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Old 09-22-2011, 11:49   #1
G29Reload
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A survey. No multiple choice, all essay.

It comes up from time to time.

A topic gets discussed, where some bad situation is described. It gets volunteered simultaneously...about leaving.

I'm not talking about bugging out of a bad party down the block, but suicide. We cross some pretty dire scenarios, and some folks think they can't take it.

I think the truth is, some of us don't really know.

Some claim if X happened, that would be it. But we know many would hesitate, because hey, its a dire step.

Others are brave and claim they'd endure ANYTHING, but might crumble in the face of adversity and be the first to bail.

Its also a difficult topic because it means as far as survival, our pet topic...all our effort came to naught. And we didn't.

Some might get philosophical and say we did...it just took another form. And there are worse things than dying.

So the question...and I'm not sure even I can answer it yet:

A. How bad could it get, where you do survive? What is the WORST it could get, and you would still hang in there? Your absolute limit, but nothing past that?

B. What the event, scenario or circumstance that would be a step too far, where you just couldnt? You'd just go over the cliff and not look back?

There are no right or wrong answers. Some of you have thought of this...some of you can't imagine...even that...say so.

Last edited by G29Reload; 09-22-2011 at 11:50..
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Old 09-22-2011, 12:54   #2
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Great question,
Who hasn't thought and wondered of the big and small details.

In the worst case, government will only take care of the east and west coast. If you live in farm country, the local farmers with their own silos would become lords of the land and locals would try to get jobs with them. Flyover land would still be just that, forgotten.

As to my family, being the oldest and most prone to get lung issues I believe I would not last more than 6-8 months. Note I have 'X' amount of food for my family.

Would I of failed my family if times got worse afterwords? I think not, as I had provided as I could. For what it's worth, I still remember my first decision to put something back, 4 small cans of jalapeno peppers .25 cents each, and no I don't know where they are, misplaced in a box somewhere. Why jalapeno's was chosen first, I have no idea.

Note I did not say end of world, as the book of revelations deals specifically with it. I would not live in Seattle, or any town with large military units or large ports of entry. It will be very hot in those places some day due to nuclear war during the end times.

And, I do not belong to the welfare state yet.

Last edited by Half Life; 09-22-2011 at 13:02.. Reason: mis-spelled live in Seattle
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Old 09-22-2011, 13:21   #3
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In the worst case, government will only take care of the east and west coast. If you live in farm country, the local farmers with their own silos would become lords of the land and locals would try to get jobs with them. Flyover land would still be just that, forgotten.
Where will the government be going to get the food to feed the east and west coasts? The flyover country.
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Old 09-22-2011, 14:27   #4
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...A. How bad could it get, where you do survive? What is the WORST it could get, and you would still hang in there? Your absolute limit, but nothing past that?
As long as my wife or kids aren't all gone, I have a responsibility to be here and trying. Even if it was just one son left, and he'd turned into Evil Lord Humongous, it would still be my responsibility to try & turn him around or deal with him otherwise. Basically, if they need me, I need to be here for them; if they're a danger to others, I need to deal with that as well, just part of being dad imo.

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...B. What the event, scenario or circumstance that would be a step too far, where you just couldnt? You'd just go over the cliff and not look back?
Don't know; can't say there absolutely isn't one. But if there was one, it would have to be after I was the "last one alive in the lifeboat", so to speak. If any of my family - or anyone else who I've committed to helping - are still around, it would be wrong to abandon them without fulfilling that commitment first.


All that said, it's hard to be too adamant about the answer without ever having been in that exact position. All I can do is go with what my core beliefs and principles are; and hope my actions follow accordingly.
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Old 09-23-2011, 02:00   #5
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I have to say my first instincts are to stick around as long as possible. I have this curiosity, no matter how bad things are...to see how things turn out.

Physical injury, where the outcome is certain? Maybe.

Just the idea of that irreversible decision...no going back.
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Old 09-23-2011, 02:41   #6
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Do absolutely everything I could. Like you said very hard question to answer.
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Old 09-23-2011, 06:17   #7
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A. How bad could it get, where you do survive? What is the WORST it could get, and you would still hang in there? Your absolute limit, but nothing past that?

B. What the event, scenario or circumstance that would be a step too far, where you just couldnt? You'd just go over the cliff and not look back?

There are no right or wrong answers. Some of you have thought of this...some of you can't imagine...even that...say so.
Humans can endure a lot of physical pain and long periods of deprivation - think German POWs captured by the Russians

What people can not endure is the lack of hope. If you are starving and do not see any way to eat, you have lost hope.

