Dear Prison Widow. I hope you and all your readers are well.
I have been reading quite a number of posts and stories on your blog concerning prisoners families and how important it is for prisoners families to maintain ties whilst their loved ones are serving a prison sentence.
My husband is at his safest when he is in prison and although that might sound an awful thing to say; it is true. When I say this to family members and some professionals; they look at me startled.
We have a beautiful home and two great kids; but the problem is; my husband cannot kick his drug addiction in to touch. We have become estranged in the last two years; but aren't divorced - yet. I say yet because eventually it will happen.
My life consisted of visiting him in prison, which I didn't mind at all. Sadly though I got bored of spending my weekends visiting him in various prisons across the country. I don't want to cause offence to any prisoners families members; but please hear me out before you judge me.
My husband has been in prison - a lot. He has been in and out, in and out and in and out. His brother has his own construction business and he has worked for him twice; a ready made job on release; but the drugs have a bigger grip of him, so needless to say, he never held a job down.
He has a wonderful family, on both sides, mine and his family have been more than supportive over the years. It did not prevent him from re offending because the drugs always came first.
I completely and totally agree with what other people and prisoners families are saying. You can have the most productive support network in the country, but if a person doesn't want to rehabilitate, they just simply won't and to a degree a take issue with the ''prisoners families can reduce re offending rubbish''.
I'm not saying that it doesn't work for some prisoners families, but I would like to see the raw statistics and until I do, I will remain sceptical.
I think it's unfair to bring prisoners families in to the picture by saying they hold the key to reducing re offending - because they don't. The only person that holds the key to reducing re offending is the offender himself/herself.
Prison is a comfort blanket for my husband. He does reasonably well in prison. It is when he comes home that he doesn't. He completely lacks responsibility and when one week we don't have much money because bills need paying, he becomes frustrated and bored. He doesn't have the experience of life and real living. Maybe he doesn't want the real world life? I couldn't honestly answer that because if he did, he wouldn't carry on going back to prison.
Every time he goes to prison he says the same thing that he will knuckle down, work hard and keep his job, but he never does because he always falls back in to the same crowd that uses drugs. When he comes home; I know he has abused drugs which results in me kicking him out of the home which then leads to a trip in the prison van to jail or the local police station. Should I kick him out of the home? Yes because we have two beautiful kids who don't need to see their dad under the influence and it is something I do not want for our children.
It's like being stuck between a wall because as a family, there is no way out unless he wants to change his lifestyle.
He has got so used to being in prison that prison has become his life and it does not faze him one bit I sadly have to say.
So, I also have a question, how do prisoners families reduce re offending? How can they achieve this if the person in question is not interested?
All my love to prisoners families out there and all the best to you Prison Widow.
I would appreciate it if my details remain private. Thank you.