Last week, my 11 year old daughter decided she wanted to help me with The Survival Homesteader while I was working on some other business. She disappeared for about an hour and came out with a report that I am enclosing as a .pdf document. You can download it here.
That was when I knew I had to write this article.
I decided to do this for two reasons. First, and most important to me, is that she thinks so highly of me and what I am doing that she took the time to sit down and think about a subject she has never tackled before. Second, This shows me that even though my wife and I haven’t talked about it in front of her, she has concerns about survival and being prepared for it.
This realization hit me like a 2 x 4 right between the eyes. I had never even thought that not discussing disaster preparedness with my daughter might actually be worse than talking to her about it. I have always wanted her to just enjoy her childhood, not worry about things that might not happen. Guess what. She was thinking about it and worrying over it even when I wasn’t talking. That is a very profound lesson to be taken to heart.
Our children hear the news on the radio. They watch it on the television and read about it and watch it on the internet. Why wouldn’t they be thinking about it? If aren’t talking to them about it in a way they can understand, it probably looks even scarier than if we were letting them see what we are doing to be ready for some of the disasters they have seen. I mean, putting myself in her shoes, I would feel a lot safer if my dad sat down and explained the things he was doing in a way I could understand. It only makes sense that if it makes us feel better about our situation to make plans fortifications to hedge our survival, that they would feel better as well.
To a child, the world can often look like a big, scary place. It’s our responsibility to make them feel safe as well as keeping them safe. We often do this by explaining to them that the monster they saw on t.v. isn’t real. But what about the real monsters and terrifying things they see? Shouldn’t we be letting them know we are working to keep them safe against those things as well?
Tonight, when I get home from my day job, before I put this article to bed, I am going to sit down and have a talk with my daughter. I am going to find out what bothers her about our future and discuss ways we can work to prepare against them. She’s not a baby anymore. She is a young lady and a small adult wrapped up in a girls body. She has hopes and fears that I don’t even know about. It’s time to know what they are and figure out ways to make them less frightening and more promising.
It’s time to start talking to our kids, instead of treating them as if they are too young to understand. They do understand, more than you realize.
Thank you for taking the time to read my rants. To my earlier readers, welcome back and thank you for hanging in there with me. To my new readers, welcome home.