Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

A place to discuss special considerations involved prepping and reacting to a disaster with children, pets and other family concerns.

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veamon
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Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by veamon » Mon Dec 16, 2013 10:52 am

Long story short, I've been around firearms and lived on a farm my whole life, my spouse is more 'citified' and terrified of guns.

I've read a lot of zombie/post-apocalyptic books, and while I know zombies are really just a catalyst for stories and setting up a catalyst for books, I'm always intrigued at some of the subtle advice that the authors slip in about prepping.

I don't have the place or means for a nice bunker hideout, but I've been collecting firearms / ammo, and looking to get things like water, mre's, medicines, BOB, etc etc.

For those of you in my situation, how do you explain to your spouse that prepping isn't stupid, and how you should be prepared?

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by Beowolf » Mon Dec 16, 2013 11:05 am

My suggestion is to start small. My wife thinks the idea of prepping much of anything is creepy and/or a waste of resources.

BUT...then we had a multi-day flood that devastated many areas around us. Not us, though, thank goodness. But it did allow me to say, "Hey, honey, just think if we had been flooded in or without water or power..." That helped. Also, I gave her a small maglite for her purse a while back, but I recently purchased some larger flashlights (3 C cell batteries) and gave one to her for her car. "Just in case," I said. Flat tire, strange sound, etc.

She's also open to firearms training, so that helps the persuasive factor.

But go with the little things--food, water, flashlights, firearms for personal/family protection, deadbolts, etc. If you start with stockpiling 1000s of rounds of ammo, 100s of pounds of meat, and 10s of gallons of water...yeah, she's gonna give you the stink eye. :)

The city is such a different world compared to the country. Those of us who live or lived in the country understand the necessity of a chest freezer or a well or a generator. My experience is that city folk don't think of those things nearly as much, let alone as something that is an expectation.
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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by jor-el » Mon Dec 16, 2013 11:13 am

Works better when something happens that demonstrates that government services are fallible and may not be relied upon in case of a disaster.

First example was when my wife was mugged. Happened before I swore in as a cop, still a city resident. Lost a tooth. Cops came ten minutes after being called. Perp never caught. Moved out of NYC three years later.
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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by gundogs » Mon Dec 16, 2013 11:20 am

Folks born & raised in cities tend to take a lot for granted,such as readily available food & water.
One would think that recent events,such as Sandy, Katrina,floods,fires,blizzards would teach them to be better prepared.
Maybe you could show her videos referencing the hard times some people went through in disasters

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by Drop Dead Zed » Mon Dec 16, 2013 11:23 am

The easiest way is to show you spouse that it is rational and normal to take reasonable steps for your safety and well-being. Start small and build from there. Explain why you are buying each thing and doing each action.

Start with an evaluation of your risks. Take into account the frequency and severity of the risks. Explain to your spouse that you are merely trying to mitigate risks. Start with useful but innocuous things like smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, and first-aid items. Begin to put emergency items in the car (blankets, jumper cables, some water, maybe a little food, etc.)

Are there disasters that are (semi-)regular in your area? Tornadoes, earthquakes, blizzards, hurricanes, floods, and all the assorted disruption that accompany them are "real" reasons to prep. For example, most folks understand the need and economic sense of having a generator on hand when the power regularly goes out for a week or more. Point out to your spouse when these events are in the news (even if they happen in other areas.) Point out that you should really, have some things to help out in a disaster. For example, a camp-stove and some canned food to eat if the power goes out.

Do you know anyone who has been in a disaster? How about a personal disaster such as a job loss or a fire in the home? Those can be just as devastating as a regional disaster and can be somewhat mitigated by prepping. If you know such a person have them tell your spouse their story or relate it yourself.

Firearms and self-defense are a little more difficult as some people have a deeper emotional reaction to guns. Here I find the old saw about, "It's not the chances, it's the stakes," useful. I find firearms a reasonable precaution even though I will likely never have to use it to defend myself because of the dire consequences if I do not have the means when the time arrives.

Similar to having a fire extinguisher in the kitchen, sometimes only one thing can do the job and you have to have it for the rare circumstance when you need it.

