If the world was a reasonable and informed place, none of us would have to hide our prepping endeavours. There are many situations that require us to be secretive about our plans, not the least of which is OPSEC (Operational Security). However the trickiest situation of all is when we have to hide our prepping from loved ones, whether they are friends, family members, or most difficult of all, spouses.
For some folks, getting their partner on board with prepping may be a long-term project. Some people simply don’t want to hear or think about the possibility of a SHTF event, others scoff at our “paranoia” and still others just cannot grasp the concept that one day the grocery store shelves may be empty, never to be refilled again.
Sometimes the concept of “don’t ask, don’t tell” is wiser than trying to persuade the reluctant spouse that the world is going to end, however if you’re living in the same home, hiding your preparedness items could be very difficult.
If this is the situation you find yourself in, prepping can become very difficult. Arguments over money are one of the biggest challenges. How can you satisfactorily explain to an uninterested partner that you just bought 75 cans of mixed vegetables? A few suggestions:
- Go with the money saving aspect. Buying 75 cans of mixed vegetables is generally $75, but today the cans were half price, which saved you $37.50. (Plus you won’t have to buy mixed vegetables for a year).
- Point out the current levels of inflation – prices are only going up. What you buy at today’s prices may hold you through this inflationary cycle until costs go back to normal.
- Explain to your partner that you’ve begun buying in bulk so that you can go to the store less frequently – every trip to the store (at least for me!) involves a few non-anticipated expenditures – shopping only once per month can really help you save money.
Another frequent issue is the change in the types of food that you purchase. Suddenly, you may have gone from a deep freezer full of frozen dinners, and a refrigerator full of perishable meats and vegetables to a plethora of canned and dried goods. Many partners might question why you no longer buy “fresh” items.
- If you’ve recently had a major power outage due to a storm, you can point to the amount of food that was lost during that time – we all want to avoid waste in this economy.
- Storage space can be claimed as a factor, especially if your freezer is already full.
Many of us want to also prep for our partners to be sure that they are well taken care of in the event that they are away from home when disaster strikes. This becomes exponentially more difficult if they are not on-board with prepping. A few things you can do are:
- Load the trunk of the car with a “get-home” bag (in case of a winter storm, of course!)
- Stock his or her desk with foods like granola bars and applesauce cups
- Be sure to keep a full case of water in the trunk of the vehicle if weather allows
- Place a comfortable “spare pair” of shoes in the trunk, just in case he or she has a shoe mishap while at work or in case they’d like to start walking for fitness at lunch.
To introduce the concept of non-food prepping items, sometimes other justifications need to be provided to the spouse.
- Get bicycles for the entire family for a healthy activity you can do together
- Store extra water just so you don’t have to go refill your bottles for the water cooler so frequently
- Add to the home’s petty cash because sometimes on the weekend the ATM runs out of money
- Purchase extra health and beauty items because they are on sale
Sometimes when you gently put these plans into place your prepping mentality will begin to rub off on your spouse. The first time the power goes out and you demonstrate your preparedness with a meal prepared sans electricity, candles and kerosene lamps for a cozy glow and a heat source to keep you warm, the reluctant prepper may begin to see the wisdom of your ways.
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Contributed by Tess Pennington of Ready Nutrition.
Tess Pennington is the author of The Prepper’s Blueprint, a comprehensive guide that uses real-life scenarios to help you prepare for any disaster. Because a crisis rarely stops with a triggering event the aftermath can spiral, having the capacity to cripple our normal ways of life. The well-rounded, multi-layered approach outlined in the Blueprint helps you make sense of a wide array of preparedness concepts through easily digestible action items and supply lists.
Tess is also the author of the highly rated Prepper’s Cookbook, which helps you to create a plan for stocking, organizing and maintaining a proper emergency food supply and includes over 300 recipes for nutritious, delicious, life-saving meals.