Separated when the SHTF 

It’s always great to have a plan and know what you’re going to do if “The Fall” happens. But most plans I’ve read online or in books seem specifically tailored to single people.

Why is that?

Most people have some sort of a family, whether it be a spouse and/or at least one child? 

What’s the plan if you are separated from them when disaster strikes? Don’t think for an instant that it’ll never happen… I’m surprised more people haven’t accounted for this situation in their disaster planning, because a lot of things can cause your family to be spread out across an entire city.

In a best-case scenario, it takes missiles from the eastern hemisphere a little less than 30 minutes to reach targets in the continental United States. However, if an attack comes from a submarine, it could take about 10-15 minutes to reach their targets. Also, consider that our government will probably move at a snail’s pace because they don’t want political backlash if it turns out to be a false alarm[1]. That means, you have less than 10-30 minutes to get out of the city.

So, what would cause your family to be separated during a disaster? 

Life… That’s what. 

In most families, parents work and children are at school throughout the day. That’s two or three different locations everyone who matters could be located. If a disaster strikes and you can’t contact your family, you need to have a plan so you’re not wasting time running around like a chicken with its head cut off. 

Assuming you have something resembling the average “nuclear family”, I’d recommend you plan to have one parent collect the survival gear and get your vehicle ready to make an escape. The other parent, preferably female (or feminine), needs to focus on getting your children out of school.

This can take forever. Actually, getting your kids is going to be the greatest time-suck in your bug-out plan because history and bad parents have taught school officials to drag their feet. 

The reason why I recommend you task the mother or feminine partner with this duty is because they tend to appear less threatening during emergency situations than males or dominant partners. They tend to exude a combination of nervous and worried emotional energy, which makes people more sympathetic. They also tend to chat and relate with staff, and that relatability may get the kids out faster.

A feminine person can say, “I’m so worried about the situation, I just want my family to be at home.” As opposed to most dominant males, who find it difficult to do the same thing. Men may appear to be more aggressive than women in the same situation. They tend to radiate anger and frustration when under pressure, and isn’t ideal when they’re forced to work with slow-government-employees.

The school may refuse to release a child to a parent who appears to be overly nervous and panicked. If this happens, the parents should switch out and try a different approach. Maybe a different face will convince the school to release your kids.

If the school refuses to release your child after two attempts… then you need to do what’s best for your family. You may have to decide, as a family, to extract your children by any means necessary[2]

This is a survival situation and minutes can mean the difference between life or death. The chances of your family’s survival reduces with every minute that school official wastes. 

If you’re a single parent, your job is twice as hard because you not only have to collect your kids, but also the supplies you’re going to need. If this is the case, I recommend you pick up the kids first because they can help you pack. If the school will not release your kids, you got that attempt out of the way. That means when you head home, you know what extra supplies you may need to bring back so you can successfully extract your child.

Who knows, maybe things will have cooled off enough that your appearance won’t be as threatening when you return. Or perhaps the staff will have a change of heart. Or, maybe another parent put the school in its place. It doesn’t matter how you get your kids out of school, you just need to keep in mind that it’s going to waste most of your family’s precious time. 

Skeptical Relationship 

What if you’re in a relationship with a skeptic who will not listen to your emergency plans? What if they don’t take it seriously and refuse to commit those plans to memory? Or, what if they are the type of person who is so worried about you, they’ll do all the wrong things when the SHTF? 

Well, there truly isn’t helping everyone. You just have to tell them your disaster plans and hope they remember the plan. 

I happen to be in a relationship with a skeptic, and we sometimes find ourselves separated by about 100 miles because of home remodels or work. 

If I were the one to be out of the city, I will not go into the city looking for my boyfriend. Forget all those heroic movies where the lone man or mother saves the family. That’s a hopeless endeavor in real life, and I don’t want him to do the same for me if the situations were reversed. 

If I’m trapped in the city, I will hike or bicycle it out to the bug-out spot… and he should do the same. 

IF he wants to come to my aid, then MAYBE it would be a good idea if he tried to meet up with me mid-way. But that will require a lot of luck…

I can’t stress the importance having a bug-out plan. However, not all plans are made for the same type of family. You need to make your own, or adjust published plans to meet your own family needs. Always keep in mind that the longer it takes you to get out of a major city, the less likely the most important people to you are going to survive.

***

Next time, I’ll post a few of my bug out plans. Yes, I have multiple plans.


[1] False Alarm: Remember the false alarm that happened in Hawaii in 2018?

[2] I would like to remind my readers that I do not condone violence, nor do I recommend that you commit any crimes. You need to use your best judgement when it comes to your family’s safety.

Schrödinger’s Baby on Board

As I was driving out of a parking lot today, I noticed a “Baby on Board” sticker on a parked car. I first asked myself, why do people brand their cars like that? It’s a waste of money and in a couple years the baby will grow into a toddler, and that sticker will make a liar out of the driver. Unless, the owner of the car intends to become a baby factory[1].

But what if there really is a baby on board that car?!

What if the baby is being cooked alive in the Texas summer heat, and I just drove by not knowing that an innocent life is being extinguished by a terribly negligent parent?

What would I think if I saw it on the news? Would I be sad that I could have stopped my car and checked to make sure there truly wasn’t a baby on board?

Could that sticker be a posted warning to the public the owner practices a deranged form of survival of the fittest? Could abandoning the baby in the car be a deadly test inspired by the ancient Spartans to see if it’s tough enough to survive?

Should I call the fire department to check it out? Afterall, there is a posted sign stating a baby is somewhere on board that car. We have a moral and legal responsibility to tear that car apart until we find that baby.

If the fire department does tear the car apart and discovers there wasn’t a baby in there after all, the owner should be responsible for the damages caused investigating because there was a posted sign indicating a baby was on board[2].

I remember when I was a kid, a vile creature some people could mistake as a stepmother, purposely left me in a car for hours in the Texas heat[3]. That never would have happened if cell phones and social media were around back then, because the risk of being publicly shamed or charged for criminal neglect would have been an all too real possibility.

Maybe that’s why I’m thinking so much about that simple sticker on a car, that’s obviously going to be parked for hours. Maybe my childhood experience may have made me overly sympathetic to a child being cooked alive by the Texas heat, which, nowadays has been made even worse by global warming. Despite the mere fact that such an endangered baby exists solely because I read the message of a bumper sticker metaphorically.

Or is there really a baby in there?

We’ll never know until someone looks in the car.


[1] Baby Factory – I just thought of what may be considered a real baby factory, an “axolotl tank” from Frank Herbert’s Dune universe.

[2] I wonder if that would be a good legal defense when the angry owner of the car sues the good Samaritan, who was concerned for the safety of a baby?

[3] Being cooked alive in a car as a child may be why I can tolerate the steam room much longer than most others. Should I be thankful for that?