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SurvivalGround >> any tips 4 getting wife 2 adopt prepper lifestyle?


10/3/11 10:40 PM
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ceiling_cat
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 I'm a nacsent prepper, a larval ant.  I've been getting the basics together but I really want to build a sustainable, self reliant lifestyle and I feel like that starts with property.  I've been with my girlfriend for about 2 years and marriage is on the horizon assuming I can get her on board with a prepper lifestyle.

One big test will be where we decide to live.  We've been looking at properties and there's one that really stands out. we live in the DFW area, this property is centrally located for the entire region.  It has 2.5 ag exempt acres (meaning property taxes are much lower).  I can have any animal i would want, the property is partially shaded with mature trees, mostly open though.  The soil is sandy in places, but its hard to tell what kind of weeds it supports in the midst of the Texas drought.  There's a small creek that flows intermitently along the back border of the property.  There's already a chicken coop, a large propane tank, a fenced yard and the whole property has horse fencing around it.  

I think the original idea of the property was horses but its below the typical equestrian market now, heres why: the house is 3/1, 1000 sqft, no garage, no central air, built in 1970.  It looks like a manufactured home but its so old I don't know. I haven't actually been inside  the house.  there's 25 pictures of the land online, but no pics of the inside.  Its probably shitty. The property has been on the market for about 9 months and even now its about 50k cheaper than what we could afford.  I bet we could get it for less.

We're going to look at it this weekend or next. Assuming there's nothing structurally wrong with the property I'm probably gonna be all about it.  I've walked the lot and there's a ton of potential for self reliance.  given the location and the space we could really grow into it, pay it off, and have that real insurance that money can't buy.  The problem is I bet the girlfriend is gonna hate it unless the inside is already great.  We could afford to fix it up, though not necessarily right away.

the land is really perfect, but assuming its structurally sound, how do I convince her to give it a chance?  do any of you have to battle to get your wives to accept some small sacrifices for a prepper lifestyle?  
10/4/11 2:51 PM
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ashleigh11
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Edited: 10/04/11 2:56 PM
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So just the cost of living consumes $3100 of your after-tax income. Yearly, that’s about half of your income. If you can pay off your home, produce half of your utilities, drop the fancy TV package and step down a notch on the Internet access (that’s a tough one for me) and produce half of your food, you cut that outlay to about $1100 dollars a month. At that point, one of you can effectively retire. Or, the two of you can work half as much.

So what do you do with the extra 20-30 hours a week? Do the soul-building things like work your garden, love your spouse, split some wood, read books, start a business, whatever! Now, you are working for you. And should everything go for a poop, you are completely prepared to live comfortably and well with little to no income.

I find the thought of retiring to my homestead around the age of 50 to be a much more motivating and positive thought, than to think of prepping to cope with worldwide disaster. Disaster may never come, but time always marches on."


kvr, i remember when you posted this on another thread. this guy perfectly verbalized what i was feeling inside.

op, you have to figure out what prepping and self-sufficiency means for YOU. then you have to get your significant other to buy into your vision and eventually she'll make it her own.

i hated being a slave to the hamster wheel of borrowing and spending money, then forced to work x number of hours a week just to make ends meet, then feeling like i never have enough time to spend with what's really important-my family. then when the day is done, you don't know when you'll be able to afford to retire.

for me, self-sufficient living was never about living in a bunker and eating freeze dried food while cradling an assault rifle. i just wanted a simpler life where i could provide for my family, teach my kids some life skills, and be the dad and husband i always wanted to be.

our family has made some big changes in our lifestyle in the last 10 months. some were tough to make, others were no-brainers. for the first time since my wife and i got married 5 years ago, we aren't living paycheck to paycheck and we're contributing to our retirement again. we eat better, we spend less time on the tv, and we're prepared for emergencies. my wife may have been amused by my desire to "prep" before, but she sees the tangible benefits of being more self sufficient.
10/4/11 3:44 PM
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ceiling_cat
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 thanks for the tips guys.

I've been dropping some hints, having brief conversations about the subject here and there.  She definitely knows that I want to get into gardening and raising some livestock, and that I need land to do it.  I talk about that pretty regularly.  I think she's at least amenable to the idea.  She's a big animal lover so she wouldn't mind having rabbits, chickens, goats etc.  We're both big food snobs so having garden fresh heirloom veggies is huge.  Also, she's pretty paranoid so its not been that hard to get her onboard with prepping for things like power outtage or pandemic.  I certainly never mention world war Z or the NWO.  

What I worry about is that she has a real aversion to the outdoors.  She works hard, but never in manual labor. She's very fair, prone to skin cancer, and just generally avoids the sun.  I think i'm gonna run into resistence based on that and just the state of the house.  She'll probably see it as doing a lot of the kind of work she hates just to live in a dirty old house.  

