Love after incarceration has never been accorded the attention it deserves. And as we all know, sometimes our relationship dynamics may be unpredictable.
Perhaps you may find yourself falling in love with a person previously convicted of murder, manslaughter, domestic violence, or any other crime that directly touches on human life. Or else, after serving your term, you are now ready to date. So how will you approach dating? Do you disclose or keep the criminal record a secret? This article gives easy-to-follow tips to succeed in love after incarceration.
Dos of love after incarceration
People usually misunderstand former convicts. Communication will help your partner understand your personality, the reason for your incarceration, and the relationship’s plans. Also, ups and downs are bound to happen in any relationship. Whenever they occur, take your partner as your immediate source of support and discuss the problems you’re facing. You will be amazed that they might have a way out.
Do accept your lover as they are
Occasionally, people commit crimes not because they like it but due to peer pressure and poverty. If your partner is trying to work things out of their tinted past, accept and support them. Remember, you can only help with their present and future lives but not with their past. Thus, avoid dwelling too much on their dark past and work on the present and future.
Do control your emotions
Offenses such as assault, domestic violence, manslaughter, among others, directly connect with uncontrolled emotions. Since no one is perfect, your partner will occasionally wrong you. For that matter, learn to control your anger, anxiety, and frustrations lest you get into trouble. Furthermore, love is all about forgiveness, endurance, and self-control.
Do look for a support system
Love after imprisonment can be pretty challenging without a good support network. Find people, support groups, or organizations that understand your situation and can hold your hand. Such include faith-based organizations, relationship support groups, and felon support networks.
Do acknowledge the wins
Celebrate the wins that you make in your relationship. For instance, applaud them for getting a new job, quitting smoking, a promotion at work, etc. Acknowledging each other will strengthen your bond and push your relationship forward.
Don’ts of love after incarceration
Don’t use vulgar language
Ex-offenders are known for excessive use of vulgar language. You will hear them repeatedly use words such as I will kill you, the F-word, and other offensive words. Your partner may not take such words lightly. As a result, avoid using such terms if you want your relationship to last.
Don’t be too judgmental
At times people can be too judgmental. Now that you are dating an ex-convict, it doesn’t mean you to be overcritical. Instead, learn to positively criticize lest your partner thinks that you’re trying to be perfect.
Don’t try to change them
This is the most typical mistake that people dating ex-offenders make. Whenever you learn that you are dating a felon, please don’t assume the duty of changing them. Rather, Keep in mind that your partner is a grown-up, and trying to change them can break your relationship. You can advise them but don’t try to change them. Who said they need to be changed anyway?
Don’t be a liar
The general perception is that ex-cons cannot be honest. Debunk that myth. Be honest with your partner, and your relationship will last. Truth conquers.
Don’t undervalue their dreams
Having come out of prison, your partner may start by setting small goals and dreams. So, instead of undervaluing their dreams, please support them.