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What to tell the kids and close family about prepping?

(26 Posts)
Jennyclose Fri 25-May-18 16:40:17

Hi all, I'm new to all the mumsnet thing (probably the last person on earth who is). I just thought I'd add in a discussion into the general prepping forum about your experiences of prepping and explaining to kids/spouse and family etc...

I've been prepping for a few months now, mostly in case of grid down, and/or job loss/economic hardship rather than less likely alien and zombie stuff. I've tried to keep a bit quiet about it to friends and some family as I know one has to be careful should it all go to pot and avoid having bad uns kicking down your door to steal my hardworked over stash!

The problem I've found is letting my curious 10 and 7 year old understand why and, crucially, not to tell all their friends and make us stand out as "conspiracy theory weirdos" in the minds of their friend's parents and our peer group. I am acutely aware that yes, while the world can be a scary place, I don't want them to feel uncomfortable and it doesn't help that hubby is a bit cynical about it and is always jokingly saying I should wear a tin foil hat and instead should be getting cool knives and gadgets rather than saving some cash for a difficult time and making sure we have stuff to wipe bottoms and feed hungry mouths.....

any thoughts and /or experiences would be very much appreciated!

Slippery Fri 25-May-18 16:47:28

Why on earth would you do this? Bonkers.

SleepingStandingUp Fri 25-May-18 16:49:35

Just tell the kids that you're stocking up on case you're ever short of money. The kid will soon lose interest

Jennyclose Fri 25-May-18 21:03:40

Hi Slippery, bonkers you may think, but what is essentially just insurance against possible future events (just like we take out insurance for cars/life/house etc, all hedging against POSSIBLE future issues)...Personally think some prepping isn't bonkers - think it is bonkers to not try and reduce debts (financial prepping), and also hedge against possible unemployment/job loss (I am self employed so having the security of knowing I have some cash on hand and a month's supply of food and water is immense). Case in point about having cash, a few weeks ago my TSB account had issues (as with tons of other people not being able to access their accounts), oh, I had cash on hand that I'd put aside........last March with the very heavy snow, we were cut off, with no electricity for 36 hours and snowed in (so no shops to top up on food), having prepped I had heat, light from candles and torches, a camping stove to heat drinks on for the kids. I did say to my kids last week that if we hadn't been stocking up on things we might not have been so comfy......bonkers not to prep at least a little for life's big and small disasters.

SugarMiceInTheRain Fri 25-May-18 21:11:29

I have lots of long life food (tins, rice, pasta, powdered milk etc) in my garage - friends thought it was hilarious at first, but I just say I see it as an insurance policy which will always pay out - if we lose our income, we can still eat for a few months without worrying, if not, we rotate the food and use it anyway then replace it, so either way we don't lose out. I'm glad of it when it snows and everyone goes into panic mode, or if for whatever reason we can't get out. I also always know I have storecupboard staples to hand so even if I've not had time to shop I can whip up several perfectly acceptable meals just from stuff in my store - pasta, bean chilli, curries, risottos, soups and stews etc.

BadPolicy Fri 25-May-18 21:17:15

I don't prep, but could you just tell the kids it's some spare bits and piece in case there are a few days where you can't get to the shops, like if it snows. That doesn't sound scary & isn't untrue.

AdeliciousRex Sat 26-May-18 11:51:00

Tell them exactly what you've said here smile

SodTheGreenfly Sat 26-May-18 12:01:12

So you mean dinnersbfor 2-3 weeks, bog roll for a month, couole of open fires and candles in the cupboard?

Add to that 3/4 accounts so I can always lay my hands on £1,000 and a £1000 in the safe. Plus a few good pieces in my jewellery box and up to date passports/id to hand.

Thought that was normal but then my grandad and family fled Russia in 1917 and my dad came to UK on Kinder transport so maybe it's ingrained.

Slippery Sat 26-May-18 13:34:31

Bit that's not "prepping" that's just normal, sensible living. Having some savings, fine. Having a few things in the store cupboard, fine. That's just normal though. Why would you need to mention that to your children??

