So You Didn’t Marry a Survivalist

Let’s say your spouse isn’t hell bent on bunker building, but you want his/her preparedness support. How does one accomplish that?

(Note that I’m now using gender neutral language on this to address Sena and Anna’s comments on a prior post. There are SHTF homegirls viewing this site as well.)

Well, this is a subject that’s been covered by others before, but let me give you the Ranger Man version. First off, let’s break the non-preparedness spouse down to a few manageable categories:

  1. No Way, No How;
  2. Whatever, I Don’t Care; and
  3. Fine

“No Way, No How”
The spouse that replies to your survival tendencies in this fashion either 1) is seeking to deny their TEOTWAWKI fears, or 2) thinks the whole preparedness thing is just plain kooky and shudders at the thought of being married to a weird survival ninja. This is obviously the toughest spousal preparedness situation to overcome, because not only is he/she not interested in taking modest steps toward preparedness, but he/she also doesn’t want YOU to take these steps. Good luck with this one. You can either try swaying the person’s mind, preparing anyway in secret (never good), or, as Sena suggested, “trade up.” I suppose dropping your preparation desires and forgetting sweet survival action altogether is another option . . . .

“Whatever, I Don’t Care”
For many people this may be as far as you get. It translates roughly to “I think the whole idea is dumb, but I have better battles to fight.” Take this and run with it, but you’re still on shaky ground. Start off slow with projects like building a pantry or buying a water purifier. Then you can move toward, “Honey, I think you need a .50 BMG.”

“Fine”
Reach this stage and you’re on your way to spouse survival success! The only thing better than this is when your spouse hops on the SHTF train and starts telling YOU how to tan a hide. “Fine” translates roughly to “okay, this sounds like something we might need to do . . . I’m intrigued.” Move on this action, but proceed cautiously. Don’t dive into the sky is falling lingo on bird flu, economic collapse and asteroids all at once. Encourage him/her to come up with ideas on their own.

Ranger Man’s Mrs. is at the “fine” stage. Anything more than that and she might start to scare ME.

SHTFblog Suggestions for Securing Spousal Support:

  • Start Easy, discuss current events and “what if” situations, there’s plenty in the news to spark preparedness suggestions.
  • Watch a movie that could spark discussion on this subject.
  • Read a SHTF book in the presence of your spouse and mention the book’s details as you move through it. At this stage fiction works better than non-fiction, because the odds are higher that your spouse will be interested in a story’s development rather than how to store wheat for 4 years. One of my personal favorites is Parable of the Sower. It’s a newer novel that reads fast and offers real survival advice that could be applied to any TEOTWAWKI event. I’ll discuss this book further in future posts, because it’s that good.
  • Turn the Mrs. on to www.mrssurvival.com. That way she can talk about the subject with other women helping to break down the male dominated views on survivalism.
  • Engage in projects that serve multiple purposes. Gardening for example. You get outside, grow your own food, get some exercise, and save on your grocery bill.
  • Set this site as your homepage, so whenever your web browser opens - sha-zam! ;-)
  • Discuss the kids’ safety. That’ll get a parent’s attention any time. Even if he/she won’t prepare for themselves, they’ll prepare for their offspring. This is actually a big part of the reason I prepare. Even if TEOTWAWKI doesn’t hit in my lifetime, living a life with preparedness in mind helps children develop the necessary skills for their own survival. Chances are even higher that S will HTF in the next generation’s lifetime, but hey, you NEVER know when the shit is going down. Could be today, tomorrow or ten years from now.

Some of you may have more suggestions. I’d be particularly curious to hear any SHTF spousal transformation SUCCESS stories that YOU have to offer.

SHTF News Updates:
Mount St. Helens is rumbling again (here).
India battles to contain a “serious” bird flu outbreak (here).
High oil prices pushes more Mainer’s to warm up via wood heat (here).

Keep on keeping on, SHTF homeboys and homegirls.

- Ranger Man

  • oldman in the boonies January 20, 2008, 8:50 am

    Back in the late 1970′s after reading Howard Ruffs book I told my wife that soon SHTF would happen and we needed to put away extra supplies. She thought that was ok and never objected. She just wanted to know the exact day it was to happen. Well here it is some 30 years later and she still asks for the exact day. I now tell her it started on August 6, 2007, the offical start of this credit situation.

    Reply
  • Greg January 20, 2008, 10:26 am

    My wife is a ‘no way no how’ kind of gal. She gave me BIG TIME grief for spending a bunch of cash on a steel reinforced, stockade fence around the house (this also includes two (2) 10 foot gates to close off the driveway. But yet she recognizes the true state of the world, is big on Ron Paul, and knows that most politicians, bankers etc. are gutter trash, and that hanging is about the best that they should hope for. She feels that all the money should be spent on bills, to the detriment of any and all preps. She calls all my preps (and there are plenty) trash and a waste of space. Now what? How do I deal with this?

