Fathering from prison

by adustyframe ~ July 8th, 2007

Being a father in prison is not an easy task for Lee.

I think he does an excellent job with the ugly situation we find ourselves in.

Yesterday, when we got home, James had a letter from daddy.

It said,

“Dad loves you and misses you. Thank you for the pictures. You are so cute. Here are some verses I would like you to read and memorize.”

Romans 2:16… God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.

Hebrews 4:13 Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.

Romans 14:12 So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God.

Today, when I visited Lee, he told me the “rest of the story.”

He relayed a phone conversation to me that he and James had.

Lee said, “You’re such a good boy. Mom always gives me a good report on you. I never hear any bad things about you.”

James said, “Well dad, that’s because sometimes I’m a little sneaky.”

Lee and I had a roaring laugh over that this morning. It WAS funny that a little guy would put that into words.

I’m so proud of Lee for realizing that although it was a funny statement, it’s a serious character issue that needs to be addressed. He took the time to look up the verses and send the card home to James.

He gave me the heads up to know that I have to watch for sneakiness.

Lee said that he used to be sneaky and feel like he was getting away with things. He doesn’t want James to think that is ok.

Me either.

We have worked very hard to allow Lee to parent positively while he’s away.

I never have Lee correct James on the phone for things.

I do not think that is fair.Their only  interactions  are on the phone or by mail. I don’t want them to be negative experiences for James.

That puts the burden on me. I have to be the one to correct James all the time. There is no having daddy deal with it when he gets home. No daddy backing me up when a little boy takes liberties.

There have been a couple times during the phone conversation that James has spoken in a sassy tone of voice to me. Lee corrects him then. I think that’s ok when Lee is right there at the time the behavior occurs. I just don’t want James to dread talking to daddy because the whole conversation is discipline time.

The letter Lee sent home was truly a positive way to address the “sneaky” issue.

I am thankful that he remains actively involved in our home and our lives.


10 Thoughts Shared to Fathering from prison

  1. Amy

    I never realized how difficult it must be for Lee to parent by proxy. And for you too, Lizzie. Trying to compensate for the absence of your spouse is never simple, and it’s easy to see how James might become confused by the simultaneous presence and absence of his father. I think you and Lee are doing an admirable job of working together to make things as easy and straightforward for James as possible.

  2. Amy

    Your son is a sweetie – kids make such funny comments don’t they? 🙂
    I think Lee sounds like he is doing a great job of being a dad.

  3. picklesncucumbers

    I imagine it is very difficult for Lee, given the limited contact he has with James, but it really amazes me how he does such a great job and is so creative about it too!

    I’m still praying for those loose ends to be wrapped up soon- so those two boys can have a visit! They both so deserve it!

  4. Chel

    I’m not sure which version of the Bible you’re using, but you might look up those verses in The Message (You can go to Bible Gateway.com and do that). They might be a little easier for James to understand and memorize. That’s a really neat idea that he and Lee could be memorizing together even at a distance.

  5. Jenny

    What a great idea. Will James understand why his Daddy was sending those particular verses to him? I’m so glad Lee is taking as active a role as he can. So many men who are away either through choice, business or incaceration would say they can’t do anything and leave it all up to mum. It will be difficult, I imagine, when he comes home, but James is already seeing his father becoming the godly head of his home in little ways, so it will be a smoother transition that it could be. Which is wonderful. And it’s fantastic the way you and Lee are as one on so much stuff. That way, he can back you up in diciplining when he comes home, and gradually take over. Hang in there. You guys are doing great.

  6. Julie

    I have spent the last two hours pouring over your blog. My babies are sleeping and my husband is in the other room playing on his computer. Usually I feel resentful when he is in there playing. Tonight…. Im just grateful he is in there playing. Thank you for opening your heart and sharing your experience.
    I have friends involved in a prison ministry that brings fathers and children together. Its called One Day With God camps. They are awesome. My friends tell me stories all the time about this amazing ministry. Reading your story has helped me to really understand a lot about what they tell me.
    I have loved reading about what God is doing in your life and in your husbands life as he deals with this.
    Once again thank you for helping me to remember to be grateful for what I have and to show me what it really means to love my husband.
    I will be adding your family to our family’s prayer list.

  7. adustyframe

    Thank you all:)

  8. Sheryl

    You are a wise and loving wife/mother!! Both of your guys are blessed!! (((HUGS)))

  9. Karen

    What an awesome testimony! Thank you for sharing. My friend, Julie, sent this to me.
    We are the ones involved with Forgiven Ministry and the “One Day with God” camps of bringing children in to spend the day with their dads and hopefully starting a relationship of reconcilliation between father and child. The website is http://www.forgivenministry.org Please take time to check it out-I’m not sure what state you are in, but God can tear down walls and possibly create this special day for them to be together.
    God bless you as you continue to keep this relationship together for them. I know it’s tough on you, but remember where your strength comes from and keep leaning on the Lord.

  10. adustyframe

    Karen–thank you. I already have seen your site. I included it in my links on the sidebar:)

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