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  #51  
Old 02-01-2015, 05:39 AM
LadyBlu LadyBlu is offline
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I appreciate your posts, DT and yourself. Just wanted to let you know that I am learning from them. Personally, I haven't done much to change things except get involved in Elsa's card swap (to get mail to those inmates with friends/family who submit their names) and trying to get more people on PTO in general. Watching the whole process my husband has been through, and meeting others on PTO and in the visitation lines at prison, I realize now I've been blind to the problems of our criminal justice system my whole life.
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  #52  
Old 02-13-2015, 04:10 PM
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Hey everyone! I apologize for my absence. Iíve just been really slammed with homework lately. Plus, Iíve been trying to carve out a little time each day after school to spend watching the video and reading the articles that Yourself provided. Thanks again for doing that!

M has since been released. I havenít seen her at school though. Someone told me that sheís now attending alternative school, but Iím really not sure about that.

Itís been two months since my sentence began. Iíve been told that within a month or so Iíll be attending a hearing where I may be granted early release. Iím feeling nervous just writing about it as I have no idea what to expect. I donĎt know what sort of questions will be asked or if my victimĎs family will attend. Itís crazy, but I think Iím even more anxious about this than I was about my sentencing hearing.

I have to run, but hopefully Iíll be able to post again soon. Please keep me in your prayers!
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  #53  
Old 02-13-2015, 10:38 PM
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Don't worry about the hearing. I know, easily said, hard to do.

Basically, expect a file review - your detention file will be reviewed, your school performance, your performance in counseling and other programming. How you've comported yourself, your attempts and participation in rehabilitation, plus your continued taking of responsibility will be looked at.

I don't know if your vics family will be there - juvie process changes state to state. You can expect questions about what you've learned in detention, what you intend to do if you're released (which, if they aren't explicit, should include what you intend to do to make sure you don't re-offend, as well as what you intend to do to try to heal the harm you've caused). You've done much of the work for this on a personal, genuine level, so it shouldn't be incredibly difficult for you to formulate your answers.

Review every so often is mandatory in most juvenile systems. Does this mean you'll get out? No. But you could, and that "could" is tantalizing. Prepare for the worst, hope for the best, or better yet, just don't get your hopes up. Getting out means that you change where you sleep, where and what you eat. It means you're freed up to do things like volunteer work and working with a therapist that you can stay with outside of the system (so you're not having to find a new therapist every time there's a change in employment, or if you get discharged - that permanence is a good thing, allowing you to more firmly vest in the process). It means that you've changed and you are on the right track towards making amends and becoming a contributing member of society. It's also an endorsement from the court that you are ready to deal with the outside world, and of your change.

It's nice to get a favorable review, and to get out, but is it essential? Will it substantively change how you feel about all of this and what you're doing? If you're not released, oh well. If you are released, have a wonderful dinner with your family, and enjoy sleeping in your own bed. After that? Go to school, and do what you need to do to stay on track towards your goals.

You're doing great.
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  #54  
Old 02-17-2015, 04:19 PM
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Hey Yourself,

Thanks for all the information. I feel better knowing a little about what Iíll be in for.

Iím trying to do as you suggested and not get my hopes up. Itís still a month away, so I guess it wonít do much good to dwell on it between now and then. I just have to be prepared to accept whatever happens.

If I donít get out, I know I can deal. Itís just that, if I was out, I could begin to work towards restitution and doing positive things in the community. I think Iím ready to start on that. But weíll see what happens.

I gotta run. My cousin just pulled up. My mom has to work late so she'll be giving me my ride back later on. The best part is, she's got her daughter with her! I haven't seen her in months; I'm so excited!
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Old 02-17-2015, 05:18 PM
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I smile whenever I read one of your posts. Keep up with all the positive thoughts. I don't even know you and yet feel so PROUD of you.
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Old 02-21-2015, 09:52 AM
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I'll be keeping my fingers crossed for you DB.
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  #57  
Old 02-23-2015, 04:58 PM
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Keep on the path you are on. If the review goes well, great, if it doesn't, you are still on a good path for yourself to recover and move on. That is the most important thing.
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  #58  
Old 03-03-2015, 04:32 PM
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Thanks for all the support. I really appreciate it.

