Meet The People Who Stand By Their Imprisoned Lovers

prison loveA man and his imprisoned wife.

Photo: National Geographic/YouTube

Love will always find a way to survive – even when one party is a convicted murderer. National Geographic’s 2011 documentary “Taboo: Prison Love” explores the lives of people in love with inmates. They stand by their partners despite never being able to share a meal or spend the night with them. 

They also look past unspeakable crimes including murder and drug trafficking. 

One woman marries her sweetheart, who was formerly one of the most-wanted fugitives in Texas. Another in Brazil enjoys conjugal visits with her husband. 

And a retired airline pilot has outfitted his bedroom as a prison cell – metal toilet and all – to feel closer to his wife, a convicted murderer. 

You can watch the entire documentary here.

This is Rachel, who lives in Texas. She fell in love with Johnny, who was on the state's most-wanted list for assault and other crimes.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

Because he's in prison, she gets married on a local radio show with the host acting as a proxy groom.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

Her new husband listens from prison and wipes away tears. He hopes one day they can be together.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

This is Maria, who lives in Brazil. Her partner, Valmir, is a convicted murderer and drug lord, but she stands by him.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

Maria says all the prison inspections she must endure are worth it. She says her relationship with her husband has improved without the threat of other women.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

Valmir also says he is more attentive to his wife since entering prison. He is scheduled to be released in 27 years.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

This is Tim McDonald, a former airline pilot. He met his wife, Theresa Deion Harris, through a prison pen-pal program. She's a convicted murderer sentenced to life without parole.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

Tim lives alone in a dilapidated Victorian house near his wife's prison in Tennessee. He spends much of his time advocating for her release.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

He keeps this life-size mannequin with a dress outfitted to his wife's measurements as a tribute to her.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

This is Tim's wife Theresa. She's convicted of murdering and then dismembering a teenage boy more than a decade ago. She'll never be eligible for parole.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

Still, Tim married Theresa. She had to wear her prison blues in the ceremony. Tim's friends are no longer in touch and his family disowned him.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

To stay close to his wife, he made himself a room that's the same dimensions as a prison cell and even uses the same kind of toilet and sink that she does.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

This is Alini, a Brazilian inmate who was convicted of assault. She's known in the prison for being violent.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

But her behaviour has improved since she met another inmate, convicted drug trafficker Lucimara.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

Lucimara was married to a man but ended the relationship when she met Alini.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

Now the two have been approved to live together as cellmates. Brazil's prison laws are controversial because they provide more inmate freedom than other countries. But Brazilians say these policies reduce violence overall.

Source: Taboo: Prison Love by National Geographic

You've seen unconventional prison relationships....

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