Author Topic: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF  (Read 23931 times)

Offline Louisiana Suvivor

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #30 on: December 17, 2009, 08:26:55 PM »

Nothing could stop her - not even cataract surgery which left her legally blind for years. (It was later corrected, but she had no tear ducts and couldn't shed tears)

that's one bad ass woman. only her and Chuck Norris CAN'T cry........

Offline flagtag

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #31 on: December 17, 2009, 08:52:46 PM »
that's one bad ass woman. only her and Chuck Norris CAN'T cry........

 ;D

Yeah. The only thing that could stop her was a stroke.
Many people don't realize how important tears are.  I'm not just talking about moisture to protect the eyes, but being able to shed them helps relieve grief, pain, etc.  Yeah, she "cried" (heartbroken sobs) when family members died, but she didn't have tears to shed. (There are times when a "good cry" is needed to relieve stress, feelings of frustration - without doing physical damage)

Offline Kayzonara

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #32 on: December 18, 2009, 06:54:31 AM »
Well said.

"Had a kind of poetry to it, sir."

Offline firefly

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #33 on: December 18, 2009, 07:32:27 PM »
Quote
"Had a kind of poetry to it, sir."

LOL  :D  great quote

SnugInMyPod

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #34 on: December 21, 2009, 12:14:05 AM »
Fellow Survivalists,

All kidding from The Onion aside, too many people of all genders in the U.S. and the West have fought, bled, and died for recognition of the individual rights of women and for equal justice for all.  I can't speak for anyone else, but in any realm of mine, in any place I would call home, everyone pulls their own weight and bears burdens equally and everyone is rewarded in accordance with their ability, whether the SHTF or not.  

And any knuckle-dragging cavemen who hold or capture women and girls as property in a post-SHTF world should be regarded as yet another class of looters and thugs.  They (the cavemen) should think themselves lucky if they escape getting flailed with axe-handles by decent citizens.



« Last Edit: December 21, 2009, 12:17:12 AM by SnugInMyPod »

SnugInMyPod

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #35 on: December 21, 2009, 12:37:14 AM »
Howdy, Morning Sunshine and TwoBluesMama!

You both made an excellent posts on the strength and resourcefulness of women back in the day.  I should add that in frontier times, it was nothing for families to have homestead cemetaries filled with 13 or 14 still-born children before one child survived.  My Grandparents and even my own Mom had siblings that didn't live very long after birth.  How women of that time physically and mentally kept it all together in the midst of such unspeakable tragedy is simply super-human!

I imagine that if times ever got bad enough, we would see many more women of raw nerve and sinew come from the experience.  Let's hope so.  They are an inspiration to us all, regardless of gender.




SnugInMyPod

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #36 on: December 21, 2009, 12:49:15 AM »
Howdy, Flagtag!

I missed your post.  Much love to your Grandmother and Grandfather too!  All of my Grandparents also raised multiple children, but fortunately, none of them became widows or widowers in the process of raising children, so it must have been a huge task for your Grandmother.

It's also a challenge when all of the children are all one sex or another.  My Dad was one of 5 rough-and-tumble boys, so poor Grammy had to have had it real bad.  The mere thought of eight children is enough to make a man consider DIY vasectomy.

 ;D

Offline flagtag

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #37 on: December 21, 2009, 11:52:49 AM »
My grandparents had 6 girls and 2 boys. Which was good for my grandmother since the girls helped out around the house. 

The point is: we can ALL do whatever is needed if it comes right down to it.  We CAN survive (with or without a man).  Many women who depend on men for support now, may find that they will have to give up the "take care of me, I'm too frail" mindset. 
Many women would be surprised at their abilities under duress and would learn just how "strong" they really are.

Offline mamabear

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #38 on: December 21, 2009, 01:21:26 PM »
Many women would be surprised at their abilities under duress and would learn just how "strong" they really are.
Sadly, Many women never discover this about themselves. I thought for years that I was not "strong" enough to handle life that was being thrown my way. Imagine my suprise when my mom booted me out on my arse and said yes I could. (she didn't really boot me out-just strongly encouraged it!) And I could. I have been doing it all on my own for years now. Even being a single mom. Turns out I actually kind of like how things turned out. I am a better stronger person for it. I am very thankful that I was able to discover just how strong I was before I ended up needing to know. We, people and women in particular, are all capable of more than we think. We have just been told we can't, so we don't. One day we will all know that we can because there is no one to tell us otherwise.

