How To Get Your Wife On-board With Preparedness

So lets say that you are completely on-board with prepping. But you are frustrated because your wife (or let’s flip it… your husband) is not on board. What do you do?

Here are a few thoughts (lets hear yours too).

Motivation for Preparedness

The number one factor is motivation. That’s true of most anything, right? Motivation is required to get action. So what are some motivators to use in order to get your ‘significant other’ on board with preparedness?

Don’t call it “prepping”

I’m guilty of it too. I do try to re-phrase the lifestyle to “preparedness-minded” or just prepared or preparedness. Why? Because long ago, a particular Reality TV Show kind of ruined the word “prepper”. They were after ratings (like all shows). So they purposely chose people and situations which were often “out there”, sometimes kinda “nutty”. They didn’t want plain vanilla “boring” preparedness (like much of it really is).

Anyway, the stereotype stuck. So it’s probably better not to use that word when trying to get your spouse or partner on board with preparedness.

Point out examples when and where preparedness would have been a big advantage!

Remember just several weeks ago when much of Texas and regions lost power? The polar vortex and snow & ice shutting down the region? That lasted quite awhile. Many millions were affected! Sounds like a good reason to be prepared, right?

>> What about the great Toilet Paper Shortage of 2020? Oh my…

The entire year of 2020 with Covid and Lockdowns! If people didn’t learn a preparedness lesson from that, I suppose they never will.

There are short term, medium term, and long term systemic risks to our lifestyle. Start pointing them out.

Normalcy Bias

Things are good right now. So they will always be good, right? This is normalcy bias. Most people have it to one extent or another. This condition makes it difficult to foresee risks and therefore nearly impossible to prepare for them.

Shedding one’s normalcy bias involves critical thinking, logic and common sense. Thinking outside the box. Questioning.

The realization that some ‘things’ could go wrong in an instant, while other bad ‘things’ may progress more slowly.

TIP: If you can get someone to read this book, it might do the trick…


>> One Second After
(view on amzn)

The Frugality

Preparedness really is frugal in many ways.

Being prepared can and will save money over time. Not for everything, but many things. How’s that? Because there is always built-in inflation to our monetary system. Stuff you buy now will cost more later. And your income probably will not keep up with that. Maybe it will, maybe it won’t. Just pointing it out.

Food is the best example. Food prices are skyrocketing as I type this. Every category has its own “inflation” or reasons for price increasing. There are many reasons why food prices are going up rapidly right now. So the more you buy now, the more you save into the future. So point that out.

Start Small if you must.

Nearly everyone’s budget is tight these days. If your budget is stretched too thin, could this be an issue for convincing.

If that’s the case, then don’t start with the expensive projects (and don’t even talk about them yet).

Start small if you have to. It’s fairly easy to slowly build a deeper food pantry by simply buying a bit extra each time you go to the grocery store (for example). Or starting with acquisitions that don’t cost so much…

If your spouse is not on-board yet, you might want to consider how this appears. Maybe you should hold off on that BIG preparedness project for now. Instead, start with a few smaller prep projects (at least until she’s finished reading that book I mentioned earlier – whereby she will probably want you to start on that ‘big’ project right away!!)

Remember that being prepared is largely about the ability to adapt with the resources that you have on-hand. It’s not all about the ‘stuff’ (although it helps).


It can be a difficult thing if your wife or husband is not on the same page as you regarding preparedness or the mindset thereof. Fortunately for me, Mrs.J and I are on the same page, and always have been.

I’m curious though if any of you are having this problem. Or if any of you have succeeded at convincing the other that there are risks out there worth preparing for. How did you do it?



  1. The COVID panic of early 2020 really helped seal the deal on getting the wife on board. Empty store shelves and everyone panic buying was a real eye opener. Now we both have a similar mindset. Plus playing one second after on audiobook every time she rode in my car was a subtle hint. Haha!

  2. My dogs are not compliant. They live for the day, not for the future. They would eat up all my food storage in one sitting if they could open the cans and tubs. But one thing great about them, they don’t get mad at me for buying food storage and will still give me kisses after every regulated meal they get.

  3. The events of last year convinced my wife to have an inventory. Those same events have convinced many of my extended family members. If people are not on-board after events of 2020, I do not know what it will take to convince them.

    The thing that scares me are those that choose to not buy and store but are watching people around them and taking what is not theirs. The story of the older couple that lost their breeding stock while out in town was terrible and sad to hear about. Those types of people have always been around.

