Incarcerated Mom Goes Home After Nearly 3 Years in Prison | The Oprah Winfrey Show | OWN

Incarcerated Mom Goes Home After Nearly 3 Years in Prison | The Oprah Winfrey Show | OWN

– This is Kelly
Taloff, right there. Also known as R37920. She’s a mother of
three small children. She’s been in prison for
most of the last seven years. Told when she can eat, when she
can sleep, when she can shower, and when she can
briefly hug her kids. She is one of the two
million people who are locked up in our country. After serving almost three
years for her latest crime, Kelly was released last Monday. It’s the day she’s been
waiting for but she has been having
a lot of anxiety, also, about life on the outside. We were there for the hours
before and the moments after she walked free. My name’s Kelly. I’ve been in the penitentiary
for about 2 and 1/2 years. In 2006, I was trying to
get money to get drugs and I seen someone
coming out of the store and I attempted to
snatch her purse. I was convicted of
attempted robbery. I had a good life growing up. I was a cheerleader
in high school. I was on the honor roll. Loving family I
started getting high. No one told me you’re
going to get addicted. You’re going to throw
your whole life away. OPRAH WINFREY: Kelly
has been locked up for almost three years at
the Lincoln Correctional Center in Lincoln Illinois. She sleeps on this
tiny bunk bed in a room with 20 other inmates. Some are drug dealers,
burglars, even murderers. So this is the day
room, bathroom over there. OPRAH WINFREY: Kelly
has no privacy here. She goes to the bathroom
and take showers in public. Her only reminder of home, these
pictures of her three children. Ladies, it’s count time. Please get in your bed areas. KELLY TALOFF:
There’s lots of times when you want to be alone. There’s lots of
yelling screaming. There’s no time for sleep
It’s hard to deal with. This is not any place that I
ever want to come back again. I miss home. The scariest thing about
leaving tomorrow is for my best not to be good enough. For someone to not
give me a chance. I could just imagine the
pain that I’ve caused people. I’m I really am truly sorry. I’m very happy to
see Kelly leaving. I’m worried at the same time
because we were released and we did come back. But just one wrong
step will lead you back to come into prison. KELLY TALOFF: Don’t cry. My kids aren’t happy
with me right now. I don’t know what kind
of food they like, their favorite colors. It’s hard to have a conversation
with your six-year-old when you have no idea
who what cartoons he’s watching that day. If I was at home, we could
talk about those cartoons. When I call on the phone,
he doesn’t want to talk. He doesn’t think that I love
him because I’m not home. My mom is my everything. She said when you’re
in jail, I’m in jail. So she’s put her life on hold
for me to help raise my kids. I worry about how good of
a mother am I going to be. How good of a person of
society am I going to be. Am I not going to live up
to everybody’s expectations. I’ve gone through a lot.
I’ve learned a lot. I’ve grown a lot in
these last two years and I look to these
people for support. And it’s going to be very hard
to walk away from these people. You be good. KELLY TALOFF: You
be good too,OK? And do the right thing, OK? KELLY TALOFF: I will I’m
gonna go home and be good. DEBBIE DENNING: Kelly
is going to walk out of here with no money. She’s going to need a job. She’s going to need someone
to keep her motivated. A lot of the ladies
will stumble or fall within the first six months. The key is for Kelly to
get up and keep walking. So Kelly is now
just hours away from joining society again. And after she’s released, she
will board a train by herself to once again meet
up with her family who lives three hours away. It has been 900 days
since she’s been home and we were there
as she walked out. KELLY TALOFF: It’s
Monday morning and today I’m leaving the