Offline Ann

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #39 on: December 21, 2009, 03:17:13 PM »
Howdy, Flagtag!

I missed your post.  Much love to your Grandmother and Grandfather too!  All of my Grandparents also raised multiple children, but fortunately, none of them became widows or widowers in the process of raising children, so it must have been a huge task for your Grandmother.

It's also a challenge when all of the children are all one sex or another.  My Dad was one of 5 rough-and-tumble boys, so poor Grammy had to have had it real bad.  The mere thought of eight children is enough to make a man consider DIY vasectomy.

 ;D

irk!!!!  That would make most women consider a chastity belt!

Offline shadewolf

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #40 on: December 27, 2009, 11:28:40 AM »
In my opinion the role women will take in a Post SHTF all depends on the woman. Hell, It'll even depend on the guy (A bum with no skills is worth even less than a housewife). The most important thing will be skills. Sex nor class will mean anything. My favorite example of this was in the book World War Z where this uppity buisness women became labor and her former cleaning lady took the role of the boss because of her experience.

So will some women have to become the housekeeper? Yes, But so will those soft men who have no skills in life or work and have the luck of having someone who would be willing to house them like their partner, friend or family member.

One thing to note, housekeeping if you are on a homestead is not easy at all, and if one is a male 'unskilled bum' you're equally as not likely to be able to cope with all that needs doing. There's alot of skill to be learned to successfully run a homestead. For instance, if you get your canning process wrong, you could pave the way for pathogens to poison your food and thus your family. Or if you are trying to make soap, you better know how to safely handle lye so you don't seriously burn yourself. Then there's the sheer physicality needed for many things around the homestead.

I just got laid off my full time computer job in the city and now work our farm full time. It will take time and great effort to turn it into a fully functioning/producing homestead. So, while my husband is away in the city making money, I am working at: building outbuildings myself, forking hay and hauling water for the livestock, cooking & cleaning & laundry in the house, building our farm store, selling our eggs and produced goods locally, managing our farm store website, planning for next season's gardens while growing winter gardens indoors, renovate the house myself, breeding rabbits and chickens for meat and eggs, slaughtering and butchering livestock for the freezer/canning/smoking/dehydrating, processing the skins into useable leather.

When my husband comes home, although he gets a list of stuff to do or he helps me with the 2-person jobs, I still have to teach him many of the skills needed to run the farm because he isn't specialised in a number of those skills. We'd be in a really sorry state if I didn't know how to do most of the things I do (and without his complementary skillset) and I just sat around the house doing only basic cooking, cleaning, and laundry. We knew what we were getting into when we left the city and I had spent years learning the skills I'd need before I even met my husband. If he wasn't handy and had some skills already that are really useful like how to build fences or knowing building construction/repair, or how to make useful gadgets & troubleshoot, likely we wouldn't have gotten together as I wouldn't want to have to support an unskilled person. Even our son is learning the skills needed to run the farm and look after everything as he is old enough to understand the Why and How of how we run the place, and he likes to produce the food we eat.

But make no mistake, those of you not already living on and running a producing homestead: the work is not easy, it's physically demanding, there's some things you need 2 or more people to safely accomplish, and there's a lot of learned skill you need to pull it off successfully. When you reach the point in your preps of getting that perfect chunk of land to setup your homestead, walk into it well aware of the work ahead of you to get it fully up and producing for you. Never take it for granted the efforts of any spouse who chooses to work the homestead full-time especially if there are children around they also have to take care of simultaneously.  ;D

Offline shadewolf

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #41 on: December 27, 2009, 11:38:20 AM »
I have been reading this thread for a while, but unable to comment since I generally only get to browse while nursing a baby, and that tends to make typing difficult :D

I have a solution for you! Install voice recognition software on your computer (windows 7 has it built right in) and then you can dictate your forum responses!

