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Spouse who just don’t get it?

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  • Tue, Mar 10, 2009 - 08:13pm

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    Spouse who just don’t get it?

I was wondering to what extent any others out there are being labeled as "kooks" by their spouses for simply trying to initiate discussions and understanding of the current crisis.  We have joked about it in other posts however my wife’s push back from accepting what we all know is truth has become quite a divisive issue in our house.

She refers to me as "doom and gloom."  I think she is a brain-dead, American Idol watching zombie who refuses to change her very unhealthy spending habits and belief that credit is good and "the American way". I’m used to frustration and ruin brought on by her spending. It’s her attitude that it is completely impossible for the US economy or US dollar to tank that really bothers me.

What is perhaps the most shocking to me is that she was born and survived in the poorest country in the Western Hemesphere for 15 years and has lived a subsistance lifestyle much harder than anything most people in the U.S. can even imagine yet she refuses to discuss, prepare or change behaviors in preparation for what I believe to be fundamental changes to our way of life. 

It’s really starting to burn at me less for my myself but for the fact that her denial and refusal to even engage in conversation over this is putting my children at risk should we not be properly prepared.

  • Tue, Mar 10, 2009 - 08:26pm

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    Re: Spouse who just don’t get it?

crkeesey,
Check out this thread.   
"Coping With Triple E Interpersonal Problems"
SG, when you have time, we could use an update.
Cat
 
Not sure why this link will not take you right there, copy and paste works.
  • Tue, Mar 10, 2009 - 08:43pm

    #3
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    Re: Spouse who just don’t get it?

CR,

Ask her friend to send her to this website. 

FOR years, my husband was Mr. Doom and Gloom in our house:  he questioned everything and I learned to tune him out.  I was too afraid to accept all he stomped about and I wasn’t ready to take action because I had no ideas about how to protect my children. 

Slowly in my own mind I started listening to my own voice, the little one inside (intuition) that told me things are changing too quickly, something must be out of whack.  But pride wouldn’t let me admit to my long suffering husband that he might be on to something.

Last August I found the Crash Course– although I wasn’t necessarily looking for it, rather it found me. And again, my husband didn’t recommend it to me.  In one 3.5 hour period I was convinced something definitely was a miss.  The first person I called was my husband.  He said something about "Now that this is YOUR idea I guess it’s OK huh?"  which we both laugh about now. 

I am willing to guess, if your spouse has had the life journey you mentioned, she recognizes the trouble coming.  Maybe like me, she needs to act in her own time and prepare the best case scenario for your children.  Don’t give up.

 

  • Tue, Mar 10, 2009 - 10:04pm

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    Re: Spouse who just don’t get it?

crkeesey,

You are in good company, believe me. Your problem has been voiced many times on this site. Rather than saddle her with the entirety of the Crash Course all at once – it can be overwhelming – start taking baby steps as noted below:

Perhaps you can do what I did. Start by pretending that you have experienced a natural disaster (earthquake, hurricane, severe winter storm, etc.). Now, figure out how you are going to survive in rough conditions for the next three days because the disaster is so wide-spread that no police, firefighters, medical are able to get to your location for at least three days.

What if your water has been cut-off? What if your power is out (no heat, no lights)? Do you have enough water for drinking/cooking (forget about bath/shower)? What about food? Is there enough to feed the entire family for at least 3-days? How do you plan on cooking food if you have no power? What about basic supplies: toilet paper, toothpaste, flashlights, portable propane powered heaters, etc.?

A lot of this you can begin doing yourself. When you think it’s appropriate, bring your wife into the conversation. Start out small by asking her what she would do in the situation I’ve described. If she’s the family cook, ask her what she would need in order to continue cooking for the family without outside power? Do you have a camp stove with propane? If not, it might be something you should pick up.

There are any number of things that you may realize you need. Just stop for a minute, look around the house and think of the questions I’ve raised. Are you prepared to deal with the problem or do you need to go out and get some supplies?

Once you have prepared yourself for a 3-day "camping" session, start expanding your perspective. How would you manage if you had to wait a whole week, a whole month, six months?

As another poster so aptly put it in another thread – eat the elephant one bite at a time.

  • Tue, Mar 10, 2009 - 10:54pm

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    Re: Spouse who just don’t get it?

Hi Cat,

You rang!! Sam is probably the only person on this thread who remembers Maynard G. Krebs from Dobie Gillis. Simpler times.

I haven’t posted much recently about my spousal situation, described interminably by me on several threads here, as well as at Rowe a bit.  It is not a good thing to do, marriagewise, though, as I told her, it’s why I stay anonymous here (one reason).

Fortunately, my wife is not a spendthrift and, like me, buys virtually all second hand clothes. Nevertheless, our two greatest differences of opinion are severe, stressful, and depressing. She thinks we are all doomers and full of crap, focusing on pessimistic stuff that will never come to pass. This, of course, while refusing to read anything relevant, watch CC, etc. No change here. She still wants me to stop talking or go elsewhere when I bring CC up.

Second, and almost more difficult for me, is not just her lack of interest, but active disparagement of the concept of community.  She wants distance from the neighbors, ridiculed my description of the group kitchen cleanup at Rowe (voluntary, BTW), and constantly tells me to go join a commune. She will never turn off a light, recycle anything, and drives repeatedly to places, etc. She doesn’t care about whales, snails, global warming or cooling, peal oil or peak tofu. She cares not about anything that is more than 50 feet away from our door unless it’s a restaurant or a cultural event. She is not a bad person, just someone who, literally, does not concern herself with anyone other than her patients (professional work) and her family.

