"We never discussed this and there was no prior agreement at all," she said. "This is not something that I agreed to. They didn't care."
Dai tried to refuse, locking her son in his bedroom. But, she said, her now-former husband had been physically abusive and she was afraid. With no friends, family or neighbors nearby who could help, several hours later she conceded. In the following months, Dai said her ex-husband denied her repeated requests to see her son. He filed for divorce, claiming she was "irresponsible" and "didn't have time to take care of the son due to work," according to court documents reviewed by CNN. Dai, a Canadian citizen, went to the Beijing police and the Canadian consulate -- but she said authorities called it a private family matter and that there was nothing they could do.