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Author Topic: Coming Home on Parole  (Read 11007 times)
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Forevermah
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« on: August 26, 2008, 10:44:06 AM »

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COMING HOME

"After years of waiting and counting down, it is almost time for the gates on the Iron House to open and your loved one to step through and come home. Your greatest dream and your worse nightmare are about to be realized...yes, it is your loved one and no, you don't know this person anymore. Is there hope that all can be healed and your loved one becomes once again the person you knew and loved? The answer is a resounding yes, but it will take honesty, patience and work by all.

The experts say that it only takes 18 months for a person to be institutionalized. After 20+ years working with First Nations persons locked up in Iron Houses, I would say that the experts are being optimistic and that any amount of time locked up leaves wounds that must be healed and behaviors unlearned. You must understand the nature of the enemy - the Iron House - in order to understand the damage done to your loved one. The prison system, regardless of where located, systematically, intentionally and scientifically makes every effort to dehumanize a person in order to better control and "manage" the prison population.

Immediately upon entering the prison system, activities are undertaken to strip away a person's identity, decision-making capabilities, and self-esteem. Their names are taken away to be replaced with a number. Their sense of "Who I Am" is replaced with "What I Am." All opportunities to make a choice are removed. They are consistently told and retold what little worth they have to humanity. They are punished for showing any emotion, questioning any decision, or stepping outside of the accepted standard. Complete and utter compliance and conformity are demanded. Individualism is punished swiftly and severely. And it never changes. Colors are bland, meals are bland, activities are bland, and days and night fold into each other. Time slows and stops, as does growth and life for the inmate.

In order to survive such an environment, your loved must have been flexible enough to adapt and once adapted, it has become his/her life. It is life, alien and warped, but it is their life. And now comes the time for the inmate to come home, a world that has now become alien and unfamiliar and more importantly, terrifying. This is a time that will require more strength from the inmate than going into prison. But this time your loved one is not alone, you are there to help the healing process and to encourage the growth. Your loved one has been deeply wounded, but can heal. Yes, there will always be scars, but one can live with scars as only distant reminders of bad times. So here are a few things to be aware of and several things you can do. You and your loved one are no longer helpless. Take your power back and use it!

TIPS AND HINTS:

First, recognize that he is coming from a place where he has had to be constantly alert and attentive, a place that is never quiet, a place he is never alone in peace, and that quiet is foreign to him. He will need periods of quiet time in short intervals. And he will not be comfortable with loud noises that he is not accustomed to, such as the babble of party noises, street noises and the like. He will be uncomfortable around a variety of colors, genders, children and animals. He will at first be uncomfortable moving from room to room, and will tend to stay in one room until it has become familiar. He will be uncomfortable going out the door ahead of anyone else. His eyes will always be shifting around and his heading turning, and he will probably wish to sit with his back to a wall. These are instinctual things he has learned and he won't even be conscious of it. The best cure is simply time, to replace his instincts with new ones and to help him be aware of his actions, without trying to correct the actions. Pay attention to his comfort level and help make his new environment
comfortable, introducing new things slowly.

The worse damage done to your loved one is his ability to make decisions or choices was taken away. It has to be relearned. We unconsciously make hundreds of decisions a day. Your loved one is not allowed any and has forgotten how to make them. He was not even allowed to choose what he would wear for the day, or if had the choice, it was extremely limited. Do not overwhelm him with choice.

The key to helping is staying supportive, but not smothering. He has to learn to make decisions and to choose in order to survive and grow in the new world, but he doesn't have to learn it overnight. Think in terms of small and slow steps. Let him set the pace, and be there for him if he demands too much of himself. He will want it all...the sensations he lost, the colors he lost, the sounds, the feels, the music. He can have it all, but in smaller doses. Wide-open spaces will scare him at first. Start with just watching a sunset to draw his attention up and out. A short walk in the neighborhood or light picnic in his own backyard. When you see he is comfortable, then expand to something a bit larger, a bit longer.

Don't ask him what he wants you to cook for dinner. Ask him if there's anything in particular that he would like, that he's been craving. Don't be surprised if some of his old favorites have changed and he no longer likes macaroni and cheese or turkey or meat loaf or pancakes. Those are prison staples and he is sick of them, even if your "home-cooked" was special. Again, give him small choices to make...do you want corn or green beans?

