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Because My Life Is Destroyed

I don't know really where to begin.  My life has been in shambles since I was 18 and I don't see how its ever going to change.  There is no light at the end of the tunnel for me. 
When I was 18 years old (young and dumb) I was convicted of a felony theft.   This single criminal act has completely ruined my life.  I did not go to jail but I may of well had.  People make mistakes especially young people.  I am not suggesting that there shouldn't be any consequences for your actions.  But, a life time of barriers and restraints is far too much.  It has been over 15 years and I still face the same collateral consequences for a felony conviction.  I cannot obtain employment and descent housing. If I cannot find a job how am I to survive.  Yeah I can work at burger king (maybe) but who is that going to support. That won't support my family I am a mother of 3 children and I do not receive a penny in child support.  I went to college to further my education only to find out that once I am done with college I cannot obtain a license in my major no matter how far up the educational latter I go.  I am stuck with the
"mark of Cain."  It is depressing I have contemplated committing suicide several times.  If it were not for my children and my concern for their well being than I probably would of done it by now.  But, then again they may do well with out me, at least they'll live better not povern because of mommies mistake.   I wish I could start a new life...But there is no such thing for me the "mark of Cain" will forever find me...
wasigirl wasigirl 31-35, F 124 Responses Oct 20, 2010

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I am in the exact same situation. I am also a minister on top of things. The enemy comes to kill,steal,and destroy your life, but you must never give up the good fight of faith. The light is at the end of the tunnel, but know everything that you are going through is strengthening you. You will have a very powerful testimony to encourage someone else to never give up..

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Your post brought me to this site via Google by searching situations likening my own, so I went ahead and created an account. Has opening up on this site helped to any extent with your depression?

You might possibly be able to get your court records sealed. I believe that might allow you to stop telling potential employers about the felony. It might be worth looking into. Expunged records may be possible, but a felony might rule that out. The one silver lining in this cloud is that 15 years ago, the Internet wasn't as pervasive as it is now. People may not be able to simply Google your name and discover your entire history through newspaper clippings.

Do look into expunging and sealing in your state. It might help a lot.

Where are you today? Have things turned around for you? I am in a similar situation though i do not have my youth to blame, instead I made a poor choice to help eleviate the financial burden of my mental health care for my son who is an an unisured adult and was struggling with depression, suicide and addiction.

I too feel the despair. I know i am not a bad person and can do something better but opportunity is limited once you have a felony.

I am praying you are in a better situation now.

thats sad and yes crazy...im going thru the same thing plus im on probation i have four kids and the last one i had i did adoption because i knew with this felonie all im guranteed is a life of struggle until i can get my **** sealed but i do what i have to do most jobs i hate an thur low paying even ****** fast food jobs no longer take felons, i respect you an just know that yea were struggling now bhu are kids our top priority always we struggle for them an think about are selfs later... are were never gonna make it and they will end up going down the same busted road and we dont want that right, but i dont know you i just thought id leave a response since were going thru the same things lol were still badass moms... dont let the justice system take that from you lol sorry i blabbed so long . ..

I want you to think instead of the possibilities. There is a way out there for you, and you have to believe that you can find it. Even people who have committed really serious crimes find a way of rising above the past and leading very successful lives. Search and you will find. Believe and you will receive.

" But, then again they may do well with out me,"<br />
What the ****? Do you honesty think that your money makes them happy? Are you stupid, or what?<br />
What makes them happy is your smile, your faith, your strength, courage and love.<br />
If you will commit suicide you will hurt them very much. Do you want your children to fall in depression? Do you know how many peoples are poor? Billions! And they suicide? No! I am poor too, but God always help me. Trust him and pray before and after eating, when you wake up and when you fall to sleep. You must be strong. I promise you that if you will pray and have faith in God your problems will be solved very fast. Fight as long as you live. We will die at an age, but 'till then we must fight!<br />
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May God bless you, my sister.

Sometimes life has really ****** up ways to make us pay for our actions. Although I do think your punishment far exceeds your crime. I'll pray for you and your family and remember life is far too precious to give up always remember your children. They are your blessing your lasting legacy and your greatest achievement. And when all else fails remember it call only get better.

The thing that bothers me is you are trying to do better and can't get a break. How do they expect you to get a job and support yourself and your children. As for the dead beat Dad, if he willfully is not paying, I say lock him up. Why should he be out playing while you are paying. Perhaps you could even set up a fund to who ever you owe restitution and we on EP can help. I know I would kick in a little (assuming you can valid your story) to help. Just a thought but many of us are still very generous and like to help someone who is really trying to do the right things in life

Trust God, pray to Him at least 10 times per day and soon your problems will be solved. this is what I swear to you, for that I do this and my problems are solved miraculously.

