Families of Prisoners Support Group

This community is dedicated to families that have been disrupted by prison. Having a loved one incarcerated or having been incarcerated comes with its own unique challenges that require support and understanding. Join the group to find others who know what you're going through, and to seek advice or share your experience.

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can marriage survive prison?

my husband is a drug addict and did some stupid stuff to get more drugs. he is in jail and is going to be sentanced to prison within a couple months. he was clean for 4 years. (was clean when we met) he was a strong christian and wonderfull man. he fell off a roof and was prescribed pain pills that he got hooked on and caused him to relapse. i havnt decided if i am going to take him back or not. we have a 19 month old daughter, thats why i left him three months ago. my question is this... are any of you married to someone who is in prison, and how is it affecting your marriage? has your love stayed strong through being in prison? im scared of the affect this will have on our marriage and family in general. thanks in advance for any comments or advice!

Replies

jasonswifey
jasonswifey

Marriage can survive prison/jail! It does definitely affect marriage though. My husband has gotten emotionally abusive while in prison and it makes things really hard. Not to mention that he cannot be there for me physically. I don't mean sex, but like when I have a bad day. Or when I have a good day. Or on my birthday. Things like that. Statistically not many marriages survive prison. It is hard. You have to work harder than you would if he was out. It helps to have letters, phone calls, and visits. The more contact you have with him, the better chance your marriage will survive. You really need to pray and find out what is right for you and your little girl. If you feel like your marriage is broken, then try to stay in contact with him for your daughter's sake. If you ever want to talk, send me a note. Good luck!
deleted_user
deleted_user

i Truly hope so, i've only been married one year and my husband went to prison for five years recently. it's only been one month and i'm already finding it to be hard,not just missing him but having to take on more responibilities around the house. i understand how you feel,whenever i think about how long that is for two people who love each other i freak because i'm afraid i might fall out of love.
deleted_user
deleted_user

thanks girls! i think you are right. my husband has been in jail for a month and gets sentanced next wed on one of his charges. he stil has other charges that i dont know how long he will get. that is my fear that our love will start to fade the longer he is in there. this stress is beginning to be to much for me, im getting migraines ect... i hope we can make it through prison so we can have our life back together! im still so angry that he relapsed on drugs and im nervous to even give him a second chance. thanks for your support!!
deleted_user
deleted_user

Many marriages do survive prison and some actually start during the prison time. We have quite a few here that have been thru that.

As jasonswifey said the more contact by letters, phone calls and visits do help tremendously.

Welcome to the group sweetheart!
It is a great place to meet lots of people just like yourself!

Love and prayers!
Love Rhea
jasonswifey
jasonswifey

You have every right to be angry that he relapsed. His bad choices affected your life and your daughter's life. Let yourself feel every emotion including that anger.

You asked on your profile if people deserve a second chance. There are so many factors that play into that; there is not one answer that fits every situation. To give him a second chance and rebuild your life together, you will need to forgive. Whether or not you can do that is up to you. It will take time. If you decide to give him a second chance, make sure you are doing it for all the right reasons. (Do not stay in a relationship so you will not be alone or for your little girl's sake). Stay if you love him and you want to spend your life with him and you can forgive him.

There are good days and bad days. It will not cause migraines all the time (I too am a migraine sufferer). I can tell you that as time goes by, it does not get easier. It does, however, get manageable.

His sentencing is coming up. I offer you this advice: Prepare for the worst, but hope for the best. (If you prepare for the maximum sentence, then it is easier to deal with).

It seems to me that the ladies on here that I talk to who talk, write, and see their loved ones on a regular basis do not talk about falling out of love. Many actually talk about their love getting stronger. There are many things you can do for this. There is a devotional available for a low price. They send you a copy and one to your loved one in prison/jail. here is the site:

http://www.prisonmarriageministry.org/NMEPM/pages/content/book_offer.asp

I hope that works, if not, search in google for "national marriage encounter prison ministry" It is T.I.M.E. by mail book offer. I have heard several good things about it.

Anyways, I hope this helps you! Hope you have a good day!
deleted_user
deleted_user

It is very true what jasonwifey said, I've met quite few people on here whose relationship strengthened during the time of incarceration, including my own. By no means is it easy, or gets easier, manageable is a good term that was used already. You get used to going through your everyday life without falling apart, but there is always that need to have your partner with you. For me and my bf this was a good time to build on our relationship, and our trust. We talked a lot about his substance abuse problems (it can be a deal breaker, no doubt) and were both honest with each. I feel like we wouldve never been as honest if we had nothing to lose so to speak. He knows now that I will stand by him and support him, and I know that hell do his damnest to stay away from doing things that can wind him up in jail again. We have our expectations from each other very clearly defined at this point, and we revisit that regularly. He doesnt seem to mind, so maybe you and your husband can work something out, and have time to heal. Good luck!
deleted_user
deleted_user

Hey girl! I just wanted to let you know that marriage can definitely last prison sentences! I've been married for 4 years now and my husband has been gone for 10 months. I'm not going to sugar coat it and say that it's easy...you will have tough times! I just always think about where he would be if he wasn't locked up...I believe it was God way of saying "Buddy if you don't chill out your going to end up dead"
We have found a new found appreciation for eachother that I don't think would have happened if he wouldn't have gone to prison. I just took everything for granted before and so did he. Now when he gets home our love is going to be so strong and nothing will be able to bring us down!
Trust me...it will get better with time! I didn't believe it at first, but it does get easier!
I hope this helps but if it's meant to be it will all work out!

