Popular picture of „true survivalist“ can often fool you down if you are easily get under the influence of stereotypes.
So for example you gonna see true survivalist with his favorite rifle standing while world is going to hell behind him, and he is tough. He has rifle and lots of ammo.
It is good picture, but rarely you are gonna see picture of that true survivalist with rifle in one hand, and 1 year old baby with bad case of diarrhea and vomiting in other hand.
It is not nice picture, but it is realistic. Personally I did not have kids during my SHTF time, but I saw how relatives had problems with kids and babies. And more important is that I have kids now, so I want to be prepared for some stuff.
When SHTF all you people who have small kids can count on multiplying all of your problems with kids so it is good to be prepared to some of those. Having kids during SHTF can be burden but at same time it is not, because if you have kids it becomes your reason for everything. Some people might fight harder or see more sense in staying alive to protect family than just for themselves. In my opinion there is no “right way” here and we still have to live in present moment and not in future that looks dark but we do not know what and when things will turn really ugly.
All this is also if you have very old people or people with handicap in group of course. You can replace babies and small children simply with “people who need help”.
1. Health problems
Be ready for “usual” emergencies that can strike your kid, remember that most probably you are not gonna be able to take your kid to the pediatrician, so you gonna be forced to solve emergencies like:
- Typical first aid „cases“ (cuts, scrapes, fractures etc.)
- Ear or throat infections and similar
Talk to other mothers and fathers what works with their kids with typical child illnesses.
Research what kind of illness you can expect, usual symptoms, therapy, care etc. Lot of that knowledge can be found online, but also be ready to invest in some literature.
If your kid lives with some health problems already, learn about it and also learn alternative treatments so you can help your kids when modern medicine is not there anymore.
2. Store things
One very valuable thing during SHTF was baby food. Very valuable. It may sound too “heartless”, but it is simply mathematics – kids are precious to the parents, and because of that baby food became very valuable. People have been ready to do a lot to get some of that.
So do not become some of those desperate folks when SHTF. If you have baby be ready to store A LOT of baby food, especially if your kid is allergic to some ingredients and you need to have some unusual baby food.
You can imagine how rare and expensive it will be to get that stuff.
3. Be there for them
When SHTF we had many other things on our minds so for kids it was only about how to keep them safe, and that was it. I mean somehow most of the folks thought that if they put kids in some safe room inside house, provide them food it will be somehow all OK when everything ends.
But in lots of cases it was not OK at all. Great number of those “safe” kids grow up and become very troubled people. Lots of them adopted philosophy that violence is key for everything, or others simply grow up without influence of their parents. No surprise, everyone struggled to pick up and rebuild life from nothing after war was over.
They have been safe, but not paid attention to.
So keep in mind that part of survival is also raising your kid into a normal person. If you failed to do that, somebody could say that there was no sense in surviving. Do not let part of your children die when you can avoid it. It is maybe crazy if you hear me talk about this now but maybe one day you remember this and use the last bit of energy after long and hard day getting things in order to survive you spend some time with kids instead of just relaxing. This can make huge difference.
Include your kids in everything and be there for them on bad days. They see everything, and if they do not have someone who is explaining to them what is going on, they could come to their own conclusions, wrong ones and that can mark them for rest of their lives.
As a part of preparing, be ready to teach your kids at home (homeschooling) and to spend time with them with games and teaching. It is survival too. Just the family side of it.
Never forget that even during collapse time still goes by. It is not like you are in frozen space and everything is different. It looks like that but we all keep learning and experience shapes what we become later. A “master” survivalist also manages to be good father or mother even in times of hardship. Many generations before us did and so can we.
What do you do prepare for, for your kids or those who need help? Join our discussion in our forum or in comments below.
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TV news and internet are covered with headlines like „shocking, captured Iraqis beheaded“ or „they killing everyone on their way“ and „prisoners executed“ and similar.
And folks who watch and comment on the news and videos who still live in „normal“ world without this kind of crazyiness going on, are shocked of course.