Yes, do what the people below me are saying. In the meantime though (or if efforts to clear your criminal record don't work) don't give up hope still look for better employment. There's got to be someone out there who would see how much of a hard worker you are and are willing to look past your record. <br />
I hope my advice helped. :)

Yes, random out of wack comment, I'm aware, but I think getting the conviction expunged is a grand idea. It's not worth ruining you life with one dumb decision, younger people make mistakes. I ought to know, I'm young, very young still and I've happened to fall upon a pit of stakes with my mistakes, some maybe not even caused by me. But I learn, everyone does, and it's better to occasionally beg for forgiveness than end it all at once.<br />
~Destiny

Don't know if this will help you help any but I also had the same issue a long time ago...Since it happened over 15 years ago you do have several options to you regarding what you are going through(also depends on the state)....If you have fullfill the probation part it is not considered part of the public record anymore(it will always be a part of the courts) then after 7 years you don't have to put it on your apps that you fill out that you had a felony. Since your still paying the fine You need to check to see if the probation was closed or still open due to the fine not being paid off yet... You can get the fine changed to show that it is a debt so that it isn't a part of your case..It all depends on if your case is open or not.Go to your old probation officer and ask if the probation was full fill(they will have a record of it that the judge signs).<br />
Most employers don't care about records that are over 7 years old and since they can't check back anyway unless you tell them, it is also illegal for them to make it a part of the hiring process...Like I said it depends on your states court system but here in Idaho/Washington I am not required to say I had a felony anymore.<br />
On your child support issue, go to the child support enforcement agency in your state...It is free and they can get child support for you from any state he is in.<br />
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Good luck and if any questions let me know

We don't even know you, but LOVE runs deep to help you up and out from pit to place so the legacies you leave will be greater and brighter.<br />
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Couponing, in USA 99% of restaurants throw away food EVERY night...some of these places will hand over if you ask for with the intention of donating it to the needy :-).<br />
Regarding ones thought life reading a Proverb a day will give you wisdom for living and making great strides from your situation. Also downloading wwwdotklovedotcom to your radios and phone will help to have positive thoughts from positive music.<br />
<br />
During process of overcoming you want prayer: 1-800-759-0700 genuine, kind and loving folks will gladly help you.<br />
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Often many make fun of fastfood, but you can get the ball rolling for you nevertheless. I believe you have to learn to to have TOUGH skin during this process, look and see who is not for you and stay away from those people. Look for where you wanna be and see people who are there and ask questions and prepare yourself accordingly. Knowing what you learn and do from living your children are doing the very same, so learn on purpose.<br />
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Be patient with yourself, write a vision and do a dream board and place over your bed or on the wall, so you see where you're heading. I believe EVERYTHING you need you have: resources check the library, PLEASE READ.<br />
<br />
Need money look for a books by Matthew Leskco and take notes. <br />
<br />
What are your gifts, talents, abilities, skills...if you don't know ASK folks, friends, people you're around. Life is funny, others see things we miss. What is unique about me? What do you think id be good at? Do I like writing? Talking? What's my learning style? <br />
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Change your speech...if all you have known is the bottom then your speech will reflect. Change your perspective, God taught me through his promises who I am and my purpose and as a result I went from death to life in esteem. I flunked college twice and was a bottom feeder, today I own and run several businesses. How do you see yourself?<br />
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There's a movie I saw recently called The Help, one made taught a lil girl three sayings: I am smart, I am intelligent, I am important...add to those I am beautiful, I love myself, I am a great mom, I am successful, I am brave, I desire to live and improve my life... :-)

hey! read Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts<br />
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btw....what did you steal?

It's the felony conviction that's causing you problems. It's the stupid choices. Like getting knocked up by a deadbeat three times. That's dumb. And yes, doing stuff like that will irreparably destroy your life.

whats wrong with you? I suspect you grew up in a rich neighborhood and had everything handed to you but yet still you failed miserably and take it out on others to pass the time.

The most important thing for you now is to be positive. Being positive helps a great deal. Your note feels you have a dark sense of foreboding and like you have this negativity in your mind that you are a failure. You need to wipe this attitude out of your mind or else it will also destroy the children. <br />
You need to seriously follow the law of attraction. <br />
Everyone goes through problems in life but you're a loser only when you quit hoping and trying. Try and meet good positive people. I am from India but I live in Dubai. If you do want to be friends, you can add me and I hope I can bring a positive attitude in your life :) <br />
Cheers. Keep smiling! Tomorrow will be a better day.

The most important thing for you now is to be positive. Being positive helps a great deal. Your note feels you have a dark sense of foreboding and like you have this negativity in your mind that you are a failure. You need to wipe this attitude out of your mind or else it will also destroy the children. <br />
You need to seriously follow the law of attraction. <br />
Everyone goes through problems in life but you're a loser only when you quit hoping and trying. Try and meet good positive people. I am from India but I live in Dubai. If you do want to be friends, you can add me and I hope I can bring a positive attitude in your life :) <br />
Cheers. Keep smiling! Tomorrow will be a better day.

i too mess up at 18 and have had to deal with a felony i got then. it is hard to find a good job. i have been able to make the best of things. it takes a long time to find the good job. if you have to do fast food till you find one then do it. getting your record expunged will help tremendously. even without doing that it is possible to get ahead of making a mistake. that's what life is all about making mistakes and learning from them. it is a hard road but i know from experience that the road does get easier if you try harder.

