This post is part of a week long cross blog celebration of national preparedness month where we, as blog owners and preppers, answer five interesting and pertinent questions–one per day–and request that you, the reader, provide your own answers as well in the comments section below. Equally important, we request that you visit the other awesome participating blogs as well in order to get to better know the blog owners and their sites. The other participating sites are mostly sites that I highly recommend you visit anyway and include: ApartmentPrepper.com, DoomAndBloom.net, IfItHitsTheFan.com, ModernSurvivalOnline.com, SeasonedCitizenPrepper.com, and The Retreat. Please choose to visit these other sites and give feedback. Thank you.
For a long time I believed that I (and my family) could pull off the “lone wolf” strategy if we ever had to survive a real long term TEOTWAWKI scenario. How ridiculous! Don’t get me wrong, I’m working to prepare my family as best as I can to care for ourselves in any extended emergency situation, including a WROL/SHTF situation, but I’m really beginning to grasp the importance of banding together with outsiders.
Think about this: assuming you live in a suburban neighborhood or anything similar like I do, you literally have hundreds of people within walking distance to your home… maybe even thousands in an even remotely populated city, and that’s being conservative. Now, think about how desperate these people will be a week or so into a major catastrophe when they realize that the power REALLY isn’t coming back on and the grocery stores are NOT re-stocking any time soon. That’s a scary situation!
Everyone will be hungry and thirsty for sure. As they say, we’re only 9 meals away from anarchy and considering that most people don’t stock much food whatsoever, they and their children will be with empty bellies very soon.
The worst part is that you, as the prepared neighbor, will likely be the one and only home on the block that looks anything less than desperate for any number of reasons, for example, you have the lights on and your wood stove is burning throughout the night. It won’t take people long before they realize you have something, ANYTHING, that they may need to take from you.
Do you see where this is going? Sadly, it leads nowhere good. Bad things will likely ensue.
The only true “safety” you have is to have superior numbers and superior firepower, in other words, a superior show of force to show people that you are not to be messed with. Even so, desperate people will resort to desperate measures. Regardless, it behooves you to have that necessary force and numbers with which to repel any threat from nearby neighbors. It’s a sad fact but likely true.
I do have some people I expect to rely upon (and care for to some extent) but honestly not what I would like. The worst part is that I’m WAY TOO CLOSE to other people to begin with. I would much prefer to not be able to see my nearest neighbor but that’s not where I am right now. So, I need to consider how to incorporate more people into my preparedness plan.
Certainly (or maybe not), this strategy should include close family and friends. Obviously, it would be best if they brought food, firearms, and more to the table but, at the very least, they bring able bodies that can help defend your home, work the garden, and perform a variety of other chores. That said, these people truly need to be ready, willing, and able to work. This isn’t the “show up and you take care of me” show.
I know many people espouse to NOT include family or friends for this very reason. Part of me wants to agree with this but I find it an interesting conundrum these days to suggest that people would want to survive whatever is to come yet willfully shun among the closest people in life to them. What would life be like without them? Sure, in some cases it may be a “welcome” occurrence but I would suspect that in most cases it would not be.
And so I find myself often feeling wishy-washy, if you will, as to what to do with this very group. Part of me understand the need to have extra bodies and even the basal desire to survive with them, while the other part of me understand the drag they can placed upon me and my family if they are wholly unprepared.
I’m not saying I have a great answer. I don’t. But I would suggest that to “throw them to the wolves” may sound like a worthy answer now but might not be so rewarding when the time comes. Besides, you may not be the only person with an opinion (or the deciding factor for that matter) as to whether they are allowed into your home. I’m pretty sure my wife would never NOT allow our family into our home.
Anyway, the point is that, like it or not, community is important for a variety of reasons. You may regret–even resent–the fact that family and friends and even neighbors have not adequately prepared themselves for whatever is to come. I understand. But to underestimate the value that these very people can bring to your life in such a situation cannot be underestimated either. Consider your actions here carefully… as you may not have an opportunity in the future to choose differently.