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! Off grid for women alone

 
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Hi
I've been following and watching many off Grid stories but I noticed it seems to attract mainly men. Are there any girls out there doing off grid alone?
I'd love to hear from you
 
pollinator
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I have a friend who moved off grid on her own, and I know a few women who live like this for various reasons. I'm not really sure if it's doable for me, but I'll either live alone or with another woman :)
 
Sandy Ann
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Thanks for your answer... see if you have to wait for that special person you may never do it...

I mentioned it to some friends and like me they knew a few men but not a single woman..
 
pollinator
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Just from observation, I think women are more hesitant to advertise that they live alone. Off-grid women even more so. It makes them too much of a target.
 
Sandy Ann
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You might be right..
 
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Ellendra Nauriel wrote:Just from observation, I think women are more hesitant to advertise that they live alone. Off-grid women even more so. It makes them too much of a target.



I think you are exactly right...

Years ago, for only a few months in my early twenties I lived alone in a tent and then a one room off grid cabin and when word got around that there was a single young woman in the woods I had visitors.  Nothing I couldn't handle and I suppose some even had good intentions but all quite annoying because of the supposition that as a woman alone I needed their 'help'.

I'm sure there are women doing just fine living alone off grid and I seem to remember a thread here about doing just that?
I'll try to find it

 
 
Judith Browning
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This is the one I remembered  women homesteading alone

Not exactly all off grid but might have something helpful?
 
Sandy Ann
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Thanks
 
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I'm currently going it alone in a lot of ways and have been for several years though we do often host visitors or work exchangers in the warm months, also have a 13 y.o daughter who isn't too involved in running the place, and we'll have a new resident arrive this month. But the idea is to eventually have more of a sub-community here like a family-style community of friends. I never intended to be doing this by myself but life throws curve balls as we all know. I've got some visitors lined up this year who might be a good personality fit, it just can be challenging to find suitable matches since we're pretty rustic which is a turn off for many and also with the pandemic we haven't been hosting folks much at all the past year. I'm not the solo homesteader by choice more by chance. And it's not my long-term plan, I'm introverted but really quite a people person and appreciate others who have complementary skills because really no one can easefully do it all alone on any sort of larger scale at least no one I've ever seen.
 
Sandy Ann
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So when you mention visitors are you referring to volunteers...?
 
kim scheidt
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Sandy Ann wrote:So when you mention visitors are you referring to volunteers...?


Yes, every year we host people who are interested in learning about this way of life sometimes just for a few days, sometimes for a month or the whole season as work exchangers. We typically provide their meals in exchange for a few hours of work each day. Sometimes visitors donate a little money to offset the energy of hosting them, depending on their financial means. We've met a lot of nice people that way (some weirdos though so it's great to screen carefully, talk on the phone first, etc)
 
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Sandy Ann wrote:Hi
I've been following and watching many off Grid stories but I noticed it seems to attract mainly men. Are there any girls out there doing off grid alone?
I'd love to hear from you



Hi . I wonder this also. I wonder too if it is only people in their 20s and 30s as well. I would love to try some things off grid, or build a natural home, but not sure if that is possible on my own or w/my husband just ourselves.
 
pollinator
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I'm a single women living off grid. I live with three of my adult children, but no partner. I've never lived completely alone because I've had children all of my adult life.
 
Ellendra Nauriel
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Judith Browning wrote:

Years ago, for only a few months in my early twenties I lived alone in a tent and then a one room off grid cabin and when word got around that there was a single young woman in the woods I had visitors.  Nothing I couldn't handle and I suppose some even had good intentions but all quite annoying because of the supposition that as a woman alone I needed their 'help'.


 




There are certain pieces of equipment that I think of as enough of a unique entity, that I actually give them names. Like the modular scaffolding (which, to be honest, I'm still collecting parts for) that can be assembled into all kinds of configurations. It's name is Steve.

I wonder if saying the name out loud might help get people to back off? "Thanks for the offer, but no. Steve and I can handle it ourselves."

(I must be tired. My brain is stuck in Silliness mode.)

 
Judith Browning
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Ellendra Nauriel wrote:

Judith Browning wrote:

Years ago, for only a few months in my early twenties I lived alone in a tent and then a one room off grid cabin and when word got around that there was a single young woman in the woods I had visitors.  Nothing I couldn't handle and I suppose some even had good intentions but all quite annoying because of the supposition that as a woman alone I needed their 'help'.


 




There are certain pieces of equipment that I think of as enough of a unique entity, that I actually give them names. Like the modular scaffolding (which, to be honest, I'm still collecting parts for) that can be assembled into all kinds of configurations. It's name is Steve.