Someone suggested you write a book -- great idea! It has the potential of "starting a new life" for you. I am willing to help you. Are you interested?

Well your life serves as a warning to others to stay on the straight and narrow. You could think of others instead of yourself and give to others. Also there is a very false perception it appears you have. Licensing isn't the key to life. Neither are degrees. These are merely just a very first step in the process. Every good person has to build their own life from scratch step by step. Lacking barriers merely shows to the world that they have made careful choices their whole lives. You haven't and it's simply a true fact like their lack of barriers is a true fact and reflection of them. It doesn't mean they will go on to be an expert in their field, it doesn't mean you can't be. It doesn't mean you can't develop character and show moment by moment that you are trustworthy. You decide your substance not other people. And it's substance, not image that matters. You seem to still think that image is what matters. A degree isn't a selfish pursuit it's about wanting to learn about the world you live in and make it a better place. If you are thinking of a degree in a selfish way than a barrier to credential would make you not want to pursue one. If you are thinking of getting a degree to learn about the world and what's right and wrong with it and wanting to make a difference- now that's substance and you will pursue it and no one will be able to stop you from making a difference. It's not the law that needs changing or barriers that are the problem - these laws and barriers are merely a true reflection of each individual and the choices they've made in life and a humble good person would not mind having to live with an accurate reflection.

Well your life serves as a warning to others to stay on the straight and narrow. You could think of others instead of yourself and give to others. Also there is a very false perception it appears you have. Licensing isn't the key to life. Neither are degrees. These are merely just a very first step in the process. Every good person has to build their own life from scratch step by step. Lacking barriers merely shows to the world that they have made careful choices their whole lives. You haven't and it's simply a true fact like their lack of barriers is a true fact and reflection of them. It doesn't mean they will go on to be an expert in their field, it doesn't mean you can't be. It doesn't mean you can't develop character and show moment by moment that you are trustworthy. You decide your substance not other people. And it's substance, not image that matters. You seem to still think that image is what matters. A degree isn't a selfish pursuit it's about wanting to learn about the world you live in and make it a better place. If you are thinking of a degree in a selfish way than a barrier to credential would make you not want to pursue one. If you are thinking of getting a degree to learn about the world and what's right and wrong with it and wanting to make a difference- now that's substance and you will pursue it and no one will be able to stop you from making a difference. It's not the law that needs changing or barriers that are the problem - these laws and barriers are merely a true reflection of each individual and the choices they've made in life and a humble good person would not mind having to live with an accurate reflection.

Look for another job I'm in the same boat cr have the job I desire because of stupid mistakes when i was young but guess what life goes on find another goal its a no win situation so go with the flow and find some thin else your good At no good dwelling in it your have the most precious things in it hands thats ya kids sorry like but every thing else comes second to none in my books cherish what ya have a nd grow think of something else you would like to do rather than dwelling on some thing you can't have good luck x

Brother I felt the way you do no for seven years. My ex wife soiled my name, and even worse destroyed my relationship with my children. While I am no Saint, doing more than my far share of bad deeds, this women left me for another man, yet to maintain a strong position with our at that time) 5th and 6th grade children, did everything in her power to destroy me. She held a fairly high office in our local government and she even used that to push me into self destruction. <br />
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As I said for seven years this went on. And for seven years I failed miserably. But just before Christmas of that seventh year my children (Know in High School) came back to me! What a glorious day. And every day since then has been as well.<br />
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They saw that the mark of any man is how he handles the times of crisis. Well I made it out the other end so there was good news. But for the most part I failed measurable for seven years. I am embarrassed of how I handle that time of torment and when I reflect on it I find myself more embarrassed of my own actions during that time than I was/am of the lies that my ex used to try and destroy me. Although her lies were far worse than my actions were, it is my mark, that period of time in crisis and how i weathered it that i feel most people judge me by.<br />
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I guess my message is hang tough, this will pass. Endure your turmoils as a gentleman. Be strong and keep the faith. Even though you can't see the light right now it is there. God Bless and be safe!

if you have no other felony arrest you ca file paper work with the court and have it removed after 3 years

Start your own business. It's tough but the payoff is good. I know a lady who owns a hair salon. Started out cutting hair for someone else. She now owns the salon, a house on the beach, and 2 other houses. Another woman started a cleaning business. It grew and she no longer cleans but has 10 employees. She now owns her house outright and is putting money away.

I really do wish you the best and I hope that you can overcome this obsacle in your life. Always treat your babies right, it's amazing to see your kids grow up strong and smart as a person. I wish you all the best.

Sex. .not see or six. .or any other variation my phone prefers. .

I have some thoughts - first what was your college degree in?

You can get the record expunged. I had no record at all until I met a guy claiming to want to hire me to be his children's nanny. Unfortunately, he forced me to perform a sex act and when I filed a police report, he told them that I offered to do this act on him for the job! I was charged with filing a false police report and while it's a misdemeanor, I hate having it on my record and getting it expunged costs money I don't have right now. But I have written to the Supreme Court here in my home state to see if they will expunge it for me, due to the circumstances (after all, the guy held a knife on me and made threats when I refused to do his bidding). This has made me leery of police because of the way I was treated when the guy lied, because the police sided with him and made me seem a hoe.