penitentiary for good. I’m nervous. I’m excited. This is good. It’s a good feeling. Never thought I was
going to get here. As you’re walking
out the front door, It’s like a new beginning. Is a new day. It’s just hope. Fresh air, Fresh air. That’s all your money
and your train trip. This is like the
last thing, huh? Don’t lose it. [TRAIN WHISTLE & BELL] KELLY TALOFF: That’s
the most exciting noise I’ve heard in a long time. Goodbye. Oh my goodness. [DEEP BREATHING] Very real. Watching all the cars. Watching the sun come up. It’s been a long time. The last time I think
I seen the sun come up, I was probably out in
the streets getting high. It’s just amazing. LORRI KELLY’S MOM: That’s
where mom will be coming. Right through those
doors and giving you the first kiss, Janet. It’s a very big day, today. My daughter’s coming home after
almost three years in prison. I have a few concerns about the
kids and how they’ll get along. And I’m just worried about
John because he’s older and he realizes exactly
what’s happened. KELLY TALOFF: When I
step off the train, I’m nervous about how my
oldest is going to react. Janet, she’s going to probably
be one of the first ones to come and give me a
hug and not let me go. The hard part is going to be
forming a separate relationship with all three of them. And just to reassure them
all the time that I’m here and I’m staying. LORRI KELLY’S MOM: Three
minutes till momma gets here. Three more minutes. KELLY TALOFF: This is it. There’s going to be setbacks. There’s going to be mistakes. But as long as I can
learn from those mistakes, dust myself off and get
back on the right track, I’m going to be fine. [TRAIN SOUNDS] LORRI KELLY’S MOM:
That’s momma’s. KELLY TALOFF: Oh, thank God. Kelly is not sure how her
children will react to her. Take a look at what happens. She’s not been home in
900 days after Kelly pulls into the train station. LORRI KELLY’S MOM: There she is! No really! There’s mommy see her? Yeah! There’s momma. Momma’s on the
choo-choo train. Yeah! Momma’s on the choo-choo train. She came to see us this time. Hi beautiful! Kisses for mom? Hey. Hey, come here. Can I have a hug? Got kisses for mama? Where’s my kisses? Where are you? Can I have a kiss? No. What is this? Now can I have a kiss? That’s OK. This Is amazing. It’s so different
from when I left. It smells like home. When she came off
that train is probably the best feeling in the world. It’s just it’s hard when
your loved ones’ away. Especially for children. KELLY TALOFF: Oh my gosh! You caught all of those? LORRI KELLY’S MOM:
Prison is definitely not the dream I
had for my daughter but it’s what she deserved. And I think it’s been a
learning experience for her. And I think it’s going to be
a lot different this time. What’s The piggy say? LORRI KELLY’S MOM:
I’m just worried about her getting in
with the wrong people and maybe being swayed. And I’m worried about
her finding a job. KELLY TALOFF: I feel
so welcomed home. I love that they’re
going to be able to come down here and spend time with
me and just the sense of family. There’s not too much more
that I could ask for. I can’t wait for tomorrow. I can’t wait for the next day. I can’t wait to just
start living life. OPRAH WINFREY: So some
of Kelly’s fellow inmates are watching this by
satellite from prison. We’re going to ask them what
it’s like to see their friend walk free in just a minute. But first, how is that you have
a child that’s 2, 4, and 6? My first child, I had
in my first incarceration. Yes. In ’02. That was John and
then probably– That’s the oldest. Yes And like the
week I got home, I got pregnant with my daughter. And had her and I
stayed home with her. She’s probably the one I’ve
been home with the most. And after my parole was over,
I gave birth to my third, Jackson. So that’s them. And what was that
like seeing them? It was incredible. I missed them. It was a chance to
spend time with them without people around. Without having to tell