I wonder if saying the name out loud might help get people to back off? "Thanks for the offer, but no. Steve and I can handle it ourselves."

(I must be tired. My brain is stuck in Silliness mode.)


hahaha...that is perfect!  and oddly enough, the real life guy I ended up with for more than forty-five years now is named 'Steve' He was NOT one of the visitors though...that probably would have eliminated him from the start
 
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Sandy Ann wrote:Hi
I've been following and watching many off Grid stories but I noticed it seems to attract mainly men. Are there any girls out there doing off grid alone?
I'd love to hear from you



I would love to do off grid stuff alone, since I have yet to find a special someone or individuals who are interested in doing it with me. My hesitation in Southern CA is that I would likely have to work full time 15 to 30 years in order to pay for a piece of land and even renting was not conducive because then making time for all the big projects I wanted to do, I had a hard time making time for.

Part of what has stopped me from doing it alone Baja and Southern Mexico is definitely the safety factor. As stereotypical as it sounds, being a single ´white American woman draws some unwanted attention when traveling alone. If I was off grid but had neighbors who would keep a distant ear or distant eye on me I would feel more comfortable doing it.

Of course, I recognize that many of this challenges have possible solutions... bartering for the use of land, guard dogs, self defense courses etc. I simply have not been brave enough to do it.

I would love to hear more details about women off gridding alone. Perhaps, it would inspire me to overcome the fear and just go for it. Being on permies has been very inspiring to quit dreaming and start doing.

(Chiapas to me seems like one of the most perfect places to off grid and grow a food forest out of all the places I have visited. I love the weather and it is simply so beautiful here.)
44FFEF67-E895-4177-89CA-332D43C883CE.jpeg
[Thumbnail for 44FFEF67-E895-4177-89CA-332D43C883CE.jpeg]
 
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Ellendra Nauriel wrote:

There are certain pieces of equipment that I think of as enough of a unique entity, that I actually give them names. Like the modular scaffolding (which, to be honest, I'm still collecting parts for) that can be assembled into all kinds of configurations. It's name is Steve.

I wonder if saying the name out loud might help get people to back off? "Thanks for the offer, but no. Steve and I can handle it ourselves."

(I must be tired. My brain is stuck in Silliness mode.)

 




A similar suggestion I saw on another site is to get a big pair of secondhand men's boots and stick them outside the backdoor.      

 
Alana Rose
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Sarah Elizabeth wrote:

Ellendra Nauriel wrote:

There are certain pieces of equipment that I think of as enough of a unique entity, that I actually give them names. Like the modular scaffolding (which, to be honest, I'm still collecting parts for) that can be assembled into all kinds of configurations. It's name is Steve.

I wonder if saying the name out loud might help get people to back off? "Thanks for the offer, but no. Steve and I can handle it ourselves."

(I must be tired. My brain is stuck in Silliness mode.)

 




A similar suggestion I saw on another site is to get a big pair of secondhand men's boots and stick them outside the backdoor.      



Excellent ideas. I used to wear a wedding ring when I was working certain places. Unfortunately, that doesn’t really deter people these days. With the kidnapping and robbery in some of the parts of Mexico I visit, I rarely wear any jewelry.
 
pollinator
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Hah, love the secondhand boots idea. I actually want to live off grid on my own, but don't have the resources or motivation necessary to pull it off at the moment. One of the biggest reasons I fantasize about becoming a hermit is because of being a victim of gender based violence.... so of course I would not want to advertise the fact that I'm female and all by my lonesome without a way to call the cops and have them arrive in a timely manner. I think most women who aren't autistic or traumatized enjoy the company of other humans.(EDIT: I also know that many women who are in fact traumatized or do have autism also enjoy living with fellow humans.) I also believe many women prefer watching a man split wood to splitting wood themselves. Not because it's hard work, but because it's just fun to watch. I got a chance to spend a couple days alone this weekend.... it really helped me realize how stressful it is for me to constantly hear other peoples' noises, and to have to focus my attention on them whenever they talk to me.
 
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I live semi off grid, alone. No family, totally alone, and here been doing it for a fair bit. I freaking love it! I do have a couple large guard dogs tho. More for cougars than trespassers,  but they are protective of me around people too. I have a huge skill set I cultivated by reading books and trial and error. I am 47. Gals, believe in yourselves even if you are afraid, try new things with bravery even if your heart quavers. Be ready for some failures, these only strengthen your knowledge. What is the worst that can happen? You end up back at a 9 to 5 job? If you are injured, call 911, carry a cell phone everywhere and learn first aid. Then go follow your heart and be free..
 
pollinator
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I love strong women. I work in the tech industry, and specialize in the automotive industry when it comes to writing/marketing. As a web developer, I cannot tell you just how often I get told "Hey, honey I need to speak to the MAN in charge." and I always make sure to tell them, "That's me." Some will even get pushy about it, "No, I mean the man who does all that internet programming stuff for our website." and I just always calmly reply "That's me." In my industries, there really aren't women much so every day is a fight showing that I cannot only do things as well as others, but better. I know it can get annoying, but I look at it as a challenge and an opportunity to show that I can be the best in my chosen fields. Reading about you girls stories sure makes me proud.