In essence, don't try to convince your spouse your nuts for prepping, show them it's nuts NOT to prep.
Last edited by Drop Dead Zed on Mon Dec 16, 2013 6:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by ZombieGranny » Mon Dec 16, 2013 11:42 am

...
Last edited by ZombieGranny on Sun Sep 28, 2014 11:38 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by Mikeyboy » Mon Dec 16, 2013 11:47 am

My wife is not into prepping, but lets me do what I want to do "within reason" . I have my hobbies and she has her's

Like Beowolf said start small. If you go all out "doomsday prepper" you will not only be labeled a nut by your wife and kin but you will hurt your family finances.

For starters every household should have a basic "emergency kit" with at least 3 days worth of food and water along with basic first and other essential gear. Before she calls you crazy, make sure she understands that this is what the US government recommends on http://www.ready.gov" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; and that most school kids are being taught this in grade school. I'm an insurance guy, and I sold my prepping to my wife as like any other insurance. We have home owners insurance in case something happens like a house fire, and we have preps in case there is ever a disaster. Trust me, as soon as the power goes out, or she sees victims of some bad natural disaster on the news, you move to prep would be appreciated.

The gun thing is another matter. If you never broached the subject with your wife, you may want to sooner rather than later. Some people are just deathly afraid of guns. Whatever you do, don't say "I NEED AN AK-47 in case of a ZPAW!!" or you will look like a nut. Just throw out your "country boy" background and your enjoyment of the shooting sports, then throw in that its good to have a gun in the house in case of a "break in" and leave it at that. You can offer to teach her how to shoot, and maybe she will tag along and get into it, but if she is insistent that she want no part of shooting a firearm, just let it go.
Last edited by Mikeyboy on Mon Dec 16, 2013 3:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by mystic_1 » Mon Dec 16, 2013 1:16 pm

veamon wrote: I've been collecting firearms / ammo, and looking to get things like water, mre's, medicines, BOB, etc etc.

My feeling is that once you stop "looking to get" these basic preps, and start actually getting them, prepping will seem a lot less "nuts".
Mikeyboy wrote:For starters every household should have a basic "emergency kit" with at least 3 days worth of food and water along with basic first and other essential gear. Before she calls you crazy, make sure she understands that this is what the US government recommends on http://www.ready.gov" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; and that most school kids are being taught this in grade school.

This. Absolutely this.

As Drop Dead Zed said, there are plenty of examples in recent history of natural and man-made disasters wherein having some basic preps would have made a big difference to those involved. Odds are, in fact, that you can find examples of these sorts of situations which are fairly local to you.

Combine these examples with the information on http://www.ready.gov" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; and the oft-repeated truth that if something happens, "the government" will take a MINIMUM of three to five days to arrive and start providing assistance.


If your only preps are currently guns, you need to reevaluate your plans.
Drop Dead Zed wrote:Start with useful but innocuous things like smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, and first-aid items. Begin to put emergency items in the car (blankets, jumper cables, some water, maybe a little food, etc.)
Solid advice. Few people would say that having a fire extinguisher in the house was "nuts".

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by zoldaman » Mon Dec 16, 2013 1:59 pm

If the term "prepping" is causing problems, then try breaking it down into pieces that make sense to her. Things like "Hey, hon. While I was at the store I picked up a few extra things. Just stuff that we are always running out of, so that you won't have to run to the store later this week to pick up just a few things. I hope this will make your life a little easier and safe us a little on gas, too." Or, "Heya hotstuff, do you think that we should get a Costco/Sams Club/Price Club/Other Discount Warehouse card? It looks like they've got some really good deals on some neat stuff. With a little smart shopping, I think we could really save some money." Or, "Yo, dollface. Would you mind if I did some of the cooking this week? I'd like to make you dinner tonight...(Then, do your best to make something good from long term store ingredients. Heating up a MRE doesn't count.) Find ways to show her how prepping can make her life easier or better now, rather than just planning for some doom and gloom apocalypse that she imagines isn't going to ever happen. Hope that helps.

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by Boondock » Mon Dec 16, 2013 2:21 pm

mystic_1 wrote:My feeling is that once you stop "looking to get" these basic preps, and start actually getting them, prepping will seem a lot less "nuts".
Mikeyboy wrote:For starters every household should have a basic "emergency kit" with at least 3 days worth of food and water along with basic first and other essential gear. Before she calls you crazy, make sure she understands that this is what the US government recommends on http://www.ready.gov" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; and that most school kids are being taught this in grade school.
This. Absolutely this.
Yup. These guys, Zombie Granny, too, beat me to it. I could't agree more. You're better off with a solid emergency plan, a basic kit and supplies, and a stable household and finances. Did I mention a solid emergency plan? Because gear and guns are useless without one.

