Proof edit: album of images locked to prevent Snoopy McSnoopertons from having easy access to data no longer required. Gracias.

I've included proof of charge and sentence, and a scan of an envelope for a letter I received in prison which will show that I was in a maximum security prison.

Edit: Added a recent inpatient form to verify mental diagnoses which I refer to in a few answers.

Edit: 1:43 PM Thank you to everyone for your questions, comments, criticisms, advice and support. I am trying my best to answer and acknowledge all the questions and comments I've received from you, and haven't been able to get to yet. Originally I wanted to do this AMA because I hoped it would allow me to address something painful in a sort of virtual group therapy setting. At some point it went beyond that and I realized that I really wanted to explain what happened to me so that people who have experienced similar situations from different perspectives could give me their input. Some of the most painful questions and comments to address were the ones from those who had absent fathers, or from mothers with deadbeat exes. Some were just from people who think that anyone who fails to pay child support and goes to prison is worthless. Those were the comments that challenged me the most, and forced me to take a more honest look at my actions and motivations.

I hope that you gained as much from what I could share as I did from all of you who contributed. Thank you, all of you.

Comments: 663 • Responses: 72  • Date: 

ElBomberoLoco84 karma

Former probation officer assigned to the child support enforcement division here. How the hell did it get that far?

1.) how far were/are you in arrears?

2.) how many warnings for non-payment did you receive?

3.) did you actually make no payments?

4.) what was your allotted payment amount?

mainlysane93 karma

I have a number of mental health issues that kept me from finding work after I lost my job in 2007. I had applied for disability but was rejected and then I moved out of state before I could make it to the appeal. I was making partial payments as best as I could but I did not know how Missouri's law was structured so I never made a "full" monthly payment.

  1. I was behind about 3 years worth (just over $8000).

  2. I never received a warning. I just got my normal monthly payment notice right up until the officers knocked on my door and "invited" me to accompany them.

  3. I was making partial payments, but the law in Missouri is quite clear that at least one "full" payment must be made within a 12 month period. I would have been better served in saving up my partial payments and making one full payment it seems. Fool me once....

  4. I owe $278 per month.

JustAnAvgJoe68 karma

That's sad, considering my ex-wife was just recently in arrears of over $10,000 and not so much as her license was suspended.

mainlysane15 karma

Are you in Missouri? I was told by the prosecutor that the only reason the state chose to come after me was because my ex was getting aid for her and for my son. They may not have been as concerned about the fact I owed my child money as they were with the fact that I owed them money since I inherit that debt.

TheMadWoodcutter19 karma

I'm sorry this happened to you bro. I'm lucky enough to have a stable well paying job that allows me to make all of my support payments and then some.

Do you get to see your kid/s often? I know the hardest part for me is only being able to visit 1 day a month due to distance.

mainlysane40 karma

I haven't been able to see him for about 9 years now. His mother and I are not on speaking terms. I have the child support order, but no visitation order since we were not married at the time of his birth and my name wasn't placed on the birth certificate. My mother does get to visit him, so I am thankful to my ex for that.

Sorry you're so far from your kid. That's got to suck.

vebent77 karma

I'm sure someone can help me by explaining this to me. Why is it that you're paying child support for children the mother is not allowing you to visit and why are you paying if your name is not on the birth certificate?

mainlysane28 karma

I think I went into this a little bit in another comment, but I'm not sure how indepth it was. The Child Support case was originally opened by me. I went and petitioned them to do genetic testing so that I could establish paternity in order to get visitation, precisely becasue my name was not on the birth certificate. (I'm not even sure if it's on there now, but I assumed they would add it once paternity was established.)

I never had enough money to pay for a lawyer to try to obtain visiting rights and there was no "free" solution I could find. I had hoped that the courts would automatically assign visitation once they assigned child support but they did not. That's basically how I ended up with a child support order and no visitation.

yourfaceisamess5 karma

When you are not working can you not go back to court, say you lost your job (with evidence) and they will give you a different child support plan? I don't live in the US so I don't know how it works there,

mainlysane4 karma

I am already at the lowest rate for Missouri, I think. But I do believe that if I was not I would be able to go and get it reduced.

Zaphod34250 karma


mainlysane50 karma

I hope so. I mentioned on another comment that my ex is decent enough to let my mother have some contact with him so he does still have a connection to my side of the family, even if it is only through her.

My mother is very careful not to mention me around my ex or my son for fear of saying something that ends her ability to see him, but I guess last year when my mother was visiting he came right out and asked my mother how I was doing. He mentioned that all he knows about me is that I'm really tall and I have bad hygiene. I laughed a lot at the last part.

I guess he is beginning to act out in school, even going so far as to give another kid a black eye for teasing him about his t-shirt. I feel like that is probably my fault. I feel like I am letting him down big time.

Your story gives me hope. I know I can't go back and change what was, but I look forward to making our relationship strong for the future.

Zaphod34229 karma


mainlysane26 karma

Excellent advice. I will take it, gladly. And thank you for sharing this.

gonzoparenting10 karma

My son gave someone a black eye for being teased and he has married parents and a rad life, so don't feel guilty about it. Sometimes kids hit other kids. Hopefully his mother will get him some therapy.

mainlysane14 karma

I think she is a good mom. I don't really know since I am not a part of their lives, but I know how much she loves him, so I am optimistic that she will do whatever she can to give him the best life possible. I actually have a great amount of respect for her. It's true that I am not happy she cut me out of their lives, but she had her own reasons and they are valid. I was no angel. Even so, it isn't easy being a single mother. My own mother was a single mother and I have the greatest respect and admiration for the strength that takes.

PixelOrange47 karma


You're clearly a violent criminal, not paying bills and all. Shame on you for killing people with your lack of money.

There needs to be punishment for people who don't pay child support or no one would pay it so I understand that. But maximum security? Really? The govenors of the state I live in are the ones who should be getting maximum security. Damn Illinois Crooks. You should have been in minimum security at the worst.

I hate our legal system. I'm sorry for you.

mainlysane27 karma

The maximum security prison was a bureacratic snafu more than anyting else.

I was in prison before when I was 19 for writing bad checks. I got released to a halway house in Michigan after serveing about a year and a half of my sentence (3-14 years). In the halway house I worked a normal job and was out in the community on a daily basis. I ate at McDonald's, went out to the laundromat to wash clothes, and even got to go home during the weekends. I ended up losing my job because I am a dumbass and was afraid they would send me back inside so rather than face that I left the halfway house and stayed gone for about 75 days before I was found and arrested.

