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  #1  
Old 11-12-2016, 08:47 AM
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Default Life going downhill before my prison time begins

How do you deal with life falling apart even before going to prison? I've been dealing with this case since February. I get sentenced in December. Since February I've lost my decent paying jobs, lost my home & car.. I even lost my kids. I was homeless for a month, & now live in various motels or rent a room in peoples' houses I find on Craigslist.

My kids are separated, & the family that has my daughter is struggling financially. Im out doing what I can to survive, but it's nowhere near enough, & I can't even send money to my kids or see them as often as I'd like. My family is going thru difficulties as well.

This is my life now. I hate to see how things will go during my sentence. How do you handle your world crumbling before/during incarceration?
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Old 11-12-2016, 09:24 AM
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How do you deal with life falling apart even before going to prison? I've been dealing with this case since February. I get sentenced in December. Since February I've lost my decent paying jobs, lost my home & car.. I even lost my kids. I was homeless for a month, & now live in various motels or rent a room in peoples' houses I find on Craigslist.

My kids are separated, & the family that has my daughter is struggling financially. Im out doing what I can to survive, but it's nowhere near enough, & I can't even send money to my kids or see them as often as I'd like. My family is going thru difficulties as well.

This is my life now. I hate to see how things will go during my sentence. How do you handle your world crumbling before/during incarceration?
It may not be practical - but I just give it to God and let him handle it. In the meantime - make the decisions that are in your best long-term interest, and know that what's best for you is also what's best for your family.
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Old 11-12-2016, 10:38 AM
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I am sorry life seems to be falling apart for you. It seems like this is a great time to reflect on where you have been, where you want to be and how you will use your sentence to grow as an individual.

I suggest taking every class available to you and learn all you can, read self-help books, anything that will help you be strong...it is difficult to accept but everything DOES happen for a reason.

Try to stay positive and know that everything will be okay and hopefully youu will come out of all of this a better, wiser, and stronger woman than when it all started.

Best to you
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Old 11-12-2016, 10:57 AM
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Thanks for the replies. Im trying to stay strong, it's just wearing on me & I'm trying to help my family and myself. Thanks for the advice
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Old 11-12-2016, 11:10 AM
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I know you've been fighting and struggling these past few months. As hard and as impossible it may seem to do things to help your kids and your family right now, don't give up. Once you go behind those walls that's it. You'll have no control of those things from inside prison. Try and try to do what you can now. Try and try to make some amends before you get sent away. Your loved ones will appreciate and remember that. GBY.
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Old 11-12-2016, 11:45 AM
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I was thinking about you the other day and wondering how you were (had been looking at bodyweight workouts and I recalled you had asked folks for input on fitness inside). I'm so sorry this time has been so difficult for you and I won't pretend to know what it feels like except to say, it must all be overwhelming.

I can't really add to what's been advised already but know that you're thought of and there are folks who care.
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Old 11-12-2016, 12:47 PM
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I know this doesn't help much but I am sending you love & strength. Wish I could do something. I hope things will work out for you
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Old 11-12-2016, 04:55 PM
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I can't add much, but I wanted to say that I'm sorry you're facing this. I agree ^^ people do care. I'm thinking of you, and sending positive thoughts for you and your family.
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  #9  
Old 11-12-2016, 05:22 PM
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Look, I'm not headed to prison, but my life hasn't been easy. Over the last year+, since my motorcycle accident, I've been unable to take new clients or finish the old (not fun - trying to find attorneys to handle my cases while in the hospital. There's Dilaudid for that!). I did 6 days ICU, 5 weeks hospital, 3 weeks rehab, then home just before thanksgiving of last year.

Now, I'm scheduled to have my leg removed, fighting with peers who think that it's atrocious while my docs (I've had a second and third opinion) and prosthetist think it's the right thing to do. My prosthetist was even shocked by the scarring on my leg. Eek.

So, I'll have my 17th surgery later this month and hopefully that will be the end of it. Hopefully, I'll be able to work by later next year. Hopefully I'll be able to walk by the middle of next year. Hopefully, hopefully, hopefully, you know what I mean?

Here's what I do, seeing as my entire world was wrapped up in my career (can't do atm) and my sport (can't do atm); I look at the road immediately in front of me. This is how you get anywhere when it comes to a journey of long distances - you take one step followed by the next (ironic, eh? When I'm nor able to walk - I am able to crutch). You pick a milestone close by and you walk to that milestone.