Sorry. sounds tuff I think you have what it takes to survive youve been doing it for 15 plus years wwent to college aqnd have three wonderful children. Deep within I believe there is hope for you, you just havent found it yet.

Mark of cain..huh?! Didn't we go over this last summer?! I believe we did. Enjoy the toys.

I believe in you.

That's how screwed up the corrupt court system is here and the sadistic creeps and bozos that run it. They don't care if they ruin someone's entire life to where they may as well just turn to a life of crime because they can't get decent employment and get desperate. If that had happened to me then I'd most likely make a living off the grid at anything I could legal or not because that would be my best option at that point.<br />
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I'm a very long time tech professional with an entirely clean record and passivist leaning but law enforcement in this country is out of control and scares me and I've seen way to many people harmed or killed for no good reason.

You can also contact you state representative. The sujestions above are right on too. The main thing is don't give up on yourself, you are worth it and mean a lot to those children. Keep in touch with ep.

You have to talk to an attorney, there's so many things we don't know about the law and how things can get fixed. Don't stop fighting for your life!

Aw, that's sad. expecially cos you didn't do it. whatever you do, don't kill yourself cos your kids need you, and im sure they love you even if youre broke. :) who knows? maybe if you were gone they would be worse off than they were. being abused in a foster home. chin up. x

I'm so sorry that you have had to suffer consequences of what happened so long ago. I would think that you need to just be the best you can right now. Tell people yes I made a mistake but that was a long time ago. I have grown up and am a responsible adult. Even if it is Burger King, that is a job. You can work hard and be the best you can be there. then once you establish a solid work record and maybe even if you were manager, then you can move on to a better job. You need to be there for your children, give them all of your love and attention as possible. They will return the affection. You need to work hard to do the best for you and your family. You and your children deserve the best that life has to offer. Good luck to you.

One thing you can do is ask if somehow you can have the felony expunged from the record but make a legal document about paying restitution. Explain to the court that it's impossible to pay back the money because the felony conviction prevents you from getting a decent job. A pro-bono lawyer could help here.

You can usually get the felony off of your record after that long, but it depends on what state you're in. In Kentucky for example you can get it expunged after only seven years, but you have to avoid misdemeanors as well during that time.

ask urself this did i have kids to keep a man or did i plan to have kids....see women everywhere and men i might add sleep around thinking its all fine and dandy till a baby pops up then it the blame game he said and she said should no longer matter. you both wanted to have sex for your own greedy desires whether it be physical or emotional and karma came around like karma does to everyone me included.i admit iwas a kid once for like 30 years but sometimes you have to stop and look back at the reasons you did what u did was it for you or for the other is there any hiddenagenda that u have itsy bitsy tiny feeling that ur in it because you want something or think u need something.

If your rejected by the system you could try working for yourself a little bit of ebay trading would speed up paying off the restitution just keep an eye out for clearance sales and Yard sales you dot need much capital

yes sales are good! i just went to target and bought veggies frozen ones for a buck and caned goods for less than a dollar...... you can buy loafs of bread for a buck ......and target had a coupon if you buy 150.00 then you get back 15.00...... i stocked up on thier canned goods that was on sale and i got the 15 bucks back

You are traveling a hard road that so many people have gone done...one moment, one life decision haunts a lifetime. I am sorry you are going through this. I am hopeful that you will be able to have this removed. I agree with others that there are MANY work at home opportunities that can provide a surprising amount of income. <br />
I have been very successful in mine. I can guide you into some options if you are interested. Just send me a note.<br />
Also, try to get it taken off. You were young, and if you have lived a good clean life since then you deserve a 2nd chance..

Let the past go and consider the insight you have gained, espcially already defeated when you apply for a well paying job, baby sitting may be a good start depending on your kids, but back to what I was saying. CALM DOWN -Take a Breath _LAUGH at your inner warrior incarnating into this bull, but learn you insights. LOVE yourself, though others will always find fault with you, it doesnt mean it is true? They are not your Authority, the answer keepers. Many people or all people go thru some really hard knocks, but I refuse to give in after surviving 49 years, They can all kiss my ***, I may fumble, but I will party hard when I overcome a hard as hell time, and you do the same -The answers tio escape the Pit of Dispair are within you, just allow the spirits help a bit, you really arent alone. I am not religious, but spiritual and do all kinds of stuff that most of society would judge me for...I laugh and let it go. So..Go laugh at this predicament unti you cry and giggling get the hiccups. Good Luck. Kim

It's been a year since you posted this story and I hope my response finds you in a much better condition having sorted things out a bit. Don't blame yourself for it, you're only hurting and punishing yourself. Everybody has made mistakes, other people get away with major crimes and look at you, condemning yourself for a felony theft. Alright, yeah, it was stupid of you to do it in the first place but everybody makes different kinds of mistakes and there should be quite a few chances for them to make up for it. What country do you live in? I can't believe how cruel the society around you has to be to label you permanently like this. Maybe it's the others' fault too, have you thought about that? If they can't even imagine that it's possible that you've learned from your own mistakes, then I say get your kids, pack your bags and go on to live in a different country!