He will want to do those things that have been denied him all those years, social functions, entertainment, etc. Help him to realize the dream, but be cautious in how you do it. Do not take him to a movie the first weeks home. Dark, enclosed places, where he is surrounded by people will cause those flight/fight instincts to kick in. Rent a video instead. Do not take him to car races...try watching it on TV first to let him get accustomed to the noise. Do not take him to a restaurant for a full meal...start by going into a smaller, comfortable, familiar place and order just dessert or a beverage. Menus are really intimidating and ordering dinner is overwhelming...soup or salad, what kind of soup or what dressing on the salad, what kind of potato..mashed, baked, fried or rice, rolls or toast, what to drink with dinner.

Don't ever come up behind him quietly and put your arms around him for a quick hug, or tap on his shoulder. The flight/fight instinct will immediately kick in.

Make a little noise before entering a room he's in or call out to him. Encourage him to come into another room by inviting him in with you.

Do not take him shopping unless he asks to go. Under no circumstances, take him into a shopping mall the first few weeks home. Start out with small convenience stores or grocery stores. Don't ask him what he wants, ask him what brand of something he was using or liked. If you put him in front of a two dozen brands of toothpaste, he'll freeze. Watch him closely at shopping expeditions. If he begins to sweat or starts looking around more and more, pull him out of the store...he's on
overload.

Encourage his participation in household decisions by asking his opinion, but do not pressure him to make the decision. I know that you have longed to have the burden shared and it can be, but first he must learn to trust his decision-making skills and feel comfortable with airing his opinion. It's been a long time since he was asked and a long time since he was trusted.

Prepare for him coming home by having a new wardrobe ready for him, preferably colors he wasn't allowed to wear. But keep the wardrobe small, six or seven shirts at most. He won't be able to decide what to wear if he is overwhelmed with too much choice. Help him with the choice by mentioning that you particularly like a shirt or that he looks good in jeans, or you will be going someplace that tennis shoes might be comfortable. Don't tell him what to wear, but give hints or
encouragement that will help.

Even though out of prison, there is still a long string tying him to prison...fines owed, parole officers to check in with, boxes on forms that ask if he ever committed a felony. The reality is that he is forever marked by being a prisoner and both you and he must accept that reality. Reduce the stress levels of the string by reducing the situation to an annoyance rather than an obstacle. Acknowledge that it is annoying, but then so is paying taxes, getting a driver's license, showing ID to cash a check. Reinforce the idea that it is simply a task to be done and has little importance in day-to-day life.

Help your loved one to redefine himself. He has lost "Who I Am," and must now start over and this time carrying a backpack full of shame, guilt, pain, anger and confusion. Don't remind him of who or what he used to be, but encourage him to look for what he wants to be. Let him know there are no limits to what he can be.

Expect periods of silence from him when he has nothing to say. Expect periods when he won't shut up and you want to scream because you are tired of the prison stories. Expect evasions and direct lies because they have become a necessary part of his living system. Expect and understand where these things are coming from, but do not change your life to accommodate these things. When he is silent, respect his silence but do not retreat into it also. When he won't stop talking about prison, understand he is feeling particularly lost and redirect his thoughts to here and now. Call him on the lies and let him know there is no reason to lie. Remember, however, that he is used to instant and harsh punishment and will expect the same from you.

Human touch was one of the first things taken away from him. His only experience with human touch during his imprisonment has been in a negative way or fleeting moments during visits. He will crave touch and be repelled by it at the same time. Watch for his comfort level and adjust to it and help him to expand. Never touch him when he is unaware of your presence. Do not sacrifice yourself and your needs to accommodate him. It will only add to the burden of guilt he is feeling. Let him know that even though the transition is home is tough, you are working on it together, and that you expect him to be a partner in the work. Guide, do not nag. Make opportunities for him to be a partner, and then sit back and allow him to do it...even if you want to take it out of his hands and do
it yourself.

Be honest, be patient, be loving and most importantly, be human. Do not try to be perfect, do not try to be strong all the time. He needs to be needed. He needs to give love as well as receive it. He needs to know he is of value to you and the creation. He needs to relearn pride and faith. He needs to be judged on his actions now and the past become a whisper of memory.

Help him to find his spirituality. Help him to see the world beyond himself and his place in the world through his spirituality.

Be the living example by which he can learn. Show compassion, honor, trust, respect and fairness. These are qualities that he has not seen for a very long time and they cannot be described in words. By your example, show him the way home.


