Counseling : A High Custody Inmate Essay

811 Words Jun 12th, 2016 4 Pages
I remember the first time I had the opportunity to work with an inmate that was classified, according to the facility, as a high-custody inmate. The section of the jail where I was counseling him had to be clear of any other inmates in order to avoid contact with other offenders. His demeanor was calm, and he did not appear to be under any distress. The purpose of our meeting was for me, as an HIV tester and counselor, to provide a service that he had requested. I had no knowledge of his crimes and only knew that he was confined to a cell 23 hours a day. We met for 15 minutes, I provided the service, and the deputy; who was present during the whole encounter; proceeded to walk him towards the door.

While I was pleased I was able to assist him, a sense of disappointment possessed me. Before meeting with my next client, I had to take a moment to process what had just taken place. During our conversation, the client disclosed suicidal ideations and, feelings of hopelessness and abandonment. For the majority of the time, I was listening; he did most of the talking. I asked him a few clarifying questions to some, provided him with my professional information and suggested that he also reached out to the mental health specialist at the facility. At the end, he expressed his gratitude and shared he felt heard and sensed that I cared about his situation.

About a week later, I received a letter in the mail written by him, thanking me for all that I did. He wrote that after our…

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