Most preppers are probably familiar with the sideways looks and awkward situations that arise when they tell others of their emergency plans and readiness.
When that skepticism comes from within the immediate family, things become much more complex. Convincing a stranger or a neighbor of the worthiness of your preparations is one thing, but explaining intents, concerns and reasons to your husband or wife is a totally different task.
Here are some suggestions on how to handle the situation, and how to work towards preparing every loved one you care about.
Have a meeting
Planning a meeting is an important part of getting your spouse involved with your emergency plan. It is vital for both partners to sit down together and create a unified plan that will be a mutual benefit.
Start with the small picture
When talking with your spouse about emergency preparedness, it is important to start off with a short informal meeting that discusses why preparing is an important part of your overall family plan. Once this meeting comes to an end and your spouse is at least tentatively interested in or accepting of the idea, ask them to come up with ideas for the next meeting on food, water, shelter. By working together it becomes more about the mutual benefit to each other and less about “your opinion.”
Have you found strength in numbers? https://t.co/A8xDpv8rml pic.twitter.com/vjU3veVpJM
— Survival Life (@SurvivalLF) August 15, 2016
Never use scare tactics
When talking to your spouse avoid being overly vivid about the “What ifs” that are out there. Instead of talking about nuclear fallout or the “zombie apocalypse,” talk about historical events (floods, storms, riots, food shortages, etc.), or even much more close to home instances such as job loss. Using rational circumstances will help to remove doubts and stigmas about prepping. This will help the both of you come up with a sensible plan regardless of if your plan is to “Bug Out” or “Bug In.”
Keep it fun
Instead of making your preparations an annoying chore, plan fun activities as a part of your emergency preparation training. Go on camping trips, plant a garden, take survival oriented classes together, go to your local pistol & rifle range, go hunting, go shopping, or take an emergency medical course together. If you make your preps an activity and not a chore it will not only lighten the mood around prepping, but may also strengthen the bond that you share.
Having both partners fully up to speed with emergency preparations will protect both of you from being ill-prepared should your partner be incapacitated or otherwise unavailable. In a crisis, communications will most likely be the first utility to vanish. Freeways become parking lots, and reaching your loved ones might become an impossible notion. Having a plan that both spouses know will give you peace of mind knowing that if something goes wrong, your spouse will be able to take charge and know what they need to do and where they need to go in order to be safe.
One thing I tell my spouse to lighten the mood and ease the panic of thinking about the situation the may be is that I want to be wrong. I want to be left with a bunch of stuff I never used because I was ‘paranoid’.
I tell her that I would rather be the guy that looked like an idiot for prepping than the guy that looked like an idiot for not prepping. The latter is the one then trying to explain away his total incompetence to a hungry family.
It’s a lot like carrying a concealed weapon. You don’t do it because you want to shoot someone! You do it because you might need to secure yourself.
The fools of this end of age cannot see the difference.
Excellent tip ChewyBees! I love your analogy about the hand gun.
I have been prepping without even really planning it. When I see a great sale on products that will last a while I buy. Toilet paper – I have 10 big packs. Soup – Canned that will last a few years. Saw a sale and we have a few cases. Tooth paste, tooth brushes, vitamins, flash lights, batteries, cat food, canned beans, canned tomatoes, rice, pasta, salad dressing, jam, maple syrup, pop, juice, soap, shampoo, mouth wash, etc. If there’s a sale I stock up. Is this prepping to store a years worth of product you like and use? I call it saving money and my non prepping spouse thinks I’m being thrifty.
Lived “gentile poor” for over 25 years. That’s living in a nice area, with a profession but no $$. I’m not, but think of teachers 35+ years ago. My income looks decent on paper, but it isn’t “regular” I started with bathroom tissue so we didn’t run out during the 3 months no income. That got me thinking, stock up when I have the cash. Love my cat(s). Bought canned on sale, tried to have 7 cases going into the bad season. that three mo, only needed milk & eggs. Every bad season managed better. $$ isn’t as tight, but still have the habit. Now where do I stash it, store it.
Also, most of us buy life insurance, in case we die, we can leave our spouse and/or children something to get by on. We buy hospital insurance in case we get sick. We buy house insurance in case of a fire or breakin. We buy car insurance in case we have a wreck. We all hope we never have to use these, but we have them all the same, just in case. So too with prepping. It’s another form of insurance. We have our supplies, “just in case.” I have been able to share food with a young couple who fell on hard times. And another family who lost everything due to a house fire. We live 10 miles from the nearest soda machine, so many is the time that we have run out of something, and I went to our pantry “store” and got it off the shelf! That was replaced the next time we went shopping. As food prices go up and up, stocking up during sales only makes sense. It’s like an investment. Learn to can fresh fruits and veggies, and even meats, in season, (or grow your own) and save even more!
Just pay attention to how you store your stuff. Zip-lock bags DO NOT work for long term storage of rice, flour, corn meal or pasta, I’ve found out the hard way, after having to throw out several bags which started molding! The pasta got weevils in it, and the good old trick of placing your stuff in the freezer for a few days to kill eggs and larvae, which are probably always present, may leave the dry goods damp. I need to invest in mylar bags and O2 absorbers!!
A five gallon bucket is too much & too heavy. Have you tried soda bottles for the dry goods? also freeze before you long term store. I don’t drink soda but have sources from my neighbors. I’m thinking clean, wash & rinse. let dry then fill. They can go in boxes away from prying eyes. Technically, I’m prepping for one, but expect “family to decend”.
Not that expensive, Fizzlecat, try Amazon for deals.