There's a few threads on ZS about prepping and significant others and family on the forum that have lots of great discussion on this topic.

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by Towanda » Mon Dec 16, 2013 6:31 pm

What's already been said about money and supplies vs gear and guns. What natural events are common in your area? What if an ice storm knocks out the power for a week? Start with stuff like that, and then build up as your partner's tolerance increases.
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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by ineffableone » Mon Dec 16, 2013 7:14 pm

Yep the ready.gov is your friend in showing your not nuts. Canada has a similar site, as well as most US states have area specific versions of ready.gov check your state preparedness info some are just a single page others have huge amounts of info and free booklets. If your state is a big booklet one, that really helps you, as it shows your state is taking preparedness very seriously, so it isn't just the feds and you but your state gov also.

Something else to consider is food preps typically end up saving you a lot of money in the long run. Buying in bulk tends to get you better prices, and food prices tend to just keep going up. So investing in some food now will save you money.

On the food topic, check out the LDS cannery prices. http://providentliving.org/self-relianc ... m?lang=eng" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false; While you can't get all your food stuffs this way, you can fill out a lot of the basics quickly and cheaply. These are amazing prices that you really will be hard pressed to find better pricing.

The last effort is explaining prepping as insurance. Much of it is stuff that would be helpful if you get laid off of work or have other issues that cut your income. Thus insurance for lean times.

Final thing if none of that works, ask them to just accept you are into it. That it is your hobby and it is no different than fantasy football, or restoring old cars, or other "guy" stuff hobbies. If all your other efforts failed most SOers will accept this as a harmless pass time for their spouse.
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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by Barnabus » Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:17 pm

My wife was the one to get me into prepping. She listens to talk radio (Beck, Limbaugh, and the rest) and I would hear the commercials for food storage, home security, and the like. I started by building BOBs for both cars, and one for my sister, and then started building up the stores in our pantries. When I talk to others about prepping, I point out reasons like, loss of jobs, that years' worth of food comes in handy when there is no paycheck. Storms knock out power for days or weeks, stores and gas stations are empty, that 20 extra gallons of gas stored in the garage looks good. Home invasions all over the news makes that shotgun you just bought makes you feel safer.

so the best reasons to give are things that can happen to any of us.

Laid off of work
Natural disasters.
Crime
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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by Mikeyboy » Wed Dec 18, 2013 1:53 pm

ineffableone wrote: Final thing if none of that works, ask them to just accept you are into it. That it is your hobby and it is no different than fantasy football, or restoring old cars, or other "guy" stuff hobbies. If all your other efforts failed most SOers will accept this as a harmless pass time for their spouse.
+1

My wife is somewhat happy with my choice of hobbies.

Camping, prepping, and gun buying/shooting is surprisingly less expensive and/or less detrimental to a marriage then say golf, fixing up old cars, gambling, or boozing.

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by Barnabus » Mon Dec 23, 2013 4:13 pm

ineffableone wrote:Final thing if none of that works, ask them to just accept you are into it. That it is your hobby and it is no different than fantasy football, or restoring old cars, or other "guy" stuff hobbies. If all your other efforts failed most SOers will accept this as a harmless pass time for their spouse.
when I was a teen, my mother was constantly complaining about my spending money on comic books, and game supplies (D&D). I pointed out other people my age were spending all their money on beer, hard alcohol, cigarettes and drugs. "Would rather I be like the other kids?" :oh: I'd ask.That would usually shut her up for a few months. :roll:
Last edited by Barnabus on Mon Dec 30, 2013 3:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by ineffableone » Mon Dec 23, 2013 8:38 pm

ineffableone wrote:Yep the ready.gov is your friend in showing your not nuts. Canada has a similar site, as well as most US states have area specific versions of ready.gov....
I figure I would help folks out with a helpful link to state preparedness sites.

http://www.aoa.gov/Preparedness/Resourc ... dness.aspx

Something like your local state preparedness site and ready.gov are amazing at showing others your not nuts for prepping. Though your actually sanity still might be a little off, but it wasn't prepping that caused that. :lol: :wink:
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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by ineffableone » Mon Dec 23, 2013 10:12 pm

With your food storage you could do some canstruction stuff like this

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Your not nuts your an artist. :awesome: :clap:






Though on second though if you start building can art you might seal the nail in the debate of if your nuts. :crazy:
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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by mbaz73 » Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:53 am

