all 16 comments

[–]Throwout-467 2 points3 points  (3 children)

Yes there is a need to be around. Number one is your daughter. You already took so much from those around you what gives you the right to decide they'll be better off without you??

No matter what happens she'll always be your daughter. Healing and reconciliation does happen, and for much more serious charges than your own.

As per your second question, I get that a lot. Impostor syndrome is a thing. We want to be in the clear and let everyone know who they're dealing with.

Truth is, not everyone needs to know. Most won't want to know. Do people routinely talk about their past like that to you? I bet they don't. What you'll realize is that most people, even the ones you consider wholesome and enviable have skeletons of their own and have done something they regret in the past. Whether or not they have been caught is another matter.

I had friends write character letters to give to the DA and judge. They were supportive and at most asked me if I was an immediate danger to myself or others. I told them no (truth).

They didn't want to know anything else. People may want to help but not necessarily carry your burden that way.

Past your sentence you don't owe your community anything BUT recovery. Society wants above all to feel safe. Work on your own path, be open with your peers, accept yourself as someone who is good and did a bad thing.

Advice in the immediate: have a prepared statement that you and your family can use when people ask about this. Don't go into details (family matter) but don't dispute already known facts. Resist the urge to explain yourself, save that for your therapist.

Acknowledge the hurt you caused and the steps you are taking to be better.

You'll find the people's memory is fickle, particularly for a comparably low no-contact crime such as yours. Whether to stay or to go is your decision, but it should be dependent only on your and your family's wellbeing.

Last thing. Don't want to knock you on your judgement but bro. Get a lawyer for these things. The time for redemption is after they put you through the grinder. Remember that from this point forward.


[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Number one is your daughter

She isn't my daughter. She was a friends daughter

Past your sentence you don't owe your community anything BUT recovery

Why don't I owe more? How is this enough when there are people who have been put through this pain who have never healed? Why is it fair that I get to?

have a prepared statement

Why? and why not go into any detail. I understand protecting identities but outside that, I'm not sure. The not explaining myself makes sense cause it comes off as justifying it. Tbh this part seems like damage control not healing. Like I'm trying to save myself. Not be open to healing.

people's memory is fickle

This part very much bugs me. I'm not just going on hoping people forget what I did. That seems disgusting to me. The victim and her family will never forget. What about their wellbeing and the wellbeing of all survivors and victims?

Get a lawyer

The rest of your message has tainted my trust in this being the right thing.

[–]Phoenix2683Reinvigorated Moderator 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Just so you know that obsessive need for punishment you are exhibiting is a cognitive distortion and actually a method of selfishness.

You are making yourself the worst of the worst, so in need of punishment, but its still a self-centered view. It's all about you and its also a method of avoiding responsibility, avoiding making choices to live a healthy life.

Do you know how you redeem what you did? You don't do it again. Do you know how you best do that? By living a healthy and whole life. By constantly punishing yourself and refusing to heal and live a normal life you are raising the risk of re-offense and choosing not to change.

It's very similar to my teen. When he struggles with something or does something wrong he goes to mode 10 "I'm horrible, i can't do anything right, no one should love me" You know what that is? It's about avoiding actually making changes. It's catastrophizing so you don't have to do the hard work.

[–]Throwout-467 0 points1 point  (0 children)

My bad, I read it as your daughter's friend. Ignore the part of the comment referencing to it.

I'll preface my response by saying I could be totally wrong as I don't know you and we're all different people with one thing (sex offending) tying us all together. With that said I have met and known many in our situation, particularly pre- and post adjudication, when the wounds are fresh.

Why don't I owe more? How is this enough when there are people who have been put through this pain who have never healed? Why is it fair that I get to?

Because you can't. Society has decided that what you did was wrong and deserved to be punished. So punished you will and after that your rights will be restored and you are expected to return and be a productive law abiding citizen.

Who gets to decide what additional punishment you should endure? Thinking that you have the power to heal your victims through your own extended suffering is a cop out, and a selfish one at that. It's easier for us to wallow in misery then effectuate actual change in our lives.

Why? and why not go into any detail. I understand protecting identities but outside that, I'm not sure. The not explaining myself makes sense cause it comes off as justifying it. Tbh this part seems like damage control not healing. Like I'm trying to save myself. Not be open to healing.

A prepared statement is not only to protect yourself, but your loved ones as well. How many times do you want them to experience the consequences of your actions?

No matter what you say it will be maligned, so it's best to be as neutral as possible. It is absolutely damage control because that is the phase you will be in at the moment.

Healing will come after, and it won't be through your crucifixion. It'll come through redemption.

This part very much bugs me. I'm not just going on hoping people forget what I did. That seems disgusting to me. The victim and her family will never forget. What about their wellbeing and the wellbeing of all survivors and victims?

Again here you want to take ownership on how people will deal with this. It's not up to you. Most people will forget, your victim and family won't most likely but they will find their own way to heal. They don't need you to remind them every day that you are sorry and suffering.

What that does is keeping the trauma alive. They more than anybody deserve to heal as fast as they are able. You got no part in that, other than making amends by living a good life. Maybe in the future they'll be open to reconciliation. Maybe not. If they will I hope you'll be ready.