Well, Michigan decided that since the halway house was "technically" a prison I was guilty of felony prison escape. I got charged and convicted of that, adding another year to my sentence.

Flash forward almost 15 years later. Missouri sees that I have a felony prison escape on my record once they process me for the child support sentence and so they have no choice but to place me in a maximum security prison.

I'm pretty sure I was the only inmate in that prison for child support. I told one inmate that was in for cutting off his wife's head and he was so incredulous that he thought I was lying to cover up being a sex offender. Most of the inmates I told just shook their heads and looked at me like, "WTF?"

That being said, our legal system is still a little broken in some areas. Drug offenses need to go away, same with drunk driving (unless it results in fatality or injury), and child support offenders should never ever be made into a tax payer burden.

PixelOrange42 karma

Ehh, not sure I agree with you on the drunk driving, but I will agree with you on the rest of the stuff. Drunk driving has killed a lot of people I know. It's a big problem.

In my town, and in many other major cities, marijuana is now a "ticket offense" much like speeding is. Instead of putting you in jail, they'll just fine you. Since fines are largely undisputed it means that the city gets money, doesn't have to pay for officer/judge time, and you can continue smoking and not worry about a criminal record.

It's the next best thing to legalizing it.

mainlysane8 karma

I didn't mean to trivialize it when drunk drivers kill people. Drunk driving is probably one of the most stupid things a person can do, and when they hurt or kill someone as the result of it they should get punished hard as hell for it. My problem is that drunk driving laws don't actually deter drunk driving. There have been numerous studies about that. All it really does is clog up jails and prisons with people who were stupid enough to do it and get caught, regardless of whether or not they've hurt anyone.

I am glad that more states are letting up on simple drug offenses though. It's about time. I can't smoke the stuff personally because it fucks with my anxiety like a cat on cocaine.

PixelOrange11 karma

I know you weren't talking about when people die, only when they drive while intoxicated (and don't hurt anyone).

The problem is, how do you stop them from driving? These people already don't care that they're driving illegally so suspending their license isn't going to stop that.

Probably the best way would be to confescate their car and sell it off and then fine them a crippling amount of money. People worry more about the financial aspect than the jail time.

mainlysane17 karma

I wish I knew how to stop people from driving drunk.

There are a lot of reasons for it in the U.S. especially.

a) almost everyone has a car

b) public transportation is usually shitty in smaller cities

c) bars are designed to get people drunk and then put them behind the wheel.

Education is probably one of the best ways to combat this. It's not so much a problem for the law to fix as it is a problem for us to fix as a people. You cannot legislate morality. That has to be taught.

I can think of a few fun ways to try to avert it.

1) build bars in places that can only be reached on foot.

2) design all cars to have breath ignition which won't start if your blood alcohol is too high

3) surgically and painlessly amputate a digit for each drunk driving offense

4)give everyone a trained cheetah which will maul you if you try to approach a vehicle while drunk

5) force repeat offenders to blow Justin Bieber (only works on straight men, lesbians and some rational women)

feralkitten11 karma

bars are designed to get people drunk and then put them behind the wheel.

Bars sell alcohol. Walmart sells food. In BOTH cases you are required to find your own transportation to and from the business.

If you impair yourself it is your responsibility to find alternative transportation. DO NOT blame the bar for your lack of pre-planning.

Personally i'm married. My wife and i take turns driving. I drive when she is out with the girls. She drives when i'm out with the guys. Prior to being married, we had one DD. This only requires a trivial amount of foresight.

design all cars to have breath ignition which won't start if your blood alcohol is too high

This is just a fail safe for people without good judgement. The whole population shouldn't have to have this for a handful of people that can't plan ahead for more than a few hours.

mainlysane9 karma

I was being a bit facetious. I definitely blame the driver not the bar.

feralkitten8 karma

Sorry, i was a bartender for 3+ years. I hated being the guy people blame.

mainlysane3 karma

No worries. I have a bad habit of being inappropriately flippant at times.

BeardMilk7 karma

3-14 year sentence at the age of 19 for writing bad checks? What is the story behind this?

mainlysane2 karma

I stole a few of my mother's checks and wrote them out to myself and cashed them. I'm not very proud of that. Thankfully, my mother and I have a very good relationship now despite that. I was originally ordered to be on probation but I ended up violating it by not paying my court costs and ended up getting resentenced to prison as a result. The 3-14 year sentence is just Michigan's weird way of doing sentencing. Basically meant I had to do a minimum of 3 years, but no more than 14 years. I ended up doing about 5 years altogether on that charge and the added escape charge.

BeardMilk22 karma

I wish you nothing but the best for your future but you are a terrible decision maker.

mainlysane9 karma

I appreciate that. And you are correct. I've made seven shitty decisions just since breakfast.

jduece3 karma

Thanks for all your answers.. I just had a quick question, where in Michigan did you live? What jail were you in? I live in south-east MI (Ann arbor area) I was just curious.

mainlysane4 karma

I'm from Jackson originally (hello, neighbor!) So I was in Jackson County Jail, though when I went to prison I was actually in a number of them: Charles Egler Facility (aka Northside) in Jackson, Camp Ojibway(sp?), Some prison in Ionia that I don't remember the name of at the moment, and the facitiliy at Western Wayne.

LaserPepper33 karma

Do you think the punishment fit the crime? Why or why not

mainlysane109 karma

That's a tough question.

I do believe there should be consequences for abandoning responsibility, but the prison time seemed unnecessarily harsh. I have known fathers who are behind over $30,000 who have never spent a day in county jail, let alone gone to prison for it.

I think that putting anyone in prison for failure to pay child support is a mistake inasmuch as it makes it that much more difficult for them to find work with a recent criminal record. Also, instead of allowing that person to work and make payments They are basically made a burden to the tax payers who have to support them, in addition to the child.

It's a broken system. I think it would have been better to place me into some sort of work-release environment. Make me work until I have paid off a certain amount and then let me go. I guess that was not an option for me since I had to be extradited back to Missouri from Indiana.

edit: grammar (reading it made my head hurt)

rlseafor32 karma

Oh you need a good paying job and your are behind on payments? Here let me put you in prison so that way it will be twice as hard to get a job.

Yep that sounds like America.

mainlysane17 karma

There's good money in incarceration from what I've read. I think it might be the state of Michigan's main source of income since they get federal money per inmate.

P.S. I really hope I was just joking.

