When your loved ones get hurt or killed

For man to have family means lot of things. Family means a lot of work and worries, but also a lot of happiness. A good family means support when you are having problems or you are in some difficult periods of your life of course.

When SHTF it can work in both ways too, bad and good, but definitely having family will help you more than being alone.

I mentioned many times why it is better to be with other (close) people when SHTF then to be alone. My course where I talk in detail about my experiences in war has many situations that I would not have survived without my family.

There is one other side to that, during SHTF when anarchy and fighting for survival means violence and you see people close to you get hurt or killed.

Lots of people here in my country have gone through that, including me, and of course after first reactions that are common to all of us (grief, anger, sadness…) we react different.

How we managed to cope with the pain, formed our whole future life, it formed us, destroyed some, and even gave strength to few.

When you lose someone because of illness or old age or traffic accident, maybe you may accuse bad health system, or similar, or even God, but eventually you will say „It is life, we all gonna die, it is how it is supposed to be“.

But when you lost someone close because someone shot him during a fight between two opposite groups (because they different, or because the hate each other, or just because one group wanted resources from another group) it is different.

Or let s just say that you are watching your close friend or family member dying because you lack some medicine after everything collapsed, but you know that there is medicine for some people there, and no medicine for others, because of power, wealth, politic or religious reasons.

It can change your whole perspective of life. It can put lots of RAGE in you.

And it is RAGE written in capitals. It lasts for years, and it can drive all your decisions, it can consume you at the end.

I’ve seen (and still see) lot of people here with it.

One example would be guy who watched how his family was killed just because they are different nationality from the killers.

He survived because he played dead, later he said that actually it was not about playing, he simply was shocked and paralyzed. He was 13, he survived his wounds and grew up into man whose mission is to prepare for the next SHTF event, next war.

He finds his meaning of life in preparing for the next SHTF, but with lots of hate and rage, he became obsessed with hating other groups of people, who killed his family, and actually at the end he became like them. He is alone now, no family, just hate.

All his life has become about preparing for revenge. Rage and hate is driving him. He keeps talking about big day of payback. His mission is to make other people lose their families like he lost his one.

Other example is man who lost his daughter who was 9 years old. She suffocated inside burning house that other folks turned on fire, he survived.

He had some period of hard drinking, after that he turned himself towards religion. His life is now about love and forgiveness. He is in some NGO that is trying to create dialogue between victims from all sides. He is alone too and obsessed with his mission.

I drink coffee with him sometimes, he is all into love and forgiveness. He is not really preparing for next SHTF event because he is believing in „non violent solving of problems“ and similar.

Both guys, stories, and examples are how things can end up.

I drink sometimes coffee with the hateful guy too. Where he gives me „adrenaline“, other guy gives me „peace“.
I like both of them for what they are but if you ask me now, I think that for the future SHTF event, they are both running into major problems with their ideas.

First one is blind because of his hate, other dude because of his love. I think (and that is only my opinion) that they both take wrong lessons from their experiences.

It is not all about love and not all about hate. You may call me idiot but yeah too much love and faith into the people may (and will) kill you eventually too.

As I said, I ve lost family members and friends too, and I had my portion of coping with that. And it was not perfect, I had periods when RAGE „colored“ my life dark red, when all my actions were driven by it.

Luckily I overcame that. I have not get ridden of my RAGE but toned it down, so rage now. Probably it is not even possible, but I kinda learned to control it. Sometimes it still controls me, but it is rare.

I like to think that love and hate are parts of life (rage too) and too much of each one can misguide you actually. It is just me, maybe I am wrong. At the end of day, survival is about having options.

Use your love to form strong connections with your group, use your hate to have energy and motivation to reach your goals (but do not let any of these emotions control you).

Have good time with people close to you in coming days. No matter what your mission is, nothing is worth to be alone.

29 responses to “When your loved ones get hurt or killed”

  1. Mom2BReckonedWith says:

    My biggest fear is that my kids will be taken from me, and then i won’t know what hell they’re going through. If they were to die, i’d be okay with that, because then they’ll be cut loose from the pains of this life, and only I will be left to miss them.

    Watching them suffer gnaws at my heart strings… how could any ‘prepare’ for that?
    You don’t. You just deal. -M2BRW

  2. Perry says:

    Great post. Thank you.
    I tend to be a loner at heart though, because other people don’t see what I see, and it’s frustrating trying to explain it to them. I also am far too independant to be reliant on anyone, even though I know I will ultimately have to be.
    I guess we’ll all just find out how it goes, and do the best we each can.

