The 6 Things You Can Do To Make Prison Life Bearable for Your Loved One
Having your loved one imprisoned is never a good experience, either for the convicted and the people who support him/her through the ordeal. Life inside a prison though not inhuman is not exactly a bed of roses either. Inmates usually have to let go of a lot of privileges such as their right to privacy and freedom. Also, the living conditions and accommodations inside a cell is not exactly hospitable let alone luxurious.
In such taxing times, you become a pillar of support for your loved one. Check out the details of the prisoners at PrisonFinder.com to get accurate information about the jail, the term and the case procedure of an inmate. Here are a few things you can do for your loved one to make prison life a bit more bearable.
Keep in Touch
The worst thing that you can do is to ignore your loved one after he/she has been convicted. It is during these tough times that your presence really matters. So, ensure that you keep in contact with them, even if it’s an occasional visit with a monthly card. Prison inmates deserve to be treated as people too, and not just be limited to their prison ID numbers. Prisoners who are completely isolated from social life outside resort to indulge in the world of prison politics for emotional stimulation. And more often than not, it leads to disastrous consequences. Try to contact them as much as possible. Visit them during the visiting hours, talk to them about what’s happening outside, listen to their woes, but most importantly, just be there- it means the world to them.
Keep Them Entertained
The somber, solemn atmosphere of the jail interspersed with silences can be quite suffocating for the inmates. Life inside the prison is monotonous and depressing, to say the least. You can make their days a bit brighter, albeit only for a while by engaging them in interesting conversations. Keep them updated on the occurrences of the real world. Of course, all your visits are monitored by prison officials, so you’re not supposed to smuggle information that might be against the rules of the facility. An empty mind is a devil’s workshop, more so when one is trapped in the hellish cells of a prison facility. Involve them in your day to day life, read books to them, talk about current affairs, engage their brains in something worthwhile.
Send Some Gifts
Some prisoners are allowed to receive gifts, letters, and books from their loved ones. Those trapped in solitary confinement cannot enjoy this privilege. Here are some important rules that you should follow when sending a gift to an inmate. Letters may seem like an insignificant thing to the layman, but for the incarcerated, letters are the lifeline they hang on to. Listed below are a few rules you must adhere to so as to avoid a tussle with the officials;
- Never use staple clips or paper clips
- Refrain from using markers, crayons, glitters and lipstick on both the letter and the envelope
- Avoid using perfume or any fragrance
- Don’t draw any markings or codes on the letter as they might be interpreted as a secret message by the authorities
- Books and magazines (if allowed) have to be new and soft covered copies with the inmate’s name and prison ID mentioned clearly on the packet.
- The gifts and parcels are intercepted by the prison staff, never write intensely private things in the letters, things you wouldn’t want any third-party to read.
Share Your Joys
Most people don’t realize this but life inside a prison cell is extremely boring and uneventful. The prisoner’s daily routine is cut out for them, repeating in the same monotonous trajectory of working, doing community service, counselingand other activities. Don’t hesitate to talk about the things that make you happy. Spread a little joy in their lives by sharing silly anecdotes from your day. You might think you’re torturing them by sharing details about a wonderful meal or an amazing movie, but it only brightens their day- the inmates live their lives through you. The best way to make their living in a prison bearable is to remind them of all the positive things about the world, give them something good to think about when times get tough.
Share Your Troubles
Prison life may be hard, but the convicts don’t have a monopoly over suffering. And sometimes it becomes difficult for them to imagine a world beyond the four-square walls of their little cells. Share bittersweet memories with them, show them pictures of their family members, share stories about the ordinary things they’re doing- it’s the most precious gift you can bestow upon them- a semblance of normalcy amidst all the chaos. Also, prisoners are great listeners, most of them have a compassionate ear about the bills you’ve to pay and the family obligations that weigh you down. Sharing your troubles with them makes them feel needed and valued- a feeling they don’t often get to feel inside the jail.
Make them feel important
Confinement of any sort can be stifling, especially if someone is jailed in a compact, dingy cell with other inmates. One of the best ways to cheer them up would be to make them feel important and needed. Plan a surprise visit, send them lengthy letters and pictures of the things you’re doing. Make them feel involved in your life even though they’re not physically present with you right now. Something as simple as remembering their birthdays and sending them a thoughtful message speaks volumes. Contrary to popular belief, not all prisoners are cruel people with cold hearts. Some, though guilty of their crimes, are more a victim of their circumstances than choices.
The Bottom Line
Prison life is tough, the loneliness, the confinement, the utter lack of human contact can trigger anxiety and acute depression in some convicts. In such troubled times, the presence of a loved one can work wonders in helping the prisoner cope with his jail term. Sometimes all they need is a reassuring glance, a loving smile and a silent encouragement to get through their despair.