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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 64906 Find in a Library
Title: FAMILY PROBLEMS OF PRISONERS (FROM CONVICTED OFFENDER ASSISTANCE - YESTERDAY, TODAY, TOMORROW, 1978, SEE NCJ-64893)
Author(s): J HEYER
Corporate Author: Friedrich-Erbert-Strasse 11a
Bundeszusammenschlusses Fuer
Straffalligenhilfe
West Germany (Former)
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 10
Format: Document
Language: German
Country: West Germany (Former)
Annotation: FAMILY PROBLEMS CAUSED BY THE INCARCERATION OF A PARENT AND POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS ARE DISCUSSED.
Abstract: THE ARREST OF A PARENT DISRUPTS THE ECONOMIC BASIS AS WELL AS THE SOCIAL STATUS OF A FAMILY AND GIVES RISE TO INSECURITY, DEPENDENCE ON SOCIAL WELFARE, THE SHAME ATTACHED TO LIVING ON WELFARE, AND GUILT FEELINGS IN MALE OFFENDERS WHO CANNOT SUPPORT THEIR FAMILIES. THE REACTIONS OF FRIENDS AND RELATIVES CONTRIBUTE TO STIGMATIZATION OF THE FAMILY: THE WIFE AT HOME IS FORCED TO DECIDE WHETHER TO STAND BY HER HUSBAND OR TO SEEK A DIVORCE, CHILDREN'S ACTIVITIES ARE CAREFULLY SCRUTINIZED, FORMER FRIENDS KEEP THEIR DISTANCE, AND WIVES' SENSE OF THEIR OWN VALUE IS IMPAIRED. BOTH PARENT-CHILD AND PARENT-PARENT RELATIONSHIPS ARE AFFECTED SO THAT CRISES CANNOT BE RESOLVED. RIGID, IMMATURE MALE-FEMALE ROLES ARE AGGRAVATED. INCARCERATED MEN DEVELOP A NEGATIVE SELF IMAGE WHILE WOMEN ARE FORCED INTO INDEPENDENT ACTION DESPITE ROLE PERCEPTIONS. COMMUNICATIONS DURING VISITS DETERIORATE, MUTUAL DISTRUST DEVELOPS, AND PARTNERS GROW IN DIFFERENT DIRECTIONS. GUILTY FATHERS BECOME AWARE DURING FURLOUGHS OF THEIR INABILITY TO HELP THEIR FAMILIES AND THEY BOASTFULLY COVER UP, DISTURBING RELATIONSHIPS FURTHER. IN SHORT, MARRIAGES SUFFER FROM INSTABILITY, ALIENATION, AND ISOLATION. CHILDREN MISS THEIR ROLE MODELS AND BECOME DISTRUSTFUL IF MOTHERS LIE ABOUT THE FATHERS' WHEREABOUTS. CHILDREN'S DEVELOPMENT IS INFLUENCED MOST BY FAMILIES' ATTITUDES TOWARD PENALTIES FOR THE OFFENSES AND THE FAMILIES' METHODS OF RESOLVING CONFLICTS. LOSS OF FATHERS CAN CAUSE BEHAVIORAL DISTURBANCES WHICH NEGATIVELY AFFECT CHILDREN'S SCHOOL PERFORMANCE AND WHICH MAY LEAD TO CRIMINAL CAREERS. FAMILIES CAN BE STABILIZED AND RECIDIVISM PREVENTED BY REVISING THE PUBLIC'S ATTITUDES TOWARD THE AFFECTED FAMILIES, BY TRAINING VOLUNTEERS IN DISCUSSION TECHNIQUES AND IN DEALING WITH AGGRESSION, BY PROVIDING MARRIAGE COUNSELING, AND BY BUILDING STRONG PARTNERSHIPS BETWEEN SPOUSES. FURTHER ASSISTANCE CAN BE OFFERED BY CONDUCTING FAMILY SEMINARS ON COMMUNICATION AND SOCIALIZATION DIFFICULTIES FOR INMATES AND INSTITUTIONAL STAFF, BY SPONSORING FAMILY WEEKEND COURSES--POSSIBLY AT THE PRISON--WHICH PREPARE FAMILIES FOR FURLOUGH AND RELEASE DIFFICULTIES, AND BY ENCOURAGING TIES BETWEEN AFFECTED WIVES AND COUPLES IN THEIR HOME TOWNS TO REDUCE THE EFFECTS OF PUBLIC DISCRIMINATION. A BRIEF BIBLIOGRAPHY IS FURNISHED. --IN GERMAN. (KMD)
Index Term(s): Children of incarcerated offenders; Domestic relations; Families of inmates; Family counseling; Furloughs; Germany; Inmate marriages; Inmate Programs; Inmate visits
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=64906

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