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Old 07-03-2019, 06:10 PM
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Default Why do some inmates lie about why they are in prison?

Don't they realize in this age of technology we can find out why they are in there. This really makes me not trust too much else of what they say. Before I write to someone these days, I check that information out first. I don't want to be shocked. I will still ask just to see if they will tell the truth.
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Old 07-03-2019, 06:23 PM
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Hi there, some inmates have no idea that we can easily check them out. Some inmates want to create a better version of themselves to hopefully attract more penpals. Minimising their crime may be a defense mechanism,it may be denial it may be manipulative. There are lots of reasons why inmates may not be completely truthful all we can do is our own checks and see how we feel.
I always checked out my penpals and on the whole they were very honest. It was important for me that the inmates I wrote to were making positive changes and taking responsibility. Those who were lying or blaming others did not interest me.
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Old 07-03-2019, 06:24 PM
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Honestly? Some likely don't realize the level of information found with a few keystrokes. Though, others, may have a version of their crime that they have had to construct in order to live with it. It's perhaps not what happened, but it's the way they've framed it in order to cope. Would I take that as a warning sign? Depends. I've known a lot of non-incarcerated folks who do the same thing to deal with difficult events in their life.
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Old 07-03-2019, 10:16 PM
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I haven't written to many but I have found most of those I have written are not really forthcoming about why they are in prison. So, i'm more cautious about who I take as a pen pal these days. I need to know before hand. Also some will claim to be innocent when they are not. Although I do realize there are innocent people in prison, I tend to believe they are a minority compared to the ones who are guilty. And I will respect a man more if he's truthful up front (even if I may decide not to continue to write him).
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Old 07-05-2019, 07:02 AM
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I haven't written to many but I have found most of those I have written are not really forthcoming about why they are in prison. So, i'm more cautious about who I take as a pen pal these days. I need to know before hand. Also some will claim to be innocent when they are not. Although I do realize there are innocent people in prison, I tend to believe they are a minority compared to the ones who are guilty. And I will respect a man more if he's truthful up front (even if I may decide not to continue to write him).
Many times folks want to be seen as more than just "xyz charge", especially if it is something ether stupid or extremely heinous. They want to be seen as a husband, father, mother, wife, devout muslim, Christian, Jewish etc.

We place heavy labels on each other every day. The hardest label to wear is honestly "convicted felon".
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Old 07-05-2019, 07:28 AM
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That is why Biker guy I see humans,on both sides. some guards seen themselves as better people I'm glad you aren't like that.
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Old 07-05-2019, 11:44 AM
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Many times folks want to be seen as more than just "xyz charge", especially if it is something ether stupid or extremely heinous. They want to be seen as a husband, father, mother, wife, devout muslim, Christian, Jewish etc.

We place heavy labels on each other every day. The hardest label to wear is honestly "convicted felon".
I understand what you are saying. But I have found the ones who try to hide why they are in prison have did something heinous. It is still my choice if I want to continue to write to them. I have been thru a lot in my life and I have a right to protect myself and my heart. I make no apologies for that. It's not because I feel I am better. The Creator will be the ultimate judge of us all. But, I choose for my own peace of mind and safety to avoid certain situations and people.
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Old 07-05-2019, 01:25 PM
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This has been mentioned in other threads, so I'll give the 'light' version of it here.

As penpals, of course you have the right to choose who you write, who you stop writing and what kind of writing relationship you form.

Writing an inmate means you are choosing to write someone (assuming all are guilty, backward, I realize) who has committed a crime and is paying the price. Inherent in that situation is that they've done a wrong.

However, we present ourselves from the outside without that filter. We aren't 'outed' by our situation. We choose every detail to share about our lives, and what to leave out. Some, I'm quite certain, mislead folks for whatever reason. The inmate receiving that letter has to decide to trust what's coming in at face value. They have little recourse to learn otherwise.

It's a balance between human beings. If you expect full transparency, give it. Make the first move, even. But be realistic. You're fishing in a pond of hurt folks, for the most part. Maladaptive behavior isn't the rare path.

Blessings to you on your writing journey.
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Old 07-05-2019, 02:17 PM
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I understand what you are saying. But I have found the ones who try to hide why they are in prison have did something heinous. It is still my choice if I want to continue to write to them. I have been thru a lot in my life and I have a right to protect myself and my heart. I make no apologies for that. It's not because I feel I am better. The Creator will be the ultimate judge of us all. But, I choose for my own peace of mind and safety to avoid certain situations and people.
With that said I still feel there are some good men in prison (not sure if they are in the majority). And some have changed or is trying to. I also felt I have been more transparent than some I have written to. So, my being transparent or not was not the issue. Right now i'm considering if I want to continue to write to inmates or not. Time will tell.
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Old 07-05-2019, 06:01 PM
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I think a lot of inmates lie about what they are in for because they already know that society is going to be harsh in judging them, and face it, we are that outside society. If an inmate has been in for a great length of time, they may not realize that we have the resources at our fingertips to find out the "real" story. I guess they feel like someone who writes from the outside will be quick to judge right out of the gate. That's just my opinion.
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Old 07-06-2019, 12:44 AM
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They are already judged why should we rejudge them ? Yes they made a mistake, sometimes years ago. The only way to get to know the person he is now is, is to write him. Their crime doesn't define them their attitude does.
Sometimes they don't even understand that what they did was wrong due to mental issues.
A crime can sound more heinous than it in fact is the 18 year old having sex with his three year younger girl friend makes him a sex offender for the rest of his life.
Sometimes the sentence sounds worse than the crime really was. But you will only see that if you give them a chance
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Old 07-06-2019, 01:07 AM
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For me personally, I do my research before I write and then I don’t mention their crimes or anything of that nature. If they feel like talking about it, then I don’t mind. But I’m here to get to know the person themselves, not to find out about their crimes and motives at all that. Just my 2 cents
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Old 07-06-2019, 07:24 AM
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For me personally, I do my research before I write and then I don’t mention their crimes or anything of that nature. If they feel like talking about it, then I don’t mind. But I’m here to get to know the person themselves, not to find out about their crimes and motives at all that. Just my 2 cents
In the past I didn't do that. But if I decide to write to other pen pals I will do the research first. It could save me from future shock and I could decide from the get go if I want to write to them or not.
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Old 07-06-2019, 07:33 AM
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I don't care why they do it... you can google their crime most of the time and if they are trying to feed me crap I'll drop them like a hot potato and never look back. I don't even wonder why... most inmates know that you can google them and that's a sign of STUPID in my book if they think they can pull this on me... Sorry to be so blunt but I even go in with my eyes open or I'll leave it alone.
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Old 07-06-2019, 09:46 AM
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They are already judged why should we rejudge them ? Yes they made a mistake, sometimes years ago. The only way to get to know the person he is now is, is to write him. Their crime doesn't define them their attitude does.
Sometimes they don't even understand that what they did was wrong due to mental issues.
A crime can sound more heinous than it in fact is the 18 year old having sex with his three year younger girl friend makes him a sex offender for the rest of his life.
Sometimes the sentence sounds worse than the crime really was. But you will only see that if you give them a chance