    Reply
  • ALPHIE OMEGA January 20, 2008, 10:41 am

    I WAS FORTUNATE TO FIND A WOMEN WHO TURNED ME ON, WELL AT LEAST ENCOURAGED ME TO DO MORE TO PREPARE, WITHOUT THE SUPPORT WE COULD NEVER HAVE ACHIEIVED THE SELF SUFFICENT STATUS WE HAVE TODAY NOR THE QUANITY OF PREP ITEMS . HONEY THE PRICE OF AMMO IS GOING UP…”WELL HONEY YOU BETTER BUY SOME MORE NOW AND GET SOME BULLETS FOR MY GUN TOO, OK?” GOT TO GO NEW CALF BORN TODAY GOT TO GO CHECK IT OUT…. NEW WIND GENERATOR COMING SOON…SHES JUST COME IN FROM FEEDING I NEED TO WARM HER COFFEE…. JUST ANOTHER DAY

    Reply
  • Ranger Man January 20, 2008, 10:46 am

    Alphie, send along pics of that wind generator.

    Reply
  • Commander Zero January 20, 2008, 3:07 pm

    Hmm…. the girlfriend has taken tactical pistol and carbine courses with me, took ‘precision rifle’ on her own, has taken the Glock armorers course and built her own race gun, gotten her ham radio license, purchased her own body armour, has her concealed weapon permit, and thinks nothing of going up to CostCo with me to buy canned food by the case for storage. I’d say she’s about as onboard as can be…which makes my life alot easier. To be fair, though…she knew about my interests before we got together as a couple so it wasnt as if any of it was a surprise to her. Of course, it also helps that she’s a hottie.
    http://commanderzero.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2008/01/aac.jpg

    Reply
  • ryan January 20, 2008, 11:38 pm

    This is an awesome post. You have a balanced and useful opinion on a topic which is rapidly going to become important to me.

    I think this is a much better situation if you are into survivalism BEFORE you get hitched. That way they have accepted your hobby/lifestyle before getting together with you. Having a sudden wake up and wanting to drastically change the lifestyle that you’ve been living is probably going to be a hard sell with anyone. In any case I am going to work under an assumption. I assume that you have a healthy and pretty happy relationship which you would like to maintain.

    For the No Way No How significant other compromise is the key. I do not think that any relationship is going to be successful with either party making broad sweeping declarations. Doing anything in secret is not going to make things better. If preps are very important to you and your partner is that opposed to them there are much bigger issues in the relationship.

    For the Whatever and I Don’t Care situation you have much more room to maneuver. I think this area also has by far the biggest difference between its extremes. In this area as long as you are not breaking the bank things should be fine. Also being agreeable to your partners hobbies is a great way to get get them to be agreeable to yours. Justifying a pantry or some extra gardening seeds is going to be much easier then a .50 BMG. I think this is as far as my significant other is going to go (in some areas) and that is ok with me.

    If your significant other falls into the fine area then kudos to you.

    Reply
  • noisynick March 4, 2008, 11:31 am

    I’ve enjoyed the oppurtunity of change come about in my wife. When we married I had the retreat and alot of survival gear not all that was needed but definitely a good start.
    She was a “No way No How ” type girl to start with She is also highly intelligent and well educated. Unlike here partener who is a good salesman and willing to work. The way i got her too come on board was thru education.
    Smart people never disagree with people they assume have higher intelligence ie. (more degrees and licenses etc.) So I just kept a patient albeit persistant attitude and did my homework and found lots of resources supporting my argument that the SHTF and were not ready we’ll suffer and so will the kids……… Thats the big kicker, the kids but supporting info swayed her logical side in the reallocation of finances. Now its been 5 years and its become one of our favorite topics of discussion when were driving to the store or movies or even with the kids.
    She thinks having 2 tons of stored wheat is great and this christmas when we bought 2 new ar-15 she thought we should by an extra 100 rounds of .223
    Point being if you’ll apply yourselfs in addressing the issues rather than making arguments for how much sense it makes I thaink with time almost anyone will see logic in preparedness. We have a saying where we live”Even a Squirrel has sense enought to put something away for a snowy day” and I add nuclear or otherwise

    shecame in as

    Reply
  • Frank Castle March 26, 2008, 6:16 pm

    A forum for Survivalists and Patriotic American Citizens.

    Reply
  • jeff October 19, 2008, 2:08 am

    My DW was raised in hurricane country (s. Louisiana). She grew up knowing that some preps were needed. Being on a gov’t agency’s Y2K planning committee for 26 states exposed me to a great deal of information. I shared the unclas info with her and made our preps. (BTW, the worst Y2K scenario came closer to reality than most people have a clue about) We have been improving on those preps ever since. Those preps have served us well through several hurricanes and are going to serve us extremely well during the “Greater Depression” years that are just beginning. I’m convinced that some of the next war(s) that will be fought, will be within the ConUS! Prayer and preparation will make the difference in our lives!

