"Ex convicts of Reddit, did you find prison rehabilitating? Why or why not? What would you change about the system if you could?" –– This was today's burning question from Redditor RamenIsMyKyptonite, and it's a doozy.
According to the National Institute of Justice, about two-thirds (67.8 percent) of released prisoners were rearrested within three years of release. Within five years of release, about three-quarters (76.6 percent) of released prisoners were rearrested.
Clearly the culture within the prison system needs to be changed, as these former inmates can attest.
"Did 4 years..."
Did 4 years in a maximum security penitentiary in Canada.
I don't think the institution itself or its programs had any influence on my rehabilitation, but I decided for myself I was never going back.
They forced us to take certain programs as part of our "correctional plan". Such as an anger management course, a course for drug dealers to tell them to not sell drugs, etc. (All of which were a waste of time imo)
You can get your grade 12 education, which I did.
The most beneficial thing that was occasionally offered in certain institutions (which is no longer available) was you could do certain trades such as carpentry or drywall, and the hours could go towards an apprenticeship on the outside. It is a huge shame that it was discontinued.
If I could change anything I would implement more programs of that nature, that taught skills that could be applied to the outside world and benefit inmates when they are released.
Parole, and living in a halfway house on release are both extremely difficult things to navigate and are imo designed to make parolees reoffend. You are thrown in a house with other convicts, prohibited from associating with any person with a criminal record, which in itself is paradoxical. Any time you leave the halfway house you must tell them exactly where you will be, and must call from a land line (no cellphone) every hour to check in and prove you are where you claim to be. Most people don't own a house phone anymore, and pay phones are almost nonexistent, which makes this very difficult. You can be sent back for the smallest infraction, such as not doing your daily chore at the halfway house (vacuuming, mopping, etc).
You are forced to find immediate employment or can be sent back. Finding a job after being inside for that long can be a very daunting task, especially when certain parole officers demand to meet your employer or meet you at work to prove you're actually employed there.
Overall more programs on the outside to help get parolees jobs, perhaps pre-apprenticeship programs and an example, would be hugely beneficial.
Most ex-cons who rehabilitate do it with their own determination and conscious decision to leave that lifestyle behind. I don't feel the system itself and resources within it play an impactful part in that.
"He went to prison three different times..."
This is not my story, this is my dads.
He went to prison three different times, but he only counts it as one, since he was only really out for less than a month each time he got out, excepting the last one of course. That's a different story.
The last time he went to prison was at Folsom Prison near Sacramento. Yes, from the song. His cellmate was an older man, though, my dad remarked that now, he's older than his cellmate was at the time. My dad was a bit of an arrogant prick and he was bragging about times he got away with some drug smuggling job. They were playing a game of chess and his cellmate just sighed.
"Boy, if you ever listen to a word I say, listen to this. You're still young, you got your whole life ahead of you. Me? I'm here for life. Do you understand that? I'm never getting out of this prison. And when I die, they're going to bury me out in that graveyard with a wooden marker over top my body. I burned all my bridges and now there's no one left to give a shit when I die. You're still a kid, but I was your age when I was put in here. Stop being a dumbass and do something with your life if you don't want to be buried underneath a prison. Now move your fucking piece so we can play some chess."
He was wrong about one thing though. Ive seen my dad cry exactly twice in my life. The second time was last year when we visited Folsom prison and my dad found out that his cellmate, the man who changed his life, passed away years ago. My dad cried over his death, and was probably the only person who did. If that man hadn't verbally slapped my dad across the face, I wouldn't have been born.
So yeah, prison can be rehabilitating, but I'm not sure if it's the system that's responsible.
"A lot of hanging out..."
I haven't been to prison, just in and out of juvie and jail for years. I don't know what was supposed to be rehabilitating. With a lot of the psychological help in juvie they had high staff turnover so there was never really consistency and progress. A lot of drug programming at both levels was just kind of like DARE stuff. And really basic. I've been in a juvie class where another kid was correcting the 'teacher's' info. Jails mostly have AA, don't really like AA.
A lot of hanging out and playing games and entertaining yourself. It rehabilitated some of my basketball skills (though some of that gets a little dirty for an actual game). It rehabilitated my ability to read books.
After the first couple of times going to juvie or jail never concerned me. Once you've figured the place out a bit then you can just hang out.
I have an uncle who had custody of me as a teen and he invested in me. He rehabilitated me, the system just took me and held me for periods of time but he did the real work. He got me competent and consistent mental health care, we found a counselor who I connected with. I got my meds sorted out. I got consistent and competent substance help. I got a good education and directed towards a career. He got himself help in how to parent me. He got me to be a regular human by about 21.
With greater funding and a change of attitude I think the system could implement all of that stuff far more successfully. And I think that a big focus on juveniles and young adults would help too. And stop being obsessed with the act of locking people up.