Final Thoughts:

Each situation, each human is different. But there is one truth for all. Your loved one has been wounded by the horror of being locked up. What must take place is a healing, not just for him but for you also. It will happen. It takes time, love and absolute faith, but it does happen. I urge you to be aware of what he has been through and where he has been, but not to allow your home to become a prison also. Help him to clean the prison out of him and replace that empty void with home. Do not allow the prison to run your lives any longer by letting him and yourself stay imprisoned within your heart and minds. In order to be free, you both must feel free. Remind yourselves constantly that you are free!

I speak from the voice of experience. Not only have I supported First Nation Iron House Spiritual Circles, but I married a prisoner. After seven years in prison (six of which we shared together), my husband has home home. On December 25, 1998, we celebrated ten months of freedom.

During our celebration, we talked about the insanity of the first few months home, we talked of the love that had grown and strengthened through the years and the most exciting part was that we talked about the mundane, routine parts of life and made plans for the future....building a new fence next year, getting a puppy as a companion for our grown dog, rebuilding our lodge and renewing our wedding vows next Spring.

All that I had hoped for and wished for has come to be. My husband is truly home and we are stronger and more united for the experience. We truly value love, companionship, partnership and each other. We do not take for granted the small precious moments of life. The healing is well underway for us both. Keep your faith and your hope....it will be a good day, and a good life." ~ author unknown
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Do not value the "things" you have in your life - value "who" you have in your life....



“Instead of thinking about what you're missing, try thinking about what you have that everyone else is missing.”
gloriab
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« Reply #1 on: September 19, 2008, 04:39:53 PM »

Just wanted you to know how this brought tears to my eyes. My 26 year old son came home 3 months ago after being incarcerated for 6 years. All I could think about was him being home. Nothing prepared me for his arrival. He was and still is confused, frightened, fearful, unsure, and scared. How he struggled initially thinking everything would just fall into place magically. No one prepared us for the rejection of jobs, apartments, and lost relationships. It was so difficult to not smother him afraid that if he didn't comply with parole expectations he would be sent back. I understand now for 6 years other inmates were his family and support. How could I expect for him to walk out of prison and just step back into society. It's been a long three months with lots of ups and downs. Today he is working 10 hour days 6 days a week. He has had to report daily for the last 3 weeks because he violated his monitor and gave a dirty drug screen. But, I am grateful to his parole officer who has been amazing. He gave him extra movement once he started working. He is being allowed to move to his first apartment next week and will be taken off the daily reporting. Jesus worked in his life and things just fell into place. Landlady didn't do a credit or criminal check, allowing him to lease apt. in his own name. What a boost to his ego. To have a place of is own, on his own merit. Parole is even allowing him to unplug his box on a Sunday so he can have that day to get situated rather than on Wednesday (the 1st) where he would have to rush around, meet PO, and get to work. One last note, he has even been blessed by being able to keep the same Parole Officer even though he is moving to another town. We were informed that the agent who covered his new home area had passed away recently due to accident discharge of his firearm. My heart goes out to that agents family. Yes, it is a very difficult transition not only for the inmate but for their loved ones. One of my favorite saying is "Jesus didn't bring us this far to let us fail now". The tragedy is behind us, where we go from here is up to us. Today We Are Blessed!
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PrettyBrwnEyes
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« Reply #2 on: September 20, 2008, 03:11:43 PM »

Thank you Forevermah

My husband should be paroled next year and this was real helpful on what to expect. He has been gone close to 20 years and the things you have gone over, neither one of us have even talked about.  wc38 wc38
I need all the help I can get. I am so busy with a full time job, full time school, and the kids that I had forgotten about the little things that my husband will need. Again  wc38 You have given us much food for thought and we will start preparing for his arrival home with much more light shed on where to start.   
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Patience
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« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2008, 11:58:57 PM »

Thanks so much for the information. It has been very helpful. I have been with my lived one for 2 years now, he's been in prison for just over 10 years and he "claims" that he is not institutionalized, but I don't really believe that. We just recently started talking about his release, being that he basically has under 2 years left in prison, and wanting to make sure that we can both adjust. I also mentioned going to see a counselor together so that it'll be easier for both of us.

Do you think that was a good idea? I don't want him to feel like he's crazy or anything like that.

I will definitely take what you wrote and apply it when he does get here. Thanks again!
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Chell771
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« Reply #4 on: October 16, 2008, 03:47:17 PM »

Thanks forever!  It all made perfect sense but I wouldn't have thought of it on my own.  I'm excited, scared and nervous all at once waiting for the day he comes home.  Knowing that neither one of us really knows what lies ahead.

thanks again for sharing.

