Five Tips for Staying Strong When a Family Member Is Sent to Prison

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Getting the news that a close family member has been sent to prison will obviously be a blow. While your loved one will be facing tough times, and you’ll therefore want to support him or her as much as possible, it’s also vital that you look after your own wellbeing throughout the situation. When you actively use techniques that can help you stay strong, each day will be much easier to get through.


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Stay in Touch with Your Family Member, e.g. in Louisiana


If a member of your family is in prison, you need to stay strong for your own sake and for the sake of your loved one. The stronger you are, the easier it will be for you to cope with the situation and remain strong to support your family members. One of the best ways of helping you both to remain strong is to write letters to your family member on a regular basis. By communicating with your relation often, you’ll feel as though you’re supporting him or her, and when an inmate receives mail, it brings a ray of light into an otherwise challenging situation. Before you can send mail, you need to know the address. For instance, if your loved one is in USP Pollock penitentiary in Louisiana, you need to know whether he or she is an inmate at the USP or the Camp, as the two have different mailing addresses. Thankfully, it’s easy to locate your loved one by using the online Bureau of Prison inmate locator.


Keep a Journal


When it comes to looking after yourself during this time of turbulence, it can really help to keep a journal. By expressing your thoughts and feelings during the time of separation from your loved one, you can release a lot of stress and have a more objective view of the situation to help you remain strong. Setting aside just ten or fifteen minutes a day to record your thoughts and feelings can be very healthy and relaxing.


Get Involved with Online Support Groups


In this digital age, it’s easier than ever before to find people who are facing the same situation as you. There are many online support groups for family members of incarcerated people; many of which are local-focused. So, do an internet search to find groups that appeal to you and your specific circumstances. By reaching out to others who can relate to you, it will be easier for you to stay strong. You can also help others in the same situation to remain positive.


Look After Yourself


Writing letters, keeping a journal, and becoming a member of an online support group certainly help you to stay mentally strong. But it’s just as important to look after your body. When you don’t get enough sleep, don’t eat healthily or regularly, and don’t exercise, not only will your body feel fatigued. Your mind will also feel the effects and you could soon spiral downwards. Even though you’ll be going through a very emotional experience, it’s important you try to sleep on a regular schedule and eat healthy meals if you want to stay strong.




Following on from the last point, exercise has been proven to help your mental wellbeing. By doing a little exercise each day, such as walking, running, stretching, or doing yoga, you’ll reduce stress and feel better both physically and mentally. Even spending a few minutes dancing to your favorite song each day can do wonders for your mental and physical health. The key is to choose activities that you enjoy doing and ensuring you do some form of exercise each day.