I hope you don't mind me writing this in English, it is just that I am more comfortable writing in English. My name is Samia A.[ name changed], I am a Saudi but my mother is an American. Through out my life whenever I mention the fact that I was half American, people would get stars in their eyes and think I am a western girl who's spent half her life out of the country. The truth is, I have never been out of the country. My father is a narcissistic man who somehow conned my mother into marrying him over thirty years ago, brought her into the country and has since been her jailer. She has not left the country in over twenty years. They had eight kids, six boys and two girls - I am the fifth child and the youngest of the two girls.

I am 26 now and one of two left at home. My sister got married and my brothers grew up, left home and never looked back. To sum up my life: I have been like a bug in a shoe box with a couple of holes on the side for air. Two years ago we used to live in Riyadh, then my father retired from work and decided to move to Madinah. I was a student at the Riyadh Girls College and I had one year left to graduate. By some miracle, my father decided that the best thing to do was to let me stay that year at the college dorms. That was the one year I was let out of the box. I swore I would never go back to my father. I did a lot that year in an attempt to get out of the country, to sum it up: I got in contact with the American Embassy in Riyadh and managed to get myself an American passport. But it was not enough. I was told that since I am half Saudi, there was no way the Saudi government would let me out of the country without a Saudi passport.

My year out of the box was over last July. I have been home for a year now and tightly locked up in the box, I swear I could count the number of times I have been out of the house the last few months. It feels like even breathing is getting hard. I've contacted the embassy again to see if there was anyway they could help and they told me that they could get me permission to leave the country despite my father if I had a passport, they also told me that I could directly request a passport from the Saudi authorities here if my father refuses to grant me one, and that is where I am stuck now. I have been trying to get more information about that but I do not know who to ask or where to look. It is impossible to get information out of officials here. My brothers and uncles turn a complete blind eye to me, I have too big a problem for them to admit it exists, they do not want to have anything to do with it. I came across your name on an American Human rights report, so I have been looking up the things you have written and done. I know it is a long shot to ask this of you, but at this point, there is not much of anything I would not try, so if you have any kind of information that would help me with this I would be more than appreciative of it.

I hope this has not been too much of a bother.

Best Regards,
Samia A.


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