Jen Shah

Jen Shah Doesn’t Think She “Belongs” In Prison

Reporting from Federal Prison Camp in Bryan, Texas. It’s the convicted felon herself, Jen Shah. Maybe she fancies herself a reality star still. Or that her dwindling fan base will still be tuning in after 6.5 years.

Whatever her motivation, the Real Housewives of Salt Lake City star decided to start blogging from prison. Already, her premiere post has gotten a lot of attention. And not the kind Jen was fishing for.

An admin posted a series of screenshots to Jen’s Instagram page. Page Six reported that the former Bravolebrity feels she doesn’t “belong” in prison.

A court decided otherwise. And the court of public opinion. After running a nationwide telemarketing scam, there’s no question.

“As I stare into the dark, I think this has to be a dream — but here I am,” Jen wrote. “I keep thinking this is insane, completely ridiculous. Why am I here? I mean, I know why I’m here, but this just feels like someone like me doesn’t belong here. I’ve never been in trouble before,” she continued.

Everyone is born with a clean record. Perhaps if she ran her business honestly, Jen would be in her Shah-chalet right now being attended to by the Shah-squad. Instead, she’s sharing a cell at the all-female prison.

Jen has to “stop [herself] from going down this self-destructive path of thinking” of imagining what she could have done differently. The reality “of [her] bad decisions” smacked her in the face in February when she reported to prison.

“I am here because I did this to myself,” Jen continued, “and there is no one to blame but me.”

The full post details how Jen’s husband, Coach Sharrieff Shah, and younger son, Omar Shah, accompanied her to the prison compound. The most poignant part of the blog is her “pain and guilt” for “putting [her family] through this ordeal.” The mom of two also mentions her role in “creating victims.”

RELATED: Real Housewives Of Salt Lake City Star Lisa Barlow Reacts To Jen Shah’s Cancelled One-On-One Interview With Andy Cohen; Says “It’s Complicated”

“Their pain of having to watch me surrender yesterday, and now the beginning of what will be 78 months without me, is crushing my soul,” Jen stated.

Surviving the first night in prison was an ordeal. Jen described crying, “silently on [her] top bunk bed.” Her “chest was hurting as if [her] heart had broken in a million pieces.”

Heather Gay’s former bestie relived parting with her family. Saying goodbye to Sharrieff, Sharrief Shah Jr., and Omar weighed heavily on Jen’s mind. She wrote, “I laid in the dark alone with my thoughts of having to say goodbye to my family — to my sweet husband and boys.”

At the dropoff, prison guards rushed the family goodbyes. Jen recalled walking back for one more hug. “Sharrieff’s face was seared in my thoughts, remembering Omar’s tears as I hugged him tight, Sharrieff Jr’s face on FT as I said goodbye to him from the SUV before we arrived at Bryan FPC,” she continued.

Perhaps future blogs will describe how and when Jen can call her family. She tried to call shortly after checking in. Sadly, the phone call was plagued with glitches. The former RHOSLC was left “frustrated.” Certainly, that’s an easier emotion than “shocked, stunned, and scared.”

Jen’s plan for coping is to “stay patient.” And to “focus on what [she] can and cannot control.” Seems simple, yet effective.

“That will be the key to my adjustment. I am not alone in my struggles, and I must remember that on days where I want to just see my husband and children,” she added.

Jen recalled her eyes, “filling up with tears. I go to the bathroom and cry so no one will see me.”

These candid emotions paint a different picture than the one we got from Jen’s lawyer Priya Chaudhry. At the time, the lawyer said that her client was “prepared to face these challenges head-on and emerge from this experience a better person.”

According to her lawyer, Jen was “committed to serving her sentence with courage and purpose, fueled by her desire to make amends for the hurt she has caused and to help others in her new community.”

Jen’s bravado deflated as reality set in. Kind of like how she changed her plea to guilty in July 2022 after proclaiming innocence for over a year. It will be interesting to see how she adapts.


[Photo Credit: Heidi Gutman/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images]