Michelle
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downtownchicago
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« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2008, 04:51:16 PM »

I think seeing a counselor is a good idea, but only if the counselor has lots of experience specifically with this situation so that they can offer some good solid suggestions for making things work well, resolving issues, etc.
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gloriab
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« Reply #6 on: October 17, 2008, 06:14:58 PM »

Hi everyone! Just thought I would post an update to this. I have had another wonderful month with my son after him doing the 6 years. He continues to work and enjoys the heck out of having his own place. One of the best things I have learned is DO NOT ENABLE. They years he spent in prison made him independent in ways we can't imagine. That is one of the few things they bring home with them that we can nurture. They have lived with the barest of necessities and realize how little it really takes to be comfortable. The do not give them to many choices is one I use often. Keep it simple, so as not to overwhelm him. As much as I want to be up in his business every moment of every day (yes, I admit it) I have to remember that he is his own person and needs to learn how to function out here on his own. I did my time just as if I had been behind the bars myself. As a counselor I know what needs to be done...as a mother I struggle. Finding the balance is what's important. Thinking about some of these things ahead of time is important. Seems like I was so consumed with when he gets out I never stopped to think any further. Prayers remain with all...
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unbreakable
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« Reply #7 on: April 05, 2009, 03:40:43 PM »

how do you get through the last week before they come home? I am going completely crazy! Like I need a straight jacked and thorzine crazy. These last couple of weeks have been the hardest yet. Any advice? wc38
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« Reply #8 on: April 05, 2009, 05:34:18 PM »

 wc2

It can definitely be tuff......
Just keep busy and make plans for yourself.
Try to keep your mind on other things, I know easier said than done.
Find some projects around the house, I assume you are all ready for the home coming from the sound of your post.

Just gotta hang in there....
Maybe someone else will have better suggestions....
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Treazur729
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« Reply #9 on: April 05, 2009, 05:57:23 PM »

Girl just calm down and get some patients. I understand the last couple of days are hard but just think of what he's going through.You should go out enjoy friends and family.Just keep yourself busy. Good luck wc30
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kalakeke
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« Reply #10 on: April 05, 2009, 06:52:11 PM »

I know how you're feeling.  My L/O comes out tomorrow and i'm nervous.  However, I think positive and know the future brings wonderful things.  Take a couple deep breaths and smile girl!
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« Reply #11 on: April 05, 2009, 06:52:47 PM »

 I have done everything I can think of to keep me busy. Right now I am alphabetizing my books and re arranging my room for the 3rd time this week. At least I could eat today. I thought him being gone was tough...SHEESH... this is just crazy. Plus he will be on immediate release so I don't know exactly which day he is coming home. I am going to have to rent a car and find a baby sitter quick enough to sleep a little bit then wake up @ 4:00am to go get him. They said I will know sometime the day before.
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It's official, he's coming on on 03-13-08!!!


« Reply #12 on: April 06, 2009, 10:41:45 AM »

That article really touched home for me.  My husband was only gone for 7 months which seems like forever to me but to some that I've seen, I know that's no time.  But even in that time he was gone, he was stripped of his ability to make decisions and he was so paranoid when he first came home that I thought I would go crazy.  I also like the part about the wardrobe as my husband (in the beginning) changed clothes like 4-5 times a day and when I asked him why his response was "I don't know what to wear, I've work prison blues for so long".  I backed off and he's eased up on that, now only changing about twice a day.  He still can't make decision on things like what do he want for dinner and the like, but he does keep an extremely clean house (for that I'm thankful  wc35).  I personally think that his going to prison and being on the monitoring bracelet (with very  limited movement) has saved our marriage as he is so appreciative of all the little things that he took for granted before he got imprisoned.  He tells me all the time now how much he loves and appreciates me and all we are.  He told me yesterday that he was nothing without me and I had to correct him and tell him that we are two halves coming together to make a whole.  when he was in prison and would say stuff like that I thought it was just "prison talk" but now I believe it because I can see his eyes when he says it.  he still does the sitting with his back to the wall and hearing noises in the night while we're sleep but it's getting so much better.

