This week, I want you to concentrate your efforts on getting the “buy in” from your family with regards to disaster readiness. This is an often cited problem preppers face — a spouse or other family member who just doesn’t “get it.”
Prepping is hard work, and even harder when you’re fighting against someone who doesn’t think it is necessary. Harder yet when they openly ridicule you or otherwise express their opinion on the subject in a spiteful manner.
So, how can you convince a spouse to get on board? The first suggestion is often to liken prepping to buying insurance. Let’s face it, insurance policies are one of the only things we ever buy in life and pray to God we never need to use, right? In fact, we’ll sometimes go to great lengths so as not to have to file a claim. Ever been in a small fender bender accident? If the damage is slight, you’d likely gladly pay for the damage out of your pocket so your insurance company doesn’t raise your rates.
Prepping is sort of like insurance. We set aside food and supplies against what might happen, but hope and pray we never really need to use that stuff in an emergency. The difference between prepping and insurance though is we can still use our preps as we feel necessary, without incurring the wrath of an insurance agent. In fact, it is encouraged that you regularly use and rotate your supplies to keep them fresh.
Another argument to be made, particularly about food storage, is the ability to eat tomorrow at today’s prices. Have you been to the grocery store lately? Prices sure aren’t coming down on anything, are they? It doesn’t seem all that long ago that I could buy ground beef for $0.99/lb on sale. Now, I’m lucky if I can find it for twice that price. If I buy a jar of peanut butter for $2.00 today and it sits on my shelf until I go to make peanut butter cookies for Christmas and I find out that same jar now would cost $3.00 at the store, I just saved myself a buck, right?
If the reason behind your spouse’s reticence is less about the possible expense and more about thinking nothing will ever happen that would require the need for preps, you could talk about all the things that have happened in recent history to folks who thought that same thing. How many people living in Bosnia in the mid-1990s thought their government would collapse? How many folks living in New Orleans worried a major hurricane would hit their area? Who in Japan would have ever even considered the devastation of the tsunami? Or talk about lesser scale emergencies like multiple day power outages in the winter, ice storms that strand you for days at home. Even smaller in scale, how about a flu virus brought home by the kids that rampages through the house, keeping everyone home for a week. <– That last one hit our home once and let me tell you, it was a whole lot of no fun for anyone involved.
If all else fails, there are still some things you can do on your own so all is not lost. Stock up on food as you can, buying an extra can or two of veggies or fruit when you go shopping and socking them away at the back of the pantry. Refill your 2L bottles with water, add a couple drops of bleach, and put them in the basement. Put in a garden and/or grow some wild edibles in your flower boxes and plant beds.
Explore possible income options as well and use the funds for prepping. While most “work at home” ads are indeed scams, there are a few places out there that are legit. They may not pay a lot but you might not have to work all that hard either. There are online companies that will pay you to write articles for them, for example. It might only get you $5-8 per article but if you’re fast, you can get several done in an hour or two. Do that a few times a week and it can add up to a bit of extra cash for preps. Or look into actual part-time work around town. Fast food joints, while obviously not ideal workplaces for many people, are almost always hiring.
Remember too that all it would take is one emergency close to home and many of those who poo-pooed prepping will change their tune. When that happens, please be gentle with the “I told you so.”
Your assignments this week:
1) Have a heart-to-heart talk with your spouse, significant other, and any other family member who is opposed to prepping. Use some of the suggestions above to get them to understand your point of view.
2) Keep filling those holes in your preps.
Next week is our last class session!