There are people who are in much worse situations than yourself and have come out the other end relatively well. I know one of them, however, I cannot share the details.

I am in a similar position.<br />
I was convicted for grievous bodily harm 3 years ago- thankfully I was sentenced to 3 years probation, not a custodial term.<br />
As far as I have managed to research my conviction is expunged in 2 years- However I still can't do anything to do with kids vulnerable people, or anything worthwhile in my eyes; without disclosing it.<br />
All I can say is every case has it's own merits and if you explain your situation then they have to make a decision from that.<br />
If you find you are totally turned away from everything job-wise (I would be surprised) then it is their loss for not seeing changes you have made.<br />
BEST WISHES<br />
XO

I said a prayer for you.

if no other run ins with the courts you can have it removed after 5 years

All I can say is wow. It could be worse. Yes you could bein my situation. I was influenced and raped at 15 and the guy went to my highschool spread around that I did this and then everyone hated me from that day forward. If your wrongdoing was connected to a sexual action then everyone immediatly thinks of you as though you must be really sexual or angry toward you almost like a hate camp. I didnt ask to be in that situation but was led there. I'm a human being, and is one sin really that much worse than the other? I didnt get sad sympathetic ongoing paragraphs of mercy. Instead I got people who are interested in sex befriending me. Every job I've been at since highschool my co-workers have been harassing me because the words from highschool follow me everyplace I go --even out of state. You say thats impossible? Come walk in my shoes. I went to college after highschool received that degree started a profession only to find what you already know. I get hired but then I get harassed because they find out after Im there all about what was beleived of me way back when I was in highschool. I could change careers but then all anyone would have to do is find out where I am and it would start all over. I have no voice as a female, what am I to say? I am angry with god for putting me in this position. Now I cannot support myself and my kids either but would not receive the support by others as you. My life was destroyed, you still may have a chance.

how does ones high school rep follow them ? are you using names from ur high school days as references? or did you live in a small town where every one knows each other bizz?

Why not try to run your own business? That's how I started over. But my problem was from drinking too much. So it's a bit different. You can go to any library to learn about operating a business. Find something you love to do and make money with it. I love to cook and I am a cook. But I started with the mailorder business to get money. No loans. Lots of people buy things. Online business might be better than mailorder.

the darkness is created because of the lack of light. so really the darkness only exists because the light dims. there is no good and bad just less good then usual. your life does sound extremely hard. why cant you get your major? and may i ask which country you are in? it sounds like something was wrong. like i dont see how a job cant be attained. i know people who have been to jail and can get a job. i dont understand that. and why no child support? he just wont pay? go to court. the system will pay for lawyers. its good you havent given up. very commendable. most would have given up. but pick a problem. beat it then move on to the other. if not ask for help. if you want my help ask. same if you need someone to talk to. ive heard of almost all situations. i suggest talking to a judge to get it removed.

People in despair often come down to two mode of giving up on their lives, one is to think of suicide and two is to live as though they are dead.<br />
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Mentally in such situation people confront an end of a road, so to speak. But in reality there is no such thing as a dead end in life. At every day's end, every one in the world face the same ending, what we all have in common is the next day, the future.<br />
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Do not define your future from what you know about your past. Believe it or not, your past has nothing to do with your future. There are many many tales of ordinary or even failing people turn out to rise above and live extraordinary lives. I am one example, I was born in an underdeveloped country where there was no rights or advance education for women, women were born to be subject to a life of the hardship and suffering, people in general were poor and ill. After that my family escape by the sea and now I end up in the USA, where education is there for all, women can speak in public and live as they pleased. No way in my dream that I could predict my future 20 something years ago...<br />
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Forget about the past. Do not reason or bargain with your past. The change must begin now. Do what others have suggested on here. <br />
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*Resolve your legal problems with the help of a court appointed lawyer or legal aid.<br />
*Get some child support to help lift off some financial burden on you and your children. Although men may make it hard for you to get money from them, in the end, I think they will understand that it is for the sake of their kids.<br />
*Start a homeba<x>se or small business while waiting for your situation to resolve.<br />
<br />
I realize that we often underestimate our own abilities. Why waste your mental energy on worries, and sadness and not put all that energy to use in more practical ways, make changes in your life.

Keep your chin up, both figuratively as well literally.<br />
It maybe a slow process, but open YouTube and watch<br />
'the secret' and 'mind movies' I do that.<br />
<br />
If you need a more volitional activity.<br />
Thank God for what you have; that it is not worse. Or,<br />
Call the tv preachers and pray. Pray hard.

Help some young misguided 18y/o by taking her into your experience and prevent it happening to her. When you share your experience and enrich another life, it was not in vain. Give of yourself and you will receive threefold back.