  3. Selco, I appreciate your openness and perspective.

  4. Matt in Oklahoma says:

    There is no real preparation for this. You can war game it, think on it, and do little stuff but when it happens, and it will, it will change you. You can try and control that change as Selco is still doing and coping with but understand it is a lifelong mission.
    Many survival families fail to understand that the first firefight they engage in (that if they win) they will lose 20% of their people. that means your daughter, grandma and crazy uncle bob all bought it and that everyone now has to cope while continuing to stay alive. 2 months after that little sally gets the flu and dies, 3 months later in a hot summer one of your brothers dies of meningitis from bad water and you SisterInLaw dies from not having the daily meds she needed for her previous condition.
    First year is coming up and you lost 6 and have done some bad stuff to stay alive and now that things are starting to look back up you develop survivors guilt. Not only that you have become comfortable with the dark side and must leave it and rejoin society. Trust is all but gone, marital relationships are never the same, fear lurks, you killed 6 men, 3 women and 1 child and many other things have happened.
    Survival doesn’t mean staying the same as the rainbow painters on the internet survivalist gurus all try and convince you of and that if you just stay in your retreat and eat rice all will be well. Remember those folks have all lived pretty much the same lives as you and don’t really KNOW anything they are just guessing.
    Ask a Soldier, from any generation, what coming home alive really means and about losing people around them

    • Matt, that is interesting. Never gave it much thought that we would lose 60% of our family/friends the first year due to SHTF. Working towards stockpiling beans, bullets, and fuel, never occurred that if we lose half our Core Cell to disease and death, then what’s it all for? Not safe to take in outsiders to replace your losses unless they come with valid tools/resumes. No place to fall back and reconstitute. No more Unemployment Checks. Could the financial crash be coming sooner than expected?

      • Matt in Oklahoma says:

        Methane Creator the core had better be larger than the household. 24 hrs ops require a lot of manpower. If the core is well established the chances are better but the core doesn’t have to be well established and taking in outsiders can work with certain measures in place. The Military does it all the time with troop replacements due to rotations, injuries and death. What you don’t see is the FNG on point, running commo or even being the real leader on patrols and in certain high risk scenarios. Those positions are worked into and earned. The same must be done with your family. You lose some and take in a FNG he/she doesn’t get the night shift all by themselves until they prove loyalty otherwise you don’t wake up.
        Trying to think thru all this clearly after losing your daughter to the flu after weeks of suffering and your wife to a slow killing sucking chest wound that lasted hours after a firefight with raiders well thats the hard part.

    • Selco says:

      Good point Matt. We all gonna lose somebody probably ,and part of yourself too in a way if we want to survive.

  5. “You may call me idiot but yeah too much love and faith into the people may (and will) kill you eventually too.” Reading that brings to mind that story in the news about the General Foods heiress and philanthropist who was stabbed to death in Honduras by a young man she was supposedly trying to help quit drugs. I admire her selflessness- wonder if she took the appropriate precautions though.

  6. No matter how prepared you are, if this happens you might just forget all the preparations you did. It is really hard to cope with the situation when you’re hurt emotionally by losing someone.

  7. Warrior54 says:

    First time commenting here. You seriously have to ask yourself what kind of world will there be to live in once SHTF? I spent ten years as a Deputy Sheriff and Police Officer, i have seen the ugly side of people that most have not. I believe that hard dangerous times are coming, and sooner than most can imagine. I remember a 10 month old baby boy that had stopped breathing, i tried CPR on him for what seemed like forever until the rescue squad arrived. With tears streaming down my face and every other breath saving IN THE NAME OF JESUS BREATH. The child was pronounced deceased a short time later. This was not my child but in a way he was.

    We all have to make a firm decision that life is so precious that we are to fight evil, tyranny, and assorted of other malevolent circumstances that are soon to come. Love covers a multitude of sins its true, but to give up is greater. Thank you Selco for your articles & If it is possible Happy New Year to all!

  8. Brazil says:

    Great job Selco.

    Arm regard`s from Brazil.

  9. john says:

    Look, we’ve all lost plenty of relatives even without living through a SHTF scenario. Car accidents, motorcycle accidents, boating accidents, workplace accidents, military, cancer, dementia, stroke, etc. We know what it is going to be like…it is going to be just like that except more of it and worse.

    None of this is forever. Not your country, not your politics, not your traditions, not your beliefs, not your family, not your friends, not even your own life. All is temporary. A hundred years from now no one will give two shits who you voted for or what charities your donated to or what prayer you said on your favorite holiday.

    If you are lucky you start out in this life with good health, good parents, and a solid education to prepare you for the big bad world. Little by little you lose all of it.