"Needless to say..."
Did 2 years in 2002. 1 year in a for profit regional jail and 1 year minimum security state prison.
Not rehabilitating in the sense they made any effort to rehab us but I did go straight to stay out of there.
I was 18 and breaking into businesses for the thrill. Hardcore self destruction. Thought my life was over until I saw how worse the other convicts were. The only services jail offers are GED, church and AA/NA so any rehabbing is done there. The discipline isn't like the military where they attempt to teach you honor or anything. Its just stand for count and clean your area once a day.
I already had a GED but took it again out of boredom. Prison is a lot better. Counselors teach community college courses and you have a job. Came out with 9 credits.
Probation sucks. Get downtown twice a week, don't have a shy bladder, keep a job, go to meetings even though I didn't have a drug problem. High stress and a lot of us get indefinite probation which averages 5 years.
But I did good. I'm white and middle class so I was able to blend back into society easy. Waited tables and did community college. My PO let me off probation in two years so I could go to university and ultimately hardly missed a beat. Happily married now with three kids, a mortgage and a career I don't hate.
Honestly the biggest motivation for me was watching WB shows in jail and seeing them all go to college. It was like when Mogli saw other humans and left the jungle on his own. Needless to say I had an unstable childhood.
"I wouldn't say..."
I wouldn't say it was very rehabilitating, though it did make me never want to go back. The worst thing they never tell you is that the COs can do pretty much whatever they want to you. You don't really have "due process" once you're inside, they can send you to solitary confinement whenever they want, move you to the cell of someone who hates you and look the other way as you get beat up, and nothing will happen to them for it. Most of us were more scared of the COs than we were of each other, though of course there were some good COs.
Specific punishments and such vary from prison to prison, but the worst one I always dreaded was "Dog breath." If someone in our cell did something the CO didn't like, they'd come in, order us to sit with our backs to the wall, sometimes cuffed...and then they'd bring in their K9 Officer to search the cell.
Except...well, she'd search the cell, but spend a long-ass time giving us a sniff-over too - with her mouth right on our nose, panting heavily. It was absolutely foul. One guy cursed at a CO one day, and the next day our cell was searched, and he spent 15 minutes getting breathed and slobbered on by these dogs until he was gagging and retching. Complaining about the smell was a surefire way to get more of it.
Nothing to do about it either. What are you going to do, complain that they searched your cell? That'd be a good way to earn another K9 visit the next day.
Some jobs really don't serve a purpose to society, or they are a relic of times past that society has yet to say goodbye to.
Spam Spam<p>The person whose job it is to send physical spam mail. Nobody even reads it anymore.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Random_Fangirl888/" target="_blank">Random_Fangirl888</a></p><p>My wife went to med school and her student loans are all federal and are at 0% interest and are in forbearance right now. At least once a week she gets a letter from SoFi to refinance her loans which would make her ineligible for any sort of loan forgiveness or federal assistance. So much wasted paper and postage sending those letters.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/schu2470/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">schu2470</a></p>
Stuck In The Middle W You<p>In my experience: A large percentage of middle management. Usually they just wind up inventing fake work reports so they can appear to be adding value.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/PasteTank/" target="_blank">PasteTank</a></p><p>My company is trying to cut costs, and thankfully some of the layoffs and unfilled vacancies have been middle management. It makes me wonder what their purpose was in the first place? I swear management makes new management positions to give their work to.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/C0PPER13/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">C0PPER13</a></p>
Grumble Grumble<p>My MIL tells me that during the days of the USSR there were people who sat at desks at the entrances of subway stations. They didn't actually do anything, but that was their job since by law for a while in the Soviet Union everyone needed to have a job.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/heybrother45/" target="_blank">heybrother45</a></p><p>Their job is to be unhelpful and surly. Those jobs still exist in some post-Soviet countries.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/jtbc/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">jtbc</a></p>
Jogging Doggos<p>Driving around Las Vegas I passed a mobile dog treadmill service. They come to your house and let your dog walk on a treadmill inside a Sprinter van.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/jesset60819/" target="_blank">jesset60819</a></p><p>idk i can see the value in this. las vegas can easily get over 100 degrees F outside, not guaranteed safe to walk a dog in that, could overheat or burn their paws. and not everyone wants a treadmill in their house</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/PizzaQuest420/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">PizzaQuest420</a></p>
Yeah, Why?<p>Bathroom attendant. Elevator operator. </p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/openletter8/" target="_blank">openletter8</a></p><p>Imma dispute Bathroom attendants by saying, their actual job is to keep drunks form trashing the stalls, the whole towels and mints shebang is to give them something to do on the meantime</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Maycrofy/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Maycrofy</a></p>
I Am The Captain Now<p>Casino Barge Captain.</p><p>Many places in the US have riverboat casino laws that are used to justify large casino barges that are tethered in position and never move, not even having any engines or other means of conveyance. </p><p>Since they are technically barges despite being immobile they are legally required to have a Captain certified to operate vessels of that tonnage and crew on board at all times of operation.</p><p>I can't imagine a more gravy position than "exist on the premises with your piece of paper"</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Umbrella_merc/" target="_blank">Umbrella_merc</a></p>