them, no you can’t do this, and no you can’t do this. They can run around. They could be themselves and
we can all play together. It’s a great feeling. OPRAH WINFREY: So what is the
adjustment been like because– do they know you as mom? They know I’m mom. They– OPRAH WINFREY: Or do they
think your mom is mom? No they know she’s grandma. They know she’s grandma
and they know I’m mom. As far as the power
struggles they’re right now. They want to run to her or
I’ll tell them to do something or I’ll say no and
they’ll run to her. Can I do this? And I tell them, no, I’m
mom and that’s how it goes. I’m trying not to be too
overbearing with them right now because I don’t want them to
think that I’m going to come in and just be the ruler. I want to– OPRAH WINFREY: – So you’re
trying to find a balance. Right trying to ease in. OPRAH WINFREY: – And re-enter. Yes We saw you that first morning
of the sunrise where you get to see the sun and
I think you were saying fresh air, fresh air?
– Yeah. As you were being released. What does freedom–
but this isn’t the first time you had freedom? No. The first time, I
really didn’t know what to expect coming home. My son, John, the oldest
was about 15 months old when I got home.
And– OPRAH WINFREY: The first time. Yeah. And I didn’t– I thought that coming
home, I would come home and he would be like oh
mommy’s home and everything would just fall into place. It doesn’t work like that. I had to readjust
into his life then. And I didn’t know
when to ask for help. I didn’t– there wasn’t a lot
of things that I didn’t do. OPRAH WINFREY: –
And that’s really the question is what will be
different about this time? I know that– Since there’s a
50% recidivism rate. I know that there’s
lots of people I could ask for help for. I don’t expect a lot
to happen right away. I know I have to
take baby steps. Little goals. Little accomplishments. OPRAH WINFREY: What are
your little goals right now? To be a part of
my kids’ lives. I had a school interview
to get into school. And hopefully find a job. Little steps at a time. And if I don’t get a job this
week, I’ll get a job next week. And if I don’t get one next
week there’s always tomorrow. So just to always look
forward to the future. and not to get high. Not to– OPRAH WINFREY: What was
your drug of choice? Heroin. OPRAH WINFREY: Heroin. Yeah. That wasn’t pretty
at all, no one– Because when you
went in, I understand you had to quit cold turkey. There is no drugs in jail. There’s no get in and
we’ll wean you off. It’s get in and
there is no drugs. And with heroin, you get sick. And it’s not nice either. It’s like the flu
but 10 times worse. So what is the
thing that will give you the will, the fortitude
to not be a repeat drug user. To not be– get yourself into
some kind of criminal act to support the drug habit. What’s different? My support system. The people that I
have to talk to. To tell them I’m
having a rough time. I need help. But a little
accomplishments every day. One goal I can reach for
one day then another day and another day. What are you most
proud of so far? My school interview and
the fact that the kids are accepting me into their lives. Well according to
prison officials, if Kelly is convicted
of a felony again, it is likely that she
could spend a minimum of 14 to 20 years behind bars. Is that real for you? Very real. And it’s a big incentive
to not do anything. When you’re committing
crimes and when you’re doing things like
that, you think, oh I’m not going to get caught. Or, Oh they’re never
going to catch me. Or it doesn’t matter
because you’re just so high on the drugs
that it doesn’t matter. But now with a clear mind,
14 years is a long time. It’s too long. The three years was too long. There’s so much that I’ve
missed in my children’s lives. OPRAH WINFREY: Fourteen
years, John would be 20. Yeah, there’s so much. Vacations. His preschool graduation
that I’ve missed. and I don’t want
to let them down.