As far as what to do the last week, I would say just sit back, relax and fasten your seat belt for the ride to come, it's just like a roller coaster, sometimes up hill, some times too fast, some times scary but in the end it puts a smile on your face because the ride is over and it was well worth it!
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« Reply #13 on: September 01, 2010, 10:11:15 PM »

I have been crying since I read this. My bf has done so many years behind the walls and I have been with him only through half of it.. and still we have some more to go, but after reading this it has really opened my eyes to more that there is more to than just what I have accustomed myself to thinking.
We talk about so much and have talked about his ways of needing to change and break the prison life habit but his "institutionalized" ways that will be a hard habit to break. I am ready to start now changing things that I do or act on and maybe find away to make him more part of my daily life, cuz I have been so used to doing all this alone and waking up alone, going about my daily ways and going to bed alone that I wonder how would I be with having him home?? I will have to remember I am not alone.

Does anyone else have more to add to this?? I ask of more input that others have had to face since their loved ones came home?
Seems alot of the members leave IPT once their loved ones are home.. I wonder what have they had to face on a reality basis.
I am glad I saw this topic and read on it, it really has me thinking alot, I have alot to think about and rearrange in life my reality is "I wont be alone anymore"! wc59
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Here we go again.


« Reply #14 on: September 01, 2010, 10:46:10 PM »

I too am glad I found this.We were just talking about this the other day,and he told me the same things posted in that article.He will not be able to eat ,he will be quite,he said he will not be himself,(so the romantic effectionate  guy will be gone?)That kinds of scars me cause we were a very touchy (hands roaming) couple, very passionate .I am  excited and nervous at the same time,but I will keep it in GOD'S hands and I believe he will give us both strength like he has these past 2yrs.
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Marks_guy
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« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2010, 09:39:45 AM »

I'm pretty sure I posted some of this a while back, but I thought it might be helpful. I spent most of my high school years in a juvenile facility. Three years and 15 days, to be exact. While I was given more freedom and choices than people in prison are, I fully admit to becomiing institutionalized during my stint there. This article is right on. When I got out, everything overwhelmed me. With very little access to the outside world, I was scared by how much had changed. Bedtime was promptly at 10pm, and my eyes automatically snapped open at 5am. It took weeks before it sunk into my head that I could sleep in or stay up later. I wanted to do everything, then would become frightened by it. My first trip to the mall? Disastrous. Trying to order at a restaurant? Hilarious. My bedroom was too large and quiet. Cousins, aunts, and uncles, even my parents, were complete strangers.

Thankfully, I had my grandmother to see me through it. She was a woman of uncommon wisdom and patience. I don't know how she knew the right things to do, but she did. Maybe it was just years of being a mother. She limited my options for a while. Did I want hamburgers or hot dogs? Did I like the red shirt or black shirt? She set the rules as to how many people could be at the house to see me so that the crowds wouldn't be too bad. She even went as far as to curtain off part of my room so it would seem smaller and put in a window air conditioner to provide noise. She patiently explained events that happened while I was away.

Now, I think about how to translate those things into helping M adjust when he gets out. I've tried to take stock of things that have changed. If your loved one has been gone more than 5 years, they will think money is funny looking. We've gotten used to yellow $10 bills and quarters with pictures on the back. We have seen the rise of Red Bull, Monster, and RockStar, when they only know coffee as an energy drink. Dazzler's loved one jokes and calls her Warden. I think, in some ways, that is what we have to be upon their release. Or at least loving parents. It is our job to safely guide them back into the outside world, just like we look out for our children. That's not to say we have to control every situation, but it up to us to recognize when things aren't working right.

Most importantly, we must understand that this is not the peron we knew 2, 5, 10, or 20 years ago. Just like we change with the passing of time, so have they. It is an adjustment for everyone involved. 
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« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2010, 10:14:22 PM »

Have to add my 2 cents....
When my son came home the first time after 3 yrs most of the things people warned me about we did NOT experience.  My list is different, than any I have ever seen.
I attribute some of it to the JOB he had the last two yrs while he was in.
He was out and about the facility everyday and inner acting with MOST all departments within the facility, and spoke with most ALL CO's LT, teachers medical staff etc....
He was out and about, and sort of kind of in a small society and inner acting daily with people from the outside.

