Parents with a Past: How to Prevent Your Criminal Record From Affecting Your Children


A parent who is, or has been, convicted of a crime, can have a dramatic impact on the lives of their children. Not only will the parent’s criminal past follow them around for the rest of their lives, but it may hinder the chances of their children growing up as well as they could.

Many people may assume that if they were convicted and released before they had children that their past won’t affect the way they grow up, but nothing could be farther from the truth. Even if you don’t go to jail, your record will follow you for a long time and have an impact on your children’s lives.

Don’t let your criminal past affect your children’s future. If you are convicted of a crime, contact to minimize the future impact on your family. Furthermore, here are just a few ways that the criminal past of parents can affect their children’s future.

Missed Educational Opportunities

It is a well-established fact that the more educated a person is, the more money they will make during their lifetime. This means that the more educated you are, the better chances your children will have because you can provide them with a better life.

If you are convicted of a crime, however, there’s a good chance that you will not pursue any more education than you already have at the time you committed the crime. This means that the younger you are when you commit the crime, the less educated you will probably be for the rest of your life. So even once you are released and start a family, chances are you will be working in a low-paying career that makes raising your children difficult.

Couple this with the fact that criminals have a much harder time finding employment that non-criminals in the first place, and you may find yourself with very little room for advancement in your career for years to come.

Loss of Money and Assets

Having money and assets — that is, things like a house or investing in stocks and retirement accounts — is the key to building wealth and giving your children as bright future, but if you are or have been convicted of a crime, then you will find you have less of each.

The cost for your defense and the fines you may have to pay for your crimes can pile up very quickly, forcing you to use most or all of your available cash and maybe even selling your assets to pay for everything. Using most or all of your cash and assets can be a very difficult thing to come back from, especially with bleak prospects of employment that may await you in the future.

This will have a negative impact on your children, as you may not be able to provide them with the housing, clothing and other essentials they will need as they grow.

Housing Difficulties

Having a criminal record can also keep you from finding adequate housing, which can result in behavior and emotion problems in children.

Many ex-cons may find it difficult to find housing once they are released, and up to one-third may end up being homeless. People with a criminal record are scrutinized by potential landlords and may be rejected based on past rent failures, poor credit records and even the potential for bad behavior in the future. If you do find housing, you may have to pay extra securities or other deposits that make it nearly impossible to move in.

This can have a devastating impact on your children, who may be forced to lived with relatives or in substandard housing. The separation from a parent or growing up in a poor-quality neighborhood will start your children off with less opportunities than if living elsewhere.

Problems With Family Stability

All of these factors — and many others — ultimately result in an unstable family unit that will impact your children for the rest of their lives.

The financial stresses and living difficulties with being convicted of a crime could negatively impact your relationship with your family, even your spouse, and children. This will result in an unhealthy environment for your children and can have a negative influence on the way they see the world and the things that are expected of them. Your children may have lower self-esteem or even turn to a life of crime themselves. And once family stability starts to falter, it’s very difficult to get it back.

Elise Ingram ran wild as a teenager and it wasn’t until her late 20’s that she finally sorted her life out. Her past still comes back to haunt her some days. Her articles discuss life with a criminal record, how to live with it, and how to approach people who may judge you.

About Author

LaDonna Dennis

LaDonna Dennis is the founder and creator of Mom Blog Society. She wears many hats. She is a Homemaker*Blogger*Crafter*Reader*Pinner*Friend*Animal Lover* Former writer of Frost Illustrated and, Cancer...SURVIVOR! LaDonna is happily married to the love of her life, the mother of 3 grown children and "Grams" to 3 grandchildren. She adores animals and has four furbabies: Makia ( a German Shepherd, whose mission in life is to be her attached to her hip) and Hachie, (an OCD Alaskan Malamute, and Akia (An Alaskan Malamute) who is just sweet as can be. And Sassy, a four-month-old German Shepherd who has quickly stolen her heart and become the most precious fur baby of all times. Aside from the humans in her life, LaDonna's fur babies are her world.

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