Offline “Mark”

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #42 on: December 27, 2009, 12:33:44 PM »
The tough ones will survive. The weak will perish. Modern society has turned a lot of people into pansies, men included.

Honestly, I don't think all that much will change. Some women will put up with men's bullshit, just as they do now. Other women won't put up with it, just as they don't now.

I don't think situations change our underlying humanity or personality. Situations, along with experience, can really only bring out what's already there. We're adaptable people, and we will do what's necessary to survive.

Offline Who...me?

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #43 on: December 27, 2009, 08:22:35 PM »
The tough ones will survive. The weak will perish. Modern society has turned a lot of people into pansies, men included.

Honestly, I don't think all that much will change. Some women will put up with men's bullshit, just as they do now. Other women won't put up with it, just as they don't now.

I don't think situations change our underlying humanity or personality. Situations, along with experience, can really only bring out what's already there. We're adaptable people, and we will do what's necessary to survive.


Add to the weak the incredibly stupid that TPTB have allowed to get old enough to breed and have incredibly stupid children.  And how have TPTB accomplished this curtailment of natural selection you ask? 

 Labels on everything in the world that informs those that are able to read (or have family that can) but not smart enough to know you shouldn't use your hair dryer in the shower or not to stick your hand into the washing machine while its on spin cycle. 

After SHTF they will be culls that won't survive.

Offline Heavy G

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #44 on: December 28, 2009, 06:58:59 AM »
"TPTB" is The Powers That Be, by the way.

Offline Kayzonara

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #45 on: December 29, 2009, 10:07:28 AM »
Allow me to give you your first +1, Shadewolf, and welcome to the board! ;D

Offline DIM TIM

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #46 on: January 04, 2010, 01:13:46 PM »
I have been reading this thread for a while, but unable to comment since I generally only get to browse while nursing a baby, and that tends to make typing difficult :D

I think there is a bit of confusion about what a woman did before the industrial era.  There is this romanticized Victorian notion that a woman was only involved in child rearing and housekeeping.  And that may have been true in the Victorian-era CITIES for middle and upper-class women.  But if we are talking post-SHTF, TEOTWAWKI, we are not talking a Victorian Christmas, folks.

Women on the American frontier were NOT confined to child and home duties.  I am going to focus on the American frontier from about 1830-1910, since that is the era and place I know best, having written my BA thesis on it.
Women were, first of all, rare on the frontier.  We are talking 10 (or more) men to 1 woman in most parts.  I mention this because it gave women social power.  Judges were likelier to grant divorces for adultery and abandonment on the frontier than in the cities.  Women on the frontier did not have to "take it."
Women worked the homesteads with their husbands.  They were out there plowing the fields, clearing the trees, wrangling the cows and horses.  They were a TEAM, husband and wife.  Neither could do it without the other.
We have heard about Annie Oakley, but she was not the only woman who could shoot.  She just happened to be able to make a name for herself doing it.
Women were doctors, vets (both the animal type and the military type), stagecoach drivers, ranchers, etc.
You think just cuz a man died, a woman folded in on herself and waited for another man to come along and "save" her?  Think Gone with the Wind when Scarlet shoots that "damn yankee" in her house.
Yes, they sewed, they cooked, they raised children.  Guess what?  Men did the same when the wives died.  Which they did on a regular basis.  the mortality rate of women on the frontier was crazy high;  it was 50% more for women than men (mostly from childbirth complications... can we say unsanitary!)
There was some division of labor along gender lines.  Childbearing and rearing does keep a woman closer to home.  Does to me these days too.  I really do NOT want to be far from home when I am close to delivery-time if I do not have to be.  I want my doctor and my things and to go home to my house after, thank you very much.  No pre-term labor 500 miles from home, thank you very much!  Little children need constant supervision.  up to about age 5.  We live in a very safe and sterilized environment for children these days.  The worst I have to worry about my crawling baby is he tumbles down the carpeted stairs to the mid-stair landing or that he picks up a small toy left by an older sibling.  150 years ago, my goodness - animal attacks, falling in wells, wandering off into the vast wilderness, falling into the fire, childhood diseases that killed instead of caused a few days in bed.  Plus the stairs and choking.  This does require a mom paying attention.

so, will there be a division of labor based on gender stereotypes?  no.  I don't think so.  Maybe a few masculine jerks in the immediate post-SHTF world would fall back on this victorian-helpless woman idea, but long term, I think it would be based more on abilities and inclinations.