Here is what was hard for him and ME!!!
THE DRIVE HOME, the closer we got to home the whiter his face became, we both thought he was gonna pass out or PUKE.........he never did
Then when we got home, IT was a beautiful summer day.............THE TREES outside FREAKED him out uncontrollably....He had not been close to a tree or plant or anything for years...........He kept saying he thought they were gonna grab him (gosh he would freak probably if he knew I was sharing this LOL)
The tree thing went on for a long time..........and then finally it faded.....
He was ecstatic about being in a real bed in a real room in a real house, BUT, he came from a dorm room, NOT a CELL..........
WHAT totally got on my nerves the most, was HE WOULD NOT TURN A LIGHT OFF OR SHUT A CABINET OR closet door..........It was crazy, when I finally brought it to his attention he says.........OMG mom, I didn't even realize I was doing it, I haven't been able to turn the lights off or on the whole time I have been gone....................THAT was weird to think about for BOTH of us.  The reality of the light switches really freaked him out, he at that point realized he was more institutionalized than he had ever imagined.
He would get frustrated remembering to lock the house up when he left and fumbling for his keys and remembering he had to UNLOCK the house to get in.
He felt funny with a knife in his hand....we had a cookout the day he came home, I had been told he wouldn't be able to eat, he ate like a cow, but he couldn't cut a steak with a knife he was hilarious, cooking on the grill with my BRO a hamburger in one hand and a Fillet Mignon in the other, first time I ever seen anyone eat a steak by hand in my life, it was PRICELESS............
I think we just laughed and hugged and stared at each other for weeks.....IT WAS AWESOME...........

A friend of mine had a weird experience with her son as well.......first I heard of this one too.
He would go to the store with her the first couple of months, and buy stuff like he was used to buying in commissary, individual cheese servings, rice, beans stuff like that,  and then she would find him heating stuff up in the kitchen sink in a bowl of HOT WATER, LIKE he was still there, HE LOVED his certain PRISON MEALS he was USED TO MAKING, and was trying to get the whole family to join in on his NEW FOUND menu's.  Her and I talked and laughed about it later, and decided it was a comfort thing, it didn't last more than a few weeks or so, but again, not a story I had ever seen on here.  Funny, and a little sad at the same time. It didn't last long, but when she confronted him about it, he was not TRULY conscience of his actions it seemed.

This is interesting hopefully others will share more here, as this thread had been quiet for a LONG time
GOOD TOPIC imo............
SLMS wc72
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« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2010, 11:53:10 PM »

Marks_guy and Still love my son ....

Wow reading your stories I could picture it all as if I knew you personally and your loved ones. It was so touching! I have been crying so much after reading all these. wc17

Thanks for the eye opening experience it was like a mini series tv show on lifetime!!  .

I want to be that person he can depend on and I want to be 110% ready for him and when he comes home. He doesnt know about cd's or cell phones, especially not computers either. I have so much to learn, teach and deal with him not only on a technology level but on an emotional level as most importantly.
I dont want him to be overwhelmed and shut himself off from us either. But I know it will be all in stages thanks to reading all these stories.

We joked cuz he said he went to the bathroom visiting room and saw a REAL mirror one in which he hasnt looked into for many many years and he said he stared at himself and noticed so much he hadnt notice before and how he sees the years show in his eyes the instutionalized man he is now. He joked about it and I went along with it but after reading all this... wow i can only imagine how he was really feeling and here i was laughing instead of listening to him. wc24

Still love my son... I am glad you put your 2 cents into this thread  wc71-1

Marks_guy ... I want to be like your grandmother one day.. all that wisdom and knowledge is amazing.  wc69
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« Reply #18 on: September 03, 2010, 08:21:37 PM »

I totally understand the light thing. Only I went the opposite direction. After years of having some kind of light (usually in an inconvenient spot for sleeping), I would rarely turn one on. I guess I was never a very good rebel!  wc35
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« Reply #19 on: October 05, 2010, 01:01:35 PM »

This article was written by a woman named Storm Reyes.

http://nativenewsonline.org/~ishgooda/caged/cageopen.htm
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« Reply #20 on: June 22, 2011, 01:59:13 AM »

these experiences were helpful for me as i prepare for my hubby to come home
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« Reply #21 on: July 25, 2011, 08:52:35 PM »

