Learning how to get along with your cellmate in prison or county jail is important if you have just been convicted due to a criminal offense. Since you’ll be spending most of your days and nights with your cellmate just in the next bunk, it is imperative to maintain a good relationship with him or her, unless you want to get your throat slit while you sleep.
If you’re a repeat offender and have been incarcerated in the past, you may already know how to do this. If you’re a first time offender and you’ll be incarcerated for the first time, then the information in the succeeding paragraphs is of great value to you. First thing that you have to remember when you enter prison for the first time is size up your cellmate. If you think that your cellmate is someone who’ll give you trouble every time, ask prison management for a cell transfer.
This is very important especially if you’re a sex offender. In prison, sex offenders are regarded the lowest of the low among inmates. They are perceived as cowards and weaklings and therefore would be treated as such. If your cellmate is a gremlin, or an extremely nosy one who asks a lot of questions about the details of your case, ask the guards for a transfer right away.
Try to keep a good balance between showing strength and at the same time maintaining that level of respect towards every inmate regardless of their race, offense or sexual orientation. Remember, in prison, your attitude is what everybody looks at. If you’re an asshole then you’d get the asshole treatment. If you’re respectful, then you’ll be treated with the same accord.
If there’s one thing that you should quickly learn in prison, it’s learning how to make a mental assessment on whether a particular inmate poses a threat to you or the people around him. Cops are able to achieve this through training. They take notice of the perpetrator’s body language; where they look when they answer a question, if they fidget, stutter, how they carry themselves when they walk, how they look around, etc.
With a little patience and practice, you’d be able to do this as well. Being able to tell which inmate is a threat or not allows you to avoid the wrong people and stay out of trouble. With this skill, you’re able to get the lay of the land much faster and know who’s who inside prison. In prison, you don’t want to make the wrong person angry. You want to stay on everybody’s good side as much as possible.
Another tip on how to get along with your cellmate in prison or county jail is to respect your cellmates bunk. Some prisoners are very meticulous about their quarters; that means their bunk. They may have personal effects there that they don’t want other inmates to see. Don’t take or borrow any of their personal effects unless you have obtained their permission. If you want to talk to a cellmate about something personal, ask his permission first if it’s okay. Some prisoners are emotionally unstable and you don’t want to be stirring up any past memories by talking about it.
Stealing is a big no-no inside prison. Not only should you avoid stealing from your cellmate, but also should avoid being suspected of it. Being suspected of anything in prison is as good as actually doing it. If they suspect you of stealing, then be ready to defend yourself because they will come after you. Nobody in prison will come to your rescue and defend you; say that you’re innocent and you didn’t do shit. You are guilty until proven innocent. Only there’s nobody there who will prove your innocence.
Always respect your cellmate’s privacy. If you find him crying to sleep at night or keeping to himself most of the time, don’t try to intrude. Let him take care of whatever issue he’s trying to deal with on his own. The only time you’re allowed to butt in is when he willingly opens up to you about it; if he asks for your help specifically. But until he does that, you should stay out of it. Because there are inmates who hate nosy people. They are very sensitive and given their being prone to violence, you’ll probably only make matters more complicated than it is if you decide to stick your nose where it don’t belong.
Having cellmate you can trust is essential to a very easy prison life. Try to develop a good relationship with your cellmate by giving him what’s due. If he deserves to have that extra blanket at night that you can do without, then let him have it. If you have something that you can share with a cellmate, then do share it. Do everything in your power to not break that trust because once that trust is broken, you’ll be sleeping with one eye open each night, which is very troublesome.
Watch your cellmate’s back all the time. Nothing builds trust better than being there during your cellmate’s time of need. If your cellmate is in trouble, try to help him out. Yes, you may make enemies along the way, but at least, they won’t be sleeping with you inside the same cell. Try to do special favors for him once in a while. Pass him a Snickers bar if you have a job at the prison commissary. Give him extra rations of food if you work at the prison cafeteria. Just don’t come off as a faggot, or else you might find yourself doing sexual favors for the men in your cell block. You do not, under any circumstances, want to be the friendly neighborhood cellblock bitch.
Surviving prison doesn’t have to be a one-man endeavor. Sometimes, all it takes is to make a friend; a friend whom you can trust to make your life easier in the joint. So there you have it. That is basically how to get along with your cellmate in prison or county jail.