Normally I would not have stopped to check out this board, let alone this thread, but the title got the best of my curiosity.

Morning Sunshine has some very good points. My own great-grandmother rasied 13 children, helped her husband work a farm, worked for the United States Postal service as a mail carrier, delivering mail up and down the hills and "hollers" of Kentucky, on mule back with a hogleg .45 for years before moving to Ohio. During the war years, she worked in the GM factories turning out the machines of war.

One of the greatest women I have had the pleasure of knowing. Women like her can be on my side any day.   ;D

Offline PAGUY

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #47 on: October 30, 2010, 12:23:59 PM »
I am watching 28 Days Later right now.  It is one of those movies that makes you say "What if".  Not in the sense of a viral outbreak occurs and causes people to become violent to the point of eating the flesh of others but, in the sense that if SHTF and you had to defend yourself and provide for yourself in any manor necessary how would you go about it.  How would you interact with others that you might meet up with if you have not prepared for a protect in place defense? Would you realize that even though you and a member of the other sex are not a perfect match but, there is a need to keep the human race going.  You might say that this is the last thing on your mind but, there is a time when you have to do what you have to do.   I know that this is off the initial trail of this thread but, think about it.  Would you do what has to be done or say "No way in HE double hockey sticks would I ever"..........just some food for thought.

Offline dodgetruckmom

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #48 on: October 31, 2010, 06:56:30 AM »
One of my favorite sci-fi series is the collection of Darkover books by Marion Zimmer Bradley. Long story short: a colony ship headed for a new planet crash lands on a different (habitable) planet. The 50 or so people who survive the crash and the initial couple of weeks have to figure out how to keep themselves going. The kicker is that half of them are "colonists" with survival skills and half are "technologists" whose skills aren't in quite as high demand in this new situation. The series deals with the establishment of a new society and what happens when the colonists are "rediscovered" by Earth.

The crash part of the story is detailed in the book Darkover Landfall. What I found most interesting was that the survivors of the crash had to come to some pretty difficult (for them) conclusions. The colonists are scorned by the technologists--who think the colonists have archaic skills--until the colonists become the ones who save everybody else's butts. Women who expected to remain childless for the sake of their careers were told that--for the good of the entire community--they had to bear as many children as possible to as many different men as possible. Monogamy goes out the window (it's considered selfish) and group marriage becomes common. At first, women are allowed to maintain leadership roles because they can foster out their children to other women. Later on in the series, though, things begin to change because of a societal breeding program (you'll have to read the books to find out) and women are valued more for their breeding ability than anything else. Things quickly devolve into a patriarchal society.

The whole series spans a couple thousand years of history of this new planet. I've read and re-read these books hundreds of times, and I always find something new and interesting in them.

Offline mangyhyena

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Re: 28 Days Later: The Role of Women in a post SHTF
« Reply #49 on: November 01, 2010, 12:10:15 PM »
Okay, I've read all the comments so far.  Excellent topic.  I'm researching for a book I intend to write at a later point, specifically about Neanderthals.  Believe it or not, some of what I've researched might have to do with this topic.

There has been no evidence found in our DNA that Neanderthals and Humans interbred.  In other words, looking at modern human DNA, we can not identify Neanderthal-specific genes.  If humans and Neanderthals did successfully interbreed, the children were probably sterile and incapable of procreating or it happened so infrequently that the Neanderthal genes were forever lost in the gene pool to overwhelming human DNA through the generations.  So it is generally accepted that Neanderthals died out 30,000 years ago, or so.

Neanderthals were much stronger than humans.  A 12 year old Neanderthal girl could quite literally rip the arms off a fully grown human male.  As such, most anthropologists believe that neanderthal women and men were equal partners in the hunt.  These neanderthal people were like supermen/superwomen in some ways, far stronger than their human counterparts.  Yet, they died out and we survived and thrived.