Sorry I haven't posted recently. Last week we were hit with snow, so I spent a lot more time than usual away. Then, once school was back in session, we were having to play catch-up. Basically, things have been really hectic.

The hearing date is drawing close. Once it's over and I've heard their decision, I'll be sure to let everyone know the result. I think I have a chance, but if I don't get out, I plan on making the best of it. Last week, I began tutoring one of my pod-mates. She's planning on taking her GED test, so I've been helping her out. I hope she nails it. We've kinda become friends through this, so I'm hoping for the best for her.

I have to go. Thanks for listening everyone!
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  #59  
Old 03-03-2015, 05:09 PM
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  #60  
Old 03-03-2015, 07:18 PM
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So glad to hear the updates. Hang in there!
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  #61  
Old 03-19-2015, 03:18 PM
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Hey, I just wanted to provide everyone with a brief update. My release hearing will be taking place this weekend. I've been doing all I can to mentally prepare myself for whatever outcome may await me. I'll be sure to let ya'll know the result as soon as I can.

My parents and sister both came to visit over the weekend. They're all anxious about this hearing. Heck, I think they may be more stressed about it than I am! My incarceration has been so traumatic for them and the rest of my family. When I am released, I plan on doing all I can to make it up to them.

I have to run. Please keep me in your thoughts/prayers!
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  #62  
Old 03-19-2015, 04:00 PM
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Hoping for lenient and good news!
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Old 03-19-2015, 05:00 PM
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I just read through this thread and oh man there's so many emotions. I hope your hearing goes well!
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  #64  
Old 03-19-2015, 05:05 PM
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Good luck, young 'un!
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Old 03-20-2015, 09:09 AM
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Looking forward to your update. Chin up and have pride in what you're doing no matter what the outcome.
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Old 03-20-2015, 12:47 PM
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I always smile when I read your posts Best wishes for you.
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Old 03-20-2015, 02:13 PM
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Best of luck to you!
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Old 03-24-2015, 09:11 AM
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Detention Bound:

I have read this entire thread and I am just stunned by your insight and maturity. In every post you talk about your growth and keep a positive outlook and have to run because you had a lot of homework etc. Good for you! I think I could barely tie my shoes at your age!

I think you would make a great lawyer and you should definitely pursue that ambition. Another thought, have you considered becoming a social worker? There are a number of occupations you can do as a social worker from working with delinquent youth, victim advocates, medical social work, hospice, to name a few. I know that criminal background is not a deterrent as NASW likes to recognize a person's past and how they used that to motivate towards them to their future. There was a guy in my cohort for getting my Masters in Social Work (MSW) who applied while he was still in prison about 4 months before he was released to our program and got accepted in. His insight was really valuable to our lectures. Anyways just another thought for you to consider.

All the best!!
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  #69  
Old 03-24-2015, 03:26 PM
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My apologies for not posting sooner, especially since I have good news! They decided to grant me an early release! I'll be out by the end of the first weekend in April.

I just want to thank everyone once more for all the support and encouragement you all have given me over the past few months. It's definitely been helpful and I'll always be grateful.

As you can imagine, things have been crazy since I got the news. My mind has been going a mile a minute ever since, coming up with huge lists of things I want to do once I'm released. Among the trivial things, I want to go out for pizza the night I'm released. I also want to take a nice long shower for a change. Among the more serious items on the list, I want to visit my victim's grave and bring him flowers. I want to apologize to him in person. And I want to start looking into any opportunities for volunteering that I can find.

Tinabeana4321: No, I hadn't considered doing social work before, mostly because I really don't know a lot about it. I know from some kids at school that they handle foster care placements and stuff like that, but that's about it.

Lately I've been thinking of doing psychology for my undergrad, so maybe social work would be a good option for me if my law school ambitions don't pan out. Thank you for the idea!

If you don't mind my asking, what area of social work are you currently involved with? How do you like it?

