Emotional Health

Improving Your Emotional Health

Unless we as parents work diligently at staying emotionally healthy we won’t be any good for our children or ourselves during their incarceration, and more importantly when they are released.
Additionally, it’s been proven that repeat offender status reduces greatly when the families provide emotional support to their loved one, but it starts with taking care of our own.
Before we get to the how, let’s start with the what. What is emotional health? It is defined as a positive sense of wellbeing, which enables an individual to be able to function in society and meet the demands of everyday life.
It is as important to give consideration to our emotional health as it is our physical health, especially when dealing with the turmoil of the incarceration of our baby.

  1. Be an Optimist. Looking on the bright side increases your ability to experience happiness in your day-to-day life while helping you cope more effectively with stress.
  1. Have Hope. Having hope allows you to see the light at the end of the tunnel, helping you push through even dark, challenging times. Accomplishing goals, even small ones, can help you to build your level of hope. If you don’t have any goals for yourself, set 2-3 now.
  1. Accept Yourself. Negative self remarks and thoughts will cloud your mind with negativity and foster increased levels of stress. Seek out and embrace the positive traits of yourself and your incarcerated child, and avoid measuring your own worth by comparing yourself to those around you.
  1. Express Gratitude. Sounds crazy right, to be grateful when your child is in jail? But it does help. People who are thankful for what they have are better able to cope with stress, have more positive emotions, and are better able to reach their goals. Trust me, you’ll need some positive things to keep you sane!
  1. Exercise Regularly Rather than viewing exercise as a medical tool to lose weight, prevent disease, and live longer – all benefits that occur in the future – try viewing exercise as a daily tool to immediately enhance your frame of mind, reduce stress, and feel happier.

Please post below which of these tips you will commit to doing this week. You’ve got this, and we’re here to help!!!!


  1. REPLY
    Gaylisa Carr says

    I really don’t know where to begin but just let me say that I admire what you are doing and your life is a mirror reflection of what I have been through with a few differences. Let me start by saying that I am a formerly incarcerated woman who spent thirteen years, eight months and a couple of days ( 1990-2003) locked up in Ohio for involuntary manslaughter. At the time of my conviction my son was three years old so you can probably relate to the emotional roller coaster that my life has been on since that time. I fortunately had a mother who loved me unconditionally and took care of my son to the best of her ability but she wasn’t me… Fast forward to 2003 when I was released and my son was seventeen and he didn’t know me, I didn’t know him but most importantly I had just begun to learn who I was so this combination was bound for destruction. Within a year my son was incarcerated and sentenced to five years then released only to go back within a year and is now doing twenty years in Indiana. I know that is a mouthful I have so much more to share with you and your organization and my hope is that I will be contacted to further explain the things that I am doing today to help people deal with mass incarceration and the life changing events that it causes for people.
    Gaylisa Carr

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