Lots of theories have been put forth about why they died out, everything from humans killing them all in a competition for territory to humans hunting them down and eating them. :o  The one that makes the most sense to me is that humans had an advantage over neanderthals when it came to a division of labor.  (Here's where the things I've researched may have to do with this discussion.)

Since both male and female neanderthals hunted together, there wasn't much in the way of a division of labor.  Since they all hunted together, if they failed to kill something for dinner, the whole tribe went hungry until they succeeded.  Neanderthals also tended to gather in smaller groups than humans, since it takes only so many to take down a large animal.  If they had banded into larger groups, they would have had to make more kills to feed themselves.  Usually, neanderthals banded together in groups of six or less.

Humans, on the other hand, split up the work of putting food on the table, which anthropologists say kept humans going during hard times.  Human men tended to hunt while human women tended to gather plants and nuts for food.  Even if the men failed to kill anything to eat, there was still a good chance that the women would have gathered something for dinner, allowing the tribe to eat.  This division of labor was crucial to the survival of humans, according to some of the theories.  This worked so well that humans tended to gather in bigger and bigger groups.

So, if humans prevailed against neanderthals because they had a division of labor, it would make sense that if TSHTF or TEOTWAWKI happened, we would go back to a division of labor to get more done during a single day.  Jack is always saying that most things come down to energy at the end of the day.  A division of labor is a better use of energy which leads to more overall productivity.

What that would look like would depend on how much of our current technology we manage to preserve and use.  The division of labor would look very different on a homestead that has no power or machines to help with productivity.  A homestead that has power and fuel for equipment, say, a homestead that uses a wood gasifier and/or solar panels to provide electricity and makes alcohol to fuel engines, would require a different division of labor, I think, because power allows for more productivity, which takes some of the stress off the people who have to do the work.  The more of our technology we manage to preserve and use, the easier things will be to endure, the less sever the division of labor will need to be.  (That's just my theory.)

Like a lot of others who responded to this thread, I believe that each partner will bring their specific skills to bear in order to best provide for the family.  If the woman is a good hunter and her partner is not, she'll wind up doing the hunting.  If the guy is great with a needle and thread, he'll wind up doing most of the sewing.

The physical aspect comes into play when applied to specific jobs that require strength and endurance.  In general, a man is usually stronger than a woman.  Not always, but usually.  My wife can probably split wood for fire with an axe, but she can't split as much as I can in the amount of time it takes me to accomplish that task.  If there's wood to be split, I'll handle it.  Likewise, I can cook, but I can't cook as well as my wife can.  For everyone's sake, she'd usually do the cooking.  That's not to say my wife would never split wood or that I would never cook.  Just that I'm better at one and she's better at the other, so we'd usually do what we're better at doing.
Apply some technology to this equation and things look different.  If, for instance, we have electricity to run a microwave, I can more easily handle the cooking.  I might not be as good as her, but I'm not half bad with ye ole microwave.  As well, if we have a log splitter (the machine that splits logs without you having to swing an axe), then she could split about as much wood as I can split.  Technology reduces the importance of physical strength and endurance. 

As mentioned previously, firearms are great equalizers.  An armed woman is more than a match for an unarmed man twice her size and strength.  Still, an armed woman with an armed mate can better defend the family due to more firepower and the fact that one can keep watch while the other sleeps.  Again, technology changes the dynamics.  (Back in the pioneer days, firearms and ammo were expensive, so not every member of a family old enough to shoot had one of their own.)  If there are no firearms, the woman will most likely require her man to help defend her, assuming things are all Mad Max and roving bands of biker brigands are looking for beautiful women to enslave. ;)  If the woman has been well trained to defend herself using hand-to-hand combat, the dynamics change again and her man might require her to help defend him.

In any case, that's my take on the roles men and women might take on after a disaster.  I honestly do not think it would look the same as back in the pioneer days because we have different technology to apply to our tasks and we have a different knowledge base.  One thing that probably will not change is that each partner will take on the tasks they are skilled at doing.  Perhaps we're even smart enough to cross train so each partner can accomplish any task the other knows how to do.  Maybe there's hope for us yet.