Dear Prisoners Families Voices.
Please can I reply to the post about pen-pals.
I used to write to a male prisoner in the UK and he promised me the earth.
Call me naive or whatever, but I did actually fall for this guy.
I sent him money so that he could order clothes and footwear out of the catalogue and money for his phone credit so that he could ring me.
I went to visit him once a month and we got on great. He told me everything about himself, what crime he had committed and how he was brought up in a kids home etc. So he did tell me a lot of personal stuff about himself - apart from telling me he had a partner and a young daughter.
Out of the blue one day, I got a letter from another prisoner who managed to find out my address because I guess letters are read and left lying around or other prisoners root for them? I don't know, but the prisoner did get hold of my address and wrote to me telling me that my faithful pen pal had a partner and young daughter. I decided to do some investigating and it was all true.
I felt gutted, used, foolish, upset, you name it.
I know there are some genuine prisoners who just want correspondence and a friend to write to but this experience has put me off altogether. I would just like to say to those who are promised the earth and a relationship when they are released is to be careful. I was a fool but common sense is the key. It happens all over such as dating websites where women and men are taken advantage of purely for financial reasons. It just happens. Thanks for listening and can you please keep my name anonymous.