HAVING met her husband two years into a 13-year prison sentence for attempted murder, Carla, 30, and Erik Aguirre, 31, from California, were understandably excited to be reunited on the outside - having spent only around 50 days of their decade-long relationship together.
But their joy was short-lived as on the day of his release Erik was sent to an immigration detention centre, before being deported back to his native Mexico - a country he hadn’t lived in since the age of 10.
Carla said: “It was very sad, I drove home crying the whole way home.
I wasn’t able to talk to him or see him.” The couple met in 2010, two years into Erik’s prison sentence, marrying two years later.
Carla said: “He called me one day and since then we’ve been together.” Following Erik’s deportation, Carla decided to uproot her life in California to move to Tijuana, Mexico, to be with Erik - much to the displeasure of her family.
While the switch from 15-minute daily phone calls to 24:7 cohabitation took some adjusting to, the duo are now happily settled and planning a family together and documenting their lives on their YouTube channel, which Carla set up while Erik was incarcerated to help other people with family members or partners in jail.
Erik said: “This last year has been trying to find out the person that I am.
Before my criminal life was number one.
Now my family is number one.
I will never go back to prison, that’s my word.
Carla’s love made me change the way I feel about life.
Without Carla I would never have made it out of prison.” To see more of Erik and Carla, follow their YouTube channel Beyond the Bars with The Aguirre’s: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCd3rqFzWDic7HiojDG40qlw