has anyone of you girls ever felt selfish for wanting him home, im just saying like my man is going to parole to my house but yet his family wants him there but he has been behind bars for over 3 years just about 4 now and I have been there the whole time I am the only one who visited him, I was the only one who every singe week he knew he would have a letter, and could always call,I am the one who goes every weekend to see him, and he would ask about his family if they could come all the time, and my hart would brake as when I asked them it was always they had something to do, I even offered to pay for the hotel bring them and pay for everything they needed just to go, and they said it was going to be a nice weekend out that they didnt wanna have to be in the car!!! I guess the point is I feel bad that he will be with me as now that he is on his way out they want him to come down there (being the city, oh I moved all the way 5 hours away to be 30 min from him, and got a good job so I am staying out here) but point being now they want him to move down there for a little bit, he does not want to but wants to see him family, but how do I say sorry your family dont want to come? or how do I protect him from that, I felt selfish about this and told him he needed to go with his family and he said no he did not want to be out there that I was the one there so he is going to be here for me, but I still feel bad, he gets out in 8 weeks and IDK what to tell him has anyone been threw this? being a mother myself If my son was locked up I would never leave him(being its his first itme not like he always there and she just gave up)In a way I am mad at them for leaving his side but in a way that is his family
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« Reply #22 on: July 25, 2011, 09:06:13 PM »

My LO's family sends him money ( I do not), that said they dont write him, nor have the visited.  I too go once a week.  I don't feel one bit guilty that he is paroling to me/my house/our house.  It is time for us to move forward.  We will visit his family.  I have no hard feelings towards them, but yeah ~ I want him all to myself.

Put the guilt away and look ahead...good things to come.
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« Reply #23 on: July 26, 2011, 05:57:25 AM »

M's family is the same way. No visits, no letters, and only the occasional (once every other month if someone is home) phone call. He tries not to let me know that it hurts, but I can hear it in his voice when he talks about them. He wants to be transferred closer to home, mainly so that they MIGHT come visit him.

Do NOT feel guilty about being there for your guy. You are the one he wants to be with after release. HE is choosing you, not you whisking him away to captivity. There will be plenty of time for him to reconnect with his family if that is what he wants, but those decisions are his to own.
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« Reply #24 on: July 26, 2011, 09:18:25 AM »

My husband has been home for just over 6mos now after serving a year and a half of a 3 year sentence.  Since just before he got out, he has said he is so stressed about MSR that he would rather have served the extra 6mos (1yr MSR) inside and come out clean.  He seems to think that this is something most inmates want.  Is this true?  Would most inmates want to do the extra time so they aren't on any supervision?  I don't understand it because he is on the minimum supervision.  All he has to do is check in 2x/mo and see the PO once a month.  No milage restriction, no ankle bracelet.  The PO even told him when he finishes his drug abuse treatment program that he will be put in for early release, which should be in the next month.  I guess I just don't understand why someone would choose prison instead of being with their family.  Has anyone dealt with a similar issue?
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« Reply #25 on: July 26, 2011, 09:22:05 AM »

My husband has been home for just over 6mos now after serving a year and a half of a 3 year sentence.  Since just before he got out, he has said he is so stressed about MSR that he would rather have served the extra 6mos (1yr MSR) inside and come out clean.  He seems to think that this is something most inmates want.  Is this true?  Would most inmates want to do the extra time so they aren't on any supervision?  I don't understand it because he is on the minimum supervision.  All he has to do is check in 2x/mo and see the PO once a month.  No milage restriction, no ankle bracelet.  The PO even told him when he finishes his drug abuse treatment program that he will be put in for early release, which should be in the next month.  I guess I just don't understand why someone would choose prison instead of being with their family.  Has anyone dealt with a similar issue?

Maybe it's just the fear of doing just one little thing that could send them back?  I think most guys just want to get out, but most are afraid, the one's that take MSR seriously, of being violated, it is a scary reality, even if you are following the rules 100%,  I know from experience.  I can't say that most want to stay in, from experiences here, they just want OUT!

Sounds likes he will be done soon, which is wonderful, it takes a few weeks to receive those final papers from IDOC, but it's a great feeling to read that letter saying you are released from their care, or should I say control!
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« Reply #26 on: July 26, 2011, 11:05:07 AM »

What can I do to help him through his stress/worry?  It's causing a lot of problems because I just dont understand how hes feeling and I'm not sure I even can because you aren't supposed to worry about getting in trouble if you're not doing anything wrong.  Why would a PO take him back if he was doing everything he was supposed to?  He's talking about wanting to go back now and do the remaining 90 days, even though he should be done with treatment before then.  I am just so confused and wish all of this would be over already.  he already did the extra 6mos since he didnt get any good time because of politics. :(
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« Reply #27 on: July 26, 2011, 01:46:35 PM »

What can I do to help him through his stress/worry?  It's causing a lot of problems because I just dont understand how hes feeling and I'm not sure I even can because you aren't supposed to worry about getting in trouble if you're not doing anything wrong.  Why would a PO take him back if he was doing everything he was supposed to?  He's talking about wanting to go back now and do the remaining 90 days, even though he should be done with treatment before then.  I am just so confused and wish all of this would be over already.  he already did the extra 6mos since he didnt get any good time because of politics. :(

