Our fast paced world often leaves us with little time to socialize and meet others. The creation of online dating has introduced us to a new world of dating where we don’t first need to meet someone else face-to-face to determine whether or not we may potentially be compatible. Through the use of online algorithms, dating websites are able to match us up with other people who share similar views, interests and have similar personalities. The world is now literally our oyster. Psychologically, we tend to get into relationships with people that we spend a lot of time with because we get to know them well. Usually this limits us to people who leave near or around us, but now we can meet others halfway across the world and get to know them before even seeing them in person.
Jennifer Butler, 29, from the UK will be flying 5, 000 miles to Texas to marry Christopher Mosier, 23. Yes, this may seem incredibly sweet that she is able to travel around the world to be with the love of her life, but get this. She is leaving behind three of her children, Tyler, 8, Tristan, 7 and Mia, 4, with their father, who Jennifer separated from in 2010. Does the story take on a new twist in your mind now? Jennifer and Christopher won’t even be able to live together until September when he is released on parole. So how exactly did the two meet? It wasn’t through the traditional use of an online dating website, but through WriteAPrisoner, a site that allows inmates and pen-pals to communicate.
Jennifer claims that she first felt attracted to Christopher due to the honesty in his profile. A quick look at his profile shows that he was sentenced in 2009 to 15 years for burglary with deadly conduct as well as drug convictions. Jennifer says that “some people might think I’m bonkers for falling in love with a prisoner. And not everyone will agree with our relationship. But Chris is a wonderful man. Sure, he made a few mistakes in the past, but everybody deserves a second chance.”
“I felt sorry for him being locked up, nobody to talk to except other prisoners. Of course, I didn’t condone his crimes. But he was still a human being, and deserved to have a friend.”
“I was really intrigued by his profile. It was different to the rest. Most of the guys were posing with their tops off. But his was articulate and he was open about his crime.”
Their correspondence began July of 2011, with letters three times a week. From there, their relationship grew until June 2013 when letters from Christopher suddenly stopped arriving. It wasn’t until a month later that Jennifer finally received another letter with an explanation behind the absence of them. It turns out that there had been a prison lockdown so Christopher had been unable to contact her. Their time apart caused Jennifer to realize that she had developed true feelings for him. Through this realization, Jennifer encouraged her three children to write their own letters to Christopher as well. She felt that it was important for her children to have contact with him as she intends to spend the rest of her life with her soul mate and their new future stepfather, although he remains a prisoner.
Their online correspondence would soon turn into personal visits. Jennifer saved up her monthly wages as a part-time sales assistant in order to afford a visit to Christopher in prison. They talked through a glass screen for four hours but she claims that it felt like she had known him for her whole life. Obviously their relationship caused some controversy within her family. Many questioned the safety of her children, to which she responded “I’ve had people ask why I’m not worried for the safety of my children. That cut me deep. To think that because he’s a criminal my children would be at risk hurt me. Chris is a brilliant man. He’s not a dangerous criminal. He’s learnt from his mistakes”.
On her third visit, Christopher proposed to her by tying a grey string around her finger while in the visiting room. The couple plans to wed once Christopher is released on parole. He is currently up for parole this coming September. After their marriage, Jennifer plans to leave her children with their father who fully supports her decision to move. Although it may appear that Jennifer is abandoning her children, she plans to be reunited with them once her and Christopher have settled down. Although her children have yet to meet their future father, Jennifer fully believes that they are excited about her move and their new future family. “Leaving my children is not an easy thing to decide to do. But I want to get everything ready for them in America before they move, too.”
“I’m doing this for our future because I want us to be a family. I need to set up a life out there for us and I’ll do whatever I can to get them over with us as soon as possible.”
“I am devoted to my children but they deserve a happy mum too. This relationship will be for me but the life I build is going to be for all of us.”
“My children are excited about eventually moving over there. As kids, they won’t realize about me not being around until I’m actually gone. It’s going to be hard saying goodbye, but I know I’ll see them again soon.”
“It’s fine because they know I’m going over there to find us a house and to sort out their schooling. The main thing is that they’re excited to get to meet Chris.”
Jennifer feels that once herself and Christopher are reunited with her children, they will make a strong happy family and that her children will get along well with their new stepfather.
[quote_center]Do you think it was right for Jennifer to leave behind her children?[/quote_center]
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