former woman prisoner reaches out

Former women prisoners who participated in writinginsideVT get in touch to update us on their progress periodically.  When I opened my email this morning, I was greeted by the words below.  My heart leaped, then sank.  How can we expect a woman to re-enter her previous impoverished home environment with limited resources..and be successful?

i was reading some of my old things and i wanted to reach out.  i miss the groups and writing so much.  i’m not doing so well, i’m sorry to disappoint u.  i know u had alot of hope for me.

i went to the web site to check (your program) out.  i still wish there was a writing circle here.  it’s really something i need in my life. writing-inside changed me.  unfortunately, poverty erases change and ur left with desperation, broken dreams, forgotten hope, and a hole lot of despair.

i’m not really sure where to go or what to do.  i had this crazy idea that maybe if i changed my environment, i’d be more able to change my choices, maybe even change my path.

when i read my writing i remember a time when i had hope in myself, when i realized my dreams.  u gave me an opportunity, a strength i never knew i had.  i hope u know the impact u had on my life even if it was only six months.  you gave me something no one else has.  you believed in me, in possibilities. i really would like to believe those things still exist.

4 thoughts on “former woman prisoner reaches out

    • Sarah says:

      Yes, Anne – our program allows women to be heard, often for the very first time in their lives. Heard with compassion and completely without judgment. This particular writer started out with an enormous well of rage which she didn’t know how to direct. Through months of weekly writing with her, supporting whatever needed to be written and listening deeply to her pain, we witnessed a clear change in the direction of her energies. Sadly, when time came for her to be released, ‘home’ was her only option. We remain in touch; and we are extremely interested in finding ways for that connection to become more real and ongoing in her life/the lives of others in similar situations, to help her return to that place of hope and determination she held upon release.

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    • Sarah says:

      If hope is one thing we can give through our work, then it feels worthwhile. The next step is for us to be able to help these women carry their hope inside, even when they are back in the setting that first created the life that undid them. Thanks for your compassion and for taking the time to comment.

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