Letter Re: Help With a Non-Preparedness Minded Spouse

Dear Jim and Memsahib,
I have been discussing preparedness lately with several of my close friends. One of the things that has aided me in winning friends over to being preparedness minded is your book. Usually, once loaned to a guy, the fellow sees how plausible something like that really is and they begin to prepare. The problem is this; overwhelmingly we find have trouble with our wives. My wife, for example, says please don’t talk to me about that stuff; just tell me to get in the car when its time to go and I’ll go. She tolerates my extra purchases and the buckets in various stages of filling, but she doesn’t like to talk about preparedness. I even present it all as a message of hope, as an idea of peace in the midst of the storm from a God given common sense to prepare (Proverbs 6:6). I tell her that I do this so that we can be okay and help others. She still doesn’t want to talk about it. Several of my other friends have had similar experiences. I have been wondering what we can do. No offense, but they generally have little or no interest in reading your book, partly because it is overwhelmingly male in its tone (thanks for that). But the tactical speak, and all of the military acronyms drive the cover shut in my experience.

So, my request is that the Memsahib writes or has ghost written, a book on preparedness and survivalism from a woman’s point of view. You know, something to bring out that prepared mother instinct in these ladies. Please help before we are all sleeping on stacks of buckets!

Thanks for the consideration, – Trevor

The Memsahib Replies: First, you need to be thankful that your wife trusts you and trusts your judgment about the state of the world. Many people are in complete denial. Many people contend that our nation will always be a super power and we will always be able to give our children a better life than we had. She probably has family members and friends that are telling her that your belief in the fragility of society is silly or downright whacko. Be thankful your wife is willing to trust your judgment even if it goes against her parents, her siblings, and her best friends.

Be thankful that your wife trusts your judgment so much that “she tolerates my extra purchases and the buckets in various stages of filling.” Many other preppers are married to spouses who resent any part of the family budget being spent on storage food or tactical gear.

Your chief complaint is that your wife “doesn’t want to talk about it.” Let me explain why she and many other wives don’t want to talk about it. Your wife’s greatest drive is for the happiness and prospering of her children. When you talk survival as a man you are thinking in terms of the big picture. It is a challenge and you will prove your manhood by surviving. But, when you talk of survival to your wife. She is thinking specifically how your dark future is going to impact her babies! She has dreams for her babies for a hope and a future. How is the storybook wedding that she dreams of for her daughter going to happen in TEOTWAWKI? How are her sons going to find sweet Christian brides when you all are living in a bunker?! What about her fantasy of a family vacation with all her grandchildren to Hawaii? Will there even be commercial flights in your vision of the future? When you talk of survivalism you are dashing all her cherished dreams for the future. She might follow your headship to prepare for the gritty life you envision. But, she would rather not talk about it. She must live in her hope that the future for her darlings won’t be the struggle to survive that you foretell.

You say, “I even present it all as a message of hope, as an idea of peace in the midst of the storm from a God given common sense to prepare.” And she thinks “how can there be hope and peace in your survivalist future?” She knows Jesus said, “For, behold, the days are coming, in the which they shall say, Blessed [are] the barren, and the wombs that never bare, and the paps which never gave suck.” (Luke 23:29). No, she cannot see any hope and peace for her beloved children in the days that you say are coming.

Trevor, the bottom line is: She is not a man and if you keep expecting her to react like a man you will do one of two things. You will either drive her into a state of depression, or you will so alienate her that she will completely reject all preparations.

Thank your wife for trusting your judgment, and get some male friends talk “gloom and doom” and “Ain’t it awful” with! Sincerely, – The Memsahib