NoNeedForAName31 karma

I have known fathers who are behind over $30,000 who have never spent a day in county jail

Lawyer here. I've had clients who were twice that far in arrears and never spent a day in jail. But my jurisdiction is a little different. In my home state they only charge you with contempt. I do practice in another state that makes it a felony to be more than $1,000 behind.

djscrub16 karma

Also a lawyer. In my state, they try very hard to give you chances not to go to jail, since you can't pay very much while you're in jail. They also bring you before the magistrate before sending you to jail and will appoint you a lawyer just like in criminal court. The lawyer can usually keep you out of jail if you make any effort at all to make payments.

NoNeedForAName6 karma

That's pretty similar to what we do here. The child support office files a Motion for Contempt ex rel the child support recipient. They get you into court and you just sit down with the CS lawyer and he gets an order entered that you have to continue paying CS plus a little extra to catch up on arrears, and the case is reset for 2 or 3 months out. If you come back and still haven't paid, they appoint an attorney for you and reset the case for a couple more months out.

At the third court date your lawyer sits down with the CS lawyer and the CS lawyer and tries to work it out. If you have an excuse for not paying, they reset court for a few more months out so you can prove you're unable to pay. If you don't have an excuse for not paying, they agree to dismiss the case for a payment of usually $500 or $1,000 and an agreement that you'll continue to make regular support payments. If you can't pay that day they'll give you another couple of months to come up with the money.

If you pay the money, they dismiss at the next court date. If you don't pay anything, they'll usually take you to court, where the judge may or may not send you to jail. If you've made any partial payments at all or need more time to prove that you're unable to work, they give you a few more months.

I have one case that's been going for about 2.5 years and the next court date isn't until August. My client says he's disabled and he had a pending disability case when we first went to court. He was eventually denied all the way through the ALJ hearing, and then appealed and was denied again. They gave him yet another chance because he refiled after his last denial, meaning that from today it could be another year or two before anything happens at all.

djscrub3 karma

Yeah that sounds very similar to my state. But according to OP, he never got any notice until he was arrested pending incarceration for failure to pay. So his state's system must be wildly different. In my state (and apparently yours too), you'd have a state-paid lawyer and 3 hearings minimum before you'd land in jail.

NoNeedForAName3 karma

OP's was different because he was charged with a felony, rather than someone filing a motion for contempt. Both states I practice in also make it a felony, but my home state doesn't enforce that law and only uses contempt.

djscrub3 karma

I understand this, but it's difficult for me to imagine that felony charges would proceed without at least one summons to appear before the child support referee regarding his arrearages.

mainlysane4 karma

If it helps clear things up I was living outside the state of Missouri, in Indiana, at the time the warrant was issued. No one sent me a notice or a summons even though Family Support had my current contact information.

An interesting footnote to this is the that I did actually get a heads up on this, only I didn't realize it at the time. About a week before the local police showed up to execute the warrant I got a number of letters from Attorneys in Saint Charles offereing me their services. I was confused as hell when I got them, but now with hindsight I realize it was just clever marketing on their part. They probably have people who browse though Missouri's CaseNet looking for new cases on the docket. Or maybe they get informed when new warrants are issued.

mainlysane6 karma

I found it to be weird the way different States would handle child support differently. It really tripped me up, becasue in Michigan they don't really incarcerate people for failure to pay Child Support. At least, they didn't use to. They might bring you in to the jail, but as soon as you made a payment, even a token one, they would let you right out. I was used to that having grown up in Michigan, so Missouri really surprised me.

NoNeedForAName7 karma

Here they rarely incarcerate you, although they can. It's actually a felony in my home state to fail to pay child support, but I've never seen it enforced. They just let the child support office handle it via contempt. Our juvenile judge appoints attorneys to represent the defendants in those cases, so I've probably handled a hundred of them. I've only had 2 clients go to jail for it, and that's because they were absolutely worthless. The judge just sets bond for them at around $1,000, to be applied to their child support arrears. Both of those clients came up with the money on the same day they were sent to jail.

The other state that I practice in is a little tougher, but I doubt you'd ever spend 2 years in prison. You might get sentenced to a year or two, but they'd probably put you in jail for a few days and suspend the rest of the sentence on the condition that you start paying your child support.

mainlysane6 karma

I'd like to see more states come up with a work-release type of system. If you have a job then you go in and leave for work but have to pay off a certain amount before you get released. If you don't have a job they give you some crap labor job that the state/city/county needs done like clearcutting, or trash pickup or something else and apply a fair wage toward your debt until you've paid a certain amount.

That seems to make more sense, and hopefully it would be a lot cheaper than just incarcerating someone.

Trifur1 karma

Also, instead of allowing me to work and make payments I was basically made a burden to the tax payers who had to support me, in addition to the child I was unable to support myself.

This bugs me. You seem to make a lot of excuses for yourself and try to paint the government in a bad light but you were already a burden.

You had previously committed a crime: writing bad checks. As in multiple checks.

You did not complete the sentence for your crime.

You had failed to pay child support necessitating tax payer support for your child. (based upon your comment I just quoted)

You mentioned previously that you were trying to get on disability in which case you would still be a burden on the state.

You didn't pay your child support which required the state to go after you.

I feel like when you get out of prison you will use prison as an excuse to continue to fail to pay child support. I have a relative by marriage (step brother of my wife) who wrote one bad check when he was 20 and went to prison.

He has used that as an excuse for 25ish years. "I can't find work because I was a felon." "People make fun of me for being a felon." etc. Guess what he is doing right now? Applying for SSA disability and for Medicaid. Surprise, surprise.

I have found that people like you and him who make these constant rationalizations for their own crappy behavior will never do anything and will be a burden on the state forever. Prison just makes it easier to keep an eye on you.

edit: Just to make an important point here. The only information we have on the OP's record comes from the OP. For all we know he has a couple robberies on his record too. I tried to find more information but his name does not come up on the Missouri Dept of Correction's prisoner search.

mainlysane45 karma

I don't fault your logic. You couldn't possibly dislike me more than I dislike myself sometimes.

I didn't think I was rationalizing. I was trying to answer questions and explain what I think happened, but I can see how it would come off that way.

Personally, I'd rather hold a job than be a recipient of the welfare dole. I'd feel a lot better about myself. However, I would invite you to walk a mile in my shoes before you pass judgment. That way, when you do judge me, you're a mile away, and you have my shoes.

Grandpas_Spells15 karma

I'm surprised of the downvotes given this.

The language here:

Michigan decided that since the halway house was "technically" a prison I was guilty of felony prison escape.

There's a distinct lack of personal responsibility going on. Michigan didn't decide something was a "technically" a prison. It absolutely was.

This is the kind of stuff that might make the title of the thread a little less shocking.

OP had a prior felony. OP escaped his halfway house, another felony.

