• Article

Family life before and during incarceration

It is widely recognized that a father’s incarceration strains a family, but too little is known about preincarceration family life, how families divided by incarceration navigate the imprisonment, and what they expect for postrelease family life. We analyze data from 1,482 incarcerated men and their partners to examine the assets and challenges that families brought with them into the incarceration experience; their considerable efforts to maintain family life during an incarceration in the face of physical separation and other obstacles; and the areas of convergence and divergence in their expectations for family life after the male partner’s release.


McKay, T. E., Lindquist, C. H., Feinberg, R. K., Steffey, D. M., Landwehr, J. G., & Bir, A. (2018). Family life before and during incarceration. Journal of Offender Rehabilitation, 57(2), 96-114. https://doi.org/10.1080/10509674.2018.1441209