xoxo
Krissy
deleted_user
deleted_user

I knew my husband prior to prison. We recently married on May 26, 2009 after two years together while he was in prison, he's been in 9 year with two more to go. When I took my marriage vows, I took them seriously. "FOR BETTER OR FOR WORSE". The WORSE is prison. It hasn't been easy, but I love my husband.
deleted_user
deleted_user

I also agree with all the ladies. It wont and hasnt been easy at all as my fiance has been in prison for eight months of his five years to go,as a firsttime. The hardest thing i have had to learn to endure.But I had to realize that love does beat the odds if it is true. I have been with him four years before he went to prison this year. Keep contact going as much as possible. It helps him as much as you.You both will need support from each other and everyone here is 100% with you all the way!!! Take care and one day at a time. Prayers for the best outcome. We are here for you when it gets rough going at times.Rhonda
deleted_user
deleted_user

Why is it so hard for people to deal? Don't we vow to stay to gather for better or for worse? You loved your husband when he was sober, you made a beautiful child together...He needs you now. Drug addiction is a disease, not a character flaw! Would it be so easy to walk away if the disease was cancer?
You have the opportunity to show your own strength and true character. To teach your daughter that when things get tough you fight back, you don't just give up!
My husband and I have only been together since Dec '08, we were married in May and he went to jail 8/26, he was sentenced to 10 years on Oct 13th...My heart is broken, truly broken! My husband doesn't know who God is. I feel like that is why God has brought us together, so I can introduce my husband to God and to strengthen my own faith.. Maybe this is all part of the lesson. I certainly have learned that pride and impatience are something I need to overcome.
The system that exists never takes into account the families that are doing time too while their loved ones are in prison. Sometimes it is a moment at a time for me, sometimes a day at a time. We have only had video visits and the 13th was the first time we had been in the same room for over 6 weeks, and we couldn't even talk to each other!
Take each day as it comes, pray to God for strength and to help you honor your vows. Love your daughter,love yourself enough to get up each day and keep trying, love your husband because he needs you too.
deleted_user
deleted_user

Some of these people did not sound this strong even a few months ago.....it is a daily blessing we all have each pother to help us this this until we are strong enough to realize we can do it!

My heart and support goes out to each and every one of you....it is soooooo goood to hear how strong your love and belief in yourself and your mates has become! That is true love for yourself and for your mate to be there thru thick and thin!

I am so proud to call all of you my friends!

Love you all! You can make it thru this to rachol notice no one said it was easy and they also said that each person had to face their issues and so did their mates in prison.

We will be here for you whether it is our son, our daughter or our husband that was/is/or going to prison!

Love and prayers! Rhea
deleted_user
deleted_user

I agree Rhea. So many people assume that because our loved ones are in prison that they must have done something horrible or that THEY are horrible people. I have been so blessed to have such great friends and co-workers, sadly my family has not been as supportive.
Fact is it is so comforting to have support from others that truly understand our sadness.
deleted_user
deleted_user

I have worked with inmates and their families for 10 years and have seen many couples marriages survive prison. A big indicator is how the marriage was when he left to go to prison.

Several things to consider: make a pact to communicate regularly: phone, letter and visit if possible. It is too easy not to write/call. He will usually say there is nothing to write about but he needs to write something.

Secondly, be ready for him to be very suspicious of what you are doing. I see this time and time again, guys in prison almost talk themselves into the idea that their wife must be seeing or at least interested in someone else. Communication regularly will help this.

Lastly, and this is one that wive don't often think about. One of the toughest times is at release. She has been "running things" for years without him and he gets home and thinks he knows better. This causes lots of tension. It is best to talk about this before homecoming to decrease the issues that will come up.

I wish you the best. If you want to contact me, you can do that through my website:
www.thefreeinmatelocator.com
Sneshinka
Sneshinka

I dunno of marriage can survive prison, but I believe that real love can survive anything. Nothing can come between real love.. marriage this days is not always based on love, but many other reasons as well. Phone calls, letters, visits etc.. they do help, but you goto stay strong though days can be hard. Take it one day at a time. It feels like a world comes to end at times, but I learned from an experience that we goto look at things in a positive way. As a lesson to be learned for our guys, and being apart does make II people stronger I agree with everyone else on here. DS is a great family who is here for support when you needed. Stay strong for you and your baby, rest will come the way it should be let the God take it over in his hands. I hope this helps you. Feel better, journal about your feelings, your anger, write him a poem or draw a picture. Send him little crossword puzzles, or word searches send them back and fourth to each other. Find something that u can both do and send it back and fourth to keep the flame going and to keep it strong. Welcome to write to me I am always here for my DS friends as they were their for me when I was going through a tough time, without of them I probably wouldn't have made it
deleted_user
deleted_user

my hubby has been away for almost 2 years now. he's in a half way house and should be home in a couple of weeks. our marriage definitely survived prison! we talked and wrote each other a lot, that helped us stay connected. i'm actually having a hard time dealing with things now that he's almost home. i feel nervous about being together again, it's like we'll have to get used to each other again. good luck with everything.