First comments are that those people and groups who are doing that are animals and they need to be „bombed to stone age“, or „they are not deserving better anyway“ and then goes „they are all same there, let them kill each other“ and similar.
While I would definitely like to see that fanatics getting „eradicated“ there, there are more things that should be considered.
Most of the folks are not going to watch video of that violence, because it is too much for them (like this video that „promotes“ ISIS), they will change channel, or simply open the page with news from the „celebrity world“.
People do not want to watch or think about bad things, people want to forget that, and yes, at the end there comes again that famous „it cannot happen to us“ idea.
- Do you really think that when (not if) SHTF events would be much different in your part of the world?
- Do you think that when collapse happens, you and people around you in your town will be somehow able to organize food distribution, security and safety for residents, and all those criminals and sick bastards will somehow disappear, and there is going to be new better society?
- Are you under the influence of movies and you think that good guys win almost always and that there is justice and sense in everything?
I hope you do not because I highly doubt anything like this is going to happen anywhere.
Forget good guys and bad guys. Prepared guys win, they can be good or bad, or both.
Problem is in the fact that simply too many people are waiting for S. to hit the fan so they can go out and play their own version of God. Just ask yourself this question: Who is more experienced living in place without any law, criminals or regular folks?
Criminals, sick folks, small Napoleons, guys who suddenly think that they have solution for building new society without including morale in story…
There are guys who wait for SHTF to go out and rule, to take your food, enslave you, recruit your older kids, or to take your wife maybe for fun.
Maybe how and when everything happens in your neighbourhood would be different when SHTF then in those news articles that we talking about, but lot of things gonna be the same, lot of people, not enough resources, and fight for power.
It is often hard to imagine for regular people how nasty other humans can become. If you have been to prison, war or deal a lot with criminals you know better.
And again, I am talking this from my own experience. Again.
One day I had job, family, car, restaurants, cinema, girlfriends, I was listening Guns n Roses and was angry about last album of Metallica. Life was nice and good to me, I had problems but they were in the range of am I lazy to go and rent video tape, or just spent afternoon reading something.
I suddenly realized that I am living among guys who are finding amusement in taking women and teenage girls to „rape prisons“, or kill for fun and not for survival. I suddenly realized that I was living all the time among whole bunch of weird sick folks who when SHTF just went out to have fun.
And yes, I heard and read many times „they are just different down there, they are all the same, let them kill each other, they are different“.
And I am sure that if tommorow SHTF in Sweden, there s gonna be folks who gonna write „oh, leave them, they are animals anyway, not like we here, they are different.“
It is the easy answer. It feels good to think like that.
But forget that, forget about image of „we are nice and decent folks here, and it is impossible to happen to us, these kind of atrocities“
Whenever someone I know tells me about bad situation here something like „OH, it is gonna be OK, it is not gonna happen to us, situation will be better“ in that same moment I got strong urge to go out and buy more ammo.
Or whenever someone says to me „do not worry, we have system here, they gonna take care of everything“ I feel like I am gonna throw up.
Screw the system, you need to build your own system.
It is like people live in their own little pretty house. Outside you have monsters knocking on windows looking at the people inside but they look away. Facing reality is uncomfortable and most believe monsters never come in. Bad news is that closing your eyes does not make you invincible. You are just blind and more vulnerable.
Lesson here is, do not discount what you can learn from ongoing crisis half way around the world. I never expected people could turn into monsters all around me so fast, I adopted and survived, but you have chance today to understand this and be prepared for this.
Best way to survive is not being close to any problems. Like I describe in my survival course about my experience in Balkan war I missed my chance to bug out in time. I ended up surrounded by enemy army and trapped in city for a year without power and regular resources. Everyone fighting for the little what was left and being shot at by snipers and artillery from enemies did not make experience any better.
