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Family in prison

(51 Posts)
unimagmative13 Sun 12-Nov-17 22:34:33

Not sure where to post this.

I’ve never experienced any family members in prison or anyone I know. I have two small children and they now have two relatives serving long stretches in prison and looks like a very close relative will be facing the same fate by the end of the month.

I’ve avoid any conversations about my children doing prisons visits but I feel like I’m going to have to cross a bridge when it comes to it.

The case has been high profile and my children are young enough not to notice anyone is missing or to know what’s going on.

Anyone have this issue? Obviously not an issue I’d like to deal with.

BitchQueen90 Wed 15-Nov-17 17:16:41

I can tell you as a child who had a parent in prison much of my childhood that those visits were horrible for me and not something I'd put my child through. I stopped going when I was old enough.

Swizzlesticks23 Wed 15-Nov-17 17:17:57

What was the nature of the crime ? It comes down to would you want this person in your children's lives.

pilates Wed 15-Nov-17 17:29:35

In your shoes I would not want a child of mine making prison visits to anyone, even family. How old are your children?

Bluelonerose Wed 15-Nov-17 17:32:45

I've visited family in prison.
It's a scary thing for a fully grown adult knowing you can leave at any time.
I wouldn't take a child. They don't need to know about the inside of a prison.

HolyShet Wed 15-Nov-17 17:35:06

Unless it was their parent I wouldn't even consider taking them.

What a difficult thing to have to deal with OP. I hope you have some support around you?

OhGrowUpWillYou Wed 15-Nov-17 17:37:03

I visited a family member in an open prison when I was a child and it was OK.

I have worked in a prison and wouldn't bring a young child to visit anyone there.

Skyllo30 Wed 15-Nov-17 17:40:23

How old are the children?

BIL is in prison and he has 3 children under 8. There’s a family room that doesn’t look “prison” like at all and designated family sessions. His case isn’t high profile at all though.

tickingthebox Wed 15-Nov-17 17:42:52

part of the answer to this lies with whether you want a relationship with these family members long term. What (roughly) are they in for?

Casz Wed 15-Nov-17 19:10:10

The Ormiston Families Trust support families in this situation.

FellOutOfBed2wice Wed 15-Nov-17 19:59:29

My best friends brother-in-law spent a long stretch in prison. Her nephews were taken to visit him and the little one (aged between about 1 and 9 when his dad was inside) wasn’t very affected by it, but his older brother (about 10-19 during his dads improsonment) was very badly scarred by visiting him and would get very upset, I think because he understood more what was going on.

unimagmative13 Thu 16-Nov-17 17:57:26

It’s easy for people to say they wouldn’t do it in theory but when faced with the reality of it you have to think of all sides - kids are too young to notice anyone is missing which is my point but I have to also think of my partner and our families.

It’s not a crime that is sexual or violent but I’m wouldn’t say what it is

knowsmorethansnow Thu 16-Nov-17 19:27:37

Who is the person to the children?

BitchQueen90 Thu 16-Nov-17 19:44:50

It was my reality as a child. Which is why I wouldn't put my child through it.

Jerseysilkvelour Thu 16-Nov-17 21:18:20

I've only visited prison in a professional capacity but as has been said, it's scary enough as an adult especially the max security prisons. Open prison not as bad. I always felt so sorry for the children who were visiting and being patted down/searched etc, once they had an inspection on so it was more serious than usual with all the sniffer dogs etc and I found it intimidating. I wouldn't put my child though it myself.

Jakadaal Thu 16-Nov-17 21:35:14

I have visited a family member in a Cat B prison. As a pp has previously said it is frightening and daunting for adults. There were lots of children there (it was Christmas time) and I just felt very sad that young children had spent some of their Christmas in a place like that.

The body searches are intrusive, the presence of prison officers can be oppressive (but also a comfort) a fight broke out between a prisoner and one of their visitors and one couple out on a huge PDA that I would want my child to see.

I have never returned. A cat D prison may be different. I think some of my sadness also came from the fact that many children were completely unfazed (perhaps used to) all the things I found repulsive

BitchQueen90 Thu 16-Nov-17 21:44:36

I don't really get the bit about thinking about your families? If one of my family members were in prison, I still wouldn't take my DS. His well being and happiness comes before the adults in the situation.

Dontknowwhattodonowok Thu 16-Nov-17 21:48:13

I was 12 and my brother 8 when one of our parents was in prison for 2 years. I’ll always be so grateful to my remaining parent for being very honest and open with us about why our parent was in prison and opening up conversations about what is right from wrong. I went to visit them once a week- although not the nicest of environments back then, I’m glad I was able to keep that contact with him.

GreatThingsWork Thu 16-Nov-17 21:54:03

I worked in a prison fairly recently and the family visiting room was as child friendly as it could be. Low chairs, toys and a snack bar. This organisation might be able to give you some idea of what the visiting process entails.

Voice0fReason Thu 16-Nov-17 23:11:31

If it was anyone other than a parent then I really wouldn't consider it.

Sodaface Thu 16-Nov-17 23:20:14

If they are to young to notice, why take them? What difference could it make. I’ve visited my brother in prison it’s awful!! I never took my kids to see him I just explained to the oldest one what had happened.

unimagmative13 Fri 17-Nov-17 23:05:35

It will be a Cat A unfortunately.

I agree about my children being priority over anyone else

gallicgirl Fri 17-Nov-17 23:16:18

Category A for a crime which isn't sexual or violent?!

I think you'd need to consider whether the contact with the relative is beneficial to the child despite the potential issues with the visit that others have raised.

MoreCheerfulMonica Fri 17-Nov-17 23:17:13

I'm not sure whether you're asking about telling the children that their relative is in prison or taking them for visits.

If they're going to be a Cat A prisoner that also suggests a very long sentence, so as the children get older they may notice that their relative isn't around. A high security prison is not a child-friendly environment (how could it be?). Have you talked it through with one of the prisoners' families support groups?

Ohffsmalcom Fri 17-Nov-17 23:43:33

You don’t go to category A for anything other than a very significant crime obviously so if not violent or sexual I’m struggling to think what they may be? Serious fraud?

Whatever, I wouldnt want my child exposed to that environment. So they wouldn’t go if it was anyone other than their father in there.
I would not be swayed by other family members on this.

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