100 thoughts on “Incarcerated Mom Goes Home After Nearly 3 Years in Prison | The Oprah Winfrey Show | OWN

  1. I think the worst choice this woman made was having THREE children when she was a drug addict!! It is so unfair to them and as others have said, she is LUCKY her kids didn't wind up in foster care because of her mother! And the way she went about it too… every time she got out of jail she got pregnant? What wonderful judgement she has!

  2. Those eyes in those boys ☺️. I hope she does well this time out. I was a single mom living with my mother and my boys would ask my mother for something I said no to and I never spent any time away from them (jail or otherwise) now my daughter does the same thing with my husband and I 😂

    It’s a shame that someone with an addiction problem is locked up away from their children and a white collar criminal can spend away a fortune that doesn’t belong to them and they get probation. We treat addicts like animals and this needs to stop

  3. I cried when the last kid didn’t care for her 😣 and I don’t blame him but so sad there are lots of these kinds of family torn apart because of drugs and alcohol. I want to say PLEASE DONT HAVE ANY CHILDREN if you are hooked on drugs and alcohol. It really isn’t fair for the innocent children.

  4. I don't feel sorry at all for the mom. She did it to her self. I feel sad for the children and her mom having to deal with that

  5. This Ted talk gave me a lot of insight into addiction, so thought I’d pass it on in the hopes it’s helpful to other. Wish you much happiness & many blessings 🙏 ❤️

  6. And why is she special? Help me understand. She should be locked up for life for having kids. That to me is criminal. Meanwhile innocent men are in jail…but let's just focus on this little snow flake that robbed people.

  7. I’m sure the cameras on all 3 children isn’t making them feel any more normal as they reunite with a mum who’s a stranger. Really hope for the kids she stays clean. The oldest had a lot of pain in his eyes. God bless her mother for raising them! ❤️

  8. So this interview took place in 2009. Ten years ago. I wonder how they're all doing. Her eldest son, even 10 years ago, worried me. He looked So angry. No male figure in his life; mom in prison. I really hope they've somehow got past all this, but life, financially, has only got harder in the past 10 years. If anyone knows of an update please let me know. Thanks!

  9. I don't think any of her kids are excited they look so depressed… I hope she can make it up for them and make them forget the pain because it was her fault in the first place!!! Her mom is sweet and caring, I wish my mom was like this..

  10. I stopped watching this. I read some of the comments hoping to hear something that made sense. This woman physically attacked someone yet she being seen as a person who made a few mistakes. Yet with the 3 strikes you’re out crime bill, there were people locked up for life for stealing a bottle of perfume. They were black and no one saw them as humans that made a mistake. Famous people like Oprah never highlighted them. Sorry but I just can’t chime in with sympathy for her when other human beings have been treated so poorly and looked upon as animals with people chiming in with, “if u do the crime u have to do the time”. People were heartless as the black and Hispanic people were seen as less than animals.

  11. I just looked her up and she’s been arrested multiple times since being released this time in 2009… so sad. Not for her for her babies. I hope she’s doing good now and is home with them. Drugs are no joke

  12. Maybe update on the same girl, she got a cosmetology license, it was suspended for a year because of a criminal conviction. Have not found the date on that.

  13. So Sad! 3 Years For A Purse Snatching? Very Harsh. She was so a candidate for conditional, live in re-hab, rather than jail. At least she's had a long time to get off the drugs. They don't call it dope for nothing.
    Kelly should consider and be glad that at least she didn't get involved in an even worse crime trying to get dope!
    Like Bob Marley says, "that dope, will make you slow!"

  14. Someone just commented that she’s been back to jail several times since this interview. This is why I am for Suboxone maintenance. A lot of people are against it because they say you’re still addicted to drugs, but you literally take it once a day and that’s it like any other medication. Even if she has to take it for the rest of her life, if it keeps her off drugs and with a job and out of jail then it’s way better than the cycle of drugs and jail. Her brain chemistry has already changed and not everyone can do it the cold turkey way, and succeed long term. Clearly she’s not the one that’s ever going to stop going back to it unless she’s able to get medication treatment. That’s just my opinion, obviously. A lot of people that make that judgment against medication treatment have never been addicted to opiates. Suboxone saves lives. There’s a huge chance prince would be alive if he was able to have gotten that medication. The sad thing is he had a doctor that discovered him dead at his home with the medicine for him at his house and he missed him by literally minutes.

  15. So this woman tried taking someone’s purse, didn’t have a weapon, and got 7 years in prison and yet a woman starved 4 children for years, nearly to death and got 4 years….how does that equal justice? This woman didn’t need prison, she needed rehab.