Felons with an escape on their record get harsher sentences and sent to worse places. This is not unfair, and is not a "bureaucratic snafu." I have sympathy for his situation, but it's largely self-created, not a largely innocent man being victimized by an out-of-control justice system.

mainlysane15 karma

Most inmates who left a halfway house in Michigan were usually charged with Absconding at most, which is similar to what happens when a parolee fails to report. It's not even a felony. It was pretty unheard of at that time that people leaving halfway houses got charged with a felony prison escape since there was no real action required to do it other than simply leaving. All the doors were unlocked. All the windows opened and had street access.

I did not mean to seem to minimize the act, but it was very discretionary on the part of the prosecutor to choose to charge me with that in the first place.

I made a serious mistake by not choosing to fight it. The judge who passed sentence went on at great length about how inappropriate the charge was, and he made a point of giving me the minimum sentence he was able to, but he was unable to discard the charge since I had already plead to it. Basically, I fucked up. I should never have had the escape charge on my record in the first place, but I was too ignorant to know better.

As to the label of "bureaucratic snafu," I was merely quoting the person who did my security assessment at Fulton Prison, not attempting to paint myself as a victim. He called it that because it was very obvious to him that someone who walks out of an unlocked door without permission is not in the same category as someone who makes a knife out of a toothbrush and stabs a guard in the neck to get the gates opened.

bonitaappetita32 karma

I feel for you. My husband had a one night stand when he was 15 and didn't know the girl got pregnant. She didn't contact him until ten years later when she sued him for current support plus ten years of back support, and won. He was making $17,000 a year at the time and they started taking $800 a month from him. We moved to the state where the kid lived so that my husband could start a relationship with him, but the mother said "These visits aren't convenient for me" and then started rescheduling visits, cancelling them. We just gave up after a while but my husband is still paying back support (the kid is now 18) while the mother and her husband own a house, 2 nice cars, etc and we live in a trailer, struggling to get by. I never asked my ex for support for my kids. My husband fully supported my kids along with paying support for this other kid. He has been threatened with "further action" during times when he was late. As the wife of someone paying support, it is so scary.

mainlysane3 karma

Doing this AMA made me realize that there are some imbalances in the way child support laws are enforced. Your comment made me realize that it would be better if the people in charge of applying the law in these cases could afford to really examine the specifics on a case by case basis. I hope things get better for you and your family. Your husband sounds like a good man.

SonsofWorvan19 karma

This is bullshit. Why does everyone just assume this guy is a nice person and a good father who deserves to see his kid? Is it not possible that he was horrible to his wife and terrible to his kid when he was around? Or perhaps he has other crimes to which he hasn't admitted?

I see a ton of projection going on here. People who are projecting their custody issues and challenges on to OP and then believing that he is as good as they are. Sad. The fact is this guy didn't pay his child support and the court likely had good reason to deny custody of his child 9 years ago. Perhaps, he abandoned the kid and later decided he wanted back into the kid's life.

The point is: We don't know. We just have OP's side. I'm sure his wife has a completely different take on everything. It's like everyone thinks he wouldn't just go on the Internet and bend the truth to make himself feel better.

mainlysane14 karma

You raise a valid point. Obviously I am biased in my own favor, though I try to be realistic and honest with myself as much as possible. My ex probably has a version of events which makes me look far less favorable, but if you read through my comments I'm sure you'll see that I'm not trying to paint myself as being blameless. I was never abusive or mean to my ex or to our child. I was irresponsble. I went from job to job and we never really had any stability. I could try to blame it all on mental illness, but the truth is that it probably had as much to do with me being young and stupid as with mental health. Either way it ended up costing me a woman I loved and a child I loved as well.

Nothing about this AMA is designed to make me feel better. It is true that a lot of people have had very kind things to say to me and I will always love them for that. But the truth is that I am dragging up a lot of personally embarassing and painful memories by doing this. My main hope is that by sharing my story and answering questions I might be able to help others avoid making the same mistakes I made.

pushygalore12 karma

I can speak of my experience in NJ. I have paid child support and alimony every other week to my ex from the time we were separated in 2007. I am in Financial Services which got killed when the economy went down in 2008 and have been accruing arrears since. My wages are garnished and right now my ex gets 100% of my paycheck from my regular job. I have to take "cash" on the side just to make money to live. I have field motions every year since 2009 for a reduction of my A&C support and have been denied every year even though I have provided the court with bona fide proof that my income has gone down by over 60%. In my last filing of a motion, my ex to punish me filed a cross motion for parenting tiime mediation. She claimed I was abusive to her and the children even though there is no evidence at all to prove that is the case. The mediator recommended to the judge that my parenting time be suspended and the judge ruled in my ex spouses favor with no due process, no discovery, nothing! Just worte a judgement saying that I am not allowed to see my children. I do not have any criminal background at all, have held the same occupation for 22 years, have not had a moving violation in over 5 years. Have been trying to go through the court system to get relief and have been repeatedly denied. I am financially bankrupt and I am not even allowed to see my children. If you think the courts are these hallowed hallways of justice then think again. I used to read about "Dead beat dads" and thought F them they deserve to be in jail. Well I have seen how the system punishes those men as I have been incarcerated for short periods of time for "willful non support" even though there is nothing willful about it. The entire A&C system is broken when men who have committed no crime are being put behind bars because they cannot meet thier obligation because they lost a job or were downsized. In my opinion alimony should be rehabilitatiive only and last no more than 5 years. If you want to know more of my story I am glad to tell it as a warning of what can happen in NJ when you are divorced.

mainlysane6 karma

Jeez, that was painful to read. You have it pretty bad by comparison. I know that a lot of people will look at the fact that I was an ex-con before my child support trouble began and say to themselves, "Fucking crook deserved what he got for being lazy and not paying." But in your case, there is no such luxury. You really got shafted. I wish I could do something to help, but short of lobbying for family law reform there's nothing I can think of.

FarmerPhreak19 karma

Did you make any friends? or did you just keep to yourself?

mainlysane50 karma

My cell mate was a mentally unstable gentleman who bashed in someone's skull with a baseball bat during a meth rage. Despite that he was nice enough while we housed together. Since it was a maximum security prison I was in my cell for about 23 hours out of the day so there wasn't a lot of time for socializing.

I guess it would be fair to say that I was friendly, without really making any friends. I tried to be respectful and polite. I avoided getting mixed up in any bullshit and just tried to focus on getting out as soon as I could.

