Reply To: Troubling consequences of federal child pornography laws

#11966

Jeff

Brian,

I feel your pain and suffering. I too was convicted of a misdemeanor 311.11 for four pictures that according to the police report the victims of the offense were sixteen years of age or older. I did not go out searching the internet for CP, I had just become addicted to porn as a result of isolating myself after to many broken hearts. As a result I spent 3 months in jail and have to register for the rest of my life. The one blessing is that my personal information is not on the megans list website. The shame and guilt of this followed me for a few years after the offense and all I thought about was wanting to end the fear, shame and guilt by taking my own life.

This offense according 14 years ago, I lost my career as a IT professional but was lucky enough to find work in construction but, knew with and previous injuries I would not be physical able to do the work. So I decided to go back to college and get a Engineering Degree. Life was good and this point, I worked construction in the summers to pay my way. I was dirt poor but, the feelings of fear, shame and guilt had melted away. The only time I thought about my past offense was when I had to register.

I was scheduled to graduate this fall 2014. So I confirmed that my attorney had expunged by case properly and he did. I was then told that I might want to do a name search on the internet of myself. No problem I thought there never was any mention of my case a few years after my conviction but, now 10 years later there is. I was shocked, terrified and the feelings of guilt and shame came racing back in. Six years in school for nothing. Now all I think about is death knowing any legit employer will do a name search.

How do we go on, am a single guy from a large family that fully supports me and have many friends that know of my conviction and they support me. But I just cannot do the construction much longer due to back and shoulder replacement needs. Its only the prescribed anti-anxiety and sleeping pills that are keeping me here. I just cannot go through this lifetime of shaming and living in fear.

I really relate to your “Each of my thoughts throughout the day are filtered through shame and the decision to kill myself or to search for some sort of life where I can feel whole again”

If you don’t mind me asking, have you been able to find employment?

May God bless you and bring you peace