All you can do is support him. If he is in a drug program are you sure he isn't worry about relapsing? Something is bothering him that he would want to go back to IDOC. If he is almost done with the drug program and his PO is going to let him off early, which they do often, he won't have much more time, he should wait, he doesn't want to go back to IDOC with the conditions right now and in this heat.  Talk to him, ask him what is bothering him and see if he will talk to you about it, get through it with you, he has so little time left. 
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« Reply #28 on: July 26, 2011, 08:09:06 PM »

thank you so much and I am so happy I have this to come too and we are all able to open up, it can at times feel like no one understands...... and together we will all get threw this!!!! wc38
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« Reply #29 on: July 03, 2012, 07:05:08 AM »

I so wish I would have read this before my fiance' came home, it would have explained so many things and maybe just maybe it would have helped him not to get violated. I think back now and realize it was not just him doing things but me also expecting too much from him.
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« Reply #30 on: August 24, 2012, 09:39:30 PM »

I just picked up my son from EMCC today.And I read your post before this happened.This is so true we went to lunch and even deciding what he wanted for lunch was hard but with patience we made it through and had a wonderful time together. I brought him to his girlfriends and his home and she had planned a welcome home party and he was so antsy that he did not know what to do. But we sat and talked and he talked with her that it was hard to be exposed like this and she understood and he just took his breathers that he need and I am so hopeful that he will lean on me and let me take some of the stress and just know that we love him more than he can imagine and I will always stand next to him through thick and thin. He really feels that people dont love him and hes not worthy which got him in this trouble to begin with. So now the work begins and the love goes to him in his time of need.I really love him so much. I hope we can move forward and take this negative and make it positive. Thank You to everyone for helping me through this journey and I will still need the support on my new journey. I will be here for anyone who needs it and we can help each other.
 
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« Reply #31 on: August 24, 2012, 09:55:43 PM »

Ellie...you are a good mom!  It sounds like you will help him through this journey.  I wish the best of luck to you both. 
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« Reply #32 on: August 24, 2012, 10:06:24 PM »

Ellie, glad your son is home ... give him time to take things in, get used to it all and he will be OK.. but they need time! 

I always suggest not to have parties that first day they come home, even their home isn't like they knew it when they left, they need time to readjust.

Give him the support these next weeks/months that he needs, let him open up to you and others as he sees fit, if you ask him something and he doesn't respond, leave it alone, he may in a few days/weeks answer you or he may never.  I learned to let them talk when they want, but not to press and there are just some things you'll never know and that's ok too. 

Just know we are all still here for you and HIM, he is welcome to share at anytime and it may be good for him to help others!

 wc30
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« Reply #33 on: January 17, 2013, 09:55:22 AM »

My loved one is now home......bounced back into the real world with ease....just a little impatient and rushing to get everything done...wants to go EVERYWHERE lol... But my loved one honestly blends right in, its like my loved on never left.
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« Reply #34 on: January 17, 2013, 10:24:22 AM »

Congrats! Glad he's bounced back.
23 hours and I can say mine is home.
I am sooooooo happy.
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« Reply #35 on: January 17, 2013, 05:14:57 PM »

 wc6  Will be thinking of you and reallove tomorrow morning!
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« Reply #36 on: January 18, 2013, 04:39:56 AM »

Thanks TSS
Yes it's 3:38 am and we are up anxiously awaiting 6 am to hit the road. Just figured out Starbucks opens at 5 and Walgreens & Meijers are open all night so maybe a little retail therapy will help. LOL
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« Reply #37 on: January 18, 2013, 07:07:00 AM »

Thanks TSS
Yes it's 3:38 am and we are up anxiously awaiting 6 am to hit the road. Just figured out Starbucks opens at 5 and Walgreens & Meijers are open all night so maybe a little retail therapy will help. LOL

        wc30     wc6     

The best to him and you and reallove!  Take it steady and slow and know patience from all is needed !!
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Do not value the "things" you have in your life - value "who" you have in your life....



“Instead of thinking about what you're missing, try thinking about what you have that everyone else is missing.”
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« Reply #38 on: January 18, 2013, 08:44:38 AM »

Veracity and Reallove, you and your son/fiancee are in my thoughts today.  I wish you a wonderful homecoming.  Please keep us posted on his progress.
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