Maybe trying to sell her on the idea of having some quality of life and autonomy in retirement is the way to go.  we're both from poor families that are now and always will be locked into debt prison.  They, of course, think the best idea is to buy a 3/2 house in the suburbs, pay for 20% of it, then try and sell it and use the equity to buy a 4/3 in the burbs, rinse and repeat.  Its debt prison and I don't want any more of that in my life.  We have the income to escape our debts but not if we make decisions like those, especially with the future of the economy.  

I guess we'll see how it goes when we go and look at the house.  who knows? I may not even want it after that anyway.  


10/5/11 10:07 AM
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NonIntervention
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 You don't want her to be a prepper. You want her to retire early, on a hobby farm, and live simply and sustainably. Thats a story that appeals more to most women, and it's not a lie.










meanwhile you fill your basement with gold and ammo, and await zombies/black helicopters/race war/peak oil
10/5/11 1:52 PM
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ashleigh11
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what? no "girlfriend won't except my prepper lifestyle" spin?
10/5/11 2:39 PM
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simthefarmer
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Edited: 10/05/11 2:41 PM
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<blockquote>NonIntervention -  You don't want her to be a prepper. You want her to retire early, on a hobby farm, and live simply and sustainably. Thats a story that appeals more to most women, and it's not a lie.<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />meanwhile you fill your basement with gold and ammo, and await zombies/black helicopters/race war/peak oil</blockquote>

This makes sense. That is basically what i try to tell my girlfriend

The thing is we are still young (i'm 28 and she is 23). So she is still very attached to the city lifestyle. In her mind, there is no way that she would want to move outside of the city on a bigger land of our own. I enjoy the city lifestyle as well, but i know that in a few years, i will want to move out and completely change the type of life i am living right now

What i was thinking of doing, was buy a land with nothing on it first. Start by going there for weekend getaways, camp there and enjoy the outdoors. Slowly i would start building a "cottage", for the "weekends"

Once it's there, it will be easier to just say: "fuck it! i'm tired of all this city living and full time work. Let's move to our countryside property and work less"
10/5/11 2:50 PM
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ceiling_cat
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simthefarmer - <blockquote>NonIntervention -  You don't want her to be a prepper. You want her to retire early, on a hobby farm, and live simply and sustainably. Thats a story that appeals more to most women, and it's not a lie.<br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br /><br />meanwhile you fill your basement with gold and ammo, and await zombies/black helicopters/race war/peak oil</blockquote>

This makes sense. That is basically what i try to tell my girlfriend

The thing is we are still young (i'm 28 and she is 23). So she is still very attached to the city lifestyle. In her mind, there is no way that she would want to move outside of the city on a bigger land of our own. I enjoy the city lifestyle as well, but i know that in a few years, i will want to move out and completely change the type of life i am living right now

What i was thinking of doing, was buy a land with nothing on it first. Start by going there for weekend getaways, camp there and enjoy the outdoors. Slowly i would start building a "cottage", for the "weekends"

Once it's there, it will be easier to just say: "fuck it! i'm tired of all this city living and full time work. Let's move to our countryside property and work less"
thats kind of where I am too.  We're both 27.  The reason I'm so attached to this property is because its a nice compromise between urban and rural.  Its far from major population in Dallas and Fort Worth, not in a suburb, but you could get anywhere in the metroplex in a reasonable commute.  I don't think we'll be able to escape the Urban scene anytime soon.  We're both lawyers, she does prosecution, I'm in oil and gas.  Both of those things are best done around major population centers.  I'm hoping one day I'll be able to convince her to go back home to Montana with me but thats a bridge too far right now.  Plus, i'm so young that I can't afford to be cynical about the future.  If there's anything i can do to make the impending depression better than I feel like i need to be around, and not bugged out, so I can contribute.  
 
10/13/11 9:28 PM
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ceiling_cat
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The appointment is 12:30 Saturday. It got pushed back because of some family medical drama. I'll let y'all know. Phone Post
10/17/11 5:33 PM
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ec
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 Subbed for the results. I hope everything went well bud!
10/17/11 8:00 PM
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ceiling_cat
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 Everything did not go well. We went to the property.  The land was great, the house was awful, but then, as soon as we were leaving, some woman pulled up and claimed she bought the property and it was still listed by mistake. 

The house was bad, and I think it had foundation issues, so I didn't really get a chance to gauge her willingness to downgrade lifestyles.  We looked about about 6 other houses that day too.  She was pretty happy to stay 100k below our budget and she was willing to rule out very comfortable houses that were on 1/10 acre or smaller lots, so thats a good sign.  I'd like to think we can start somewhere smaller and move to a dream property next, but I'm afraid we'll be knee deep in a depression by then.  

