The following are real exchanges between husband and wife dealing with sex addiction while the husband is in jail as part of our Consequences of Sex Addiction Series. Sex Addiction is real and we hope these letters inspire you to get help and/or make a change if you’re facing similar circumstances.
“Shared joy is a double joy; Shared sorrow is half a sorrow.”
— a Swedish Proverb
You can kiss your family and friends good-bye and put miles between you but at the same time you carry them with you in your heart, your mind, your stomach, because you do not just live in a world but a world lives in you.
— Frederick Buechner
I have visited my husband in two states and in three different Federal Correctional Facilities over the course of two years. At first, the distance covered many lonely desert miles of solitude. The visit was petitioned [sic] off by a hook-up in another part of the prison to the the [sic] Visitation Front Lobby. I could hear my husband’s voice over the telephone connection and see him on a computer like screen the size of a shoebox. My visit would last exactly one hour and then the screen went blank as I hung up the wall phone. A friend asked why I would drive over six hours to not visit in the same room face to face without even touching my husband’s hand. The answer was simple — I got to see and feel my husband’s emotions written all over his face and in his eyes and his body language. It was our connection in the world that lives in us.
This article is about making connections to bridge the enormous gap of being on the outside looking in to someone on the inside looking out. The physical distance between us has not cut off our emotional connection of the world we both live in.
On a visitation date recently across a small table, we looked at each other for a long time trying to see inside each other’s souls. We asked what can we do to help each other deal with our imposed separation. We both agreed that (a) we continue to visit as much as possible with our family members, (b) we write long letters and mail cards and pictures and (c) we talk over the phone every single day even if only for 2 minutes. We have been doing these three things already but it needed to be said again to stamp this in our hearts.
Incarceration effects [sic] more than the person living on the inside walls of prison. It reaches into the hearts of the world that existed before and will continue to exist after the day has been served.
I know how hard it can become to keep the faith and continue to live with hope but it isn’t impossible and is so very necessary to share your double sorrow so that it can be cut in half. The double joy is worth everything.
From Hope To You
Until Next time