If you have a disease and you do not see any way for a cure, you have lost hope.

If over months you have seen the people around you die from various things and you do not see a way out, you have lost hope.

Hope for a better future is what keeps people going.

People that commit suicide now due to a depression, have lost hope.

Those that say that they would do anything to keep going have are not really prepared for SHTF. They have not fully explored the mental challenges of those situations. They might be prepared for all the 'active' aspects - food, ammo, electricity. But, they are probably not prepped for the psychological aspects - depression, lack of hope, physical pain, suffering of loved ones and others etc. Think of a rich person that commits suicide - they have all the physical things but not the mental & emotional tools to deal with their problems.
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Old 09-23-2011, 06:43   #8
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Man's Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl answers your questions.
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Old 09-23-2011, 09:16   #9
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I have no children yet, but neither did my Grandfather when he was captured as a POW at the Battle of the Buldge Dec 21 '44. He was 160lbs when captured before his forced 600 mile march into the German Stalag, and I believe 89lbs when released. If he would have given up one day before that Stalag was liberated, I would not be here.

I can only hope I could be half as strong as my Late Grandfather if ever faced with such difficult times. I have never lived through hard times like some here may have. But if I ever have to face truely hard times, I will do my best to just take one day at a time, while thinking of my family who came before me, and the future generations yet to be born.

I was told that the guys that made it, were stealing frozen horse grains that would break teeth along that forced 600mi march across Europe, and they were not afraid to eat whatever rats and cock roaches could be caught in the German Stalag.
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Old 09-23-2011, 18:23   #10
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Old 09-23-2011, 20:10   #11
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There is no way to know your limit until you have been there.

Here is a different way of thinking about it.
1. How much pain can you take?
2. How much can you take and still be able to think?
3. How about how much you can you take before you pass out?
4. How long can you take a near maximum amount of pain, before you can not think?
5. Can you handle more pain if it increases slowly until you max out?

My answers.
1. A good bit more than I ever thought.
2. Short term pain doesn't do this to me. I can think through it. I can even drive through it.
3. As long as I can move and I am not forced to sit up and sit still, I don't pass out.
4. This is a different story. An hour is no problem. A day is doable. Multiple days is tolerable. Weeks, months, years, is enough to break even the best of people. Knowing permanent damage is being done breaks many.
5. Oh, yes. If things slowly go bad people don't people don't even notice at first. Then as it builds I am able to endure much more than I would have ever thought possible.

And to answer your original question, I don't know how much I can take before I decide to just eat a bullet, or decide to go out like the Sun dance kid..
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Old 09-23-2011, 22:13   #12
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I don't post in here that often but I believe this is a very important question.

To answer the first question I think it could get very...very bad and I would still have the will to survive. When I was younger I went through some pretty bad times and found my way out of it. I believe mentally I'm stronger now than I was then. Physically not as much but I believe I can persevere.

The second question is difficult. It reminds me of my mother. My Mom died of congestive heart failure. A slow very debilitating and painful way to die. It took two years from the onset of her suffering before she passed.

Now my mother was a very solid Catholic. Catholics believe suicide is a mortal sin. Yet towards the end my mother was begging to go.

So you can't know until you are there. Here was the strongest woman I've ever known wanting to commit the mortalist sin of her church.

So I don't know. I'm afraid most of us will end up in the same position. Wanting to let go but too weak to do anything about it.

In my opinion plan ahead for such a moment and if possible at least give yourself the option. Your friends and relatives won't.
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Old 09-23-2011, 23:21   #13
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Old 09-24-2011, 09:22   #14
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Just finished researching some WWII history for a book I'm working on. Long story short, the Japanese were quick to revert to suicide during WWII, as you know. It made a measurable impact on the training of the next generation of soldiers...they weren't able to learn the lessons of the soldiers they were replacing. It was particularly bad among the pilots. Pilot quality for Japan decreased sharply during the war. Pilot quality among the Americans increased sharply. Main reason, according to historians? The American pilots who were shot down, burned, disfigured, maimed, and who suffered all the humiliations of mortality that a self-respecting Japanese soldier wouldn't tolerate, were around to train the next generation of pilots.

So you have to weigh your responsibilities to the next generation in your calculations. Like Quake says. If you have no responsibilities, that's one thing. If you have responsibilities, that's another.

