“I Got Married To Two Murderers That Were Behind Bars” | This MorningMay 06, 2023
Prisoners in the UK have applied to get
married, but a new law could ban inmates serving life sentences from marrying. Behind
bars, well, Teresa Roberts
marriedtwo prisoners who were jailed for murder and she says relationships with men who aren't in jail are boring in a while we're here from criminologist David Wilson but first let's talk to Teresa she's joining to us
morninglive from Seattle good
morninggood morning thanks for joining us Theresa I want to know where
thisall started um well my brother was in jail and I used to go visit him in jail and while I was there I saw someone who was attractive and I made an offhand comment that he was attractive and I got a letter in the mail asking if he wanted if I wanted to be his pen pal and soon after we fell in love I mean that's um it didn't last that long they were together in the outside but then unfortunately she went back to her problem with drugs and she was back you were back you went back to dating non-prisoners which she said was boring a date you said the guy was watching her video on his phone playing video games yeah i mean it's just when i started dating people abroad they were distracted or waiting for something after date um and it was just so frustrating um so i went back to texting pen pals so , how does this work? your ex-partner particularly when you were visiting your brother and then you go back to outside dating how does that work? how do you get a pen pal? so there's a couple of websites like friends be on the wall or writeaprisoner.com or whatever there's a few websites that are um that cater to that if you want and you can go on there and basically it's like a dating site on the way you choose their age choose ethnicity or whatever you're looking for three things what were you looking for um so after he was tired and exhausted from trying to date outsiders um wanted to find someone who was far away like that that I would not be tempted to visit him and someone who was locked up for a long time so he wouldn't come out and break my heart like the last person did and someone who wasn't terribly hideous but not very handsome either so I didn't fall for him so I was trying to protect myself and not fall for a person.
I get it because it was Sandra in 2006, it was Chuck in 2013, it was Nick in 2016. a pen pal is one thing why on Earth would you marry them? Which is the? What's the point of marrying them? When you have all your three things. You could just write to them and visit and be and be friends because you can't. I assume you have privacy because you. they're not going to leave me alone right right um so I think with um with Xander I think the point is we can get married when someone is in prison they can't do that many things but we can get married so you can do something you do and I have a there is an attraction for someone in jail to get married uh it makes them feel loved it makes them feel wanted um so you know it means a lot to them i think you know one of yours was Talking about their list of criteria and one of them is that You know you'd like them to be locked up for a long time, don't you?
Doesn't the red flag happen where you think if they're locked up for a long time the cry that they're engaged must be particularly bad and in essence that makes them the person you'd want to spend your life with and with you know to be committed I think there are a lot of factors involved like with Xander he was found guilty of murder but he was an accessory after the fact, he actually didn't commit the murder, he was in the wrong place at the wrong time and I did my due diligence and looked at all the microfilms and all the police records and i heard his story so you know he's really honest he wouldn't hurt a fly the kind of guy who was young and was with the wrong people and in the wrong place at the wrong time is that something um what do you take out of your life from your past I mean what do you write in your book I think about the relationship with your brother um is it something you are looking for is it something you think was planted in your childhood um no I think so huh but I mean I'm the oldest of four kids I'm pretty independent so I don't need that constant you know the person around me or camaraderie like that I think for me it was but also when you have a relationship with an inmate, you have that dedicated attention to each other that you don't go out here, I mean, you know that when you go to visit them in prison there are no distractions there are you are not you are not talking to them while you do the dishes or cook you are you are talking with them and you're looking at them and you're holding your hand and you're sitting for six hours looking at them and it's an amazing dedicated conversation if you fall in love enough if they were really going to be released that you think we can be together or you'd run a mile well Xander was released In fact, I helped him get to the pardon board and I got him released seven years early and we spent a year together outside, so he was released.
He is doing well and he lives in Florida with his girlfriend and he is doing very well and he is successful. business and um actually part of me so i charge it oh i was just going to say actually every single person i've ever been with now is off and out and what how do your friends and family feel about this because i would wonder if you know when you get married you have this idea of the people you're going to have there and you know some people dream about it some don't but weddings look like you know sometimes they can look a particular way how do they your friends and family?
I'm sorry about that I mean they think I'm crazy of course but they also met I mean they also met Xander uh I mean I was married for 14 years to my first husband and he was a normal person but um I mean not in prison, just my second husband, second, third, and fourth husband, um, they were in prison, but they also know the frustration of dating outside, um, you know, I mean, there are a lot of statistics and facts, I mean, half of the murders don't get solved so go inside if the irony is you're safer dating someone in prison because here you never know what could happen but there it's a safe environment it's ok Teresa thank you um I mean she told us that she is she doesn't like bad boys i mean that's not what she's not looking for um then um so from your point of view david has a name is there a name for this yes this is called hybristophilia is a term that is it was coined in the 1950s so we can date it to set a story in the history of the 1950s and even before that, um, this is more commonly known as Bonnie and Clyde syndrome, so you have to Bonnie Parker Clyde Barrow to American bank robbers working together and eventually going to get shot by the police so this is a phenomenon that we can trace back in history and it's becoming common as well not just women writing to men but also men who write to violent women in prison and same sex couples that form as a result of this hybristophilia and you were quite um I have read Teresa's book and enjoyed raising this book most research would say the Most research would say that often people who are hybristophiliacs have had traumatic childhoods and feel they get the love they want the attention they want they have no control over how their parents or caregivers are going to care for them and therefore what better way as an adult to establish some control over your life than to build a relationship with someone who is behind
barsyou know where he is you choose when you write him he can't take all your money you choose how much money you send him Teresa was referring to some of those instrumental reasons, she herself chose people who were quite far away so it would be difficult to visit, so there are a number of instrumental reasons why these bristophilic relationships are established, but then there are some of the reasons more difficult expressive Of the more psychological and darker reasons finally Dominic Robb, just as clerk, recently proposed changes to the judicial system, including preventing prisoners serving life sentences from getting married.
He suggests that this is to protect vulnerable people who can be manipulated by criminals. I totally accept it and remember that it's not that I'm Banning everyone Behind Bars from getting married, these are tariff prisoners for life and one of the things if people really want to write to people behind bars and get support to do it there is a wonderful registered charity called New Bridge they could just do this through new bridge where they would get support in terms of some of the issues that would come up about how to keep the relationship real because of course it is true that it will be a lot more capable of reintegration. in society if you have strong relationships in the community and Teresa finally on that note, what do you think of our Attorney General Dominic Rabb saying he would prevent marriage between life prisoners and outsiders? from what i understand, the reasoning is because he wants to save women from being manipulated.
I mean to me that's ridiculous. Women are women and men are manipulated by people outside the prison. manipulate someone they manipulate us every day here thank you thank you both thank you very much thank you
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