  4. Well, my situation has changed just a bit. My DH…. USED to be on board with everything, but then one day decided that he was done and just tired of the lifestyle. We haven’t changed anything (never will) but I encourage him to do more of what he WANTS TO BE DOING instead of always HAVE TO BE DOING. A much happier life has resulted. He is playing golf right now with his buddies. And I encourage this as much as possible. I do not mind shouldering more of the responsibilities here as I get to make most of the decisions, lol! There is an ebb and flow to this lifestyle. Sometimes preparing is more intense than others. And sometimes you have to give yourselves a break.

    I think it is very important to keep communication open between all members of the family. You may not notice when others are no longer interested in always preparing for “something.” This open communication also acts like a sounding board sometimes; helping to reorganize or reprioritize projects.

    Enjoy the life you have been given. Blessings to you all.

    1. I get it. My spouse loves to golf so I insisted that he keep up with that hobby. It refreshes him. Then he continues to enjoy life, which is equally important. Good call DJ!

  5. My husband and I are usually on the same page regarding prepping. We periodically revisit topics such as our prepping goals, what scenarios are we prepping for, prepping priorities, and what areas we need to improve.

  6. DW does not like the word “prepper” and is not cooperative when that word is used. But she likes roses and I like having thorns around our windows. She likes fresh veggies and I like raising a graden and being self sufficiant as much as possible. We both like guns. I carry all the time and she does some time. When we go out I always sit facing the door and we locate the exits. She is a bargain hunter and can smell a discount from a mile away which builds a deep pantry. So she is a prepper she just doesn’t like being called one. She is a good woman and I am lucky to have her.

    1. Car guy
      Prepper became a stereotype from that TV show, portraying many as weirdos and unrealistic braggers. It seemed the show made fun of them. No one I knew of would ever be caught dead on that show, blowing their cover to have 15 minutes of attention. So I don’t blame her, I don’t like the name on me either. Smart lady your DW.

  7. My wife is never on board, so I do what I can. Sometimes she is happy with what I have done, other times, not so much. She just doesn’t like to think about things going bad and she doesn’t want to live an old time lifestyle. She says she will if she has to but not before. She doesn’t like to think about it or even talk about ‘what if’ scenarios.
    Try as I may, she refuses to be depressed, and always tries to live a happy life.

    Occasionally I ask for suggestions about specifics (what soap and shampoo do you prefer for long term?) to get an answer like, “If you are going to buy a lot, it would be better to get 2 in 1 shampoo and conditioner.” Playing dumb elicits cooperation.

    1. OK, maybe I’m misunderstanding, but that made no sense. “Try as I may, she refuses to be depressed, and always tries to live a happy life.

      Are you saying that being prepared makes you depressed? Maybe you need another hobby.

  8. I talked to Mom once and she told me how she got Dad “on board” when she wanted something and he didn’t. She would mention it three times (I saw some of these discussions, and she would go into great detail, from costs to benefits) then wait until it became his idea. When that happened, when he agreed to it, she already had everything lined up and ready to jump.

    Same thing happened when they sold me the house. She was on board (excited about it, honestly), I was on board, but Dad didn’t like the idea. A few months later he suggested that they sell the house to me and it was done.

  9. My wife is on board! She has become very involved with canning, dehydrating, and food storage. We are luck enough to live on a small farm, in the middle of nowhere. Our land supplies us with wild edibles, wood for heat! She was a little hesitant at first, but with world events she has come around.

  10. For years my wife thought my preparedness was a weird but harmless hobby until 2004 when we took a direct hit from Hurricane Ivan. We were without power for 3 weeks but our preps kept us in relative comfort compared to the vast majority. The generator kept lights on, the 55 gal. fuel drum provided gas so we were not waiting in 2 mile long lines to get 10 gallons or driving around trying to find clean water. We were not waiting in lines for FEMA handouts or hoping to get something at the grocery stores or worried about looters.

    When she heard the stories of what her coworkers were going through and realized my years of planning was making things a lot easier for us, she thanked me and never complained again about my preparedness. Now she actively ensures we have things that I may have over looked and it 100% on board which makes life easier for both of us.

    Over the the years our preps have provided us when things were not available (covid chaos) or during extended power outages and the peace of mind is worth its weight in gold….or silver.

  11. I would read news articles to my DH and then a little generic comment at the end, “ I guess it wouldn’t hurt to grab some extra (whatever)”, or “that would be awful I would hate for our family to have to go rejuvenate that”. This went on for awhile. Then I would suggest “wouldn’t it be nice to have an apple tree or two”, “we should get some chickens the kids would love that”. All along telling telling him news stories that would push MY agenda. Lol! He came around to my thinking. He calls me a prepper
    but he is one too now, he may not think he is but he is!! He also keeps reality in play and I tend to dive deep into it all. He keeps me grounded!