    You lose your parents
    you lose your good looks
    you lose your physical strength
    you lose your good eye sight
    you lose your good hearing
    you lose your hair
    you lose your teeth
    you lose your reflexes

    and if you are blessed with a very very long life, you also lose
    your money
    your home
    your friends
    your spouse
    and even your children.

    Then you lose your wits
    then you lose your life

    • MarkF says:

      i disagree. while it’s true that the survival rate for our earthly life is zero percent, i think you are missing the larger picture.

      consider some who have gone on ahead of us.

      John Lennon died nearly thirty five years ago. yet people still listen to his music.

      almost twenty five years after Mel Blanc passd on, he is still keeping young children (& older ones) in stitches thru his cartoon voices as Bugs, Daffy, etc, to this very day.

      George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin, Adam Smith all died in the early 1800s. yet their Manhattan Project of Individual Freedom has changed billions of lives for the better, not just in America, but the entire planet over.

      William Shakespeare & Francois Molliere have been gone a while too. yet people are still laughing at their plays. people are still grooving to Beethoven & Mozart. centuries later.

      when Billy Graham passes on, the tens (hundreds?) of thousands of lives he changed by speaking of Christ will burn on to repeat what he shared and change millions more for generations to come.

      there’s more to life than losing your wits & life. figure out what you are on this earth to do.

      we don’t have much time.

  10. j.r. guerra in s. tx. says:

    Thank you for your post. Having children does change your life a lot, your home really gains meaning as more than a place to keep your stuff. They say that losing a child is the worst thing that can occur to a parent. One of my cousins was able to cope with that – his 3 year old son contracted cancer and he died by age 6. I avoid talking to my cousin about that event in his life but seriously, I don’t know how he came out of that.

    I think that is the power of religion, your faith can help you carry on.

    I guess what worries me the most is if death precedes suffering. I think that is why most of us prepare, we know that eventually we all get a turn at dying, but its the time before that that worries me. So we prepare as best we can and pray that they will never be needed.

    One of my bosses cousins worked as a electrical company field foreman. He told me that when a car accident involves a power pole or other electrical unit, a person from that utility is called to shut off the power so that rescue personnel can do their job safely. He takes medications for the memories of the victims – it was the children particularly which effected him the worst. Even if they were not his own, he related to them.

  11. Clytemnestra says:

    The reasons your perspectives are so valuable, Selco, is because 1) they’re from the heart and 2) they reflect reality rather than posing as something you’re not, i.e. all hero, all tough guy, all survivalist. What you have described as that middle road between blind rage and blind optimism is, IMHO, the only one that offers the best chance of not only survival but survival with sanity.

    The fundamentals are clear: There are good actions, evil actions, informed actions, ignorant actions, brave actions, cowardly actions and on and on. All part of what goes on here on earth and we are in the middle of it and must do the best we can, not just for ourselves but for others and even for those who come after us.

    It’s been said a great warrior never exults over the death of an enemy, it is something to be mourned. The death of any human, even animals, by violence is a terrible thing…but it doesn’t relieve us of the necessity of facing it if a collapse is upon us.

    I’ve been a subscriber for awhile and I have never seen information anywhere online that comes close to what you offer in actually touching on the REALITY of what those of us here prepare for. The best news I could ever have is that all the time, money and effort I’ve spent over the years in preparing was a total waste and things never get that bad. But if they do, I know anyone who retains his or her humanity will be facing the same issues you raise and dealing with the aftermath…if they survive.

    Thank you for your continuing assistance in providing the truth about preparing and not the comic book superficiality seen in so many other sources.

  12. Isabel says:

    So is it worth it? I mean, what if I manage to survive, though damaged, and all the folks I care about are either dead or worse? Do you make new friends? Is it something too ghastly to consider, like that Japanese soldier who appeared years later on that Pacific island, with everyone gone, and he didn’t know the war was over? Selco, how do you not lose your mind?

    • john says:

      You prefer to “call it quits”? Well, that’s your call. But this website is about survival.

      • Tolik says:

        Its a choice , only one that each person as an individual can make for themselves , sort of like the choice to or not to become a POW in war when the situation is hopeless and defeat guaranteed even if you fight on . Or weather or not you want to survive a nuclear war , when there is nothing on earth that is not contaminated or worth anything that is left over after the last nuke goes off . Or have terminal cancer , a choice to linger on watching yourself decay and waste away in pain or get it done and die with dignity . Quick death or the slow death ………death is death , sometimes it really is better to get it done quickly , Your correct , its a choice only we can make .

