Three Letters Re: Prepping with an Unsupportive Spouse

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Hugh,

I appreciate this discussion, but it also frustrates me, because the head of my household thinks preparing beyond a few day’s worth is all hype and hysteria. I have put up a number of provisions but am unable to make many of the prudent improvements to our home for physical and energy security. I take my vows seriously, but this tears at me because I know we will likely suffer needlessly when, not if, it all comes apart. (Money is not an issue for us.) I would truly appreciate your wisdom on this “opposite” issue that I’ve never seen addressed. – Mrs Southern AZ

o o o

Dear S.R.

In Genesis 20 (Abimelech in Gerar) Abraham asked his wife to say she was his sister and allowed her to wind up in a harem. God protected her from the man of the harem, and she was never touched by him. She is commended in 1 Peter 3:6. So how does the lesson here apply to modern times? When a husband and wife are in disagreement on an issue and she feels he is wrong (especially if he really is) I call that situation a “Sarah’s Harem.” My husband and I have the blessing of us both being Christians and preppers. He is a good man and a good husband. My “Sarah’s Harem” was financial. I have always been a debt-averse saver. My husband was not. Our start into credit card debt was small and “floatable.” Eventually, we had a large credit card debt and a mortgage. We were usually in disagreement on how our money should be handled. I made sure he knew where I stood on each purchase and on debt in general (trying hard not to nag) and left the decisions in his hands, right or wrong. Being in debt was stressful to me, and seeing it grow with no end in sight was terrifying to me. I strove to show him respect (Eph. 5:33) and to be submissive (Eph. 5, 1 Pet. 3, Col. 3); but I didn’t take it sitting down. I went to my knees and took it to my heavenly Father. Being in submission to and respecting my husband in the financial area were difficult, and the only way I succeeded was through prayer and fasting. God showed me many of my own flaws, and I worked on those as he did. Eventually, a coworker of my husband took a financial class and began working his way out of debt. My husband signed up for one also. We are now debt free, and he is committed to staying that way. God did a work in both of us during our 15 year debt journey. I recommend two books. Love and Respect by Emerson Eggerichs; I personally found this book to be very helpful. The other is Beloved Unbeliever by Jo Berry; I haven’t read it, but formerly “unequally yoked” (now equally) women I have known have spoken very highly of it.

o o o

Dear HJL,

I can’t say I have an unsupportive spouse, since I don’t have any spouse, but I’ve been prepping on a poverty line budget for years. I have this to offer: see if your husband would support some of the more traditional feminine hobbies. Don’t say they are for prepping; instead say they are for helping out the household budget. Mending would be my first choice. Then, look at sewing your own clothes or knitting your family’s sweaters. You are learning a skill that will be in limited supply after SHTF. You can grow your own vegetables. Do you live in a Homeowners Association? You can still learn to garden; tuck a few decorative veggies into your landscape. You will be learning about soil, weather, pests, et cetera. Many fruit trees bloom in beautiful profusion in the spring and would be acceptable to your HOA. If you’re not in an HOA, maybe the kids would like a pet rabbit. 4H and FFA teach the kids a lot of skills they can pass on to you. If you can afford the time away from home, volunteer at Habitat for Humanity or Rebuilding Together. They will teach you the skills you are asking about. Learn, learn, learn. Reading is free. Yes, it’s best to have hard copies, but if your husband complains about space, then get books on DVDs with all the skills you can ask for. Watch YouTube, too. There are thousands of how-to videos. The knowledge will pay off eventually. Finally, follow Mrs. Latimer’s advice– pray for him and praise him. Be the wife he wants you to be. I wouldn’t hide any of the above, and I certainly wouldn’t let it interfere with the time he expects you to devote to him and your family.

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