So, what is your next milestone? Your overall journey through the criminal justice system ends when what? You can make a living, have a home, have your kids back, and are off paper? Break those goals up into the littlest possible parts. Walk to those parts. Cannot be with your kids physically? Write to them. Keep a journal to each kid about your trip with them - what you want for them, what you are doing to help them get there. Make sure you make actual contact for each birthday and holiday and then talk about those contacts in those journals. Talk about what you know of each kid - who's the most creative, who'll do best at the science fair, how scared you were to leave them, and how scared you are that they will hate you so much that .... whatever makes you afraid for them the most. Talk about what you want for them in the future.

Getting through prison? Focus on one thing at a time. Break it down, move to the next thing. Make yourself some promises - you will do your best to program as quickly as possible, take advantage of whatever programming you can (prioritize that programming), do your research on everything that the prison has to offer, and then work the system to YOUR advantage. Make sure you stay out of trouble and identify the areas that may cause you the most trouble. Figure out what you can do to avoid those temptations.

Getting out? Focus on what you need to do to stay out, and to get your kids back. You have the recommendations of DCFS (or whatever it's called in your state), start chewing those up. Make sure you know how to contact your caseworker, and then contact him/her regularly. Break down and meet every goal set. Make sure you contact your caseworker while you're in prison.

Deal with your mental health issues (everybody going to prison or losing their kids has mental health issues - it's natural). Depressed? Identify your negative self-talk and write out counters to that talk. If you have, "I'm a failure as a mother" as one, counter it. "I'm not a failure. I am a mother for the rest of my life. Characterizing my entire mothering relationship with my children by this period of our lives means I'm unable to see the wonderful things we have in store for us in the future." or whatever works for you. Every time you catch yourself in negative self-talk, counter it.

It's prison. Everybody's life gets turned upside down by the criminal justice system. It has nothing to do with your character or your life - you determine this. Plenty of people have gone to prison and come out stronger than before. Plenty of mothers have gone through prison and come out to reclaim loving, healthy relationships with their kids, and their kids don't wind up any more or less fucked up than anybody else's kids.

Give yourself a pass and enjoy a Pity Party every now and again, but remember to limit it - go home at the end of the night.

It sucks right now, but this isn't a permanent thing unless you let it be permanent.
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  #10  
Old 11-12-2016, 07:03 PM
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I'm overwhelmed at all the words of encouragement that it made my eyes water when reading these responses. I will try my best to take heed to what each of u has said.
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Old 11-12-2016, 07:32 PM
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I'm overwhelmed at all the words of encouragement that it made my eyes water when reading these responses. I will try my best to take heed to what each of u has said.
I am surprised you haven't gone yet! Enjoy the freedom while time is short. I am a fellow prisoner, I came home in September from the feds.

Stay strong! I know things will get better.
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Old 11-13-2016, 12:42 AM
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This is likely a stupid question but maybe it will lead to a helpful answer.

How does Georgia do sentencing?

Is there anything browneyes1181 can do before sentencing to have the judge think "Now there's a person I have hope for"? Or "Hmm, everyone _says_ they're remorseful, but this one is making it real"? Life would still be a mess of course. But it would be something practical to do.

@browneyes1181, if you have any kind of spiritual practice in your life history, revive it if it's fallen away, take full advantage of it if you were already active.
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Old 11-13-2016, 07:38 AM
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I'm overwhelmed at all the words of encouragement that it made my eyes water when reading these responses. I will try my best to take heed to what each of u has said.
Remember what Freidrich Neitzsche said: That which does not kill us makes us stronger. It's true! You'll go through the flames and come out tempered.



That which does not kill us makes us stronger. Friedrich Nietzsche
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/a...nietzsche.html

That which does not kill us makes us stronger. Friedrich Nietzsche
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/a...nietzsche.html
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Old 11-13-2016, 08:13 AM
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Remember what Freidrich Neitzsche said: That which does not kill us makes us stronger. It's true! You'll go through the flames and come out tempered.



That which does not kill us makes us stronger. Friedrich Nietzsche
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/a...nietzsche.html

That which does not kill us makes us stronger. Friedrich Nietzsche
Read more at: https://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/a...nietzsche.html
I actually have that phrase tattooed on my back lol
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Old 11-13-2016, 08:25 AM
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This is likely a stupid question but maybe it will lead to a helpful answer.

How does Georgia do sentencing?