  16. Dated 10 years ago 🙄 come’on Oprah … gives us update on this person … we want to know if she’s doing good now or if she slipped back into her old life ……

  17. She has been in prison twice. Grandma take control of those children. You are the most stable person these children have in their lives. Mom is going back to Jail!!

  18. Instead of hurrying to get a job, maybe those in this situation should be on 24 hr./day house monitoring. There's no reason for her to leave the house. She needs to stay at home with the kids and just be. I think six months of being with her family only might change her.

  19. I have been raising my daughters three kids for the last six years while she was in prison. When she came out she wasn’t able to come home to me. It’s part of her parole conditions to have no contact with her daughter and only supervised contact with her boys. It’s been so hard as I am 63 and crippled up with arthritis. I would love to have her come home and help me out with the kiddos but she’s not allowed. Her daughter has autism and the boys have multiple diagnoses. They get mad that they can’t see or visit their mother whenever they want. I feel the kiddos have been punished much more.


  21. She is carrying on as if she was wrongfully convicted. Do your time and reflect on your actions. But no, she is only feeling sorry for herself. What about the person she robbed? This woman has no remorse.

  22. You have so many people rooting for you!!!!!! You got this!!!!! Keep that healthy paranoia. Don’t date anyone that will get you in trouble and you know it! Keep your faith. Make it stronger than ever

  23. She is setting herself up for relapse. There was no mention of attending and working the 12 step NA program that would most certainly provide her with the tools she needs for lasting recovery. Hope she gets involved with that. Why in the world would the jail system not mandate NA meetings during her incarceration and make that a provision in her probation. NA members would go into the jail system and run these groups. Hope she makes it.

  24. Her son was soo uncomfortable with the cameras. It should have been a private, intimate moment. I could not imagine being away from my children.

  25. I'm so sorry for all people today. Life is so hard for us all. Obama has allowed. So meany people into this country. That life as we new it is over. Tent people on the streets all over. Nasty way of living. It's depressing. I have to find a place to move. Where there is not so meany People everywhere.!

  26. I hate to be negarive but i think she will be back inside in a few months unless she undergoes psycho therapy. I wouldnt b surprised if she was diagnosed with a personality disorder. The kids seem to be estranged from her and mom u did nothing wrong and she made her own choices ur a strong woman. Where r the childrens father in all this?

  27. Christina Randall and Jessica Kent
    These two ladies have spent time in prison and both have channels on YouTube.
    Both of these ladies have turned their lives around!!!
    Their stories are remarkable!! If you or someone you know has spent time in corrections, PLEASE follow these ladies. They just may be the incentive you need. If you are doubting yourself and worry that you may not make it out here, give them a listen, they may have a message for you. Take care.

    ✨🎄Happy New Year 2020🎄✨

  28. 3 years, the only thing that’s harder is that everything on the out goes really fast, cars, people etc… that’s it though

  29. Hope shes better now. Its been a little over ten years. As always with a bunch of these clips, wish there was an update

  30. She's really lucky she had her mom. Bless her mom for caring for her kids… most people in prison have kids sent into foster care and when they are released from jail they don't have a family member to financially support them until a job will give them a second chance.

  31. my jaw hurts from smiling , i went to prison in 1999 aged 19 i lost my son to adoption as i had no one to take him , he tracked me down ages 17 and i been clean a long time im lucky

  32. It’s to soon to celebrate…she’s still doesn’t appreciate her life until she gets on her own with those kids.😞

  33. Her main responsibility was to be a mother, get a job & provide for her kids….. but instead drugs were her main concern .
    This is her chance to raise her kids and stop being an embarrassment to her kids and family .

  34. God is the answer. Ask God forgiveness in Jesus name and turn from your sin. When you need direction, talk to God. WE all forget how SMART He is. He made us!! He LOVES US!

  35. DAYUMMMM MS.OPRAH😍🔥👌 I see you! This was a memorable show, I was 9 and remember yelling out she won that weight loss battle! She taught all of us young girls and young woman watching that insecurities are obstacle courses we WILL overcome!!

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