    Reply
  • TripodXL September 21, 2010, 9:41 pm

    I’ll lean into the left hook. My wife kept not locking the gate to our 25 acre property. I just simply said this, (explanation; I am not prejudiced but somethings are best said in a very blunt and direct manner with hyperbole{that means exaggeration}), I said “when the [admin edited racial content], and you start to pass out, you remember that we had this conversation.” Sometimes we have to use shock words and techniques to get our point across. My wife has never left the gate open since. I do not personally feel this way about race, but it got the point across. She has not left the gate open since.
    Enjoy……..I really do not care what color you are, just be a decent human being.

    Reply
  • Anonymous November 30, 2010, 1:48 am

    My wife also fears the apocalypse. It is so nice that we are able to be afraid together. Fearfulness is a wonderful togetherness exercise. I like nothing more than being afraid and hanging on to my gun while afraid, and being with my wife while also being afraid.

    Reply
  • Survivorwoman December 13, 2010, 10:51 am

    In the beginning of our relationship I was a non believer. As you can see by my screen name things have changed dramaticallu. We live on an urban area and work daily on our preps. Whether it be scouting the area for new faces or canning our own meat we are constantly working on form of prep for TEOTWAWKI.
    (sorry about the spelling-just got a new phone & am still trying to figure it out.
    PS. We have receintly been working on knife fighting techniques-don’t want everyone to hear the gunshots. lol

    Reply
  • WikiFunna December 19, 2010, 4:39 am

    What do you think about WIKILEAKS?
    Thanks

    Reply
  • Canadian Doomer January 10, 2011, 7:37 am

    I’m the one who introduced Mr. Doom to prepping. He listened to what I had to say about peak oil, did a bit of reading on his own, and he’s convinced. He’s intelligent enough that, had he reached a different conclusion, I would have had to seriously look at my own beliefs. When we were at the warehouse store the other day, buying a 20 kg bag of flour, his only question was “Just one? Or do we need a few?”

    We usually end up on the same page regarding things.

    For the record, hyperbole is usually more … elegant … than anything I suspect was edited out of the above comment. :)

    Reply
  • Kat January 18, 2011, 10:42 pm

    I am the survivor girl in our family. I am a suburban gardener and about to start taking archery lessons so I can provide security for my family. Unfortunately my husband thinks I am a bit whacky. He has let me stockpile and do food rotations, but when I talk about buying large containers for water and small propane tanks he gets freaked. It is an ongoing battle. I truly want to be wrong. But even if we find ourselves on our own and no food supply I would like to think he would be thankful for my foresight. Sometimes he says to me that if something bad happens it is just fate or that it would be too much trouble to try to survive. It makes me sad because I enjoy living, and would want our daughter to survive, but I honestly could see him literally just giving up. It is not easy being the one who wants to be prepared.

    Reply
    • Ranger Man January 19, 2011, 6:43 pm

      Hang in there, Kat. My only advice is to not push the “doom” side of your case too much. If all else fails, explain to him that this is an interest of yours, one that you think is constructive, that you could instead spend time and money on something far less productive, less interesting. Perhaps if he sees prepping as your hobby, he’ll be more receptive to your endeavors.

      Reply
      • kathy January 20, 2011, 10:01 am

        Thanks for the encouragement. I need to play up the “hobby” aspects more to sell my case. Thanks for the advice.

        Reply
  • Jack Fallin February 21, 2011, 11:29 am

    39 years ago I married a wonderful, peace loving anti vietnam war activism who was the ultimate live and let live woman. I was a marine recon officer. Go figure. We were made for each other and what was a good relationship with endless political battles and social question has become the best possible relationship anyone could hope for. I was prepper when we met, she called it a pack rat syndrom, Worked for me. Now 39 years, 2 kids and 3 grand kids later she is a prepper at heart, She still questions an arsenal but she can out shoot 3 out of 5 men and is afraid on nothing when it comes to protecting her family. Wome need a reason to prepare, they are natural preppers but they need to have a reason. Don’t call it survival, survalism or being a survivalism. That sounds to negative and morbid to women. Tell them that you are preparing to take care of your family and it won’t take long to get the good ones behind you. It makes life so much easier when you work together for a common goal instead of trying to do it alone or hide your latest rifle from your wife. My Hippy, flower child, anti war, live and let live liberal has turned into a mama grizzly of the first order and you don’t want to be on her bad side when she is protecting her family. Her custom made 410 pump is deadly to 75 yards and she is not afraid to use it. He choices in pistols runs a little expensive though, HK, Beretta and Browning but what can I say. She is mine. Always negotiate from a position of Strength, It is easier.
    Semper Fi

    Reply
  • T.R April 24, 2011, 2:31 am

    I guess Im lucky in that respect . My sweety is from Russia , we are both middle aged so she remembers the days of the Soviet Union where shortages were a way of life . She has no problem with the idea about preparing for the ” what ifs ” . Gotta love a no bullshit woman ! She has a problem with anything , I know it , straight up …without the histrionics or games ! a cultural trait I wish we would adopt .

    Reply
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