brasil until they honor the Hague Convention.

    !Free Sean Goldman!

    Comment by Laura Petersen | March 13, 2009 | Reply

    • Thank you Laura. We are doing our part, by writing to politicians and the media. David will never give up, and we will support him all the way.

      Comment by Grace Farrell | March 14, 2009 | Reply

  3. BRING LITTLE SEAN HOME SOON XXXX

    Comment by Angela Jackson | March 14, 2009 | Reply

  4. I think this analysis of Bruna’s personality and reasons why she did what she did in that brutal way is quite right. The life of the Brazilian elite is so much full of comfort and abundance that living a middle class, hard working American life with an ordinary guy in the suburb seemed like a poor life to this woman.
    I don’t dare to say that Bruna had been planning this with her future husband in Brazil. But it is quite surprising that she could just get a divorce and remarry in Brazil so fast without any negotiation and consent from David, especially when they had a son together. I am pretty sure that Bruna and David never registered their marriage at the Brazilian embassy in the U.S.. And therefore she has never been considered married in Brazil and could easily get married a second time.
    I know this is possible because I have been married to and divorced two Brazilian women in Europe, both with and without registering the marriage in Brazil. In the first case we had to officially divorce in both countries. My second wife though was always considered single in Brazil in all her documents.

    Comment by Mikael Karlsson | March 24, 2009 | Reply

  5. In 1996, thru the Rotary Club we sent out son to Brazil for ten months, and housed a Brazilian exchange student too.Through this program we successfully bridged the gap between our two countries’ cultures. I am dismayed at the reluctance of the Brazilian judicial system to do the right thing and return Sean to his bilogical father’s loving care. This international tug of war over the divine right of a biological parent does irreputable harm to the country of Brazil. I would not send another child to your country because of your secular approach to justice. DO THE RIGHT THING, SEND SEAN HOME, AND DO YOUR OWN COUNTRY A FAVOR.

    Comment by HOLLY | March 28, 2009 | Reply

  6. In 1996, thru the Rotary Club we sent out son to Brazil for ten months, and housed a Brazilian exchange student too.Through this program we successfully bridged the gap between our two countries’ cultures. I am dismayed at the reluctance of the Brazilian judicial system to do the right thing and return Sean to his bilogical father’s loving care. This international tug of war over the divine right of a biological parent does irreputable harm to the country of Brazil. I would not send another child to your country because of your secular approach to justice. DO THE RIGHT THING, SEND SEAN HOME, AND DO YOUR OWN COUNTRY A FAVOR.

    Comment by HOLLY | March 28, 2009 | Reply

  7. Holly, I hope Brazil does the right thing and sends Sean back. I am one of the people actively fighting for that to happen. I have worked very hard the past month for David on http://www.bringseanhome.org. Come and help us too! I also hope you will not judge all Brazilians for the actions of some bad people; in reality, most Brazilians are in favor of David, the real father. And yes, you can send your child to Brazil and also travel there yourself, this case has it’s own peculiarities. There are other held children in other countries too Holly, not just Brazil. Revengeful and selfish mothers and fathers exist everywhere, and countries tend to favor mothers more than fathers.

    Comment by Grace Farrell | March 28, 2009 | Reply

  8. I am so disappointed at this case and how it has turned out for David and Sean Goldman. I am from Brazil and have been living here for 20 years and it saddens me to know that this is happening in my own country. I do not understand how they can think that it is better for this child to stay in Brazil with the new husband, not related at all to the child, instead of sending him back to his own father. I have a child and if my ex-husband took her back to Brazil and never returned, I would not know what to do. This is just ridiculous!

    Comment by Andrea Martins | June 7, 2009 | Reply

    • Andrea, I am going to post about this case soon. I have neglected this blog since I started helping out along with many other people, many Brazilians, to try to spread consciousness about this case. It has been a lot of work going against a powerful and politically connected family in Brazil.

      Comment by Grace Farrell | June 8, 2009 | Reply

  9. As a Brazilian, it is embarrassing for me to read about this case since it explicitly exposes the shameless corruption in Brazil where the affluent get what they want no matter what the law states. Otherwise Sean would already be living in NJ with his father.

    This is a case where an influential family can pull strings in the Brazilian courts to get what they want. And they have enough influence in the media to assassinate David’s reputation. What a disgrace!

    Comment by Fabio | June 10, 2009 | Reply

  10. Bruna’s new husband sounds very successful which seems to indicate he may be much older than Bruna. If so, was he married before? Does he have other older children? If not, is it possible he could not have children? By his marriage to Bruna, he acquired a step son, even trying to get his BIRTH CERTIFICATE name of father changed.

    Yes, he has a daughter. Lucky or by petrie dish. Perhaps in his wealthy family, there must be offspring (especially male) for him to inherit the family wealth. To achive this, even with a female offspring, he and Bruna may have gone to great lengths produce a daughter.

    He is WAY TOO MUCH INVESTED IN GETTING THIS LITTLE BOY. HOW WELL WAS BRUNA’S DEATH LOOKED INTO??? If she is no longer here, she could never leave him and take his daughter. Maybe someone should reinvestigate her death and take a good look at HIS motives. To actually get Seans birth certificate changed and all the delays shows he has great infuence over the Brazillian Courts and their judges. Also, for him to be able to intimidate the Brazillian news agencies smacks of something very dangerous and the authorities shuld investgate him bigtime instead of treating him with kid gloves. Is it possible he able to intimidate the Police Authorities? Again, HE IS WAY TOO INVESTED IN ANOTHER MAN’S SON.

    Comment by Nancy J. | June 19, 2009 | Reply

  11. I a Brazilian Citizem and resided legally in the US for 16 years. My opinion about the case is that Bruna was nothing more than a spoiled girl who never thought twice about the problems her actions could bring to her kid. Sean is not just a American citizen, for those that think he is. He has dual citzenship, but that is what matter the least. He was kidnapped by his mother and had her not passed away, this situation could have become a lot worst! I’m glad Sean is now home with his biological father, but sad to think about the psicological problems he might have suffered because of this judicial battle.

    Good luck Sean and Merry Christmas!

    Comment by Sergio | December 25, 2009 | Reply

  12. I believe that Sean Goldman must live with the father, in this case. Anyway, I have a question to Senator Lautenberg: You have proposed retaliation to Brazil. The Brazilian nation can be condemned because of an individual case?
    Hamilton Moraes
    Thank you.

    Comment by Hamilton | December 28, 2009 | Reply

  13. It appears the family in Brazil will fight to regain custody according to this article here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/12/29/sean-goldmans-brazilian-r_n_405992.html

    The David Goldman would be very wise not to let the Sean visit the family in Brazil given the fact that the Brazilian family cannot be trusted.

    Comment by Fabio Lacerda | December 29, 2009 | Reply


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