If you’ve got wrapped up dating a prisoner, you’ll be aware that your relationship is far from normal.
However, that doesn’t mean you can’t have an awesome, loving, and fulfilling relationship – while adhering to prison rules!
Still, there are more dangers to be aware of when dating a prisoner compared to dating someone on the outside.
Here are 10 dangers of dating a prisoner you should always consider:
10 Dangers of Dating a Prisoner
1. They May Not Be What You Expect When/if They’re Released
When you date someone on the outside, you get the benefit of being able to get to know them personally and see them in person.
This isn’t the same when dating a prisoner, unless you knew them when they were walking free, of course.
All of those little things that you’d pick up on when dating someone that might put your off – you’re not going to be able to pick up with a guy behind bars.
Many people put everything into their relationship with a prisoner, only to find they are nothing like they thought when they do get released.
2. Prisoners Are Often Writing to Multiple People
Dating a prisoner can feel like you’re the only one in their life, but that’s often not the case.
Many prisoners are writing to multiple people (or have someone on the outside doing it for them), so you might not be as special as you think.
It can be easy to get caught up and become emotionally attached to someone behind bars and think that they’re all alone inside waiting to hear from you.
But sadly, that feeling of being alone also means they have a lot of time on their hands.
Most prisoners will speak to multiple love interests at the same time – it’s one of the dangers of getting too attached to someone locked up.
3. They Often Find It Hard to Adjust when Released
If you’ve been dating a prisoner for some time and they’re finally released, the reality is that it’s not going to be as simple as carrying on your relationship how it’s been going.
They’ll have spent a long time in an environment that’s very different from the outside world, and most prisoners find it hard to adjust to being released.
Being released can stir up all kinds of emotions and cause them to push you away.
Ex-prisoners often want a lot of alone time, too, as they’re used to being alone. This feels like rejection to a lot of partners and puts a strain on the relationship.
4. Prisoners Can Go Radio Silent
If you’re dating someone in prison, chances are there will be times when they go completely radio silent or ghost you.
This can be for a number of reasons; their privileges might have been taken away, they might be on lockdown, or there might be some other issue that’s out of their control.
It can be really tough not knowing what’s going on with your partner, but it’s one of the dangers you face when dating someone in prison.
5. They May Get Moved to Another Facility Further Away
If you’ve been dating a prisoner for some time and they suddenly get moved to another facility, it can really throw off your schedule.
You’ll have to start the whole process again of getting permission to visit them and arranging transport, which can be costly and time-consuming.
It’s one of the dangers of dating a prisoner that you might not think about at first.
But it’s a reminder that they’re not free to decide where they are and what they do and anything can happen at any time.
6. Depending on Their Charges, They May Present a Risk when Released
If you’re dating someone you met while they were in prison, it’s important to be aware of what they’re in for.
Some prisoners will have been convicted of nonviolent crimes, while others are in for more serious offenses.
If they’re released and still pose a risk to society, it could put you in danger as well.
Just because you’re involved romantically, it doesn’t mean you’re not in danger. After all, how well do you really know them?
7. You May Get Wrapped up In Their Illegal Activities
If you’re dating someone in prison, it’s important to be aware of the fact that they may still be involved in illegal activities, even if they’re behind bars.
You may get wrapped up in their illegal activities without even realizing it, and that can have serious consequences for you.
If they’re asking you to run errands for them, take a careful look at what they’re asking you to do.
I know you want to please them and help them out, but the last thing you want is to end up behind bars too!
8. Their Friends on The Outside Might Be Dangerous
If you’re dating a prisoner, chances are their friends on the outside are also involved in illegal activities.
As sad as it is, there’s truth to the old saying that we’re the average of the people we hang around with.
You may not have anything to do with their illegal activities, but if you’re starting to become associated with them through your love interest, it can put you at risk.
It’s important you keep your personal life and circle of friends separate from their friends.
Surround yourself with good, positive people and build a strong network of people you can rely on and turn to in times of need.
9. They May Ask You to Do Things You’re Not Comfortable With
If you’re dating a prisoner, they may start asking you to do things that make you uncomfortable.
On one hand, they may ask you to smuggle in contraband or help them with things that could get you and them in trouble with the prison officers.
On the other hand, they might ask you to do things on the outside that they’re not able to do that you’re not comfortable with.
Of course, you’re not obligated to do anything you’re not comfortable with, but it can be hard to say no when your partner is behind bars.
Prisoners are in a bind, to state the obvious, and they are very good at leveraging their desperate and vulnerable position.
Whenever someone behind bars asks you to do something for them, before saying yes, take a moment to think about it.
Tell them you’ll get back to them, and never agree to anything in the heat of the moment no matter how important they say it is or how desperate they are.
10. You May Never Get to Be with Them on The Outside
One of the hardest things to come to terms with when dating a prisoner is that you may never get to be with them on the outside.
I’m not trying to make you feel bad, but the reality is that no matter when their scheduled release date is, anything can happen.
You have to be prepared for the possibility that you may never be able to be with and do all of the things you – and they – want to do with each other physically!
Image credits – Photo by Khashayar Kouchpeydeh on Unsplash
Phil lives in England, UK, and has around 20 years experience as a professional life, career and executive coach. He started this blog to help others find and define their own self development journey. Blogging about a wide range of topics to help facilitate a better future.