A Family in Prison | Teen Ink

A Family in Prison MAG

January 28, 2009
By Anonymous

I was five when I watched my dad get led out of a courtroom in handcuffs and shackles. There were so many people moving around, I wasn’t sure what was really happening. One thing I did see very clearly and will never forget was the tear rolling down his cheek. That was the first time I had ever seen him cry. Almost 11 years have passed and I still remember that day perfectly. That was the last time I saw my dad outside prison.

Being young, only in kindergarten, I was frightened by this terrifying place. Surrounded by barbed wire and razor fences, I thought it was a horror house. That first visit was just the first of many times I’d go through the process of being frisked and walking through metal detectors.

That first time my family and I stepped into a large room filled with dozens of men wearing blue uniforms, I wondered if the other inmates’ loved ones felt the way we did. The convicts looked almost like clones – until I saw my dad. He looked much thinner and really frail. My mom started crying, and he came over and hugged her.

It felt so surreal, like I was dreaming. Now I can hardly remember my dad without his uniform. Some mornings I wake up and, for a split second, forget he’s not home anymore. Then it hurts even worse when I remember where he is and that my mom and I will never have him back.

It hurts to think of all the special memories my dad didn’t share with us. All the birthday parties and family vacations he missed. It’s one of the worst feelings in the world for a girl to know that her father won’t be there to walk her down the aisle.

While my sisters, mom, and I are out living life, Dad is in that horrific place every minute of his life, only getting to see his family one day a week. My mother and I feel so much pain not having him with us, but I can’t begin to imagine his pain and suffering every day in there.

We continue to hope for a miracle. My dad will be eligible for parole in 2023. We continue to pray that an innocent man will be freed from his life sentence for a murder he did not commit.

Similar Articles


This article has 230 comments.

on Jul. 26 2011 at 3:48 pm
FatesMistake13, Springerville, Arizona
0 articles 0 photos 157 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Most people die of a sort of creeping common sense, and discover when it is too late that the only things one never regrets are one's mistakes." Oscar Wilde

"The books that the world calls immoral are books that show the world its own shame."

This article is so amazing. Not only is it wonderfully written but also truely touching. I'm so glad that you realize your fathers innocence and only pray that our justice system will realize it too.

on Jul. 26 2011 at 3:18 pm
lovetildeath GOLD, Virginia Beach, Virginia
10 articles 0 photos 34 comments

Favorite Quote:
I'm selfish, impatient, & a little insecure. I make mistakes, I am out of control, & at times hard to handle. But if you can't handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don't deserve me at my best.
- Marilyn Monroe

I will pray that your father will get out.Our justice system is really messed up.

on Jul. 26 2011 at 3:40 am
IAmWhoIWantToBe PLATINUM, Manila, Other
41 articles 0 photos 650 comments

Favorite Quote:
‎"I’m learning how to drown out the constant noise that is such an inseparable part of my life. I don’t have to prove anything to anyone. I only have to follow my heart and concentrate on what I want to say to the world: I run my world." - Beyoncé

Your story's so touching. I wish no one who deserves to be in prison would be there...

on Jul. 4 2011 at 2:26 am
WishfulDoer GOLD, Portland, Oregon
14 articles 0 photos 69 comments

Favorite Quote:
If ignorance is bliss, why is our country so complicated?

I don't feel sorry for you. I admire you. To be able to tell a story that probably sticks in your mind and composes your nightmares...There really aren't words to describe my admiration for your courage. I know you'll get through this, and I know your father is proud of each and every thing you do. 

on Jun. 12 2011 at 8:43 pm
Untouchable-Summer SILVER, Cranford, New Jersey
6 articles 0 photos 86 comments

Favorite Quote:
Even the best fall down sometimes

Wow. I am so sorry:( I sincerely hope your dad will get out of prison. I can't imagine life without my daddy</3

on Jun. 12 2011 at 7:35 pm
shinegirl24 BRONZE, Grand Rapids, Michigan
3 articles 0 photos 49 comments

Favorite Quote:
"All, everything I understand, I understand only because I love." Leo Tolstoy

I'm praying for both of you, I mean. 

Sayuri97 GOLD said...
on Jun. 12 2011 at 6:23 pm
Sayuri97 GOLD, Gilford, New Hampshire
12 articles 0 photos 49 comments
Thank you very much shinegirl24, but I believe that the one who wrote this article needs the prayer much more that I.

Sayuri97 GOLD said...
on Jun. 12 2011 at 6:22 pm
Sayuri97 GOLD, Gilford, New Hampshire
12 articles 0 photos 49 comments
The same thing happened with me! It's so good to hear that people are going through the same thing.

on Jun. 12 2011 at 5:24 pm
JoPepper PLATINUM, Annandale, Virginia
35 articles 0 photos 782 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Freedom is the ability to not care what the other person thinks."