    1. Rejuvenate? Have no idea why spell check came up with that. Was supposed to be “through that”…

  12. It’s not the person I live with, it’s my oldest daughter & Grandkids.Youngest daughter is on board. None of the 1st group lost their jobs during CCP virus, work from home now or are in construction. All relatives are doing fine, so their little bubble around them is A ok for now. I get told “mom, your afraid of everything”, well that set a slow simmering fire. Explained being aware is not scared, worried, heck ya. So I set a new rule, don’t you dare show up ( if you make here at all) empty handed. Will I enforce that rule – no – but I planted the seed, better bring survival items. Mom doesn’t suffer fools at all, especially family, raised you better than that. Both da. are 50+ so not effected by the “woke-joke”.

  13. My wife is not really on board with prepping though she see’s what goes on around the world. She does have a bit of Normalcy Bias. The good side is she understands that it is important to me and something i feel I need to do so there is no arguments over me doing it. Mostly she just says nothing but then in her world life is always good. She doesn’t relies that most of the time this is due to my prepping

  14. Wife was/is ?? not on board, she would yell at me (still does) “we have enough (fill in the blank) don’t buy any more! Then covid hit and she saw how people reacted and she came to me and thanked me for having TP and food stored already. Then the ice/snow storm hit last month, she was home alone, she started a fire in the wood stove and I told her to fill the bath tub with water (she did) so, she had heat, and a way to cook food, she also had water for flushing. When I was able to get home I started the generator and hooked up the frig, freezer, and blower for wood stove to it. She was happy! Happy because I was home AND because she realizes she won’t survive without me. She will not take the initiative to learn things unless I am with her (she wants to learn how to sew, and can but, not on her own). I have tried to get her to play the “what if game” but, she won’t, she, says she doesn’t like thinking about that. She would like to have some solar panels though, and a bigger house with more storage space/bigger rooms.
    I just try and do what I can.

    1. The LDS Preparedness Manual shows lots of examples of just what it takes for one man to survive for a year. A friend of mine sent me an on line copy. I have since ordered the hard copy, to add to my library. I keep these in the den, as they would scare off some of our visitors and OPSEC would be no more…
      These suggestions don’t include a lot of things for a good variety….the spice of life. Even after all these years of prepping, I was surprised when I saw all the cooking oil on the shelf in the picture. I felt better remembering our other oils, plus a few spray cans. This church used to have a cannery in a town near us. People could bring their own food or buy it there. Then, the government decided it wasn’t up to standard to serve the public. It was spotless and the church members were helpful to all who came. They have not been to other kitchens, in peoples homes. Maybe that will be next.
      For those just beginning, they print a list of what to buy each week. If you follow their suggestions you have enough food for the year. Something not to your liking? Just replace it with something you do like using the same amount.
      Most of you know about this, but there are many new people who may find it helpful and it is a good review, to check on any holes in your preps.

  15. My wife and kids made fun of me for years as being a “prepper.” They liked the tools, tips, and tricks that were easily utilized when we went camping, but for the most part I was the butt of their jokes until March of last year. Once Covid hit their friends and co-workers were scrambling for basic things like toilet paper, cleaning supplies, and some even for food, that’s when they thanked me for making sure that we had so much on hand. Now they make fun of me for stacking silver, gold, and precious metals, but with Jerome Powell, and the Felon Yellon at the FED, they may see the wisdom in that sooner than later too.

  16. I agree that the word, “Prepper” is a negative term to many people.

    We never have used it as we’ve been doing this long before the word became a reality tv show and made a subset of people look like fools.

    Instead start out using a term such as “being ready for likely events” or “having what we need should a ________ disaster happen. (Flat Tire, Power Outage, Hurricane, Snow Storm, Job Loss, EMP, Zombies…)

  17. Really happy that T.H. and I are on the same page. We sometimes disagree on what the next most important step is in our preparedness. Goals now are center around making the experience easier, like not having to carry water. We do have a good filter.
    A friend of ours who could not get his wife to commit, asked her to read One Second After, at my suggestion. She now gardens and cans. She is showing an interest in what he is preparing as well. I think it is more difficult to prep if the wife is the one not on board. This may be sexist, but most women do the shopping. It is almost an art form to restock what you are using each week, in your short term and mid-term storage. Watching for sales to stock up is also time consuming. Protecting what you have and making that skill set very automatic is also expensive and time consuming. It sure helps to have two. It takes your whole household, in the event of a home invasion.
    By the way, each chicken you currently own just has so many eggs to lay in its lifetime. Unless you plan to harvest them in a year or two, there is no need to rush on the egg production. Personally, I would rather feed greens, than hotdogs..

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