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But I have promises to keep
And miles to go before I sleep."
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Old 09-24-2011, 10:54   #15
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our ancestors

our ancestors were survivors and preppers, they knew when to bug out, that's why WE are here....they managed to survive and pass their genes down to us..... where are the jebusites the midianites, the amelechites, etc.? and where is Israel, for example?..... Israel and its people and culture survived and now thrive.... I think we can learn a lot from survivors.... I take some ridicule from my in laws for the garage full of buckets of food and for my huge supply of mil surp rifles and crates of olive spam cans of ammo.... and I recall the biblical admonition...the WISE will understand and I just quietly keep on prepping....
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Old 09-24-2011, 11:19   #16
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I have no children yet, but neither did my Grandfather when he was captured as a POW at the Battle of the Buldge Dec 21 '44. He was 160lbs when captured before his forced 600 mile march into the German Stalag, and I believe 89lbs when released. If he would have given up one day before that Stalag was liberated, I would not be here.

I can only hope I could be half as strong as my Late Grandfather if ever faced with such difficult times. I have never lived through hard times like some here may have. But if I ever have to face truely hard times, I will do my best to just take one day at a time, while thinking of my family who came before me, and the future generations yet to be born.

I was told that the guys that made it, were stealing frozen horse grains that would break teeth along that forced 600mi march across Europe, and they were not afraid to eat whatever rats and cock roaches could be caught in the German Stalag.
Inspiration!

My basic inclination is to hang in till I can't. I have a high tolerance for spartan living and enduring what others won't put up with.

I'm still trying to put my finger on exactly why I even started this thread.

I think I have it:

I'm expecting things to get REALLY bad. I mean uncharted territory. To go where we never expected to except in our worst nightmares. Terrorist nuke, followed by financial collapse, countrywide destitution, foreign interference, military struggle and chaos on an unimaginable level.

Not a sure thing by any means, but more likely than ever at any time in history. The daily political scene with those currently holding the helm are scary beyond not having any confidence in them. Banks, media...have never seen such willful ignorance, determined ruination and denial. Its like there's no adults in the room, and the animals are running the zoo. Everyone is content not to stop them except a powerless minority.

Damn. Didn't take much to even depress myself. I need to head to the kitchen and have a consolation sandwich.
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Old 09-24-2011, 21:55   #17
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...have never seen such willful ignorance, determined ruination and denial. Its like there's no adults in the room, and the animals are running the zoo.
And yet, when gradeschooler's history textbooks cover this period 20 years in the future, it will be treated as a tough time for a brilliant young president who through his own heroic fortitude, managed to keep the nation together despite the evil villains and corporate boogeymen who were trying to tear it asunder. B.O. is too big to fail.

If you doubt me, see how FDR is still treated as a hero for being both the disease and the cure. I was at Home Depot a couple weeks ago and a woman with some political axe to grind had a table set up with flyers, and she was shouting that we all needed to learn a lesson from how FDR took care of things. My wife and I doubled over laughing and caught some serious stink-eye from her.

It's like watching a boxing match where America is in the corner, taking blow after blow, and you wonder to yourself, how much more can it take? Knowing that most nations would have gone down already.
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Old 09-25-2011, 16:55   #18
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Great thread, something all of us have wondered but hope we do not have to find out.

Most know in Vietnam all POWs were tortured, held in tiger pits, etc. Admiral James Stockton was the highest ranking officer in the Hanoi Hilton. Years after their release, a reported asked who (which types) were the first to go. Stockton replied, That's easy - the optimistic ones. They always thought they would be rescued by the next Christmas, next Easter, etc. but it didn't happen. Eventually they lost faith, laid down and died.


I have never been an optimist, so maybe it is a plus(?).
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Old 09-25-2011, 17:38   #19
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Read about the Bataan Death March survivors and what happened to them when they got home.

In the early 1980's the local PBS station did a documentary called Memories of Hell and interviewed the survivors. As a child I was deeply affected after watching, and actually seeing the men telling their stories.

I have two uncles who are/were survivors. One survived, only to be killed 30+ years later. The other is still alive.

I think that it would be easier to endure knowing that you'd have something to look forward to, like family and everything that's "home". However, if all the people, and for lack of a better word, "things" that make up what one knows as"home" are gone, I could understand why some people would loose the will to live.

I'll be honest, I'm soft, and I can't say for certain if I'd be able to endure the hardship of loosing everything, especially the people that I love. . . I hope I never have to find out.
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Old 09-25-2011, 18:26   #20
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Interesting topic. I keep thinking about the people that jumped out of the burning World Trade Center on 9/11. I think it's the point at which we lose hope. As long as we feel there's a chance, most of us will fight for survival. Perhaps some of us lose hope faster than others.
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