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Guest post from our friends at – Prep Survival Guide
The time has come: you have decided to become prepared for any situation that life may throw at you. You have decided to prep. And our of all the challenges facing you, one of them is greater than any other: your family.
Out of all the challenges we preppers face, none may quite be so close to home as our loved ones. When it comes to the preparedness lifestyle, even a longtime supportive and loving spouse may suddenly be found hostile to your mindset.
Out of all the challenges we preppers face, none may quite be so painful and detrimental to our prepping as our loved ones.
For almost every story of a man or woman who had a life changing event that turned them into prepping, there is a story of a spouse who didn’t understand or refused to accept this new way of life.
I found myself in this situation once.
So the question arises: what do I do when my family doesn’t support my prepping.
The answer is a fairly simple one. Talk to them.
Today I want to tell you how slowly, over time, I fixed the painful situation that I was in by simply having a serious of honest conversations about prepping with my wife and kids.
So this post is neatly divided into two parts.
First, I answer the question “How do I talk to my loved ones about prepping?” literally.
Second, I discuss how we can answer objections that family members may raise.
Let’s get started.
How Do I Talk To My Loved Ones About Prepping?
The moment has arrived.
You have been convinced that you must prepare for hard times.
This means storing food, learning skillsets. It means changing how you behave financially. It means doing whatever it takes to separate yourself from the herd.
Now you have to tell your family. And not only must you tell your family about your (and their) new lifestyle, you must convince them that it is the way to life.
Here is how I did it.
#1: Prepare A Presentation: If you get up there and start winging it, you are doing your family and your beliefs a disservice. Make no mistake: you are preaching a life-giving sermon. If you are wrong, there are few if any downsides but if you are correct, you will be a savior to many lives.
Prepare a presentation. I don’t recommend it, but take notes if you need to. Have facts and figures. Know what you believe is the biggest threat and tell them why you believe so. Your feelings are rarely enough to convince people that they must change their way of living, so be ready with facts.
Plan what you’re going to say and stick to the plan come what may.
#2: Speak To Their Fears: Not everyone is scared of the same things you are. My wife is terrified of a home invader even though I am not (that’s because I’ve got 4 members of the family, we’ve all got guns, and we can all use them. I pity the fool coming in my home uninvited) so in my presentation, I spoke to her fear.
I told her that if life got bad enough, lone wolves and mobs would probably come looting, robbing, raping, and killing in local neighborhoods.
This is not manipulative! It’s the truth. I simply revealed to her a possible consequence of not being prepared.
You owe it to your loved ones to share with them the full impact of what may come to pass if things get bad enough. If they’re afraid of being alone, speak to that! If they’re afraid of financial hardship, speak to that!
Show them, in a way they understand, what may happen if no preparation takes place. Speak to their fears.
#3: Watch Your Tone: Of all these tips, this one is both the most important and the most difficult to get right.
Remember that you are helping the people you are discussing this issue with.
You are not forcing it. You are not forcing them.
You are offering to help them.
If you approach it in any other way, you will receive hostile feedback because people don’t like to be commanded. Not even your spouse, not even your kids, and not even your friends.
If this conversation about prepping is taking place, remember: you are asking them to prepare for disaster with you. You are willing to do it alone because you think it is right, but you want to do it by their side and with their support.
Be gentle. Be loving. Be kind.
Let your tone reflect these things.
How To Deal With Objections
You gave the presentation like a master orator and were met with silence. Blank stares. Grimaces.
They looked at their feet a lot.
And then one lone voice raised an objection, soon echoed by another. Before you know what to do, those you love have revolted against your measly presentation and your desired preparation.
Your loved ones do not like the idea of you prepping. Here’s what to do.
Listen: You have done your talking. So shut up, sit down, and let them speak.
They will never trust you with their lives if they cannot trust you in a conversation.
Take a moment and read that last sentence again.
Your loved ones probably love you back. And that means that they trust you to listen to their words. So do it.
The listening phase has two goals.
- Gather information
- Use their information as fuel for the next phase
When they discuss why you shouldn’t prep, listen to them. Hear them out. They will probably have valid reasons. Maybe they think your fear is unfounded. Maybe they will say that they don’t want to change what is working financially.
Maybe they just think you’re crazy.
But hear them out, learn their objections, and then…
Speak To Their Fear Again: If they bring up objections, then you didn’t speak to their fears enough the first time. Do it again after listening. They will probably bring up points that you didn’t expect or weren’t prepared for.
That is okay.
If you have to, tell them that you don’t know how to respond to their objection. Look up some facts and get back to them. There is no shame in not having all of the information on command.
Do remember two things: first, you are not speaking to your fear. You are speaking to theirs. Second, use facts and figures. Your emotion is probably not enough to win the day.
Hear their objections, speak to their objections.
Be Ready For Feedback: When dealing with their objections, be ready for some stinging remarks. Someone, whether they mean to or not, will undoubtedly say something that hurts your feelings and feels like they are attacking your character.
It’s just the name of the game.
Be ready for your loved ones to say hurtful things. Be ready to be hurt by their lack of support. It isn’t that they don’t love you or don’t support you. It is that they think this is a fad at best and ridiculous at worst.
Be prepared for them to say hurtful things. You owe it to them, to yourself, and to your beliefs to not give up.
Be Gentle: Remember that you aren’t commanding them. You are asking their permission to prep with them. Show your love for them by listening to them, by not interrupting, and by taking on an air of humility.
You don’t know everything, you don’t have all the answers, and you can’t make all the problems go away.
They will appreciate you in the long run if you don’t act like you can do any of those things.
What Do I Do If They Still Don’t Support Me? Be Patient: Rome wasn’t built in a day. If you walk away from the conversation and they still aren’t on the same wavelength, that’s okay.
You did your best. Nothing more can be expected of you. Be patient.
At this point, it’s best to begin to show instead of tell.
Here’s an example I found true one time:
My family wasn’t unsupportive, but they definitely weren’t really feeling the preparedness thing. They were kindly skeptical about it.
One time on a road trip, we had been on the road for hours and I insisted that we were not stopping until we got to our destination. Pee in bottles, starve, I don’t care. We’re making it.
After a few hours, my family was pretty hungry but we were so close (kinda) and I didn’t want to stop. Then my oldest boy remembered something.
“Hey Dad, don’t you keep food around here somewhere?”
I told him where to find my bug out bag that I keep in my car. It’s stashed with granola, some canned foods, and other items that are useful in bugging out. You know the kind.
After my two boys, wife, and I had all gotten something, my wife put her hand on my leg, turned towards me, and said “Well, I guess being prepared does come in handy.”
No one ever gave me another moment of grief about prepping.
The post What To Do When Your Loved Ones Don’t Think You Should Prep appeared first on The Survival Place Blog.