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Life as a Registered Sex Offender: What Is It Really Like?

This article is split into three parts: offense and registration; family, friends, and romance; and work and recovery. Part one, with questions on the offense and the registration process, is presented below. Full Article

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  1. Registry Rage

    For me personally, I feel as though my life is under attack 24/7 because my future, safety, privacy and security has been hijacked and under siege and is being held hostage under a “compliance” or prison ultimatum.

    No such thing as moving on or starting over. The smoke never clears. No such thing as damage control. There is no silver lining because you’re constantly being tried in the court of public of opinion 24/7.

    As long as the public sentiment is: “I want to know where these people live,” expect nothing to change.

    What Is It Really Like? It’s a dead end life.

    • kind of living

      registry rage ,,, well said , it truly is hard to look at the future when we are still being punished for our past , in many case’s for many years , dragging our family’s in the dung of uninformed haters , as well as unrelenting laws being stacked on top of another stack of laws in the whole dang country , we cant even move anywhere to leave our past behind , we see the lives of others living free enjoying there family’s , the whole time trying to keep our heads up only to see our family feeling the unsettling vibe of not just where we live ,but everywhere we go , nut jobs with cams and I phones saying rude things and even going as far as making threats as well as harm , and not being able to make to much of a stand , because the LEO’s are not here for us , no we go to jail if we make a stand only to leave our family behind not knowing what some nut job will do as we are setting in jail , forget having a nice car , truck , motorcycle , or any thing else for that matter because some coward when your not looking will just trash it , saying this kind of life in not punishment and just regulatory is a “blind fool” , all the same we keep breathing staying clean and trying to stay positive with high hopes , and that at times takes a good deal of energy , and when you feel so beat down energy is in high demand , me an my family miss the simple things ,like real friends , cook outs with friends are priceless and that’s how we have always been , but those days are gone it seems , these relentless laws always ragging on about RC’s , yet has anyone took a head count of freakazoid nut jobs that seek us out and the crimes they commit at a pregnant rate ? and not just petty crime , many of the crimes would put RC’s in prison , I see nothing equal in RC’s rights , we cant even travel to other states with out the worry of being prosecuted for not know the laws of each and every state , or county for that matter , and go to another country ? what is that truly about ? is there any less sex trade since they have enacted these laws? 0!!! big fat zero ! so all of these laws were never created to do anything really except to cause pain punishment and suffering , as long as there is a public Registry the further our constitution will be watered down with regulatory trash tell they abolish the constitution , this is a sad time for RC’s as the Gov’t waves freedom like an apple on a stick to a jackass just out of our reach waiting for some Federal Court judges to stop turning a blind eye to the truth that we are not only being punished why past our crimes that have long since paid for in full , but also being shamed in pubic for “life” hard to find good housing , jobs , privacy , right to travel , and the bottom line is no one is being helped , Whats Next ?

      • Duc

        It politic. We all know this is failed system. The registry is just a hoax. Making public fell safe. Wile they are predators out ther fucking everything up. We just brand for no reason, but public satisfaction. Base on statistics, most oftener don,t reoffend. Just politicians, that all it is.

    • Counting the days

      It truly is a dead end life for me. I wake up in the mornings and wonder why I even should get up.
      Each day is a repeat of the previous one. Constantly seeing and hearing reminders of a life no longer. Even smells take me to places I will no longer be able to go to. I look at morning skies and wish for night to fall so that the darkness will deliver me from the pain of my memories.
      I think of ways to end this at least as many times as I breath a day. I hear about a suicide on the news and think, should be me. Maybe tonight, maybe tomorrow.

      • AJ

        @Counting the days:
        Hang in there, friend. Though none of us knows your exact plight, we can all empathize with that feeling of dread and inability to escape. Please try to take heart that the courts are continuing to tip in our favor. Justice moves slowly, but all the latest signs indicate it’s finally moving our way.

        • Counting the days

          Thx. I see so much hypocracy everyday. Example:
          Today I was checking channels and there in plain site for every child to see, ” 18yo big boobs splattered with large loads”. Xfinity can put titles like this on T.V. and it’s not even discussed, but I see a pic of girls that end up being underage and I am marked for life as a pervert. It’s the same as letting drug dealers off, but condemning the person that smokes a joint. I recall that S.A.A. says not to feel shame, but what else is there. I cringe if I even get close to a child, for no apparent reason other than court imposed anxiety. My health has taken a hit, I have much worse PTSD than I ever had from Iraq, and my ambition and drive, once something that my clients praised me on, is now non existent. If life could be described in flavors, mine has gone from a full bodied Cabernet to tap water.

