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  #1  
Old 01-27-2020, 05:12 PM
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Hey Guys,

I doubt anyone here would remember me, but I was a member and a moderator here many years ago. I came to PTO after I was arrested in a high profile at the time case, and felt completely lost and out of my depth coming from a generally straight-laced middle class background.

15 years ago yesterday I was sent to prison for four months of a 2 year sentence, and at the time I had no idea how I was going to manage that, or how I was going to deal with my life once I got out. Fortunately I had loving family and friends who supported me throughout my sentence, and after I came home.

After I got out it took me two years of irregular / casual work in a wide range of industries before I finally landed a temporary job in a government department. At the time the rules about criminal histories were pretty lax, particularly for contractors, and I really lucked into something wonderful. I started off at the ground level, and am still working at the same place 13 years later in a much more senior position.

Sometimes I think my family has chosen to forget that it ever happened, and perhaps that is for the best. Certainly very few of my current friends - if any - were around in my life at the time. However there are still some lingering psychological things that stay with me after all this time.

The least of which is the adage about going out wearing fresh underwear. The day I went to court for sentencing I was wearing the oldest, rattiest most uncomfortable pair I owned. Not realising (due to prison shenanigans) that I wouldn't have access to a new/fresh pair for almost a week. Not good!

I guess the lesson that I've learned is that there is nothing that cannot be overcome in the end, although it may require patience and perseverance. I am very thankful for the information and support that PTO provided me with that helped get me through and to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

MadeInOz
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  #2  
Old 01-27-2020, 06:09 PM
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Hey there I remember you Sounds like you're doing great, and that's what I like to hear. Don't be such a stranger 'round here...your opinion, input, knowledge & experience is always welcomed
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Old 01-30-2020, 06:15 PM
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I've always wondered what doing time is like there in Australia in comparison to Texas where I've done 18 years inside. At the end of the day, I guess time is time and prisons are much the same the world over, it's the one place no one wants to go to and everyone longs to be released from as soon as possible.
I'm glad you're doing well. The fact that you've remained with the government job for 13 years speaks highly of your determination to be a responsible member of society. I have hell hanging onto a job. I really do. I walked away from yet another one this week that I've been at since November. Still, there's always another one to be found. Staying sober and building a life around sobriety is the center of my focus and on some days that is not easy.
Good luck to you.
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Old 01-30-2020, 07:56 PM
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I've recently been convicted over a host of serious offences in Victoria and I'm looking at around 15 years. I'd be curious on how you got your head around going inside. Everything feels inconceivable to me at the moment.
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Old 01-30-2020, 09:22 PM
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I've recently been convicted over a host of serious offences in Victoria and I'm looking at around 15 years. I'd be curious on how you got your head around going inside. Everything feels inconceivable to me at the moment.
Just be yourself that's all you can be. It's easier said than done, but don't worry about what you can't change. Just be yourself. What ever problems come a long, take it one day at a time and always ask God to keep his hand on you in there because, he will if you ask him. I didn't put up with a lot of nonsense from other men in there around me and the truth is I've always been like that, I didn't get that way in there. You're a man, take it like a man. You're blessed to be a man under these circumstances. No one wants to have to suffer through what prison entails, but men are better suited to do that anyone else. Be yourself, be the man that you are and know that God is with you, Michael. It's 15 years, it's not 1500. One day this too shall pass and until then we're taking it one day at a time. You're never alone even in there. Be good to yourself and don't worry because it won't change anything. You're going to make it through this. Other men lesser than you have made through prison and moved on with their lives. If they can do it then, you can do it. It's all going to be alright, my brother. Keep your chin up.
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Old 01-31-2020, 12:34 AM
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Originally Posted by Michael644 View Post
I've recently been convicted over a host of serious offences in Victoria and I'm looking at around 15 years. I'd be curious on how you got your head around going inside. Everything feels inconceivable to me at the moment.
My advise to you would be to do your research. Find out as much information as you possibly can to help you transition into prison life. Also attend to your family if you have any, make sure that they don't suffer by your absence whether that be financially or other wise. Pay off any debits that you might have, If you have a mortgage try to do a refinance or even sell the home and give whats left to your spouse so she and the children can survive. Every little bit helps in your transition in. That's what my husband and i are doing right now. We've been doing this for the last several months. We have also done our home work for when he comes out too.