My only real encounters with other inmates came when we went to eat or when we got a chance to visit the prison library. I talked to quite a few guys. Most of them were going to spend most, if not all, of their lives inside, so many of them were jealous to hear that I would be getting out so soon. It was sad to hear so many stories of misery. Inmates in general are not terrible people... they're just people. People who have made mistakes, but people nonetheless.

FarmerPhreak15 karma

wow, firstly thanks for responding and secondly, that really makes me remember that people always have this stereotype that prisons are filled with the scum of the earth, really despicable criminals. When really they are just humans like you or I, who have just made mistakes.

You sound like a nice enough guy, I hope you don't mind if I ask another question.

Have your perspectives towards life in general changed now that you've had 2 years to contemplate your life?

mainlysane26 karma

Thank you for the cyber-compliment :)

My perspectives have probably changed a lot, but it is hard to tell when you are the one doing the changing. My incarceration did give me a lot of time to think about the choices I've made in my lifetime. I was pretty addled when I first got there becasue I was on so much medication. I spent the first three months so dosed on Haldol and Thorazine that I was pretty much a walking zombie. By the time I decided not to take the medication anymore I started to feel crippled by depression, sadness, hopelessness and loneliness.

On a lark I found a book on Buhddism and started reading it. I don't have much faith in religion and consider myself an atheist so I was surprised to learn that in it's original form Buhddism did not have a deity associated with it. That book turned me onto meditation and I began to practice it.

Note: it is very easy to take up the practice of meditation when you sit in a concrete block for 23 hours a day.

At first meditation felt a lot like sitting there waiting for something to happen, but eventually I found that it was a wonderful way to really focus my mind and engage in what I like to think of as "Productive Thinking." I was able to take rather elaborate trips inside my own head. I started to have lucid dreams. But the best thing is that I was really able to think about my life from a more detached perspective. I was able to look at my good points and my bad points. Ultimately I was able to forgive myself for being human, and I realized that this self-forgiveness did not absolve me of my mistakes, but rather it obligated me to do the best I could from that point on to becoming a better person.

To me, that means trying to focus on really connecting with people. Not just my friends and family, but also strangers and neighbors... people I don't even know. It means trying to help when I can, and learning to let go when I can't.

I think that I've become more optimistic since my time in prison. I still have bad days, days where my mind won't even let me get out of bed. I still make a ton of mistakes, but I still meditate almost daily so I am learning to catch my mistakes sooner rather than later and doing my best to correct them.

FarmerPhreak8 karma

Thanks again for the response. I appreciate it, thanks for taking some time to answers our question in depth.

mainlysane6 karma

You're welcome. I appreciate the questions.

ennaneked13 karma

Jail librarian here. I'm glad you were at least able to get out to the library. I know it's not true for all, but the library seems to be one of the 'safe zones' in the jail. I hate hearing about how terrible some of the guys and girls get treated and like to think they can count on being 'normal' in this room. Good on you for keeping out of the BS, and keep your head up!

mainlysane6 karma

Thank you for the support! My grandmother was a school librarian and teacher, and she taught for over 40 years. She passed away this past October, but she instilled a deep love for reading and learning in me. I have massive amounts of respect for the work you do. The prison library was probably the only thing I looked forward to. That and finally going home.

ForYourSorrows10 karma

Yeah its kind of a rule you don't tell people when you're getting out or how long you have.. people get killed on or just before their release date by crazy jealous fucks

mainlysane3 karma

Thank god for 23 hour lockdown! I usually have a good ear when it comes to avoiding truly crazy, but you are right: It's a good policy if you ever end up in prison to just keep yourself to yourself.

KattNapp18 karma

This is seriously fucked up. I really feel for you dude. The American legal system is deeply unfair unless you have money in your pockets to pay for legal advice and a lawyer. If you don't you're screwed.

However 2 years in prison for a debt is still very wrong. I hope something will get resolved in your life so you can pay your way and not have to worry about going back to Prison.

Take care dude.

mainlysane8 karma

Thank you for the supportive comment.

It's probably sad that I have heard many stories which I feel to be worse than my own, especially from some of the inmates I talked with while incarcerated. Some of them had horrible stories of lifelong abuse and mistreatment at the hands of every adult authority figure they ever came into contact with, stuff that made me shudder just to hear about.

I've applied again for disability benefits, but I would much rather get my issues under sufficient enough control that I can get and hold a job. Any job. I would be happy digging ditches all day if it meant that I could feel self-sufficient and take care of my obligations.

lovesfunnyposts17 karma

One suggestion, if you are still reading these:

Make sure to write your son a letter at least once a month until he turns 18, and make sure he receives them. You said elsewhere you cannot see him, but his mother allows your mother to visit. Your mother can help confirm that your son gets your letters.

If you do not do this, here is what will happen, when he is 18, you will try to see him, and he will say "dad, you're a dick, you never visited." and you will say "your mother wouldn't let me, but I thought about you all the time." and he will say "bullshit. go fuck yourself. I'm gonna rob a liquor store."

But if you make the effort to write letters on a consistent schedule for an extended period of time, it is tangible to you and to him that there is and always will be a connection. Just a suggestion.

mainlysane12 karma

It's funny you should mention that. I have done something similar to that since we parted. At first it started off as a Livejournal, but then I just started keeping a journal addressed to him. I may go weeks without writing in it sometimes, but when I do write I write a lot. Mostly just stories and things I wish I could tell him or show him. I plan to give it to him someday if he wants it. I hope he does.

Poopkitty9 karma

Do you have any kind of relationship with the child(ren) or the mother(s)?

mainlysane24 karma

My son's mother and I were together for about 10 months after he was born. It was a tough time because I had a hard time supporting the three of us and we did not live in very lavish circumstances. For example, we lived in a motel for about 4 months. Our relationship was strained and finally she had enough and moved back in with her parents (which, to my knowledge, is where she still resides.)

It got ugly for a while after she left. At first she said she would never cut me out of my son's life, but she was under a lot of pressure from her parents to cut me off. After she had been gone for about 3 months I realized I wanted a chane to make things work with her and jumped in the car and moved back down to Missouri from Michigan. I needed to be close to my son.

I had no job, no prospects and I was living in my car. I assumed she would let me see him but once I got down there she turned into a block of ice. She would not respond to phonecalls, emails or direct confrontation. If I showed up at her parents house I was asked to leave. I made such a nuisance of myself trying to see her and my son that she ended up getting a restraining order against me.

I was completely floored by that. I knew she did not want me around, but the idea that I was a threat to her seemed laughable to me. Not to the judge however. He continues the order for a year. I managed to get a good job and worked my way into a good place. I got caught up on child support, was making current payments and decided to send my son presents fro Christmas.

Bad idea.