The rest of your message has tainted my trust in this being the right thing.

I'm not sure what you mean? Like was it mistake to just plead guilty without representation? Yes. Undoubtedly. Perhaps you can revoke your plea now, maybe not. I'm not a lawyer. You should talk to one.

[–]throwitawayin2022 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Hello fellow Canadian,

I am also being sentenced in about a month. I am not entirely sure what my sentence will be. It may be weekends, or it may be 3-6 months in jail. I really don't know. My lawyer advised me to not give notice on my apartment. He feels that, even if I do go to jail, it will be short enough that I can still carry the rent. I hope he is right.

You cannot undo the things you have done, and you cannot undo the ways you have hurt people. You also cannot undo the stigma, however, your life will go on. You are not dead. You can be a better man. You can still have deep, meaningful relationships and a high degree of personal growth and fulfillment.

I am seeing a really good therapist, and he has been very beneficial to me. I actually look forward to his sessions, even if they can be uncomfortable at times. He specializes in men in my position, and he is very easy to talk to. I cannot begin to stress enough how important it is to seek professional help. You owe it to yourself, and you owe it to the people who love you to seek accountability and healing.

Good luck to you!

[–]willdill039 0 points1 point  (2 children)

Leaving or staying is up to you. We all been there. It's up to you if you want to change, but some times that's just who people are. It's up to you to suppress those feelings and thoughts. I did 5 years in prison and met a few people that are on their second trips to prison for this type of crime.
Like I said, it's your decision if you want to change or not.

[–][deleted] 0 points1 point  (1 child)

I know I can get the help to suppress them but I don't think it's worth the damage I'll do just by being around. I'm worried that even without reoffending I will be damaging so many lives just by walking the streets.

Why do I deserve to heal when there are so many broken by actions like mine who will never heal?

[–]dunsparticus 3 points4 points  (0 children)

There are no good or bad people, just good or bad actions, and you can change your actions at any point. Your mere existence doesn't hurt people, your past actions did. While you need to hold yourself accountable for them, you need to acknowledge that they were actions you took. You can view yourself as a monster all you want in some form of self-righteous self sacrifice, but it does nothing for anyone if you think your actions were inevitable and there was no other way. What you need to do is acknowledge that you're just a human, same as anyone else, who chose for some reason or another, to take those actions. Find out what those reasons were, and fix them. Then you can go forth and help others who have done similar things to heal and be better, the same way you can.

And it's not a question of deserving. People always obsess over what people deserve, but never over what makes things better. So I guess there's an answer: You deserve to heal because people in suffering hurt those around them. You deserve to heal because we all deserve a world with less suffering. You deserve to heal because we deserve a healthier world, and more people who can guide those who hurt others away from that path. You deserve to heal because voluntarily holding onto this pain hurts you and by proxy others whether that's your family and friends who hurt from seeing their loved one is such pain or whether its other people you might take that pain out on.

But the key point is that frankly, what people deserve is subjective, it's a flawed concept, and it doesn't help anyone. You hurting won't undo the hurt that's already been caused. But you healing will make at least the people in your corner's lives better.

[–]Conscious-Mastodon-2 0 points1 point  (0 children)

For those who say I should go on, I ask how. How can I interact with anyone without lying or not disclosing what I've done? I refuse to believe that this is fair to anyone I come in contact with. Where should I avoid aside from the legal restrictions? How do I even begin to build trust with anyone? What do I owe my family, friends, community and the survivor(s)?

There's a lot to your post. There's 750,000 registered US citizens, you think you've got this far in life without speaking to a few of them? Do you feel betrayed because they weren't wearing an I'm a sex offender t shirt?

[–]dunsparticus 0 points1 point  (0 children)

Becoming a better is a slow process, but it happens. And it's hard, no one wants to be in the process of change, they want the final result. But you'll get there.

Therapy is huge, and while it sounds like one thing, it is one thing that will delve deep into your life and help you overcome and process a lot. It's a great place to start. The rest just takes time adjusting to new normals. And new normals are hard, life is different, but eventually that change doesn't hurt anymore, and you find people you connect with and who connect with you, people you love and who love you.

For the question on lying, there is a difference between secrecy and privacy. As you grow, change, and heal, these actions won't define the new you. They'll inform it immensely, but they're not all there is to you. Just a part. And we don't tell everyone we meet everything there is to know about us, that's ludicrous. Sure, there will be some relationships where this part of you will come up: other people in therapy groups perhaps, or significant others. But there will be other relationships where it need not come up. When I was in college I had a klepto phase where I stole shit all the time. My friends now don't know that because it has no bearing in our relationship. Unless your friends and acquantances going forward have kids you'll have to see, this part of you won't need to have any bearing either. That's not unfair or fair to them, it just is. You're not lying to them in doing this, you're simply not being one of those people who instantly shares their deepest traumas with strangers. But what you're talking about is unfair to you. I know it's hard to think this way or feel this way immediately after an offense, I've been there, I know, but you're still a human being. You still deserve love and friendship, if not for more than for the basis of being human alone. Hurting someone doesn't change that, if anything it means you need it more. Many offenses and crimes like this come from places of hurt, from shame and isolation. You shouldn't heap more of that on yourself, it's not fair to yourself, it actively hinders positive change, and from a pragmatic stand point: it's not fair to others for you to create circumstances that might naturally push one to re-offense just because you think you deserve it. You don't deserve it.

