Author Topic: pros and cons  (Read 275 times)

Offline DreamFae

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pros and cons
« on: August 20, 2014, 01:21:00 pm »
What would be the pros and cons of moving from another state to Texas to be closer to inmate doing a long sentence or doing life

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Offline sunrayswench

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Re: pros and cons
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2014, 06:55:52 am »
If you are considering moving to Texas from within the US, and the main reason is to be able to visit more often, then there are several things to consider.

* Employment.
How are you going to support yourself once you have moved? Texas has areas of high employment and high wages, related to the oilfields and also Corrections as an industry, but it also has large areas of low employment and poverty. Consider the wage you will be leaving behind and all it allows you to do, and then measure that against living in Texas - extra transport costs, taxes, health care/insurance, etc

* Accommodation.
Are you going to rent or buy? If you are purchasing a home, consider the areas you would want to live in against the areas that are closer to where the inmate is currently located. Prisons are not normally located in beauty spots. If you want to sell the property later for any reason, would you make anything back on it or would you more likely make a loss. If you are renting, consider the areas as well, a nice looking house might be in the middle of a bad area and you wont be able to tell from the picture the rental agent shows you. Make sure you visit several times, in all weathers and at different times of the year and day to get a real feel for the area.

* Lifestyle. Are you used to having a lot of local amenities on your doorstep such as libraries, galleries, a movie theatre, coffee shops, parks, large shopping malls, medical centres and hospitals, good public transport, etc? If so, there are few places in Texas that can offer all (or even some) of those things.

* Support system.
This can be a lonely path to walk. Would you be leaving behind friends and family, clubs and associations, and moving to somewhere where the only person you know is the inmate? How will you fill your time when you are not at work or visiting? How well do you cope with your own company? Do you need a busy social life? Would you be taking children or elderly relatives with you? How will they cope with the change?

* Climate.
Much of the US has hot weather during part of the year. Texas really only has two seasons and the summer can last for around 9 months - and those 9 months can often see prolonged periods (weeks) with the daily highs of around or above 90 degrees. It is not unusual to have 100 degree days. The humidity is high across much of the state. When it rains, it rains hard and heavy. And then there are the hurricanes. Nights can be cold, and ice is not unusual during the winter. 

The logstics of visiting won't change a whole lot. Yes you would be able to visit every weekend if you wanted, but only for 2 hours at a time (plus travel time and waiting). Living more than 300 miles (by TDCJ calculations) means you get special visits, though not necessarily every weekend. You could live in Louisiana or Oklahoma and still visit monthly rather than moving round the corner from the unit.

But what happens if you move to Beaumont for example, to be close to the prison there, and then the inmate is moved to Amarillo? Or you move to Tennessee Colony and the inmate gets moved to Beeville? TDCJ inmates can be moved at any time to any other unit - and often are.

What happens if the only job you can find requires you to work at weekends? Or the job you find then changes the hours they require you to work to include one weekend day?

Calls may be a little cheaper, but you will still be at the mercy of the phone company and the availability of the phones at the prison.

The biggest question is often, do you want your life to be dominated by the inmate's prison sentence? Do you want to tie your weeknds to visiting - and if you slowly start to want to do other things and skip visits, how will the inmate react to that? Do you want to tell all of your new friends and co-workers why you moved to Texas? Do you want to bump into the guards you see at visits also at Walmart or at the school gate? Texas is full of small towns and if you want to build a life there, you will need to decide how open you are about things. People aren't stupid; they can tell when someone is holding something back or not being completely honest about something. Is that a good basis on which to build up a new group of friends and a new life?

There and back again....


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