        • Jtc

          Try not to think that way. You must be newly released and younger. The feelings I’m sure are super string. Fight it. You can win and avoid this end pitfall. Their is light at end of the tunnel. Things change and if you fight this you will see Life ahead and reason ahead for staying alive.

      • Jtc

        Try not to think that way. You must be newly released and younger. The feelings I’m sure are super string. Fight it. You can win and avoid this end pitfall. Their is light at end of the tunnel. Things change and if you fight this you will see Life ahead and reason ahead for staying alive.

        • Andy

          I’ve been on the registry for 19 years and it’s only gotten worst. I cant find a place to live. I live in a shelter. There no way out. I’ve looked over my shoulder for many years. I was told if I miss a registration date I go back to prison. Until you walk in our shoes you have nothing to say.

      • john doe

        I am a sex offender too. You are right about a great many things, I have been where you are at. The bad news, it’s true that you never escape it and your life is changed and affected forever. The good news, it DOES get easier. As time goes by, memories fade, record checks for jobs often only go back 7 years. I took me about a decade to get to a good spot but I’m glad I held on and believe me, I was really close to suicide. My advice: Get plenty of exercise. An iron body fosters an iron spirit. It’s harder to be mentally unfit if your physically fit. Also, find a career. Figure out a way to work for yourself and you never have to worry about getting fired. Do what you have to do in the mean time, but work towards that goal. One more bit. Keep a tidy dwelling. It helps to keep the spirits up. It’s a psychological thing, I guess. Remember, it’s gonna take some time, a lot of time. Good luck and remember; What you’ve done in the past does not define who you are today.

      • Nikita

        I am here if you need to talk my email is

    • BSL

      1 count of indecent exposure 25 years ago. Was spotted by adult witness while urinating in public area. I was messed up at the time. I had just quit doing drugs for a year and was not mentally in a good place. I was identified and called into the DA’s office. I was embarrassed and denied the accusations at first but in about 5 minutes I agreed that it may have been me. I was ashamed by my reckless public actions. When asked if I had done this before, I responded yes, several times I have urinated in public. The DA asked me all the right questions. Little did I know, he was building me up as a sex offender. He asked if I became aroused, I told him at the time, I was just urinating but if someone had seen me and I put some thought to it, yes, I may have been aroused. Then he told me he had two witnesses and that it would do well for me to write them apology letters. They were random people to me. Later I found out this is a standard tactic to create 2 confessions on paper. I was so embarrassed and knew nothing about laws in this area as well as the sex registration so I became very open and truthful about my actions. Had I known the consequences, I would have enlisted the help of some counsel. I don’t even remember being read my rights. However, I was told I could go after that. I was never arrested or spent a day in jail. I went to court and pleaded guilty. I just wanted to get on with my life. I was on probation for 6 months, but got out early 3 mos. because I followed all the orders for counseling and completed my community service hours super fast. At some point I was told by my probation office to see the Sheriff because of a registration requirement. I took care of this and was told I had to register as a sex offender for the rest of my life. For me, It’s been like putting my life on hold. I stated that I had quit drugs. I was never the addictive type but I was beginning to change my life to the good. I was cleaning up and getting ready to go to college and make my future dreams come true. My negative behavior had stopped. The offense I engaged in was from the year before, it was just a while before I was identified. I already had a job and was going to school and the bad stuff was out of my system. I just wanted to put this in the past but registration would never let me stop looking back. Suddenly there were all these laws created to protect people from me! I was told to go to college, I had to register with the campus police. I had x high school friends that worked in the college administration. The last thing I was going to do is have them find out I was now a Sex Offender! I live in a small town. One college admin tells my co-workers what they found out and I loose my job. I now live in constant fear of loosing my job. But I can no longer move forward because I had to drop college to protect my job. I never went back. Every time I saw a news report that profiled a violent sex predator that molested a small child, they would refer to them as a Sex Offender! I felt sick inside. That’s not me, why am I being lumped into this category. I was sorry for my actions, but they were very different. I would later on get married and have children. Every time I went to the park with my child, I was so paranoid that if only someone knew I was labeled a Sex Offender, they would not care why, but they would probably want to grab their children and run or see harm come to me. It made me feel like I was a bad person, an outcast, not like everyone else. I moved to the local town in my area and had to change reporting to a police office. They seemed nice but I was told that the sergeant likes to personally talk with the registrants the first time they register before I could go. He called me in the back and proceeded to verbally humiliate me. He told me I was scum and he would be watching me and do anything to put me in jail or get me to leave his town. He said he can’t make me leave but I was not welcome there. I left there crying and suicidal. When laws started changing for registered citizens, I was told never to go to parks, schools, or other places where children gather. Now I have a child and I can’t take her to the parks anymore. No more open houses at school. No more 4th of July picnics at the park or boating at the lake. I became imprisoned by all these new ordinances in my town. HOW IS THIS NOT PUNITIVE!?!?! It was all gone. My future dreams, college, family get together, school sports for my child, amusement parks, everything! All I had left, was my job, and my family. I’ve managed to hold on to those for all these years. But that’s it. Things are starting to change now. and I’m holding my breath….