Is there anything browneyes1181 can do before sentencing to have the judge think "Now there's a person I have hope for"? Or "Hmm, everyone _says_ they're remorseful, but this one is making it real"? Life would still be a mess of course. But it would be something practical to do.

@browneyes1181, if you have any kind of spiritual practice in your life history, revive it if it's fallen away, take full advantage of it if you were already active.
All I know is that the prosecution has suggested a range that my sentence fall between. The judge either chooses to remain in that range, or rule higher/lower than what was suggested. I've done the standard things like have people submit character letters/videos saying the type of person I am. ..but I really don't think anything, outside of doing something extraordinary, will have a big affect on my sentencing.
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Old 11-13-2016, 08:44 AM
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All I know is that the prosecution has suggested a range that my sentence fall between. The judge either chooses to remain in that range, or rule higher/lower than what was suggested. I've done the standard things like have people submit character letters/videos saying the type of person I am. ..but I really don't think anything, outside of doing something extraordinary, will have a big affect on my sentencing.
There's really not a lot of time left to get character letters of substance in, i.e. letters from counselors, AA sponsors and the like.

It has been a while between charge and sentencing, so you do have a great deal of time without criminal activity, despite some pretty significant stressors. This will be taken into account.

But you're right - there's not a lot that you can do to push it a great deal one way or the other. Your attorney has probably prepped you on what to expect based on your record and the crime. Know that as long as you don't have a substantial criminal resume, you'll get sentenced to something other than the max. It is no longer election time, we're almost to the holidays, both of which lend themselves to lighter sentences, or so the conventional wisdom holds.

breathe deep. harvest some meditation practices online, and start practicing - they will help you deal with everything.
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Old 11-13-2016, 08:53 AM
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yourself is SPOT on with what she is telling you.
I hate this for you.
I know its very hard right now. So much change and uncertainty it would make anyone afraid.
I really like the idea of keeping a journal too.Not sure if you will be able to put some money on your *books* but try to save up so you have a bit when you get there for postage, papers etc.
I dont know if the feds allow people to mail you stamps and stationary supplies or not (my hub was state and it was allowed)

Finding a job wont be easy that is true. But it can be done. The way its done is keep trying. Dont give up. No matter what, there could be that one time someone says yes.
My hub had alot of difficulty getting work. He'd lost his commercial dl while he was locked up. He ended up having to redo all the tests, and he did that with the help of a program. (Im sorry I always forget what its called)
He didnt have to pay for anything but the fee to take the test(s)

They may require you to go thru some sort of classes once you are released.
They figure out what *benefits* you could be eligible for. Make use of any and all that you can.
I know my hub was getting food stamps and going to the food bank to supplement himself that way.
(he isnt allowed to live with me due to parole conditions and I was struggling to pay for a motel, plus everything else)

Anyway, he's doing pretty good now. Has a job driving a charter bus. He's got his own place now in a mobile home park (for those over 50)
Just about two yrs now from sleeping in his car, to having his own place.

Hang in mom. Hang in.
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Old 11-13-2016, 09:40 AM
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There's really not a lot of time left to get character letters of substance in, i.e. letters from counselors, AA sponsors and the like.

It has been a while between charge and sentencing, so you do have a great deal of time without criminal activity, despite some pretty significant stressors. This will be taken into account.

But you're right - there's not a lot that you can do to push it a great deal one way or the other. Your attorney has probably prepped you on what to expect based on your record and the crime. Know that as long as you don't have a substantial criminal resume, you'll get sentenced to something other than the max. It is no longer election time, we're almost to the holidays, both of which lend themselves to lighter sentences, or so the conventional wisdom holds.

breathe deep. harvest some meditation practices online, and start practicing - they will help you deal with everything.
Oh yes I've already done turned in all the letters, etc...I don't have a record outside of traffic tickets, no drug abuse. ..I was the "goodie toe shoes" type all my life lol. I've been told to try meditation before. I think I'll check it out. Thank u
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Old 11-13-2016, 09:46 AM
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yourself is SPOT on with what she is telling you.
I hate this for you.
I know its very hard right now. So much change and uncertainty it would make anyone afraid.
I really like the idea of keeping a journal too.Not sure if you will be able to put some money on your *books* but try to save up so you have a bit when you get there for postage, papers etc.
I dont know if the feds allow people to mail you stamps and stationary supplies or not (my hub was state and it was allowed)

