originally posted 6/2012
Today I happened upon the RSOL website and felt such an incredible sense of relief and a glimmer of hope that perhaps someday our sex offender laws will reflect appropriate justice and true rehabilitation methods. As a female sex offender, required to register, I have a unique niche in this strange RSO world. I had no idea that by turning myself in for having an affair with one of my students I would be effectively destroying my life and beginning a perilous, never-ending journey to stay afloat, stay hopeful, remain strong, and survive. Aside from the humiliating and awful labels applied to me (pedophile, violent predator, manipulator, child abuser, rapist etc.) and the emotional/mental depression resulting from such terrible labels, the most devastating trial that I have had to endure is losing my own three children. The fact that they have not seen their own mother for over two years now, that they cannot talk to me via the phone, write letters to me, or even see me under the supervision of another adult has almost, literally, killed me and is more abusive to them…the system is abusing my babies in their efforts to protect them! After an attempt to end my life, that resulted in even more difficulties, I have radically embraced the idea that I must persevere, do my highest sense of right, hold my head high, forgive myself, and be an example to my children. What I did was wrong and being punished for it is necessary, but being given the opportunity to make amends and change for the better is also requisite. What I did does not define who I am. The law and its enforcement does not consider that truth in its application. My heart goes out to RSOs, their families, and their friends. Our lives are challenging, but our core selves can only be fortified through these trials and our chance to effect change is what we must focus on to prevent future people from suffering as we have.