You May NOT Touch Your Gas<p>For the states that require it, the gas station employees that fill up your tank. I ended up in New Jersey and it was super awkward.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/DaveyJonas/" target="_blank">DaveyJonas</a></p><p>Saw this woman standing next to her SUV for ten minutes at the gas station. Finally she asks me why no one is pumping her gas for her. So I says to her "We hate you cause you're from New Jersey." </p><p>She looks at me amazed and asks how we can tell. Eventually I let her in on the joke and helped her pump her gas. She was in her 40s, had she never driven out of NJ before?</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/damasu950/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">damasu950</a></p>
Up And Down<p>Elevator Operator. It's a union job. A dude sits in a chair next to the buttons. He asks you what floor you want to go to and he pushes the button.</p><p><span></span><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Real_Time_Delay/" target="_blank">Real_Time_Delay</a></p><p>SF hired elevator operators for the subway stations. They're only there to ensure people don't piss on the elevators... which they would otherwise do.</p><p><span></span><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/tyinsf/" target="_blank">tyinsf</a></p>
Sell Sell Sell!<p>Car sales people. Because you end up dealing with the sales manager when you actually purchase the vehicle. Car sales people can't even give you a price without checking with sales manager. They are literally there to babysit you.</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/user/Aroon164/" target="_blank">Aroon164</a></p>
Life doesn't come with a blueprint, instructions, nor a roadmap of what to expect in the days and years ahead. It does, however, contain all kinds of people who've lived life for longer than you.
Until It's Breezy<p>"Study to the point where the tests seem like they're insulting your intelligence. Best calc professor Ive had" -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthzyk0?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">Fruooop</a></p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"That's a really good way of putting it. I'll have to remember that."</p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"Something I've read in the past, that's sort of similar: 'Don't just study until you *can* get the questions *right*. Study until you *can't* get the questions *wrong*.' " -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtj84pl?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">skullturf</a></p>
Stock Up First<p>"Pay your savings account FIRST."</p><p>"Don't wait until the day before you get paid to move the left overs into an account."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthl3w1?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">FrostyRain5286</a></p>
Actions, not Words<p>"Anyone can replace you in the job you do. It's not your job to boast about how irreplaceable you are, but to prove to them that they don't WANT to replace you."</p><p>"There's a difference." </p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gti7zi9?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">[deleted]</a></p>
The Cardinal Directions<p>" 'When it's her moment stand behind her. When she's nervous stand beside her. When she's scared stand in front of her. The rest you'll figure out.' - My Grandmother on women" -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthtx99?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">WholeMilkStandard</a></p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"I love your grandma!!" -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtjky5h?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">Neverthelilacqueen</a></p>
Keep Rage At Bay<p>"From my friend's late father, a wise old man from Trinidad:"</p><p>"Any man can get your goat, if you let him know where your goat is tied."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthmelk?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">JimmyBallocks</a></p>
Check Your Sources<p>"Don't take criticism from someone you wouldn't take advice from" -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthtigw?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">thehotdeskpodcast</a></p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"Well that rules out like 98% of the people I interact with." -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gti82zo?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">MrEngin33r</a></p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"Thank you. No need to give our power away." -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtjihka?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">kittanjaan</a></p>
People Are Not Psychics<p>" 'You have to ask for what you want from people, make your position clear.' "</p><p>"Don't just assume people know what your problem is, communication is key. It is great for relationships, work, friendships, school and even playing team sports or video games."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gti4ssq?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">SuecidalBard</a></p>
Let It Go<p>" 'You will continue to suffer if you have an emotional reaction to everything that is said to you. If words can control you, that means everyone can control you. Breathe and allow things to pass.' "</p><p>"It's easier said than done, but it's 100% true."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gthmxbc?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">mytwoquarters</a></p>
Give More Love<p>"Don't be afraid to show gratitude. I don't know why, but for most of my life I was embarrassed to reach out and thank people for a variety of things." </p><p>"I'd say 'thanks' to stuff like everyone does. But feeling comfortable giving specific and thoughtful expressions of gratitude has been a journey well worth taking."</p><p>-- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtikmwh?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">wtfreddititsme</a></p>
Comparative Suffering Doesn't Work<p>" 'It doesn't matter if someone has it worse than you, you're still having a hard time and that makes your problems valid and gives you the right for help.' " -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtjac08?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">BenaBenaBadBad</a></p><p style="margin-left: 20px;">"I remember one similar to this that was like 'just because someone else is in a full body cast, it doesn't mean that your broken arm doesn't hurt' " -- <a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mkqicu/what_is_the_best_piece_of_advice_youve_ever_gotten/gtl6ln4?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank">UnwaveringBear</a></p>
A school is supposed to be a place for educating and care for children.