    • Selco says:

      Yea Isabel, John is right there, it is about survival.I lost friends, my peace, and lot of other things. But I also learned lot of stuff. Writing about this experiences is one of the things that make my reasons for existing, there s more reasons of course, family, friends… Making new friends is kinda harder after everything, but they are more precious in a way if you understand me.
      Yea, it worth it. If I thought that it did not worth it I would not be here to write about it.
      Whole point is that it is not easy or nice or romantic or similar. It is survival.

  13. TimGray says:

    Most of America is insulated from the realities that the rest of the world deals with. Colonial USA it was highly common for a family to lose children to all kinds of death in the first 12 years of their life, in the World today it’s still that way. People ask why starving Africans living in an arid place with no food have so many children, it’s because the children are expected to die so you have to have a lot of them to get 1-2 to survive. Humanity has done this for millions of years.

    Consider this, Kids that were born and raised in war torn parts of the world can sleep through the sounds of gunfire and play in the streets the next day. Where I live, violence is almost non existent expect for a few scumbags trying to kill each other for drugs or a TV set. I can drive 200 miles and end up in Detroit where I know current army guys that have seen combat are not comfortable to be as it’s a war zone. (Yes the news is lying to you, Detroit is SHTF right now, same for Flint It’s not calm and certianly not safe) Yet families trapped there in Detroit sleep at night and are now numb to the violence and danger.

    But the RAGE that Selco talks about, the type that is triggered by you feeling as if you were the target directly… That can happen at any time to anyone. It’s what can turn a nice guy into the sadistic guy that slowly tortures the man that killed his brother/sister/son/daughter/wife while taking enjoyment in trying to recreate the pain that exists inside of them. Some will be satisfied with just killing all of X, making them pay for their crimes. Some will snap inside and those are the ones to be afraid of, be very very afraid of.

    For example, the Marine that left camp in Afghanistan and nearly killed everyone in a small town on his own burning and desecrating the bodies because one of them killed his best friend. They went from humans and people to dirty animals in his brain, giving him justification to override any limits to unspeakable behavior. And when the RAGE was complete and he snapped, he kept doing what he though was needed until he was satisfied or it became rage and was horrified with his deeds.

  14. Tolik says:

    If I ever met the person that did something to my family , even long after things got back to normal , I would have no problem killing them . I am a patient man , and a lot of undocumented vertical mine shafts left over from the old west in my state ………….you fall in or get thrown in ……..you will never be found again , or ever come out . Have no problem with revenge against people like that , sort of like the Israelis hunting down nazi war criminals long , long after the war was over , they might be old and grey when they are found ……..it doesn’t matter , they still did it , they need to pay .

  15. flyshooter says:

    Having had a loved one murdered in 1991, I understand, completely, the sentiment that some people are alive only because I could end up in prison. The three involved got out. One got killed by a shop owner during another armed robbery and another one is back in prison. The shooter is around and there is a chance that one of our family members could drive by and see him playing in his front yard with his kids. System of justice? No, we have a system of laws and justice has little to do with them.

  16. Selco, I have served in the armed forces of two nations, and spent a few years in both government and private security on two continents. I, too, have lost people, young and old, under brutal conditions. I know rage and frustration, anger and depression and hopelessness. I also know that when you have to act, you must act COLD; plan and execute with no feelings whatever.

  17. KOS says:

    love leads to self destruction just as often as hate…

    and anyone who thinks otherwise of love… has truly never been in love…

  18. pbbrown0 says:

    Selco, your sharing is most valuable. In one of your posts you mentioned that you have a belif in God, but you were never very religious. The things you share often reflect a spiritual maturity lacking n most religious people. I say this as one who was trained and served as a full time church pastor earlier in my life.

    How we deal with violent or “senseless” suffering and death of those we know and love is a measure of our character. I expect too few of those who are religious and too few of those who are not religious will survive what is coming because of their wrong assumptions and inability to adapt to realities they do not yet comprehend

    Gary had a very good point. that it is important to know when and how to respond to violence and danger. Your actions must be on solid footing and not distorted by uncontrolled emotions. You must know how to use your emotions to motivate yourself, or they can bring about foolish actions resulting in more harm to you and to those you care about.

    Selco you were so right about people’s reactions taking them to opposite ends of the emotional spectrum and essentially devouring who they were or could be. Likewise opposite extremes of the “spiritual spectrum” ,being “hyper religious” and being “religiously obsessed”, can destroy your ability to make good choices for survival.

    Thank you so much for this web site.

    • pbbrown0 says:

      What I meant to say was … Likewise opposite extremes of the spiritual spectrum,being “hyper religious” and being “obsessively a-religious”, can destroy your ability to make good choices for survival.

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