Alex's Answer

How do I cope with my significant other going to jail?

Your Question

How do I cope with my significant other going to jail?


Hi, thank you for your question and thank you for making contacting with us at Ask Alex. 

You asked how you cope with your significant other going to jail. We understand that this must be a trying time for you both. Well done for reaching out for support.

Firstly, do you have a trusted person in your life that you feel you could talk to about what’s going on for you, this could be a parent, aunt, uncle, grandparent, teacher, couch or youth worker? There may even be a liaison officer, member of the gardai or prison officer dedicated to supporting you/the family and loved ones of the person incarcerated. How would you feel about approaching any of these options for support? 

You may be feeling overwhelmed, confused, angry, upset or depressed; these feelings and emotions are completely normal. Having someone you care for go to jail is a tough situation to experience and can bring about various strong emotions.  

Secondly, here are some tips here that could help you cope: 

Stay in the moment. If you start to think about the months/time ahead without the person you care for in your life, you will likely get overwhelmed. Instead, take it one day at a time, dealing with what each day brings you.  

Take care of yourself. This will most likely be a big period of adjust for you and your significant other and a lot of your energy may be spent on making sure they are okay but don’t forget you still need to take care of yourself. Try to keep to a regular sleep schedule, eat healthy meals, exercise, manage your stress and have some fun when you can.  

Decide how often you can visit and find out the rules around visiting hours. Most jails limit how often you can visit so if you find out what the rules are, you can decide how often you will visit. This will allow both you and the person you care for to know what to expect.  

Make a plan about what you want to tell people. It can be difficult to decide how much to tell other people about what’s going on for you and your significant other. What you want to share with others is a personal decision. It may be helpful to be consistent in what you say about the situation to those around you. 

Thank you for your question and we hope that you find some of the information above useful.   

Take care, 

Ask Alex  

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