Here was the 1st event that convinced my wife...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/December_2 ... _ice_storm

here was the next...
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2011_New_E ... o_outbreak

and here we are again...
http://www.cnn.com/2013/12/25/us/winter-weather/

Actual events are a powerful motivator.
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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by Darkhunter » Sun Dec 29, 2013 5:06 pm

I got my roommate into prepping by telling him a few things from my childhood:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_Amer ... rm_of_1998" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hurricane_Floyd" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
http://pubs.usgs.gov/sir/2009/5102/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EG5MgP6x32s" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

That was all that hit my area that were memorable as I grew up. Most of the time it was losing power for a day or two, week other times. Right around the time I left Maine, this happened:

http://bangordailynews.com/2011/08/28/n ... hes-maine/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

And just recently this happened:

http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2013/1 ... story.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

As of right now these stories are reasons I show to people to show the need to prepare. As I grew up I was glad my parents and extended family had a few months of preparedness and most have expanded to less than a year. Not many questions are asked after that from anyone when I point out prepping is a good idea.

I don't really need to tell people to have a gun or other means for self defense as most people where I live have more than me. I just recently gathered a few from friends and coworkers outside of tools I bought that have multiple purposes.

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by zombiekilling » Mon Dec 30, 2013 10:03 am

I'm new to the prepping world, & I have a difficult time on spending money on the resources. I have guns & ammo, it's the food portion I'm struggling with. I want to make sure I'm not being wasteful.

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by Mikeyboy » Mon Dec 30, 2013 10:49 am

zombiekilling wrote:I'm new to the prepping world, & I have a difficult time on spending money on the resources. I have guns & ammo, it's the food portion I'm struggling with. I want to make sure I'm not being wasteful.
The best thing with this is to have a pantry. Look at what is usually eaten in your home, and focus on the stuff that is "shelf stable", meaning it requires no refrigeration and does not have a short shelf life. Stuff like Pasta, Cereals, rice, oatmeal, canned goods, Peanut butter, etc. Then all you do is when you go to replace those foods at the store when you run out, you buy 2 instead of 1, and fill up your pantry. Once you have enough you just rotate. You take a can out of your kitchen cabinet, you replace it with a can in the pantry, and you replace that can the next supermarket trip.

Another item I keep is Parmalat type milk. I usually get the Hershey brand because its cheaper. Its basically a shelf stable milk, in a box, that has about a 6 month shelf life. A lot of Americans think this milk sitting on the shelf and not the dairy section is weird, but a lot of people overseas, especially in the islands, use it all the time. I keep this milk on hand and just rotate a box into the fridge for consumption every 4 months or so.

Having a simple pantry of essential foods that the whole family will eat is a lifesaver when the power goes out and the roads close.

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by gundogs » Mon Dec 30, 2013 10:50 am

zombiekilling wrote:I'm new to the prepping world, & I have a difficult time on spending money on the resources. I have guns & ammo, it's the food portion I'm struggling with. I want to make sure I'm not being wasteful.
By buying more of the food you normally eat isn't being wasteful. Shoot for a month's supply at first and replace what you eat

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by RedneckRifleWorks » Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:45 pm

When I met my wife we lived in NJ and she had never even saw a gun up close needless to say she was a bit freaked when she saw my stuff. It took a long time to get her to get used to having them around and even longer to get her to touch one. The more often I brought it up the more she shied away from it. The more I pushed the more against it she got. Then one day there was a women's day at the range locally and I mentioned it to her and her girlfriend they should go. Well they did , and it turned out GREAT!

Now it has has cost me thousands since lol money I am glad to spend. It has gotten so bad I am currently building her her own 10.3" suppressed AR with a custom dip paint lol I created a monster, but she never questions my ammo purchases.

Brian

PS to this day I can not instruct my wife in shooting I have to have others do it, there is just not the right vibe for us with that.

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Re: Convincing spouse you're not nuts for prepping...

Post by 101airborne » Tue Dec 31, 2013 9:10 pm

Beowolf wrote:My suggestion is to start small. My wife thinks the idea of prepping much of anything is creepy and/or a waste of resources. .
I agree with Beo here, my wife was much the same as his and is still a bit like your she doesn't really like my weapons but is coming around to realize they are a tool to use when needed. As far as bringing your wife around it's like making Love to your wife slow and easy is the way to go. She'll eventually warm up and enjoy it if you do it right. Best of luck and don't give up.

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