Help some young misguided 18y/o by taking her into your experience and prevent it happening to her. When you share your experience and enrich another life, it was not in vain. Give of yourself and you will receive threefold back.

All the above advice is excellent. Go for any help you can get from the government. Welfare, food stamps, medical assistance....anything you can think of. Housing etc., etc., <br />
Also, do you have family who could maybe help you pay your restitution?<br />
You are maybe already doing all of these things, but if not....begin.<br />
Food banks, Salvation Army etc...There is so much help out there for people who <br />
really need the help.<br />
Good Luck and God Bless You and Yours!

I am truely sorry that you are experiencing this. Despite the difficulties there is much good yo u can do in this life.<br />
There are lawyers who donate time to people perhaps you can speak with them.<br />
<br />
Loving those children is a most important job. Stay strong!

You are not your label. Even though you face very serious obstacles, you can perserve. Not everyone is prejudiced against someone with one criminal conviction. Find a way, not just to put food on the table, but to feed your heart, and do that while you are working on restitution. Love yourself.

I know first hand exactly what you are going through, my husband is in the same boat, he got a felony theft in his early twenties he's 44 now. and the stupid felony follows him every where . We are lucky though he is self-employeed. All you can do is keep on fighting the good fight, don't let them knock you down, believe me I know it is hard. Keep your holding your head up

Your life is not destroyed, there are people who wake up in the morning wondering if they will be able to walk enough kilometres to find water for their children, after 12 hours, so you don't face the same difficulties as these people, you don't look out the window of where you live and wonder can you provide food or water for your chilren, so relax, and stop being so dramatic, you don't qualify

what kind of crime was it.

I am not sure where you are from. In Canada you can apply for criminal pardons. I would think that the US has something similar<br />
Check these things out

Have you looked into online jobs? They don't always pay the best but, with a little perseverence, you can get pay raises with time. If you have skills in computers or writing, there is usually something available. Jobs like these require very little information to get you started (what they want, such as a ss number, is only for tax purposes) and I don't think they do any sort of background check. Even if you don't make much to start, just working a little every day might help to pay some of the bills.

Let me know what you need if I can help I will.

I believe your children would be worse off if you committed suicide because although they could have some rich adoptive parent take care of them, they'd grow up spending every day thinking of you and wishing you were here. The older they are, the worse it will affect them too. There are probably other people in the world with a criminal record that somehow have picked up the pieces and found a well-paid job, I would look up stories of people who have bounced back and then see what they did. I cannot believe "there is no hope." I have a mental illness(bipolar) and can't find a decent job, and I have no college degree. At 26 I have had maybe 15 jobs, I have a terrible employment history and I have to lie on my applications. I'm basically on drugs they are just prescribed. If I was in your spot I would still knows for a fact I'd get paid more if I had a degree, and if I can't get a license, then I might pick a degree that doesn't require a license. But if you are almost graduated then that wouldn't work. In which case it does seem illegal to deny a certification to someone with the degree and knowledge to work in the field. I recommend consulting a lawyer if you could, or ask someone for legal advice that is cheap or free....that sounds like discrimination. there is also something called statute of limitations where 7 years after the crime is done then you no longer can have any penalty for it if you are free(not in jail) and it cannot prevent you from getting a decent future. This all sounds illegal to me, they can't deny you a certificate when you've earned it. I think you may want to talk with your colleagues then collectively form a small protest movement or petition and come to the people who give the certificates and make your case.<br />
There has to be something you can do. never give up. Never. Try every possible thing you can think of and keep doing that.

You can get your criminal record erased here in Canada, but it is expensive. I think it costs about 600 dollars. I feel sorry for people like you. Being a women doesn't help out like a guy. I am a butcher by trade. they don't seem to care if I have a record or not. I am treated as if I were one of the guys. I have met other convicts at work as well. If you can't erase your record, please try working as a laborer, the guys usually try to help out the girls at work. My sister has been a butcher for 20 years now and she says that she would like to continue being a butcher, but in a nicer company. All you have to do is go to the industrial section of your city, and start applying around. Good luck, some women make great laborers. I hope that you can get by.

I can't do anything to help you, I don't know you so even if I tried to give advice it wouldn't do any good. I just want you to know that things will not always be miserable. Not for a good person like you. Stay strong, live for your kids if not for you and I will do my best to pray and think of you often. As I said, there's not much I can do. We are here for you, don't forget that. And your not the only one going through this right now. Hang in there as long as possible.

Your story is inspirational to others...someone out there...at least one...has read your story and it impacted their life! Yeah, while I cannot fully understand your unique situation, I can affirm how a black mark on "your permanent record" has grave consequences. I made a simple, but ignorant mistake one night, and got a misdemeanor, and that alone prevented me from numerous jobs...even retail. I have a wonderful work record, and a month after applying, my irresponsible teen got the same job I was applying for, for the same money, and I know it was that box I checked that prevented me from the job. (He quit a couple of months later...serves them right!) I can not even imagine the struggles and judgments you have have had to endure because of your childhood error. I know this may sound trite, and I am sorry, but I agree with janec about focusing on those things you CAN control, for it is not merely the destination, but also the journey that gives our life purpose.