It turns out that sending the presents (even though they were for my son and contained nothing addressed to her) constituted a violation of the restraining order. I ended up getting 2 years probabtion for sending my son Xmas presents. I just have to laugh about that now when I think about it.

I have not seen my son since he was a year old. He is now almost 10. My ex allows my mother to visit him and she always tells me about him and shows me pictures so I do have a small connection with him still. I just hope he won't think too badly of me once he gets old enough to decide for himself whether or not to let me be a part of his life. I never wanted to lose him. I just wansn't smart enough, strong enough, or good enough to keep him and his mother in my life. My biggest regret.

SaintSoldier113 karma


mainlysane7 karma

That means a lot. Thank you.

Verdei8 karma

I really don't understand the amount of sympathy in this thread. Am I the only one who is suspicious of a guy who claims to have mental issues AND had a restraining order against him? I know reddit likes to play the MRS card, and demonize his ex, but this guy is raising too many red flags for me to enthusiastically believe he was sent to a maximum security prison for not paying enough in child support.

Edit: for clarification, the last part should read "sent to maximum security for ONLY his child support violation." I think there's more to the story that likely made a judge unsympathetic and sent him to a max security prison with lifers instead of a minimum security prison.

mainlysane2 karma

I think it gets clarified in some of my other answers that I went to a maximum security prison because of a felony escape charge on my record stemming from walking away from a halfway house in Michigan in my early 20's.

Basically I did it to myself.

RedWhiteBlackYellow7 karma

You are one tall motherfucker.

mainlysane7 karma

That came in handy in prison.

wolfkin3 karma

6'5" yeah you should be over at /r/tall

mainlysane8 karma

Why do I still get surprised at the number of oddly specific subreddits?

Serekh6 karma


mainlysane15 karma

Good questions!

Firstly, I pled guilty mainly because I felt guilty. I did owe child support, and according to the law as it is written I was guilty. I might have stood a chance at trial, but it is far more likely that I would have been pretty successfully painted as a deadbeat dad and garnered no real sympathy. I had no money for a lawyer and so would have had to rely on a court appointed attorney which (as the joke goes in Missouri) is a lot like having two prosecutors on your case. Since I was fairly sure I was going to get some time I figured it was best to just get it started as soon as possible and get it over with.

Juries are a wonderful thing, and for a serious crime I would go to jury trial in a heartbeat, but for something like child support it just felt like it would be too easy for people to judge me poorly. I have a long list of mental disorders. I have been to prison before (bad checks when I was 19.) It is easy to look at me on paper and not like what you see. My fiance always makes fun of me for that because most people who meet me and spend any time getting to know me do generally like me.

Secondly, I was very angry for a very long time. I was angry at my ex. I was angry at society for making such stupid laws. I was angry at Missouri for enforcing them. Then, one day, I had a realization and the anger just started to melt away. I realized that I was really angry at myself for allowing the situation to get so bad in the first place. When I am honest with myself (which is about as rare for me as it can be for most of us) I look around and I realize how very fortunate I am. Sure, a lot of bad shit happened to me, but look how many people in the world have it worse. It's hard to hold onto anger in the face of children who die of starvation and never know what it feels like to have a full belly, women who get acid thrown in their faces for no good reason, entire groups of people who are hated and vilified just for being born different. Where does my own anger really fit in all of that?

Jesus, that sounds trite. It's really not though.

I have found ways to combat my anger by trying to make myself a better person. I'm getting treatment for my mental illnesses. I've started an outreach to give blankets, hats and gloves to homeless people in my area. I'm engaged to a wonderfu woman. I'm physically healthy. I have the hope that I will be able to reconnect with my son once he gets older. I have a lot going for me. Anger only ever made me miserable.

Stibemies4 karma

My fiance always makes fun of me for that because most people who meet me and spend any time getting to know me do generally like me.

Hell, I haven't even met you, and I like you already! I am fond of how you respond to people in this AMA, I know I would be a bit pissed if I was in your situation.

Also, I've been mildly depressed for some time now, and you really hit it home with your paragraph about anger. It got me thinking about the reasons why I'm depressed, and why I haven't done more to get better.

You are awesome, even with all your faults, keep on rocking!

mainlysane5 karma

Hell, I haven't even met you, and I like you already!

That's probably one of the nicest things anyone has ever said to me on the Internet. Thanks a bunch. It was hard for me to go into this AMA knowing that I would be revealing a lot of very unflattering truths about myself, but for the most part people have been very kind and understanding.

Depression is a bitch. I can think of no kinder way to put it. If it gets serious enough I would recommend medication. Personally, I hate pills with a passion. I was almost 30 before I was even willing to admit that mental illness might be a real problem. Who in their right mind wants to take medication with potentially serious side-effects for something they think is just moral weakness on their part?

I finally got to a point where I couldn't kid myself about there not being a problem too big for me to handle on my own. No one would choose the kind of life I have lived. At least no one who is sane.

Since you label your depression as mild I can suggest a few beneficial alternatives to medication that have helped me out. Walking for at least 10 minutes a day outside works wonders for lifting mood. A full cardio workout is also good if you are up for it. Nothing like an endorphin rush to make the silver linings a little brighter. Also avoiding caffiene helps at times.

Best of luck to you, and thanks for stopping in!

treems5 karma

WOW what a story! My ex owed $30,000 at one point. I took our case to court and an arrest warrent was issued (not the first one) but he has never spent any time in jail. At one point, he even left the country and stopped paying altogether for several years. Child enforcement in Oregon is very relaxed.

mainlysane3 karma

It differs from state to state I learned.

Was he a father who was capable of paying and chose not to, or was he unemployed and unable to pay? Not that it makes a difference really, responsibility is responsibility any way you slice it, but I tend to be more personally sympathetic to the ones who can't pay becasue they don't have the money.

BadenSac4 karma

Do you know how your expartner reacted to you being sentenced to jail?

mainlysane4 karma

Not really. My mom does see her from time to time when she visits my son, and the only thing she ever said to me regarding it was that my ex went to great lengths to let my mother know that she wasn't the one who pressed charges against me. I think she would probably rather have me out of jail and paying child support than in jail. I don't think she hates me, at least I hope she doesn't. I just don't think she likes me very much.

SirEctor3 karma

Will this make it hard to find a job and do you still owe back payments?

Did you try and reason with the courts / ex?

What's next?

mainlysane5 karma

Having a record into today's economy severely limits what sort of work you can get, sure. There are so many people looking for jobs that I have heard of HR people who just immediately exclude ex-cons becasue it lowers their potential candidate pool down to a more manageable number.