I have prevailed upon her to let me stockpile some food and am researching things that she would eat (she is a lot fussier than I am). She is not happy with it and if I spend a few $ will probably be really unhappy.  In other areas, I have stealthily acquired a few gold coins. I worked in counter-terrorism briefly and acquired some armament a long time ago. She will never change and my only recourse has been to try to be quiet, read and post here, acquire stuff stealthily, and plan how to set up community with my own contacts. If I were 25 and not 60 I might consider other options but they are not in the cards.

Trying to make local contacts is pretty tough. Yesterday I met with a local state rep, a good guy who is very energy conscious, which is why he is ridiculed by the legislature in which he works.  I tried to watch the Chris PBS special for a bit with him but his laptop froze. I gave him a CC DVD and told him to call me after he sees it. We’ll see. He does keep chickens and wants to hyperinsulate his house. He also noted, during our conversation, that "a lot of folks are going to die," an astounding comment from an elected official.I was impressed with his grasp of at least several of the "E’s"but I can’t see him buying into food storage, security, etc  .I have two more people on my contact list, that’s all. It will be interesting to see if anyone within a zillion miles is a CC person after Chris gets the group option up here. The reality is, if folks are more than, say, five miles away, they might as well be on the moon, IMHO.

Well, you just wasted another perfectly good few minutes (to steal from Click and Clack at Car Talk) reading my whining. If you want to help, put a Gold Eagle in an envelope, address to SG c/o Chris and Becca, and I’ll make sure that I share my radishes with you when TSHTF.

 

SG aka Capesurvivor

 

 

  • Tue, Mar 10, 2009 - 11:19pm

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    Re: Spouse who just don’t get it?

[quote=capesurvivor]

You rang!! Sam is probably the only person on this thread who remembers Maynard G. Krebs from Dobie Gillis. Simpler times.

[/quote]

Hey! I resemble that remark!  Wink

My other Maynard favorite is "WORK?!?" Surprised  For those reading this thread, I apologize but only those who remember Dobie Gillis will understand this. And, if you don’t know who Dobie Gillis is – well, here’s a peek into the past:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Many_Loves_of_Dobie_Gillis

http://www.tvparty.com/recdobie.html

SG – any chance of doing some of the things that I mentioned in my post #3?

At least you can touch base in these forums from time-to-time and not feel so isolated! My sympathies.  Frown

  • Tue, Mar 10, 2009 - 11:23pm

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    Re: Spouse who just don’t get it?

Hi crkeesey,

I’m lucky enough to have a spouse who is in agreement with my concerns (to put it mildly!) about the future. However, most of my friends would just as soon not talk about it. That’s one reason why this forum is so important to me.

One suggestion I have for you is to not say anything negative to your wife about her interest in things such as American Idol. Yes, it’s trivial, but it’s important to be able to have an escape from time to time. If she feels like she can still have these pursuits and not have to defend them, maybe she will start to come around to taking your concerns more seriously.

I do find it interesting that she’s spent time living in a very poor country. I think many Americans take for granted that we’ve had a prosperous way of life here. Maybe for her the "good american life" is something she’s put a lot of thought and energy into and now you are threatening that belief. I know I’m scared of what could happen and I’ve always been pretty cynical. It’s probably really scaring her. Sam’s suggestions are great ones. Baby steps. Every part of the country has some sort of natural disaster that could happen. Preparing for those kind of things is a great first step. And, it’s a good idea no matter how optimistic one happens to be.

Hang in there,

becky

  • Tue, Mar 10, 2009 - 11:34pm

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    Re: Spouse who just don’t get it?

It’s all in our heads… 

Have her read "A New Earth"…  

But you know what?  Some people wont come around until the last minute, or they come around when it’s too late, but they also become your best adversaries in a time of crisis.  Kinda think in terms of the movie, "Far & Away".

 

  • Tue, Mar 10, 2009 - 11:39pm

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    Re: Spouse who just don’t get it?

SG,

Thank you for the update.  I always learn from you, I promise you others do as well.  Sounds as if you had a productive meeting with the state rep. Smile  Thanks for putting that thought in my head, I will look into meeting with mine. 

Here is  the link to Bulk Foods.  They have a few tasty choices, some low salt as well.  

http://www.bulkfoods.com/products.asp#foods

Cat

  • Tue, Mar 10, 2009 - 11:44pm

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    Re: Spouse who just don’t get it?

Hey crkeesey, I get where you are coming from completely.  My husband couldn’t be bothered to watch the Crash Course, so I summarized it for him and he was on board with it.  It hasn’t really hit him yet that this could be really bad if we don’t start actively preparing and he has no sense of urgency about it because it hasn’t directly affected us (yet.  I am sure it isn’t far down the line).  I tried talking to him about ditching our cable service because it would save us $80 bucks a month and it was like I had suggested giving up showers.  I mean he seriously sees HD TV as a necessity in his life.  We have no savings and considerable consumer debt in addition to our mortgage and 2 little kids we have to provide for and picture quality and 700 channels are above and beyond important.  I just don’t get it.

 /

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