Would like to let you know that my sister went to jail for 6 months. When she got out she got her costmotology paid for and became a hairdresser. After that she got a job working in an office working for 10 doctors. There is a way out of this. That is a long time ago. That should be off your record. When you fill out an application do not put that you had a conviction.

I too am a convicted felon it was 12 years ago and for the most part ...you are right. HOWEVER ...we can get good jobs we just have to go to 10 times as many interviews. There ARE people that give second chances. In an interview be sure to point out that you went to college AFTER the felony. Do what I did...START YOUR OWN BUSSINES. But whatever you do dont lose hope. Turn this into an inspirational story of TRIUMPH. We (and your children) are counting on you.

LIES. After 7 years. The conviction gets wiped off of your record unless you reoffend.

After 15 years you might be able to get the conviction expunged from your record especially if you have had a clean record ever since. If you can't afford legal counsel on this you can go to legal aid where they charge what you can afford to pay.

Hi... I'm moved by reading your story. I know that people rarely give us a second chance, but there is One who always gives us a second chance, and a third, and a fourth.... and a millionth! <br />
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Please go to the website ... BibleGateway.com ... and do a search for "Isaiah 43:18-21" ... then read the rest of the chapter ... "Isaiah 43:1-21"<br />
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Man rarely gives us a second chance but Jesus can take your life and turn it around. He did it for a 'sex worker' (Luke 7:36-50 - try The Message translation) and He can do it for you if you ask Him to. God bless you!

while I am not a christian, it's true that christians might be more open to offering a second chance to you because of their forgiveness value...so maybe try applying to a christian-related businesss or job

I sometimes read about this situation, in which a person convicted of a crime gets punished like this for decades or life, and I think it is very unfair. At least, there should be a limit of maybe ten years after the crime, after which the person should be treated as a changed person and given another chance at things, if he/she does not get another crime conviction in that period.

your story really spoke to me. I too made a mistake at a young age, and it pretty much ruined the rest of my life. it hasnt gotten better since. i had a promising route once, but i lost it all, even myself. The once intelligent and strong girl was shattered. I wonder if my life will ever get back on track again. I really wish people could be more forgiving. Its just ridiculous the way its set up. Young people will make mistakes, but people change and mature, so why not give people a second chance. I'm still waiting to get a second chance, and i know i wouldnt disappoint anybody. But no one will give me that opportunity. Never mind if i had a clean record my whole life before, never mind if i had a good reputation for years and years. one little mistake and everything fell down, like dominoes. very sad

Wow for a minute there I thought the site bluetoothed my thoughts into this thread. You are not alone in this. Everyone has made mistakes. I too commited a theft crime at a young right when I turned 18 which was a dumb stupid mistake only ever made once. Haven't been in any trouble since then and I have just turned 26. I too am having trouble finding employment. All I can suggest is to keep your head up. When your going through hell just keep going. As soon as I find out a soluton I'll let you know. I just wanted you to know ur not alone :)

that's not fair

Remarkable when so many hardened criminals seem to get off scott-free and offend over and over again. I mean how many serial killers seem to always have a steady job?

It's time to start your spiritual journey<br />
http://www.mountainoflight.co.uk/sj_secA_part1.html

life is so incredibly painful sometimes even when you think you have found a solution to all your problems they come back with a vengeance. Sometimes I wish I could stop living because life isn't worth it. I watch as family and friends gather and live well. My oldest sister makes so much more money than me, is healthier, and has so many attractive men giving her attention. I feel like an accessory to her life. I feel like an ob<x>ject that someone has placed on the shelf. Sometimes I hurt and feel like I am dying but I go to counseling now. After running with the law you can forget about whatever it is that makes you feel whole because it drove you to do unlawful things. The best of you is yet to be told. I know because I have spent time in jail. And it ruin my life. I practically have died to live now. People have done unspeakable things to me and yet everyday I have to prove myself. People I thought loved me don't help me. People who do horrific things get praise. And if I say life is **** I am a liar. If I say **** life or stop doing whats popular I feel less like myself. Life literally hurts me to live. I have injuries that are so painful and yet it barely warrents an excuse like "hey i dont want to have brunch tomorrow with you after all" (because i would rather lie in bed and think of death or be alone because being with others makes my pain more real). Doesn't matter. I guess everyone has to find strength to go on because death will come- that is the only promise and frankly I bet you are in need of some real help but dont even know what kind of help you need. i pray for you and i pray for myself.