SoyDora Sat 26-May-18 13:37:56

I don’t get why you’d need to mention it to your children, or anyone really, unless you’re making a big deal of it at home? My children/family/friends have no idea how much cash we have available or how many tins of beans we have in the cupboard?

Laston Sat 26-May-18 13:45:04

I have had to explain to dd because I have lot of 5l water bottles stored, and we don't drink bottled water. I wish I hadn't. I think she will probably blab to her friends if she hasn't already and we will be more vulnerable.

SoyDora Sat 26-May-18 13:45:51

More vulnerable how?

Laston Sat 26-May-18 13:48:24

In that if people have no food and they know you have lots of food they will come and get it.

IDefinitelyWould Sat 26-May-18 13:50:28

I live somewhere it is regularly -30° in winter and thick snow/ice/blizzard conditions. We have a room in the basement with an extra freezer. We store extra cans, bread, meat, frozen fruit and veg and bottles of water. Also stock up on shampoo/shower gel and toilet paper.

I wouldn't describe that as prepping necessarily, just been sensible? This month we are having 10 days at the end of the month with no money in the account. Luckily, we have plenty of groceries and toiletries so it has barely affected us. We also always make sure to have some cash as we can't always get to the bank (30 miles to the nearest cash point).

My children only know that we are organised and there are usually extras downstairs. Why would they need to know more?

Kursk Sat 26-May-18 13:51:24

Just say that it’s always good to be prepared because you never know what may happen. Don’t tell people, if you want to mention to family, again just say that you are making sure that you are prepared to face any situation that may arise.

We stock food, water, petrol, ammo and medical supplies. We also have a set of spare parts for most things.

Remember that it’s not just stocking up on stuff it’s also having the knowledge to use it. We do as much DIY as we can around the house and car repairs. So if that situation arises we can be self sufficient.

Kursk Sat 26-May-18 13:53:59

IDefinitelyWould your home location sounds amazing! We live pretty remotely too and like you storing extras is normal for us as a 3 hour round trip to get milk isn’t practical.

InfiniteSheldon Wed 13-Jun-18 19:16:13

I don't tell anyone and if anyone asks/notices I say we're running it all down bored of it now

auntiebasil Sun 17-Jun-18 20:00:24

I make it more about veg gardening and food preserving with my dd. My dh is happy for me to truck along without much input from him. However, he's quietly paying attention and knows where stuff is kept in the house etc.

MariaMadita Sun 01-Jul-18 16:22:18

Thought that was normal but then my grandad and family fled Russia in 1917 and my dad came to UK on Kinder transport so maybe it's ingrained.

It is normal imo as well.

I also always have some extra cash on me (I know, there's the danger of being robbed but it has honestly saved my ass when). Preferably not in my purse btw.

The experiences of my mother's family (particularly WW2) probably play into this.

(Me having a fully stashed escape bag was a bit of a bitter pill for DH tbh.)

TheLastMermaid Sun 22-Jul-18 02:02:48

Oh my, I do all of this. I thought it was just me but there's a whole board!

Hi fellow preppers!

P.s. My children just think I'm hyper-organised.

BlueEyedBengal Mon 30-Jul-18 21:52:55

Hello, anyone there? I'm a prepper ,there said it! Financial crisis will probably be the main thing that will happen . Glad I found you allsmile

RaininSummer Mon 30-Jul-18 21:59:05

Tell them it is sensible to have some extra bits and remind them about the recent snow. End of conversation. I think it is normal to have a stash and dont understand people with empty cupboards (or space under the bed etc).

bellinisurge Tue 31-Jul-18 06:42:29

Hi @BlueEyedBengal.

I agree @RaininSummer . We've been snowed in enough times for it to be a reasonable thing to do.

That said, I spotted and bought a dirt cheap Dutch oven and my partner was a bit hmm.

PositivelyPERF Tue 31-Jul-18 17:32:53

Sorry, but what’s a Dutch oven?

bellinisurge Tue 31-Jul-18 19:57:56

A Dutch oven is basically a cast iron pot with an inverted lid. You put smouldering charcoal underneath and on top and it creates, in effect, an oven inside. It's an option for cooking when there is no gas or electric- more cooking options than a camping stove or BBQ. And , I hope, yummy cooking outdoors for the heck of it.

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