    • Shane

      Yes it is. Especially when you didn’t do everything they said you did in court. I text a 16 yo girl I met online and never even saw in person. That’s all. Yes we traded nude pics and videos. I never forced or hurt no one. I cared as much as I could about someone I only knew via text. I don’t feel it warrants ruining my life. Now because I have gotten behind on my payment for restitution for damaging a hospital I assume, and probation fees I am told that I may have to attend a probation hearing. I am currently on the verge of a stress induced heart attack cause lets face it people will use any excuse possible to put another dirty sex offender behind bars, or underground. You are hated every where you go. You are under surveillance while former murders are not. Doesn’t matter if you pissed in the street, text a young girl cause you were lonely and stupid, or raped 3 10 year olds, you are the same once they arrest you. I don’t even think fair trial is an accurate word to describe what follows either. I was basically given by police, judges, prosecutors, and even my own lawyer the ” just plead guilty or else” attitude, so stupidly, after some time in jail and out of desperation to get out and feeling it’s the only way, I plead guilty only to find out after the fact that the prosecution had charged me with photos I didn’t even have as well. Women will not touch you once they learn about your record. I have had a woman agree to go out with me once. I told her I had some issues to talk to her about in private she should know before making her final decision. I intended on pulling her aside and explaining my situation gently. Instead my friendly co workers found out and gladly informed her then acted angry I had not told her during the 5 minutes of time I actually spent talking to her. Love life, forget it. Social acceptance not available. Being treated just like anyone else hell no. Good jobs good-bye. Privacy now public. Money the law wants it or else. Peace of mind a distant memory. Hope destroyed. Being innocent until proven guilty, absurd. I assure you life as a sex offender is not life. You are destined for a lifetime alternating between jail and struggling to stay out of jail while everyone hates your guts.

    • Duc

      It doesn’t matter. The government is nothing but scum bag. Live your life until the end. How long do you have on this earth? 10 year maybe more. So just go along. You know deep down inside there another world out there, better than this one we on right now. I believe strongly in the god of universe. Jesus Christ. God in the flesh. In my heart, he is the way the truth, and the life. Do your homework. Eternal life. Or a moment of pleasure on this filthy earth.!

  2. Clifford Ray Irby II

    @ Counting the Days
    I have been dealing with this crap since March 12, 1991, n one form or another. There r days that I wish I could just slap someone, there r more days that I’m grateful I didn’t! It does get easier with time. I have learned that I define who I am, not other people. Some people’s opinion I value & listen to, even they do not define me. I have discovered who I am, & who I am not. U have that strength, I can hear it with ur words. Once u have come to terms with what u still have as a human being, hang on to them. Build urself with those good traits & u will b a much stronger person. Believe me, if I can do this, I know u can as well. Just hang n there, give urself a break. Take care of the little things & the big ones will fall n2 place. Almost 27 years of dancing to their tune hasn’t broken me. Because I know who I am & have held true to that. Hold ur head up & look the world n the eye. I wish there had been something like this then!!