I still owe back support and am paying it as I am able to. My bill continued to increase even during my incarceration so I got out with an extra 3000 or so in back due support.

I tried to explain to the courts that I have not worked since 2007, but that was not something that made an impression with them. I explained that I had applied for disability, but since I was not currently on disability it made no difference. If I had been on disability it would probably have allowed me to avoid prision time.

My ex was not really at fault so reasoning with her would have made little difference. The State of Missouri came after me because she received benefits for her and for my son. Since I owe Child Support I sort of inherit that debt.

Now I will continue to do my best to make payments and get caught up. I would love to be able to convince my ex to allow me to be a part of my son's life as well, but she does not seem interested, and I cannot fault her for it. I wasn't much of a boyfriend. I just worry that my absence is going to have negative impact on my son.

SirEctor2 karma

What's your disability? My assumption is its hard to get benefits for.

And can they keep placing you in prison for continuing to be unable to pay?

mainlysane6 karma

My disability stems from mental illness. My current diagnoses (which I can probably verify if it is needed) are OCD, Psychotic Disorder NOS, Personality Disorder NOS, and Major Depressive Disorder. Anyone who has ever tried to get any disability will tell you that it is rarely a slam dunk case of filling out the paperwork and getting your benefits. They make you fight for it, which is probably as it should be.

And I can very easily be sent back if I ever fail to make at least one full payment within a 12 month period. I would be charged with a new felony and probably get 4 years this time instead of 2, if not more. I am doing my best to make sure that doesn't happen though!

Beaverkilla2 karma

Mmmm, that's fucked, you get to either pay off an insurmountable debt with disability and a criminal record or goto prison, not work and get more debt.

I wouldn't be able to keep going with that hanging over my head. Onya for succeeding.

mainlysane4 karma

I figure if I either had to choose my life the way it is, or living with something like full body paralysis, I would definitely choose the life I have.

Nothing is insurmountable. And even if it is, eventually you die and surmount the hell out of that bitch anyway.

incident_report3 karma

How many layers of condoms do you use now during sex?

mainlysane13 karma

Let's just say that women suddenly became more impressed with my girth.

jakery436 karma

If anyone reads this and thinks he's serious, DON'T. Double bagging it can easily make the tear, multiple methods of BC are the way to go.

mainlysane6 karma

Yes, I was totally joking. Please do not attempt that.

chrissyskellington3 karma

that's pretty fucked up and severe punishment. sorry our justice system is ass. and sorry some of these mentally deficient people think the "punishment fit the crime".

all these fuckheads that just think jail is a cakewalk need to try a few days themselves. especially if you're someone with mental health issues it can be a fucking degrading, hellish nightmare. BUT WELCOME TO HELL!

mainlysane6 karma

I mentioned in another comment thread that I started an outreach for the homeless in my area. A lot of the guys I run into when I go out at night to find them are people with mental illness, ex-cons who cannot get work or extreme drug addicts. Most of them have been in and out of jail and prison. The local police make it a point to find them and arrest them on various petty charges like Loitering, Trespassing or Vagrancy. To me that feels a lot like kicking a man when he's down.

But you're right. There is a lot of stigma against people with mental health problems, and the court system has a tendency to just sort of "lose" these people inside of it. I don't know if it was "fair" to get sent to prison the way I was, but I do know that it was legal. I feel a lot of personal guilt about not being able to help my child financially, but I refuse to accept the role of victim. I was responsible for making a lot of poor decisions. I have to live with that.

That being said, I see so many poor, underclassed, undesirable citizens getting thrown to the wolves while corporate criminals legally and illegaly rob us blind. I'd like to see more justice in the world.

Boob_A_Tron3 karma

Did you meet Morgan Freeman?

mainlysane5 karma

I wish! I did see Jack Kevorkian in passing back in the late 90's, but it was from quite a distance away.

Roninspoon2 karma

Now that you're out of prison, are you considering running for congress?

mainlysane6 karma

I just got away from a bunch of crazy people. Not dying to go back among them so soon.

trooper8432 karma

Are you sorry now for not paying?

mainlysane10 karma

Yes. I regret not being able to get or hold a job to make payments. Mostly I regret not understanding Missouri's child support laws enough to realize that in the scheme of things my partial payments didn't mean anything. I was paying $50 here, $100 there, as I was able to, thinking that at least a little was better than nothing. If I had simply held onto those funds until I had enough to make one full $278 payment I would never have been charged or arrested. Mea culpa!

trooper8434 karma

Yea I personally think you should have at least looked up the laws concerning child support in your state so you would have at least know what the bear minimum would have been. I know it's hard to get through everyday life suffering from depression as well as other possible health or mental concerns but if you don't pay attention to the details for your self you will never be able to do so for any one else especially your kid who is the real victim here. I'm not trying to come off as sanctimonious, I also have made a mistake years ago that has cost me in ways I could never have foreseen or even imagined but focusing on others may help you push through what ever ailments you have. There are good people in the justice system, I would not be where I am if I didn't meet some, so try to find them and ask for help, you might be surprised at yourself and the results.

mainlysane7 karma

Good advice on all fronts. You don't come off as sanctimonous, you simply come off as someone who has been through something and has something to share.

I have battled mental illness for most of my life. I was diagnosed as early as 13 with depression, conduct disorder and ADHD. Focusing on the things that matter has really been a struggle for me, and still is even to this day.

I have the "Pure O" form of OCD which is mainly all obsession with only a little compulsion. I do have some counting compulsions, and weird little ticks like being unable to step on cracks in pavement or tile floors, but mainly I get crippled with these horribly intrusive obsessive thought patterns. We all have disturbing thoughts from time to time, and most of us get past it by just not dwelling on them. Well, in my case, those thoughts just keep on coming, and sometimes they cripple me with panic attacks so bad I can't do anything other than curl up wait to die.

This has made it hard for me to live a normal life in some areas. It's getting better thanks to medication and good therapy, but there is still a ways to go.

I know there are many good people in law enforcement and in the court system who are willing to help, but there is a lot of stigma associated with mental illness and being an ex-con. I find it rather hard to get the benefit of the doubt sometimes. Thankfully today I am addressing my problems rather than hiding from them and there are a lot of wonderful people in my life to help me prioritize and pay attention to the details. No man is an island, and few men know that better than me. :)

teknik9093 karma

As someone who has OCD, you have my sympathies, because I cant imagine having this and being sent to a maximum security prison. Fuck everything about our "legal" system.

mainlysane3 karma

It was an experience, to be sure. The impulse in the prison I was at seemed to be to try to drug people into docility. I honestly don't remember much of the early months. That may have been a blessing.

