Thursday, August 27, 2009

A Funny Thing Happened at the Prison

About a week prior to the X's birthday, I figured out that his big day fell on a Saturday... visiting day at the prison. Back in June, I had decided not to take the girls to see their father for Father's Day as he had requested due to the fact that I was busy helping my own dad with his house addition, and felt that I should spend Father's Day weekend helping the man who has been there for me through thick and thin and has sacrificed so much for his own children rather than taking my girls to see the man who abused me and neglected them and sold us all down the river for his own hedonistic desires. Now that his birthday was approaching, I thought that I would be nice and take the girls to visit him as a surprise.

I dreaded the visit the entire week. We drove the hour and a half to the prison and then entered... the Karma Zone.

The guard at the front desk looked up X's rap sheet. She said to me, "He was convicted of violation of a protective order." "Was that against you?"

I answered yes.

She said, "You're a victim."

Now this is where I would normally vehemently deny that I was a "victim". I would proudly state that I was a "survivor". But I wasn't in the mood to argue symantics with this tough looking female guard. I knew what she meant. I HAD BEEN a victim of X.

I told her that when I had filled out the request to be on X's visiting list, I had marked "YES" on the question that asked if I was a victim of this inmate.

She said that if she had been the one to intially approve me as his visitor, then she deserved to be kicked. She got on the phone and had someone pull X's file. The form I had sent did indeed have a check mark beside "YES" on the victim question. However, she hadn't approved me... someone else had. She then proceeded to inform me that I should never have been approved as X's visitor, and she would remove me from his list.

Then she said, "He was also convicted of domestic violence in the presence of children." "Are these the children?"

I again answered yes.

She then informed me that she would also be taking them off his visiting list. I think she thought I would be disappointed or try to talk her into leaving us on the list. I think she thought this would be bad news. I told her that this was great. Now I wouldn't have to take them to see him... and I couldn't even let his mother or other member of his family take them to see him. They COULDN'T visit him. And best of all... I wasn't going to be the "bad guy" in this. The system would be.

She walked me out to my car and apologized for breaking the girls' hearts. I looked in the back seat of the car, and they didn't look the least bit brokenhearted. They were playing and laughing. I think it was a relief for them also.

She and I had a smoke together and discussed domestic violence and our experiences with it. I gave her the URL for Our Place and told her that it is a great resource to pass on to victims of abuse.

The girls and I had a pleasant drive home, and I felt very relieved. I only had a tinge of regret that we didn't get to see him because, after all, it was his birthday. But it wasn't MY doing. Yay! I get to let someone else take the blame.

Karma is sweet!


Suz said...

Thanks so such for sharing. My sis is still struggling. We got her to got to a support group last week, but she didn't feel well enought to do it last night. I wish she would of gone. She really need help, help that I can't offer. You are a great example to all. Thanks for being my friend. If you have time maybe give her a call I could text you her number.


Boy Mom said...

So nice sometimes to let someone else be the bad guy or good guy, whatever.

It is a pretty drive, especially with some caffeine a bag of licorice.

MisssRobin said...

What an incredible blessing! I can only imagine the weight this must have lifted off your shoulders. Hooray for attentive, scary, female prison guards! (Now that's a phrase I never thought I would say.)