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Wasted Youth

When I came in the system, I was always the youngest prisoner around with few exceptions, until I was shipped off to Walnut Grove Youth Correctional Facility in 2001. Often people wouldn't know how young I was unless I told them, and then they thought I was joking. Fifteen years later there is no "youth correctional facility" and I am around young guys (who are around my brother's age) coming into this system. It's an odd experience.

In prison, when you start associating closely with people, giving them advice when they ask for it or if you get them out of a problem... you become responsible for them. And having been locked up so young, I still don't see myself as the "old convict" these youngsters view me as. I have had to let my guard down a bit to associate with them and it is taking some readjusting on my part.

A couple of them in particular are lighthearted and upbeat, which I encourage. In prison, anything that might be slander against someone's "manliness" is avoided and considered disrespectful. These two joke about each other and it's no big deal. It's no-holds barred - gender, sexual preference, whatever. I overheard one say to the other, "Bitch, I need a hug." I couldn't help but laugh because I knew he was playing, but he wasn't. And no, neither one of these youngsters are gay.

I worry, though. I remember when I was at WGYCF, when guards and staff would comment that I smiled so much. After ten years of being harassed, moved from cell to cell every week around prisoners with mental illnesses that weren't being treated... I stopped smiling so much. It took me awhile to come back from that bitterness, but I've become even more introverted due to my experiences. Guys have commented that my face doesn't show emotions, that I always look calm. A lot of that is due to meditation, but prison has trained me to be less outwardly expressive. I worry that prison will affect these young guys as it has affected me.

I will probably be writing more about these kids in the near future, so brace yourself. They aren't politically correct. They don't care if it upsets you or if you're offended. Actually, that would amuse them no end. It's like being around a couple of Howard Sterns in training, so shocking people is always a plus for them.

Just a reminder: If you have a loved one in prison, the holidays are difficult. Support them as you can, and I hope they'll reciprocate. If you are reading this and are only involved on the fringes, send some prisoners a card and let them know they are not forgotten. They will appreciate it.


I look forward to hearing more, not matter what, your right the HOLIDAYS are difficult for ANYONE connected to some one in prison. Im barely doing Christmas this year because I find it hard to pull myself out of the darkness of not seeing my son for over a year due to WCCF. before he was moved there i would see him at least once a month and we exchanged many letters. its been several years and more to go, but one day he will be released. thanx for the post , must move on before the tears flow for ALL YOU GUYS, PEACE TO ALL!!! THE BEST IS YET TO COME..............................................

PS,,,,,, I've not heard lately what's going on , more lockdown? I did call and try to get a fifth Sunday visit this month, answer was no, and they didn't know if there would be one, Have you heard?????????? ITS been SOOOOOOOOOOOOO long since I had a REAL VISIT and I've been told not to come to the nocontact becuase of the danger in the halls for HIM.

They'd been off lockdown for 2 or 3 weeks. Now apparently the place is still on LD. They're doing some shakedowns, I suppose. We haven't heard from Steven for a couple of days. It's awful that they are doing it in the Christmas time, as if it wasn't already hard enough for the inmates and their families.
If they are so concerned about your son's safety, why don't they let you take care of him? I bet he would be safer at home.
Stay strong and remember you're not alone in this. Sending positive thoughts your way...

have you heard anything these days, I heard about the riot at W.grove,, and i heard there was a bit of one at Woodville , with one to hospital. always the same pod. ALL i know is my son is ok, but have heard nothing for a week or so. OH yes, gangs im sure but some are they not, formed for protection??? I hate hearing all this and the stupid comments people make on line. if they only knew, the pain of it.

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About Me

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Steven Farris is a prisoner who has been incarcerated since a month after his 16th birthday in 1998. Currently serving a life sentence without the possibility for parole, he is seeking to educate the public about the true nature of prison and the widespread and negative effects of the prison industrial complex. Steven has worked with both the National Prison Project of the ACLU, as well as the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund in furthering this effort.

You can contact him directly at:
Steven Farris #R5580
P.O. Box 1889
Woodville, MS 39669-1889

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