And you are right. I don't judge, BUT some people will. I'm just saying why an inmate may life about his original crime. I do my level best not to judge anybody because I myself am human with faults of my own. I don't believe that an inmate's crime defines them. I was just stating why I thought an inmate may not tell all the details of why they are locked up.

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Old 07-06-2019, 12:41 PM
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... most inmates know that you can google them and that's a sign of STUPID in my book if they think they can pull this on me...
I think they know we can Google them, but I don't think some understand the depth of what we can find. My husband was surprised to hear I'd read the transcript of his sentencing, the appellate decision summary, ect. He thought I could find his charges, but that was about it.

But then his crime wasn't splashed in headlines or in a small town. That may make a difference.
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Old 07-07-2019, 05:05 AM
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Don't they realize in this age of technology we can find out why they are in there. This really makes me not trust too much else of what they say. Before I write to someone these days, I check that information out first. I don't want to be shocked. I will still ask just to see if they will tell the truth.
Very true. I told guys and still do today that they need to be upfront because anyone can find out. Their past is their past and they need to own up to it. It might be embarrassing, but it is what it is.
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Old 07-08-2019, 10:46 PM
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I am in no way making excuses for anyone's heinous acts, but to expect them to lay out the worst of themselves to a stranger pen pal within weeks or months is totally unreasonable. They've all gone through a lengthy process of being publicly judged and humiliated. Some cases go on for years as they sit in county lockup. Why do we expect them to lay it all out again so that we can be satisfied that they're "honest"? Why do we find it hard to imagine that this is the last damn thing they want to talk about? They've talked about it a lot -- to their lawyers, to their families, to the judges... And most of all, to themselves. Every single day is a reminder of the worst thing they ever did.

As Miamac said wisely, those of us on the outside have the luxury of keeping private what we choose to keep private. Our worst moment in life is not hung out to dry in the public square, and I'm willing to bet we don't just come on out with it to a pen pal right out the gate either.

I'd say research and Google a penpal until your fingertips are numb, but don't expect him or her to lay it all out for you. They've been there and done that in ways you couldn't imagine, probably. Being an inmate is a nonstop experience in humiliation. Be a respite from that for them.

And of course don't write anyone whose crime crosses your boundaries of what you can accommodate.
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Old 07-09-2019, 07:34 AM
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I am in no way making excuses for anyone's heinous acts, but to expect them to lay out the worst of themselves to a stranger pen pal within weeks or months is totally unreasonable. They've all gone through a lengthy process of being publicly judged and humiliated. Some cases go on for years as they sit in county lockup. Why do we expect them to lay it all out again so that we can be satisfied that they're "honest"? Why do we find it hard to imagine that this is the last damn thing they want to talk about? They've talked about it a lot -- to their lawyers, to their families, to the judges... And most of all, to themselves. Every single day is a reminder of the worst thing they ever did.

As Miamac said wisely, those of us on the outside have the luxury of keeping private what we choose to keep private. Our worst moment in life is not hung out to dry in the public square, and I'm willing to bet we don't just come on out with it to a pen pal right out the gate either.

I'd say research and Google a penpal until your fingertips are numb, but don't expect him or her to lay it all out for you. They've been there and done that in ways you couldn't imagine, probably. Being an inmate is a nonstop experience in humiliation. Be a respite from that for them.

And of course don't write anyone whose crime crosses your boundaries of what you can accommodate.

I totally understand what you are saying. But some of these inmates "pen pals" want to know everything. And some have no problem it seem crossing certain boundaries esp when it comes to talking about sex. Also I tend to have more sympathy for victims of crime than the perpetrators. Which is why i'm seriously considering if I should be writing to inmates. Again, I do realize there are good men in there but i'm just leery. I'm even leery about most men out here.
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Old 07-09-2019, 08:29 AM
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I totally understand what you are saying. But some of these inmates "pen pals" want to know everything. And some have no problem it seem crossing certain boundaries esp when it comes to talking about sex. Also I tend to have more sympathy for victims of crime than the perpetrators. Which is why i'm seriously considering if I should be writing to inmates. Again, I do realize there are good men in there but i'm just leery. I'm even leery about most men out here.
I like your signature line. . I'd say ditch anyone who can't follow that philosophy. Genuine friendships take a long time to grow. Trust is not an automatic given. We ought to reveal ourselves in proportion to the time and trust built into the friendship.
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