The Felonious PhD.

White Collar Female PhD. Felon, Prison Camp, Re-Entry, Criminal Justice Reform. Women, Lesbian

Today is a Tough Day….I am Going With It…..

As the endless month goes by, I have occasionally awakened in a mindset that puts me in intense, extreme and complete opposition to everything that is going on here.  The past few nights I have experienced dreams in regards to being in Reno, Nevada and being watched by the Feds.  Whenever I begin my morning with the absurdity of my reality and it seeps deeply in, even into my subconscious, I have a difficult time shaking it off and mindfully redirecting my thoughts.

Today my 2 mile walk was, once again, fueled by my inability to be available for my son.  I am taking the tragedy of being an absent parent seriously and will forever remind all…..this is a fundamentally UN American act and I feel like a terrorist who has been banished to Git-mo. ….except I have not harmed ANYONE.  So, needless to say, I am beyond dramatic and feel so incontrovertibly abused by the system because I am separated from my number one responsibility in the world….my son.

As the Government is politically posturing and advocating for keeping immigrant families together, they are on the other hand destroying my American family. And nobody, absolutely nobody, discusses, boycotts, videotapes or reports about our white-collar, non-violent, spotless backgrounded, mothers’ plight.  My American family is facing a tragedy also.  I feel for all kids who are without their mom.  Today as I sit subjugated in this soulless, paternalistic, irreverent environment, my heart cries out to my own son.  I love you Sonny!  This will all be over eventually.

I am thankful that my son has a foundation of love and is a big, loving, caring soul.  I am also eternally grateful that he has other caring family members to reassure him, guide him, love him, provide for him, nurture him, and reassure him that he will be okay and this too shall pass!

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Eight Months in an Alternate Existence that I Will Never Understand…and That’s Okay!

Eight months gone; honestly, I have a difficult time saying where it went.  I think that because I have always marked my space in time with experiences that have traditionally been connected to my loved ones , it has been strange being untethered from my crew.  Mostly, I miss my son. I just do not feel in my heart and soul that a child should be separated from their mother for this nonsense.  That, I will never reconcile with, and I have to be okay with that too.  Other than my own personal turmoil about missing some of his young, precious life, I am okay!

For the past month, I have mindfully re-framed this process for myself.  It may be a coping skill I have perfected, but I want to consciously and authentically express how profoundly this experience affects the human soul-a good soul, a loving, caring, thoughtful, intelligent soul.  It gives me something cognitive to focus on and it also provides me an opportunity to share these feelings with all who care.  I am opening up my soul to this experience, fully vulnerable, alert, and actively asking myself the difficult questions as I move through the next few months.

My first question, which cracks me up, is “What in the world was I thinking when I voluntarily walked myself into this captivity?”  If this system views me as a criminal or a threat to my community, unlawful (Ha!), then why would they TRUST me to walk into the lion’s den?

Don’t get me wrong, I am thankful I had the opportunity to walk in as I will be able to walk out (if the arthritic knee doesn’t worsen, haha) on my own! It is just that eight months into this ridiculousness, that just speaks again to the fact that our justice system has alternative means by which to make its point.  So why do we incarcerate so many people?  And once we are incarcerated, then what?  I am creating my own purpose in here, many don’t have that ability.

There are so many issues that can be discussed with our system and many have and still are on the forefront of championing legislative changes.  For me, someone who is currently trapped here at the Federal Prison Camp, I am concerned about how people exit from this environment.  How do we remain whole and sane and able to have access to the American Dream…..however that is defined anymore….

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Support Those Doing the Work…..

As the messages from the Felonious PhD are shared, the TAGS that connected to the post are chosen to drive readers to this blog.  However, MORE importantly, the website addresses that are used as tags or linked in the text are there to drive YOU to those websites, where you can get involved in advocating for change.  Please visit frequently to see where the opportunities are for you to contact your representatives. also frequently creates opportunities for correspondence with key players in D.C.  and needs our support.

The Felonious PhD has only been personally swept up into this oppressive and convoluted system fairly recently, but’s fight has been going on for more than two decades.  I believe that Orange is the New Black is doing this country a service by making a REAL and ENORMOUS problem part of mainstream media and entertainment.  The word is getting out and it probably has never been easier to engage those who previously knew nothing of the Prison Machine, and Mandatory Sentencing than now.  But it is easy for people to let it to slip back into the unconscious because it’s not happening to ME!  Let’s not let that happen!  Go to these websites:,, and get involved.  Follow Piper Kerman on Instagram, attend one of her events in your area.  Look for groups in your local area and online who advocate for the families or inmates in your area…..there are many!   Send letters, make calls to representatives, tell your friends to do the same, donate money or time to these organizations if you’re able.

Thank you for your loyalty to this blog and thank you in advance for your loyalty to those whose organizations are often linked here!


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I Have Never Been or Felt So Helpless……Until Now….


That is the only fundamental principle I have control of in my life at this time.  I cannot parent my child, or console my siblings.  I can’t laugh with friends or manage an of the adult things in my life that need to be tended to.  I have to surrender.

In theory, it all sounds so easy and a bit refreshing when you think about how wearily women trudge trough life as we grow older.  But, trying to surrender to this process is what constantly brings me back to asking “WHY?”   There is absolutely no reason for me and many other women to be here.  We don’t need rehab, we don’t require monitoring (we are kept here by the yellow line), we don’t need meds (well, not yet anyway), so what is the purpose??

Right now, I am sitting under a picnic area staring out at the desolate desert with a beautiful mountain back drop.  I would much rather be at home, if I had one, with my son, helping him prepare for finals and registering for his sophomore school year (which i will be completely absent for) as I sit here as inmate 47078048.

Seriously, what is the point?  How does an intelligent, hard-working, loving mother, aunt, sister, friend, surrender peacefully to this helplessness?  From a government system that continues to incarcerate women at an alarming rate and report differently.  I am an eye witness!

I only have 14 to 15 months (hopefully) left to serve.  So, while I may have a difficult time surrendering to this environment and criminal justice system that creates the truth it wants told, I am truly relieved that no matter what our government does, it cannot make time stand still.

Today I will just sit in this feeling of helplessness.  Like everything else in my life, I will fearlessly work through this feeling.  I am thankful for my strong resolve and my ability to understand that no matter what happens to me, it will pass.  I don’t have to like it, agree with it, or accept it.  I will RISE above it!

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The Mindful Inmate



broken hearted



daily counted

but insignificant


in an

inhumane existence

trapped in a viscerally

nonintellectual space

as a thinker

caged not

like a bird

left free to


instead treated

like mice


coerced to feel

privileged to go in

circles on a


day after day

hour after hour

minute after minute

that leads to


The Felonious PhD, June-2014