  3. Ajt

    I went on a adult chat site I was currently in a relationship with a step child who ment the world to me but I was suffering depression and went on a 18 chat site but someone pretended to be a minor and I went and met them but I didn’t see the minor age they put then my partner contacted me saying wat I had done so I went to the police on my own accord to sort it out I was put in a cell and charged to the appear at court the solicitor said plead guilty as I was in ni fit state o did this iv since lost my partner and step child iv been put on the register for 10 tr and a shpo plus all the other mumbo jumbo I find it very hard to move forward as it went social (fb) over 2000 people seen it and iv list friends family even more depressed now I suffer ailments I walk in to shops to have the staff talk about me and it hurts the only time in life I feel happy is when I’m a sleep and I think that is where suicide comes into this I hate my self for not seeing the minor age and stopping the convo I would never abuse a child in a sexual way as its a wrong thing to do I no by past tense and I ni how it scars probation say it gets easier but every day just seems to be getting harder I list my dad which lede to depression and was let down the help from NHS (gp) and I went to a point where I never wanted to go and now everyone sees me as a monster I have to hide my suicidal thoughts from my family and my probation I get told I mees contact the police every time someone says something to me in the street but I think if they kill me I don’t have take the easy way out so I just keep quiet and hope inside that it gets better

  4. Jeffrey M Lenz

    Here is some food for thought

    • Brian Oglesby Sr.

      the system was designed for failure, I learned that the hard way. Did 10 yrs, and still married to my victim. Lol,been over 25yrs now n still registering. Thank the God’s I’m disabled now, no more work,living inna tent. The system made me what I am today, a criminal, subhuman. Thats right people, a subhuman.

  5. California Ruined

    Picture being chased off every job you are fortunate enough to get , refused every job that does illegal background checks (most all) then told by a court due to back child support you will go to jail if you don’t get employment. (The court accepting no excuses other than you being a worthless deadbeat) After 29 years of registration and no further trouble it’s still just like the year I was convicted, might as well have been yesterday. No friends, no relationship, few (labor level) jobs and a court that wants your ass.

    • Low key 23

      Man ive been living this shit since the day I turned 18 years old I was slaved as a child forces pay my dad’s bills if I didn’t manage to keep up with school an work I got my guts kicked in thin met this girl we hang put i move in with her an her mom iam 16 we never really messed around well she turning 17 iam turning 18 she found out she having my baby I get a great job clearing 3500 a week building plants for ethinal. I did that for while we have the baby an christmas comes around granted my childhood was a nightmare I never had a birthday party or. Christmas I was totally fuckin freaked out so her mom decided i was trash without askin any questions turn me into the cops convicted me unlawful. Sexual conduct an wanted me register 25 years years of running from the law an fuckin my life up i got cought done my time I still with same girl we have kids an wanted get married anyway I said fuck the laws iam take care my family spent 12 years my life locked up on an off now iam out an free. An have ptsd an depression I have 3 girl I see real life sex offenders walkin the town an nothing but I have to watch my wife work her ass off to take care my family because I can’t I have to hear my kids cry from the other making fun me I have to deal with all this shit in a day to day life an I jus want to pack up why there sleeping an leave so there life be ok but thin iam worried someone hurt them this. Shit ain’t easy to live with I don’t no how I manage day by day all i can say is this will destroy u till u die I have couple years left to register but I’ll allways be that town sex offender they don’t look at the crime or what its gonna do they want that check for putiing ur life in the trash an u in a cell good luck in life after u deal with this happy ain’t happy anymore iam jus numb to life waiting on my day it ends an I get to start over because nobody cares enuff to see u for u will allways be defined for are past

  6. Jason White

    As someone who literally had serious mental issues at the time and lost everything because I couldn’t afford a competent attorney to defend me I find the American judicial system a joke. I have in the last few years met true sex offenders and they freak me the hell out. I am an eagle scout, I’ve saved 13 lives in my 49 years on this earth, I defended this country, I worked my ass off without a single handout to be a productive member of society. With 2 emails and 2 texts to an undercover detective, that contacted me not vice versa 2 days after being released from the ICU for my brain shutting down I was convicted and sentenced to a lifetime of suffering. Wow, do the crime, do the time. I didn’t do the crime, however I manned up and did the time. I’m now a fugative officially for 2 years now, I work full time, obey the law, and dream one day I will be so far away from the state of Washington that it isn’t in their financial benefit to extradite me. Until you make it into the “system” you will never see how corrupt it is, until it’s too late and your opinion no longer matters.

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