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Preparedness tips for families of divorce

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By Jim Cobb, Living Ready Online

With around 50 percent of all marriages in the United States ending in divorce, and with a high percentage of those split families involving children, more and more preppers are faced with the possibility of those kids being in another home when disaster hits.

It is important to consider this when making your survival plans. While you may liken conversations with your ex to be even less desirable than a root canal performed with rusty tools and no laughing gas, you still need to sit down with him or her and discuss who is going to be responsible for what, should the worst come to pass.

Preparedness Tips for Families of Divorce: Who Gets the Kids?

For example, if an event happens, who will pick up the kids at school? Will that always fall to Dad, no matter what? Or, will it be whichever parent has custody that week? All other things being equal, I suggest that task be assigned to whichever parent is routinely closest to the school and can therefore get there the quickest.

As a follow up to that, while it is probably assumed the children will go to the parent’s home after being picked up, what if that location is not safe? There need to be plans in place as to where that part of the family will go, how they will get there, and how long they will wait for everyone else.

Preparedness Tips for Families of Divorce: Make a Plan

What you might consider doing is determining two different backup locations. Call them A and B. Location A is the primary backup, B is the secondary. Should the home be determined to be unsafe for some reason, everyone is to meet at location A.

Once there, the family will wait a predetermined length of time and, if no one else shows up (or that location also becomes unsafe), they move on to the second meeting place. Give thought as to where a message could be left as well, such as under a specific potted plant or in a mailbox.

Preparedness Tips for Families of Divorce: Consider the Ex

Survival plans for divorced families


One way to stay in touch with family when a disaster hits is with a two-way radio. Remember, cell phones often go out of service. Living Ready recommends this DeLorme inReach satellite communicator for constant contact. 

Then, there’s the subject of physical preps – water, food and supplies – necessary to provide for basic needs throughout the duration of the crisis.

In speaking with preppers at conferences, a situation where both parents are preppers is the rare exception. In fact, I’ve known more than a couple people for whom the marriage break up was at least partially due to beliefs about disaster readiness.

In any event, the reality is that if your former spouse doesn’t actively prep, you might need to do double duty, so to speak.

If your budget allows, consider investing in some extra food and gear and ask your ex to keep it at their house. Stress that you aren’t asking them to be financially invested in this, they merely need to give up a bit of closet space.

While you, as the “prepping parent,” may feel compelled to do anything you can to get your ex actively involved with prepping, it is far better to be able to convince them to let you stage supplies at their home than it is to feel like you’ve won the larger argument about prepping in general.

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