I can relate...this is true, but, everyone has to stay optimistic and persevering and look on the bright side to avoid getting sucked into the black hole. It is a choice to think or perceive life in a certain way because it will make you more likely to succeed. Make your stay here on earth in life as pleasant as you can despite conditions. Try to make the most of it. I think it is the only way to cope with life and not go nuts and stay functional. One thing I know is that one day those people will have ti come back to them, and one day you will receive your due, so that there's a balance and nothing is unfair anymore. The more someone has the more they have to lose and the more chances for them to lose something. If they are used to having, then they do not appreciate what they have. One who has to earn it all the hard way and struggle will maintain their position always because they appreciate and care for the fruits of their labors in this world and the rewards for their struggles. I live in the faith that unfairness will recieve karmic punishment because it will. For what they steal from us, something will be taken away from them and when they realize what it was, material or immaterial, they had to sacrifice for their cheating, then it will be too late.
I keep going remember people like you and me are stronger than the rest and will win out in the end.

I hope you have someone near you that cares about you, a strong loyal individual that can help you in practical ways, especially in your search for work. If you don't have a person like that now, you MUST find such a soul. You know already that you cannot do it alone. Your burdens are many, don't be too proud to ask for help. Don't kill yourself, that would be abandoning your children. Instead, reach out in any and all ways that you can, this is a good start right here. Talk Talk Talk, get to know people that can help you, maybe someone you ask for a job would give you one if they came to know you personally, if they can see the adult you are now instead of your record on paper from all of those years ago. Clean up as best you can and go talk to community leaders, church leaders, agencies, everyone that will listen, you might get a break, you really might. Swallow your pride and look people in the eye and tell them your story, it's amazing how many people WILL listen when a person is authentic and direct.

After 15 years it is possible to get the felony conviction expunged from your record. You should see a lawyer about having this done. If you can't afford a lawyer you can go to legal aid where they only charge what you can afford.<br />
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You also need to go to court and get some child support going. Your children need and deserve the financial support from their father and there is no reason why he should get off scot free while you absorb the entire financial burden for the children. After all they are still his children too even if he is no longer with you.<br />
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Most importantly of all keep thinking of your children when you have thoughts of suicide. They would not be better off without you. You are their mother and they need you so much in their lives. Also think of the devastating effect it would have on them if they were to be the ones to find you if you did commit suicide. Your children love you and they will need you for the rest of their lives.<br />
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I wish you all the best as you seek legal counsel and I hope that you can get your record cleared and that things will start looking up for you and your children very soon.

u said: '' they may do well with out me, at least they'll live better not povern because of mommies mistake.''<br />
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==>>> are u crazy?? my mother made mistakes and her mistakes are huge, yet everyday i pray that God protect for us my mother, we are nothing without her and no one would care about us like she do, she is always busy, but at least when i come home i know i have a mother, Thank God.<br />
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i learned in life that someone without a father, is like someone without a back, but someone without a mother is someone with a broken heart. yes mothers do mistakes, HUGES one, but living without them makes life horrible and heavy, life is hard, be it with u or without u........so they will always have problems, so wishing to die wont solve their problems, u will be adding another one............................................. dont break ur children hearts just bcz u are too weak.......just be strong for them and correct the mess u have,,,,everyone have a mess, but the strong ones correct things.<br />
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take care and be strong mommy :)

The person who suggested volunteering is right on. What you want to do is establish a reputation as being honest, responsible and a good worker. For this you need to be around professional people who can give you good references. Many, if not most, job interviews come through word-of-mouth recommendations. By volunteering in the area of your major, you are getting work experience and making professional contacts.

When you do all you can do God will take care of the rest. Start your mind with one thing you're thankful for each morning and maybe it will carry out through the day. It's worth a shot, right?

may I ask what state is that from, in which you live if you need a ear,I will listen. I will listen to you when you need to talk. I am here to listen if you need someone to talk with or just say I need for someone to listen to me,its been a hard day for me.

I will definitely pray for you. It's something I know I can do. I can tell you are a great mom and that your desire is the well being of your children. Please don't lose hope, I'm sure something will come around.

Have you thought about writing a book about your experiences/your situation right now and getting money off of that?

A book can take some time, but why not keep a blog about it and stock it with useful links and info for people in similar situations? You could also include google adsense and affiliate links and make a bit of money if it gets popular.

Lol though I don't know where you'd find the time with 3 kids to raise.

Write me if you're interested in the blog idea and I'll set it up with your own domain name for a free year. It's what I do for a living.

oh geez I just realized this is a pretty old post...
I hope everything is working out.
*hugs*

October of last year, and 42 comments later - I am late.<br />
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Haven't had time to read the other comments as I should - to keep from being redundant... sorry. <br />
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But firstly, suicide isn't the answer. It places your loved ones in the position of feeling rejected and/or feeling responsible.<br />
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Also the rejections of the world are Not worth taking someone's precious life for.<br />
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Perhaps to suggest applying with smaller employers who will not check into past incidents of years earlier. Or to disclose to employers and suggest that they take you on a temp to perm basis.<br />
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Also, temporary jobs are good. Employers do not check out or test the applicant as fully, then if they like you - they ask you to stay. <br />
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Self employment is always a good idea. Think upon that which you have been blessed - or have a special interest. Order business cards and pursue it. This can be done in your off time while working a job. It could be something like the real estate field, or other sales interests. <br />
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Disregard this point if already answered: Do what you can to receive child support due your children.