There are many reasons why people fail to bug out. Last week Jay (guy I run this website with) left Bangkok because of military coup. He first did not want to leave right away but then common sense won and he left. You can read about what happened in our forum. Nothing bad happened after he left, but it could have.
There can be many reasons like failure to recognize that S. gonna hit the fan, blocked streets on the way out of the city, problems convincing everyone to leave or just some special events you want to stay for.
I mention many times why I failed to leave city before everything became blocked. So I said that simply I did not see signs, or even if I saw something that looked serious to me, I assure myself that everything gonna be OK in short.
And of course media was there to told us that everything gonna be fine, nothing gonna escalate etc. and all of this above is true, it was like that, but as the time goes by I am able to see one more mistake that I have done that contributed to the my choice of staying.
Actually it was not really choice, I failed to see that I had big choice to make back then. We humans like to go with the flow and that is what I did. There was no choice, just years later and when your freedom is taken you realize you failed to make right choice.
So the big mistake I also made was the fact that I was simply thrilled and excited how events are unfolding in front of my own eyes, it was kinda mesmerizing.
You know that feeling that you are going to be part of something big, something that it is gonna be part of history books?
I had that feeling on some subconscious level I guess.
It was like being part of event that goes like this:
- Day 1: Today we lost ability to phone outside town, sporadic shots were fired whole day, on the TV there is no news from our city, which is weird…
- Day 2: I just saw tank on the street, went to check is there anything left in the store to buy or take, but actually there is no store anymore, tank was slowly rumbling over the street, guy who was standing next to me said „they gonna ruin the asphalt with that beast“ like that is important, but that guy still thought in old terms, like we all did. I think he thought that it is temporary, and tomorrow city gonna need to repair that street because tank ruined it, and we all pay that through our taxes, and so on, and so on.
- Day 3: Our first neighbor shows up with rifle and said „I ll gonna shoot those mother……s „ I ask him „who?“ he said „anyone who approaches my house.“
At the beginning it was like being in movie, but pretty soon we all were like „f..k, people get killed for real here“.
One day after another day, events simple unfolding, more dramatic after dramatic. It is a bit like slow collapse that we experience now, changes come step by step, even in short time but it is all exciting until one point and then it can be too late.
This is what happened, one day it was simply too late to leave.
Now you need to understand me that this was not the only reason why I stayed in the city, it was not even most important, I speak about everything in detail in my course. But still it was the one of the reasons and one of the reasons that can be easily overlooked.
It is important to be mentioned here, simply because I can see and read in many places that lots of people still make similar mistakes. It is simply interesting for them to stay and see what is going to happen.
For those of you who were part of some SHTF event, whatever it was, some natural disaster or similar, you may understand what I am trying to say. Arrah who lost almost everything in devastating hurricane Haiyan in Philippines writes about this too.
It is the fact that timing of events is not goning to wait for you, it is going to unfold on its own, and at the end it is simply gonna overrun you if you are in its path.
You will be left behind to sit through consequences or destroyed.
People often act like world is spinning around them, and like nothing bad is going to happen to them, while in reality you (and me) are nobody in bigger picture. When you get more experience as survivalist and prepper you maybe even become arrogant and think you know what you deal with and can stay and wait.
I was young then, and my blood reacted different on gunshots, screams, or hearing about attacks or defense, or pride and similar, so I can blame that too. But still, it is easy to fall into the thinking of „staying to see events“.
Oh it was interesting for sure, especially in the beginning, before I realized fact that people died in great numbers, and that there is a huge possibility that I could be killed too, and it would not be some big event and very soon it is over.
Later it was all about trying to survive, something like constant running for your life. You become very humble man if you almost lose all control over things around you.
And remember the saying: “May you live in interesting times”, but also remember that it is as much curse as it can bring you excitment in good times. So if you see that „interesting times“ are coming to your neighbourhood, just leave the area, it is much better to be „bored“ but alive somewhere else.
Did you draw clear line for yourself when you bug out or bug in? Discuss in our forum or in comments below.