Anyway here are a few links on Australian prison life that you can peruse through to get a feel for what it might be like.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...rmitories.html

https://www.newidea.com.au/australia...ian-jails-like

https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/02/06/...ralias-prisons
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Old 02-01-2020, 02:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Firebrand View Post
I've always wondered what doing time is like there in Australia in comparison to Texas where I've done 18 years inside. At the end of the day, I guess time is time and prisons are much the same the world over, it's the one place no one wants to go to and everyone longs to be released from as soon as possible.
I'm glad you're doing well. The fact that you've remained with the government job for 13 years speaks highly of your determination to be a responsible member of society. I have hell hanging onto a job. I really do. I walked away from yet another one this week that I've been at since November. Still, there's always another one to be found. Staying sober and building a life around sobriety is the center of my focus and on some days that is not easy.
Good luck to you.
Thanks. It's difficult for me to comment on what it's like these days, so much will have changed. I found that it was its own society with its own crazy rules, and it helped to find your niche. The hardest thing I found was the sheer boredom of being locked up 24/7 and finding ways to fill in time. I was lucky in that I had a definite release date and it wasn't too far off. I focussed on that and tried to keep out of trouble.

Good luck with your journey
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Old 02-01-2020, 02:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Michael644 View Post
I've recently been convicted over a host of serious offences in Victoria and I'm looking at around 15 years. I'd be curious on how you got your head around going inside. Everything feels inconceivable to me at the moment.
I can't comment on what prison is like these days, but I would say that you have to find ways of filling in time and keeping yourself sane. I wasn't expecting to do time, but on the possibility that I did, I tried to learn as much as I could from folk on here. I found a group of like-minded people inside to make friends with, which helped. I obviously wasn't facing anywhere near as much time as you are, but I really focused on not doing anything to screw up my getting out.

My family and friends were very supportive and helped keep me sane; it really is another world inside. There were a lot of things I didn't always tell them about because I knew they'd be worried about. I also kept a diary which I turned into a book a few years after I got out, but I never actually shared it with my family. It made sense at the time, but as time has gone on I just didn't know what the purpose of sharing it would be any more.
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Old 02-13-2020, 07:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Born View Post
My advise to you would be to do your research. Find out as much information as you possibly can to help you transition into prison life. Also attend to your family if you have any, make sure that they don't suffer by your absence whether that be financially or other wise. Pay off any debits that you might have, If you have a mortgage try to do a refinance or even sell the home and give whats left to your spouse so she and the children can survive. Every little bit helps in your transition in. That's what my husband and i are doing right now. We've been doing this for the last several months. We have also done our home work for when he comes out too.

Anyway here are a few links on Australian prison life that you can peruse through to get a feel for what it might be like.
Thanks. Are you located in Australia?

I've spoken to a few people recently who were in, but the last finished his bid five years ago, in a minimum security facility. I'll likely be in maximum security for the duration, so things will be quite different. The only guy I know who has done serious time in max was nearly twenty years ago, and he had quite a lot of crazy and frankly, scary stories. I think it might be a bit better these days but either way you cut it, it's a horrible place.

Thankfully, I'm debt free. As for family, there's no-one really. Everyone's either dead or long estranged. My wife and I are divorcing and we have no children, but she's kept in semi-regular contact, and I've assured her she'll be taken care of. It kills me to see what this has done to her...

All the best to you and your husband.
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  #10  
Old 02-13-2020, 07:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MadeInOz View Post
I can't comment on what prison is like these days, but I would say that you have to find ways of filling in time and keeping yourself sane. I wasn't expecting to do time, but on the possibility that I did, I tried to learn as much as I could from folk on here. I found a group of like-minded people inside to make friends with, which helped. I obviously wasn't facing anywhere near as much time as you are, but I really focused on not doing anything to screw up my getting out.

My family and friends were very supportive and helped keep me sane; it really is another world inside. There were a lot of things I didn't always tell them about because I knew they'd be worried about. I also kept a diary which I turned into a book a few years after I got out, but I never actually shared it with my family. It made sense at the time, but as time has gone on I just didn't know what the purpose of sharing it would be any more.
Beside from the loss of freedom, what do you think was the biggest shock or most bizzare element of going in?
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Old 02-13-2020, 11:22 PM
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Thanks. Are you located in Australia?

I've spoken to a few people recently who were in, but the last finished his bid five years ago, in a minimum security facility. I'll likely be in maximum security for the duration, so things will be quite different. The only guy I know who has done serious time in max was nearly twenty years ago, and he had quite a lot of crazy and frankly, scary stories. I think it might be a bit better these days but either way you cut it, it's a horrible place.

Thankfully, I'm debt free. As for family, there's no-one really. Everyone's either dead or long estranged. My wife and I are divorcing and we have no children, but she's kept in semi-regular contact, and I've assured her she'll be taken care of. It kills me to see what this has done to her...

All the best to you and your husband.
Thank you, I wish you all the best also.

I'm Australian and my husband is American. I've had to leave due to not having any support system for me when he goes in. It's really heartbreaking and some days are worse than others. I'd rather be there with him and by his side but that won't be happening anytime soon. All i have to look forward to is letter writing till such time he gets out. So technically our life is on hold and we both have our own prison to contend with till such time we can be together again.

All the best to you Michael, I hope that the Australian prison system is not as harsh as the American one is.
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