Finding a job wont be easy that is true. But it can be done. The way its done is keep trying. Dont give up. No matter what, there could be that one time someone says yes.
My hub had alot of difficulty getting work. He'd lost his commercial dl while he was locked up. He ended up having to redo all the tests, and he did that with the help of a program. (Im sorry I always forget what its called)
He didnt have to pay for anything but the fee to take the test(s)

They may require you to go thru some sort of classes once you are released.
They figure out what *benefits* you could be eligible for. Make use of any and all that you can.
I know my hub was getting food stamps and going to the food bank to supplement himself that way.
(he isnt allowed to live with me due to parole conditions and I was struggling to pay for a motel, plus everything else)

Anyway, he's doing pretty good now. Has a job driving a charter bus. He's got his own place now in a mobile home park (for those over 50)
Just about two yrs now from sleeping in his car, to having his own place.

Hang in mom. Hang in.

I'm glad to hear that your husband is doing better some being released. I've been tring to save up money for prison for months but it's just not working. I won't stop trying though
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Old 11-13-2016, 11:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Minor activist View Post
This is likely a stupid question but maybe it will lead to a helpful answer.

How does Georgia do sentencing?

Is there anything browneyes1181 can do before sentencing to have the judge think "Now there's a person I have hope for"? Or "Hmm, everyone _says_ they're remorseful, but this one is making it real"? Life would still be a mess of course. But it would be something practical to do.

@browneyes1181, if you have any kind of spiritual practice in your life history, revive it if it's fallen away, take full advantage of it if you were already active.
Her charges are federal so in very general terms the sentencing will be about the same in a Georgia federal court as it would be anywhere else in the country.

Of course, every federal judge is different, but the basic outcomes are usually about the same nation wide.
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Old 11-13-2016, 11:44 AM
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Her charges are federal so in very general terms the sentencing will be about the same in a Georgia federal court as it would be anywhere else in the country.

Of course, every federal judge is different, but the basic outcomes are usually about the same nation wide.
Even though the sentencing guidelines are only ONE out of a multitude of factors judges have to consider when sentencing you...

I've found that judges (IME and also having been around some hundreds of federal prisoners) tend to follow the guidelines (if you have a copy of the PSR/PSI report it will be in there) and what you have in your criminal history (or lack thereof) will determine if whether or not you get the high or low end of it.

Judges also don't normally like to depart from the guidelines because this requires the judge to enter in an explanation as to why they would in the SOR that will ultimately be forwarded to the BOP (your attorney will have a copy of this as well). The reasons can be open to interpretation and may raise an appealable issue.

Just hope for the best, prepare for the worst. I was told this time and time again prior to sentencing, during my incarceration, after my release, and through my job search.

I've been in the same boat as you, gathering up character letters, working my butt off while I was out on bail, and did A LOT of volunteer work. It did no good for me. It may work for you, but just prepare yourself if you find out all the good you've done has ended up having no net benefit for you.

I wish you luck in your incarceration. Hopefully your guideline range puts you in that sweet spot where you can have split prison time and home confinement or straight probation.
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Old 11-21-2016, 12:02 PM
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Even though the sentencing guidelines are only ONE out of a multitude of factors judges have to consider when sentencing you...

I've found that judges (IME and also having been around some hundreds of federal prisoners) tend to follow the guidelines (if you have a copy of the PSR/PSI report it will be in there) and what you have in your criminal history (or lack thereof) will determine if whether or not you get the high or low end of it.

Judges also don't normally like to depart from the guidelines because this requires the judge to enter in an explanation as to why they would in the SOR that will ultimately be forwarded to the BOP (your attorney will have a copy of this as well). The reasons can be open to interpretation and may raise an appealable issue.

Just hope for the best, prepare for the worst. I was told this time and time again prior to sentencing, during my incarceration, after my release, and through my job search.

I've been in the same boat as you, gathering up character letters, working my butt off while I was out on bail, and did A LOT of volunteer work. It did no good for me. It may work for you, but just prepare yourself if you find out all the good you've done has ended up having no net benefit for you.

I wish you luck in your incarceration. Hopefully your guideline range puts you in that sweet spot where you can have split prison time and home confinement or straight probation.
Thank u for the info. I'm trying to keep my head during all of this
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Old 11-21-2016, 12:23 PM
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Thank u for the info. I'm trying to keep my head during all of this
Glad to see you checking in. Hope you'll continue to let us know how things are with you.
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