I have to run. I'll definitely post again once I'm released! Thank you all once again!
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  #70  
Old 03-24-2015, 04:12 PM
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VERY happy for you!
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Old 03-24-2015, 08:18 PM
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wahoooo!!!HAPPY DANCE EVERYBODY!!!!!!:new ::val :
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  #72  
Old 03-24-2015, 09:32 PM
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Congrats!!! That is awesome on the early release and I believe that is because they recognized your maturity and and responsibility that is well beyond your years

I did my Undergraduate in Psychology, got a BA. I was always fascinated with people's backgrounds and history and explanations for certain behaviors. I originally wanted to get my Masters in Counseling and it was one of the counselors that I spoke to at the agency where I was doing Psychosocial Rehabilitation who talked to me about getting my Masters in Social Work instead of Masters in Counseling. He told me that as a Social Worker you could do counseling as he had his MSW but you could do a lot of other potential occupations as well, a lot of versatility. I never knew that was an option at the time and then I started googling careers with MSW's and figured that was a better way to go. I am glad I did because I have some friends who went for Masters in Counseling and they are now "trapped" and unhappy with their career. My concentration tract was Mental Health;my school also offered Addiction Studies /Community Macro Policy/Gerontology/Medical Social Work...some people did a dual concentration. So my main practice was learning about individual, family, group/couples counseling but part of our program required us to take courses from the other tracks to be more versatile.

During my Foundation (First year) Internship I worked for the Prosecutors office as a Victim Witness Coordinator. I loved it, it was a lot of advocacy for clients that had domestic violence, sexual assault, battery, or other serious crimes brought against them. I then transitioned to the Family Justice Center where I did Biopsychosocial evaluations and intake coordination assessments. During my Concentration year (2nd year) I was set to start counseling pro bono clients at an agency but at the last minute I switched working at the Pediatrics Unit at the hospital because I wanted to try and open the door career wise after graduation at the hospital. I interned at the Pediatrics/PICU. and then also CARES which stood for Children-At-Risk-Evaluation-Services. Peds/PICU was great because I worked with all the families and help strengthening them but also involved some CPS issues which were hard and I had some child deaths on the floor s o it was counseling and support services, bereavement etc. A lot of parent advisory boards and help with policies. At CARES it was Forensic Interviewing which is definitely not for everyone. The social workers are specially trained to conduct interviews when there are concerns of physical or sexual abuse to a child, usually law enforcement and CPS would be monitoring the interview in another room on a video monitor.

After I graduated I did private practice counseling for about a year or so and then wanted to switch to something else because it was a little exhausting hearing everyone's problems and their refusal to make the changes necessary for them. I transitioned to working for an adoption agency but got laid off with budget cuts. Currently I work for the state and I am a Designated Examiner (DE). I do assessments on people that are put on a mental health hold by law enforcement, doctors, or are currently inpatient mental health facility. I assess whether they can be discharged or not, which also requires me to appear in court and testify why I ruled if the patient was positive or negative.

I have friends from my cohort that work in Hospice and do home care assessments that love it, some go the CPS route, one friend works for the ACLU on prisoner's rights, and another works at a school for pregnant teenagers helping them to get prepared for their new baby and the transition into motherhood.

There is so much you can do with a MSW. You should google social worker jobs in Louisiana or any other state you are thinking you may want to live in. All states have different licensing requirements but pretty much the standard at least for the jobs I have mentioned is completion of MSW from an accredited school and then passing the ASWB exam which is simple enough if you survive Grad school Oh, I wish I had known this...if you get your Bachelors in Social Work (BSW) you can cut the amount of time (and money) to get your MSW in half, it is one year instead of two. I will say this though you definitely wont make as much as a social worker a you would if you were a lawyer so it all depends on what you want to do in regards to your occupation.

I hope that helps. Again congrats!!
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  #73  
Old 03-29-2015, 04:36 AM
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Thanks for posting your news. Your immediate plans sound great, including visiting your victim's grave. I believe your should speak aloud everything your heart says at the gravesite.

When visiting my hubby this weekend, I spoke to a man also in that prison currently doing 18 years for a hit and run motor vehicle accident that occurred when he was 18 years old himself. He's done 10 years now, but felt no remorse at the time of the accident. During the recent conversation with me, I told him of the driver who hit my ex-husband but never apologized and he asked me if he should apologize to the family, even at this late date, as he never had. I then told him of your story, and suggested that he do so, if he felt he should. He was very impressed with your maturity, how you've shared with the world your story, as well as your plans for the future.
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Old 03-29-2015, 07:50 AM
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Im very happy for you DB that you are being released early.

I think you will thrive.
Congrats!!
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Old 04-03-2015, 10:50 AM
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I am so happy for you! Good luck!
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