"Not all those who wander are lost" --JRR Tolkien

"When you are listening to music it is better to cover your eyes than your ears." --Jose' Bergamin

That was so sad!  I nearly cried!!!!!!!

on Jun. 12 2011 at 3:48 pm
shinegirl24 BRONZE, Grand Rapids, Michigan
3 articles 0 photos 49 comments

Favorite Quote:
"All, everything I understand, I understand only because I love." Leo Tolstoy

Oh my gosh.... I can't even imagine what you have to go through. Your writing was very powerful. Just know that you have me out there praying for you and your family.

Sayuri97 GOLD said...
on Jun. 12 2011 at 12:52 pm
Sayuri97 GOLD, Gilford, New Hampshire
12 articles 0 photos 49 comments
You are amazing. My own father went to jail when I was in 1st grade and didn't get out until 3 years later. I can't even count the number of nights I spent lying awake thinking of him. I didn't even recognize him when he came out. After that my parents got divorced and my dad moved to this ratty house. It wasn't until 6th grade when I realized he started drinking. It got so bad that when I tried to hep him he disowned me. I left him in the beginning of 8th grade. I am almost a freshman now, and I can almost relate to you. It hurts the most to walk down the street and see a father pick up his little daughter and twirl her around. It gave me such comfort to read your story. It shows me that there are other's in the world just like us. But let me remind you that although so much horror has befallen your family, your father still loves you more than life itself. (I wish I could say the same.) Stay strong and know that there are always others out there who stand by you, whether they be on opposite sides of the ocean or in the house across the street. Stay strong and everything will be okay.

RMicchelle said...
on Jun. 12 2011 at 11:39 am
RMicchelle, Corry, Pennsylvania
0 articles 0 photos 75 comments

Favorite Quote:
You don't have to like me... I like myself, and that's enough

"When life gives you lemons it better give you sugar too or your lemonade is going to suck."

Wow, hon...I can't even begin to know how you feel, no matter how much I try. This story darn near brought tears to my eyes, esspecialy when you said "It is one of the worst feelings in the world for a girl to know that her father won't be there to walk her down the aisle." Really, made me emotional. I have always known my father, but have never wanted to have a relationship with him for certain reasons, therefore he is no longer part of my life.... I made that choice and I am proud that I could, But to not have the choice, to have him almost completely ripped away without a say, I don't know how you stand it, I would want to scream my head off and make them let him out. You inspire me more than words can say. I hope all works out for you in the end... Him too. You have my best wishes.

on Jun. 12 2011 at 11:24 am
Jacy-Lee PLATINUM, Stonington, Connecticut
21 articles 2 photos 24 comments

Favorite Quote:
Love to learn, learn to love

you are a great writer. this piece is truly touching and it has wonderful detail. I am very sorry for you.

kingtut SILVER said...
on Jun. 12 2011 at 9:37 am
kingtut SILVER, Douglassville, Pennsylvania
9 articles 0 photos 8 comments

Favorite Quote:
"You can beat or jail me or even kill me, but I am not going to be what you want me to be," ~Steve Biko from "Cry Freedom"

I feel so sorry for you. I can now imagine what you are going through. My prayers, also, are for you, your family, and your father. 

on May. 21 2011 at 2:46 pm
BeiberChick1419 BRONZE, Lilburn, Georgia
1 article 0 photos 9 comments

Favorite Quote:
Don't tell me the sky's the limit when I know there are footprints on the moon.

honey, i love this writing. its perfectly descriptive, and is something i can definately relate to! a member of my family was imprisoned for a very long time, shortly after the birth of his first daughter. me and my family will keep you in our prayers. please know that god is looking out for you, and your father too. (:

on May. 5 2011 at 12:17 pm
I can tell this really hurts but the adice i got to give to you is just pray and hope for a miracle because the one up in heaven knows what you are going through. If i was in your shoes I don't think I could of handled it how you handled it. This proves that your are a very brave girl and my heart goes out to you.

Angelina C said...
on May. 1 2011 at 11:58 am
I would love to reach out to this writer please respond to warrant that and I will send you my info or vice versa.

on Apr. 29 2011 at 6:39 pm
lyssamarie97 BRONZE, Centralia, Washington
3 articles 3 photos 12 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I am, I am, I am." Slyvia Plath, The Bell Jar

touching article. I could not live without my father. U and ur family are in my prayers Hope for a miracle. :)

on Apr. 29 2011 at 3:29 pm
fearless.girl SILVER, Apex, North Carolina
9 articles 0 photos 3 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Fear is only in our mind."

I think you're very brave to sit down and write this. I bet it was hard to post it to the world that your dad is in jail, and how it affects you. I think this piece was amazing.

smith said...
on Apr. 7 2011 at 9:04 pm
I am so srry for u and your family. that remined me of my bestfriend mom being in jail. she was so upset and every night she cry and i allways had to be the one to confort her. so i know what u are going through its hard. especially when u didn't see him for 11 years. my friend  mother was in jail for 2years.  i hope that some miracle happen for your father. i am really srry for u truly.