A Family in Prison This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

January 28, 2009
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.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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This article has 233 comments. Post your own now!

htrae22 said...
Jan. 9, 2011 at 4:05 pm
i had by dad killed my a murder i hope the best for you all
Sunshine67 said...
Dec. 31, 2010 at 6:04 pm
Thanks for sharing this. I wouldn't imagine life without my dad. He is my hero. Well I am praying that he gets parole or at least some how get out of prison. THnaks
Leann13 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Dec. 18, 2010 at 10:34 pm
I'm so sorry for you... I honestly can feel from the things you wrote that he is innocent. You know in your heart he is, and so should every reader. You are an amazing writer and you give a lot of feeling to WHAT you write. I will pray for you and your family, but especially for your father. Please keep writing and keep having hope! :)
Ifeelurpayne said...
Dec. 18, 2010 at 9:28 pm
My uncle, who was very close to me, went to jail and was given a life sentance as well. But your father WILL get out. You just have to hope. The real culprit was caught after years of being forced to see my uncle in an orange jumpsuit. Your father is inncoent, and I believe it. Keep strong :)
Shrien said...
Dec. 18, 2010 at 6:48 pm
That was amazing! Good luck and keep strong! (:
pattyd said...
Dec. 18, 2010 at 6:48 pm

I am an adult now but grew up with a father who was in prison. Your story was honest and really touched me. It is so difficult because you know how much you love your Dad. I remember those visits and how much I looked foreward to seeing my Dad. Remember, Your father loves you even though he made some mistakes. People don't understand unless they have been there. Stay strong.


Azrael said...
Dec. 18, 2010 at 1:45 pm
it took u so much bravery for you to write this and im giving you my blessings that a miracle will happen and your dad will be set free
kitkat95 said...
Dec. 18, 2010 at 11:18 am
you are so amazing for writing this and i give you all the hope i have in my heart good luck and keep praying
SkyDeer This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Dec. 18, 2010 at 8:45 am
Very sorry this had to happen to you. The writing is so descriptive it is a very good article.
SkyDeer This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Dec. 18, 2010 at 8:55 am
and I'm praying.
DaddiesDoodle This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Dec. 18, 2010 at 10:07 am

Yes I'll join your prayers! ;) I really enjoyed reading your touching story!


AlexAldridge replied...
Dec. 18, 2010 at 7:15 pm
I'm praying too. 
oogensagen said...
Dec. 18, 2010 at 7:57 am
Wow! You are amazing what power your piece shows. My heart goes to you.
1234567890 said...
Nov. 29, 2010 at 7:45 am



nessie14 said...
Nov. 4, 2010 at 5:05 pm
what you wrote was beautiful and i can understand what you are going through my dad has a chance for parole in 2017. so wish him good luck and good luck to you and your dad...if you ever want to talk just write me back.
Brook_little_obbsessive replied...
Nov. 4, 2010 at 8:12 pm
Thats really really insulting to whoever wrote this piece, 'Luvtaylor16'
luvtaylor16 replied...
Nov. 5, 2010 at 12:16 pm



pyropoet said...
Nov. 4, 2010 at 12:42 pm

I can only imagine what you're going through right now.... my dad was almost hauled off to prison for domestic violence a few years ago. Though I don't know you, I'll be praying that your dad gets released and is seen as innocent to the judge and jury come time for his parole hearing. No one should have to go through life without a father figure. 

This was a very good piece, by the way. I actually have two pieces of nonfiction on here as well. I hope you check them out when you ar... (more »)

The Situation said...
Oct. 13, 2010 at 10:57 pm
This was a really good piece of writing that's better then anything I've ever put down or will ever write on a piece of paper. I wouldn't know what that feels like because that's never happened to me or my family. Keep up the writing because you're an awesome writer.
Challenger101 said...
Oct. 13, 2010 at 5:31 pm
Whoa, my gosh. I loved that piece its my favorite! :) but wow, i wasnt expecting that last pharagraph. That makes me want to cry... Please keep writing i was shocked and surprised with this story and i really really enjoyed it. God bless you. Peace. Hope everything works out. Thank you. Amen.
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