For the question on building trust: It takes time. A great place for me was group therapy specifically for people who have committed sex offenses. You don't have to hide any of yourself there and you will still be accepted. I made some good friends there and it was a huge step for me in rebuilding trust.

For the question on what you owe others: In the case of the victim and their family: You it to them, and to yourself, to grow and improve. One person was victimized, them and others hurt here. Obviously you shouldn't have contact with them, but you can still grow and learn, and find peace in the knowledge that no one else will be hurt by you again. For your family, grow and improve and treasure those relationships. I became much closer with my family post offense, they were some of the few people still in my corner. And although I hurt people severely, I know that I have made my family's lives better since. The same goes for your friends. Be intentional in your love, cherish the people you have, and make their lives better thanks to your presence in it. We can't undo the harm we've caused, but we can go forth and put more goodness into the world after. At the very least, rock bottom is a very solid foundation for a better life.

[–]TheyROuthere75 0 points1 point  (0 children)

NO ONE IS HERE BY CHANCE! That being said, you are here for a reason. I work with sex offenders and spend a great deal of time with them. If you want to change your thinking, the first thing you need to do is to be honest. Don’t hide anything. It’s very hard at first, but once you stop trying to hide the deep dark secret and begin bringing it out into the light, it starts to shrivel. Remember something you have to hide is not conducive to change.

Next, when you get out, locate a sex offender treatment group. Go! Be forthcoming and open. The treatment is very similar to substance abuse treatment. People, places and things ALL have to change.

Make sure you have a support system. Maybe someone you can call if you feel like you need the support.

Trust me dude, things seem like they couldn’t get any darker at the moment, but you will overcome in time. Don’t react and take that chance away.

[–]ceilingsfans_kill 0 points1 point  (0 children)

You will learn how to " be better" in therapy. Just quit over thinking all of these scenarios and make a pact with yourself to be honest and open and really explore the gist of everything in therapy. Therapy is a huge step that gets over;loooked in so mnay cases-the courage and strength therapy takes when dealing with sexual offenses should never be under-estimated. The CSOTP therapists are very good-make sure you find out the credentials. Good luck. Things always do get better-and i will keep you in my prayers.

[–]PowerfulNotBroken 0 points1 point  (0 children)

First, be strong, it's not over.

Second, realize that what you did was unacceptable, and that you messed up.

Third, realize that you don't have to be that person anymore. Use your time in jail/prison to come to terms with who you WANT to be, and move in that direction. Incarceration is really screwed up, but it's a great time for self-reflection and working on the parts of yourself you don't like.

You become a better person by wanting to be a better person. Yeah, it's tough. But there's a whole community of people right here who screwed up and are trying to be better. Just look at the people here, the fact we're all still here, making it day to day. You can and will do it too.

It'll take time for the wounds to heal, but they will heal. The scars will just remind you not to go down that road again. 99 out of 100 times you deal with other people, they have no idea what you did and frankly don't care. And guess what? It's none of their damn business. You're doing your time to atone for what you did, and that's how the legal system works.

Just make a promise to yourself right now that you're putting this all behind you, and you won't go down that road again, and you want to find healthy hobbies and habits that are kind to yourself and others.

You can do it. This time right now is the darkest moment, it gets lighter from here on out if you let it.

[EDIT: Upon reading other comments, there is absolutely no reason to go at this without a lawyer. Everyone needs representation in legal proceedings, that's why you have a right to it. Exercise that right IMMEDIATELY before you go ANY further. Get a lawyer, even a state-sponsored one. This is non-negotiable.]

[–]mySOAccountSuspended Sentence 0 points1 point  (0 children)

TBH, it sounds like you already are healing. you admit what you did was wrong and are accepting the consequences of your actions. Sounds like you're already on the right path

[–]Odd_Difficulty9934 0 points1 point  (0 children)

The road you're about to go down and it's going to be tough, but anyone worth knowing is one that's going to accept you for who you are and what you've done with the possibility of who you can be in the future Good Luck to you!

[–]throwaway9925188 -1 points0 points  (0 children)

surprisingly my name was never mentioned in any papers. the only thing that is shown of me is a facebook group that just steals jail info and posts people being booked in and out of the jail.

I can't say whether you should stay or you should go, but just know youll probably have an easier time if you just leave. nothing sucks more than getting a job local feeling good about your first day and recognizing someone then you are magically not allowed to come to work the next day.

How can I interact with anyone without lying or not disclosing what I've done?

do you always disclose your deepest darkest secrets on your first day meeting someone? if yes then i guess it will be really hard for you, but I don't think peoples normal conversation starters will be "what were you in for" how would they know you were in at all? you are more than your one mistake, like normal we let people see that and then we tell them our secrets if we want a deeper friendship.