WuTsKrAkEn2 karma

What Did You Do Your First Day Out?

mainlysane16 karma

Drove 8 hours to get back to my home state. Ate an incredibly greasy and unhealthy hamburger. Took the longest, hottest shower of my life.

ala062 karma

Do you think marriage is still relevant in this day and age?

mainlysane3 karma

Sure. I think it comes down to a choice for most people. No one should get married because they feel they have to, but everyone who wants to do it should be able to. (Yes, even homosexuals.)

emperorOfTheUniverse2 karma

Can you elaborate more on your mental illness? Why was it so hard to find work?

Have you ever done drugs? Do you drink?

mainlysane4 karma

I added a scan of my current diagnoses from my last inpatient confinement (to get medication adjusted.) In hindsight, I'm not quite sure that it was as hard to find work as it was to keep it. Obviously it got a bit harder when the economy tanked near the end of the last decade, but my main problem was in keeping jobs. People tend to let employees go when they fail to show up for work, and when my OCD and Anxiety kick in it can become almost impossible to leave the house. Sometimes I would be unable to enter the building I was working in becasue I would become convinced that something terrible was going to happen. Sometimes the fears were specific, but mainly it was just an impending, overwhelming sense of dread.

The depression would also be a factor at times. At its worst I would not even have the motivation to get out of bed, let alone go out and try to find work.

I smoked weed a bit in my late teens and early twenties, but gave it up when it started causing me to have panic attacks and vomit. I did about 10-12 hits of LSD in my late teens and I tried a line of cocaine once when I was 16, but other than that I haven't used anything. I don;t know that I was ever what you would consider an addict.

I drink occasionally, but not very much even when I do drink. My father was a pretty bad alcoholic and I never wanted to be like him so I have always had an aversion to getting drunk and drinking in general. My fiance and I have a 3/4 full bottle of tequila on the top of our fridge that is almost two years old.

AliceLooking2 karma

What kind of person is your ex? Does she need the money? Could she have done anything to help you avoid your sentence?

mainlysane2 karma

She is a good person at heart, I don't like to think I would be attracted to someone who was horrible or needlessly petty. She wasn't directly involved in the events that led to my incarceration as far as I know.

HeyZuesHChrist2 karma

Since you spent time in jail, do you still owe child support? Back support?

mainlysane2 karma

I was billed during every month of my incarceration. I'm not sure if they can count those months against me, but they probably can.

GlassCoins2 karma

I'm on my phone so I can't scroll all the down but did he answer why he didn't pay?

mainlysane2 karma

Mentally disabled, unable to work since 2007. Still paying what I can when I can, but it's only a drop in the bucket.

Cakesmite1 karma

  • How do you feel about the fact that society treated you with such unfairness just because of your gender?

  • If you would be sent back in time before this incidence, what would you change?

mainlysane16 karma

I feel that most child support laws are fair, if a little gender-biased. I am his father and he deserves whatever financial support I can give him. It is a bit ironic that I am the one who initially opened up the Child Support case in an effort to get visitation because his mother never put my name on the birth certificate. To date I have never been given an order of visitation, though I have been ordered to pay support. "Father enough to pay, but not father enough to play."

If I could go back in time I would make sure that I made at least one full monthly payment in a 12 month period :p

I wouldn't have avoided having him. He is one of the best things in my life even though I have not intereacted with him since he was just under a year old. I spent the first 10 months of his life with him as a hands-on father, and he totally changed my perspective on life.

ThisIsTheDrew3 karma

You aren't "given" visitation. You have to get an attorney and file for it. Child support and visitation are two separate issues.

mainlysane2 karma

Unfortunately I was a complete noob. I figured that out finally, but not before I had gotten my hopes up.

ThisIsTheDrew2 karma

What part of Missouri are you in? I'm in Southwest Missouri and my attorney was relatively inexpensive and he did a great job. I also know a great attorney in the St. Louis area.

mainlysane1 karma

I lived in St. Lousy. At the moment I live in Indiana.

Cakesmite-4 karma

Thanks for answering in such short notice.

mainlysane5 karma

You're welcome.

I should probably drop by sometime. I just get very sad, angry and confused as how some people get treated. I'm no innocent victim, but at the same time it's hard to deal with how quickly people will label you a "deadbeat dad." I would gladly accept that moniker if it were simply a case of me choosing not to pay child support, but in my case, I had no job. I had no money to support myself let alone pay child support.

EffeCt701-13 karma

White men are so oppressed xDDDD

mainlysane3 karma

We also can't jump. Or so I've been told.

MelodieMaker1 karma

Nice try, ex-wife who hates Daniel Weible's guts.

mainlysane1 karma

Which one are you?

seashanti1 karma

My ex is in arrears over 30,000. I have done my part raqising a wonderful daughter and she is in college makes deans list every semester and has consistently produced every semester a 4.0! She's pretty brialliant, I hope he does go to jail! Not one dime! Ever. I deserve that money, so does she! He is a loser who can't hold a job with a flaming abuse isuue now! I think these men should go to jail!

mainlysane1 karma

A lot of them do go to jail, but it seems like not enough depending on where you live. My hats off to you for raising such a good child. That is your accomplishment alone. Her success is a testament to your parenting. I have much respect for you.

imperius930 karma

why didn't you pay?

mainlysane4 karma

I originally fell behind when the company I worked for closed it's doors and I lost my job. I did a lot of odd jobs for awhile, delivered pizza, waited tables, etc. Finally, my then-wife decided we should get divorced. I took that kind of badly. My ability to function kind of went down the tubes. I started to have a hard time even finding jobs, and an even more difficult time keeping them. I turned into a bit of a shut-in. I would make payments whenever I had money to spare, but it got to the point where I couldn't hold a job longer than a week. Then I just didn't have money. I was homeless. I couch surfed. If it wasn't for friends and family I wouldn't have made it.

Cikedo0 karma

Did I miss the part on why this is significant? Pay your child support.

mainlysane1 karma

I pay as much as I can, when I can. As to the significance of this AMA, it's pretty subjective, but thanks for asking a question.

deadcat-1 karma

Holy fuck. I am glad I was born in Australia, and not an ass-backwards country like the USA.

mainlysane2 karma


kunomchu-3 karma

Why did you have a kid when you can't financially afford to take care of the kid? You have multiple crime records and unstable/no job. I don't feel sorry for you.

mainlysane6 karma

I was working when she conceived, and I had no reason to believe I would not be able to take care of a child. I was probably living in denial, but there it is. We were in love, and we wanted to have a child together.