Probably Shouldn't Be Around Kids Anymore<p>There's telltale signs when a person most likely shouldn't be around children. The following stories are those educators who should maybe consider a job doing something else. </p>
Unable To Keep Her True Thoughts Together<p>The one at a private school who broke down crying yelling "You're all f-ck-ups!" to the class and stormed out. </p><p>She was hired just out of college and didn't last long.</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtoz53w?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">dougiebgood</a></p>
Silly Rules Which Benefit No One<p>A 6th grade teacher.</p><p>She was very mean to all the students and not just from our perspective. She was very particular about how things were done and in many ways it was unfair.</p><p>Example:</p><p>We were not allowed to take our sheets out of the three ring binder to write on them. The problem is, I'm left handed, so the rings were in the way of my hand and then she would yell at me for my handwriting.</p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp5fke?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">AntiqueStatus</a><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp5fke?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3"></a>
Taking Personal Issues Into The Classroom Way Too Far<p>Had this one teacher who'd hit me for almost no reason. Found out years later she had problems with my mum at the time</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtox0ae?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">tattooedbutemployed</a></p><p>Wait why didn't your mom file a lawsuit because of this?</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtq228k?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">Yung_Mulann365</a></p><p>This was pretty normal where I grew up. (Really small Pacific island, rather not say exactly) Disciplining your kids in and out of the house was normal. Like every morning all us kids had to line up in front of the classroom with our hands out. If our fingernails were too long or dirty, you get hit with ruler. </p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtq461w?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">tattooedbutemployed</a></p>
Enacting Improper Teaching Procedures<p>Becoming a decent teacher means taking hours of training, attending professional development classes, and doing everything you can to try to perfect your craft.</p><p>Or you might encounter one of these individuals leading a class with their less than stellar skills. <br></p>
Classic Awful Behavior<p>Ms C, sixth grade.</p><p>She would frequently body shame kids she didn't like and she was racist AF I was the only Asian in class and she would openly say things like, "what breed of dogs do you think is the delicious-est?" There was only one white kid in class and whenever he did something kinda dumb, she'd say, "What a white person thing to do."</p><p>She had no respect for other people's privacy and would openly announce grades. There was a dyslexic student who got poor grades and she would mock her for that.</p><p>She would never actually teach the class, she'd literally just rant about her life. She'd gossip about the other teachers and she was just a b-tch.</p><p>Did I mention she was a toxic feminist with a hatred for men?</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp46ps?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">PuppyCumMeowMeow</a></p>
Little Reason For Choices<p>Social Studies teacher in 6th grade. I worked incredibly hard on a project for National History Day and she pulled me aside, threw it in the trash and said she'd be ashamed to put her name on it. Still makes me mad to this day.</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp7hz5?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">SnugBear</a></p>
Inappropriate Disciplinary Behavior<p>Had a woodworking teacher that used to lock disruptive students in a closet/room. Think he got fired for locking a girl in there. </p><p>Also had a teacher in primary school that whacked the class clown over the head with one of those old wooden 1m rulers and It snapped</p><p><a href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp7epu?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3" target="_blank"></a><a target="_blank">Existing_Lettuce_639</a></p>
Being Too Much Of A Creeper<p>Then there's those teachers we've encountered who...</p><p>Well, just take a look. </p>
Maybe Don't Talk About Boys' Willys?<p>Mrs. Thomson, fourth grade. She was a Brit who was always going on about how boys shouldn't let their "willy" do the thinking. I didnt even know what a "willy" was.</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtp1evk?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">ChaseDonovan</a></p>
What A Jerk<p>My History teacher in 9th grade. 1970's style, grey chest pubes popping out of his shirt with a gold necklace entangled in them. well over the line of obese but still not waddling. This was right after 9/11, so we all had to wear IDs around our necks and he'd always stare at girls' boobs saying he was checking ID. He used to give me detention if I walked in the class when the bell was ringing, but if anyone showed up after me it was fine. Made it a point to give me a hard time and belittle me in class, and I even had a meeting about it with him with out principal. Nothing happened of course because he'd been working there for 20 years. </p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtozbsj?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">mmm-pistol-whip</a><br></p>
Wait Until Your Personal Time<p>The one who got sacked for watching porn in his lunch break at school</p><p><a target="_blank" href="https://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/mm3as2/what_was_the_worst_teacher_you_ever_had/gtowryd?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x&context=3">CupperT2</a></p>
Human bodies are weird, man. And at times, they're completely unexplainable. Like, I can link my arms and bring them around my body all the way, without letting go. Don't ask me how I figured it out, but weird, right?!