The property we saw was ideal but thats really all it had going for it. I don't know if another property with real acreage is gonna come along where we need to live so who knows what'll happen.  I think for now our best bet is a house on a 1/3 acre lot that has a couple of garden beds and a chicken coop already built in.  Its more money, but still well within our budget, and its about 1000% more comfortable.  Who knows what'll happen though.  we still have about 3 months before we really really have to make an offer somewhere so I guess we'll just save for the down payment and hope something better comes along.  
10/24/11 6:15 PM
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BigRyana
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It sounds like you have a good plan, good luck man.
5/29/12 5:51 PM
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TheHouse
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And what happened?


5/31/12 11:22 AM
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TheHouse
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Just stumbled across this site called TheSurvivalMom


Seems to have a lot of snippets of info in all sorts of areas. Nothing really in depth, but it does seem to be a lot softer to digest then some of the other sites out there that talk of nothing other than riot control, which assault rifle will last and cutting blades for decapitation.

My wife liked that the lady seemed prepared but normal. Just throwing it out there..... if there is anyone out there? *cricket cricket........... omg it has begunned.


http://thesurvivalmom.com/
5/31/12 12:08 PM
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ceiling_cat
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Well I ended getting laid off about 2 months after I started this thread so all my house buying plans have been delayed significantly.  Its ok though.  I found another job with a firm in a smaller town.  I commute 10 minutes as opposed to 60, and the partners are great guys who do things the right way.  Its tough right now until I build my clientelle, but things are looking up and we hope to buy maybe by the end of the year or by this time next year. 

Since this is a college town we've been thinking about getting a cheap place and fixing it up while we live there for later rental income.  I've been gardening and storing more food at the rent house though, and my fiance even bought a red cross hand cranked weather radio so I think she's getting the picture. 

Also, I like that site.  My fiance would be more receptive to these messages if they were coming from a female as opposed to Jack Spirko.
5/31/12 3:45 PM
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TheHouse
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Thats some tough stuff to go through but being able to get a house in even the next 2 years is still something to be proud of. I am a couple years away from that myself.

And I don't know how handy you are but buying a college/town house that is already in average shape and fixing it up is a great way to do and redo until its right. You learn a lot more when there is a 2x4 sitting right in front of you thats not cut right then reading about it on the interwebs.

My wife likes that I am like minded (prep wise) and slowly and surely she is getting more comforable with picking up an extra gallon of clean water at the store.

That sight almost seems like it was written by a gun loving nutjob but his mother filtered out the weird parts and put girly colors on the page. At least that's my take. Would be good if she had more personal stories of how to do stuff like KVR but its still a nice intro to the prep lifestyle.
5/31/12 4:03 PM
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ceiling_cat
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My handyness is sorely lacking, I have delicate lawyer hands, but we already own a rent house in a college town from when we went to law school and we've been going there fixing it up between tenants.  I've suprised myself by not cutting off any of my fingers or destroying anythign on that house yet.  So far so good. 

Another thing that has helped me get her on board with prepping is food.  We are both pretty meticulous about our diets and its easy to make the case for your own food sources when we want to avoid processed foods. 
6/8/12 2:25 PM
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MountainMedic
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it honestly sounds like it all worked out for the best.
your plan of buying another rental is a sound way up the property ladder. I never was that handy until I bought my first house. I did it the evan tanner way.... need to re-wire, buy a book. need to redo the plumbing, buy a book. I also found that offering to help others on projects paid off big time, both in skill developement but in having people I could call if I needed a hand.

If you can do that AND possibly swing 10 acres in the foothills, close enough to go up there on weekends and do a bit of work each time, it'll all come together.

I like the approach of "honey, we're not prepping for zombies, we're working towards semi retirement so we have more time for gardening and hunting"
6/8/12 3:26 PM
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ceiling_cat
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I think we're just goint to borrow money from relatives for the down payment.  We're going house hunting again this weekend.  We've got a whole bunch of houses to look at on the 75-125k price range.  Even with a tiny down payment we'll be paying much less than we are for rent right now.  One of the houses actually has 1 acre, so hopefully it isn't a shithole.  Its an old house, 1930, but 3/2/2 and on an acre so it could be great, but I'm worried that if we ever tried to rent it out the tenants wouldn't keep up with all that land.

If we didn't get that house with the acre I would want some land out west of town eventually.  The good thing about this place is that every direction but south is pretty rural, and there's some cheap but soemwhat productive land.  I'll let you know what we end up doing.  Something could happen pretty fast. 
6/8/12 3:43 PM
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MountainMedic
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Good luck!
We are closing (hopefully) on our place the 15th. Phone Post
6/9/12 8:28 PM
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LeroyJ
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The things that have worked for my girlfriend are much more common sense than anything else. Calling it a "prepper" lifestyle immediately puts you in a bucket with a bunch of probably more extreme folks.

I garden so that I can control the healthiness of my food by using No pesticides/insecticides. I collect water because it's better for the environment. I have an edible landscape because I like having local, heirloom varietals that I can't get elsewhere. I hand pick dandelions because I don't like to put fertilizer on my grass. I raise chickens because the eggs taste better....

This type of approach seems to appeal to folks a lot better than "prepper" fanaticism.

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