In leading up to Love Your Inmate Day, August 8th, 2020, we’re sharing the benefits of staying connected with incarcerated loved ones and highlighting one man’s journey.
Take a moment to think about the domino effect that occurs when someone goes to prison. It impacts, not only the incarcerated, but his/her family, community, co-workers, and others.
For the incarcerated, emotions can range from fear to anger to high levels of anxiety in anticipation of the unknown. These emotions often stay bottled up looking for any possible escape. Similarly, loved ones experience so many emotions as they adapt to their new situations without their loved ones.
For these reasons, you can see how critical it is for those incarcerated and loved ones to stay connected. They need to have an outlet to share these pent up emotions. It goes without saying, that given the limited interaction in prison, staying connected with loved ones has numerous benefits for those incarcerated. We would like to highlight some in particular…
- Staying connected can prevent institutionalization by reminding loved ones of the freedoms that exist, giving them much needed hope, inspiration, and validation.
- Two-way communication provides families and friends with the insight and opportunity to understand what their loved one is going through, leading to more thoughtful conversations.
- Better connectivity means those incarcerated have a better chance of successfully integrating back into their family and community upon release.
- The memories that are missed by those incarcerated often serve as powerful reminders and mental motivation, so they are less likely to be a repeat offender.
- Most importantly, staying connected makes those incarcerated feel human, cared about, and heard.
Over the next few days, we’ll be sharing the journey and story of Tyrone Toliver, an inmate at Ironwood State Prison (CA). His life of self-proclaimed gang-banging changed when he found his outlet to connect with others. Tyrone is now able to talk about the topics that he was too scared to talk about when he was first incarcerated.
Read Part 1 of Tyrone’s story now – ‘My Journey Behind Bars’