People are amazing, as individuals, so often any of us can accomplish our goals no matter how dire the challenges and problems we face. And you guys are proving that. So please stay strong and keep up the most excellent work. =) Know that all my positive thoughts are behind you, though to be fair all my positive thoughts are behind all the good people out there. As we fight to overcome the bad, through educating the uneducated, and writing the wrongs others have done in the past to restore the Earth. So much love to you all.

I have not qualified as living off grid, so sorry if my post is unwelcome. I have a huge computer, and it pays my bills. I also am very (way too much so) fond of my kitchen gadgets like my instant pot, meat grinder/sausage stuffer, kitchen aid.... and my video games. If I didn't have video games to help me chill out, I would have died of stress long ago working 80+ hours a week and having a 10 acre farm all of my own.

I did however live by myself for years, and raised all of my own food (And the food for 5 families, including cooking oil!) except some occasional treats like a pineapple or pistachios that I just couldn't find room or justify heating a greenhouse to grow them in. I did run a large aquaponic system off solar, and had plans to take my farm off grid but I haven't gotten that far. I actually got a bit derailed teaching sustainability, permaculture, aquaponics, etc to others on the other side of the world.

I did have people show up, a few times it was even a bit intimidating. I am a big girl at 6' but I am no fighter, so it was a bit scary on two occasions but I sure didn't let it stop me from living on my own, and wrestling cows/pigs much bigger than myself when necessary. lol!
 
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Hi there. For 7 years I was homesteading alone with a very young child here in the wilds of upstate NY. I slept with two large dogs and a compound bow next to my bed. Other than the occasional unexpected or uninvited guest who braved our very long steep driveway, no one ever bothered me. I heard it through the grapevine that I had a reputation for being that crazy lady on the hill with the bow...yup. Ladies, live high upon a defensible hill, get a hunting license, cultivate yourselves a reputation, have big dogs and know how to use your tools. I recently removed a trespassing poacher off my property by following his tracks in the snow ... caught him. He was armed and I didn't have 'mother' so was unarmed. No dogs either. He still got my message loud and clear. "Dude. I hunt here. You are directly in my line of sight." Say like you mean it ladies and become just a little sharper around the edges. Homestead alone? We have woofers and helpers we screen carefully. Anyone with ill intent either hears the rumors, meets my dogs and/or decides to pick on someone else. That someone else should not be you, ladies. I'm 61 years old and my attitude remains the same as it was when I was 19 and spent the next 3 years hitchhiking around the country as detailed in my book, "Tripping with Gabrielle." Live like you deserve your own space, and do not tolerate unwanted visitors. If outnumbered by scumbags who rape and terrorize you are in the wrong place. Jules
 
Stacy Witscher
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It's interesting to me that others main concern is safety, mine is definitely wanting help with projects. I really don't worry about my safety, maybe it's because I've survived a lot of horrible things so I know I can handle it. I don't know.

Aimee - the computer and internet thing is an issue. My kids partner coaches e sports and can't live here because the internet isn't sufficient and his computer uses so much power. We are looking at renting some space for him in town with fiber optic.
 
Mari Henry
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I worry about being safe all the time and I am not even homesteading. I think you are all brave and awesome.
 
Mari Henry
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Aimee Hall wrote:I love strong women. I work in the tech industry, and specialize in the automotive industry when it comes to writing/marketing. As a web developer, I cannot tell you just how often I get told "Hey, honey I need to speak to the MAN in charge." and I always make sure to tell them, "That's me." Some will even get pushy about it, "No, I mean the man who does all that internet programming stuff for our website." and I just always calmly reply "That's me." In my industries, there really aren't women much so every day is a fight showing that I cannot only do things as well as others, but better. I know it can get annoying, but I look at it as a challenge and an opportunity to show that I can be the best in my chosen fields. Reading about you girls stories sure makes me proud.

People are amazing, as individuals, so often any of us can accomplish our goals no matter how dire the challenges and problems we face. And you guys are proving that. So please stay strong and keep up the most excellent work. =) Know that all my positive thoughts are behind you, though to be fair all my positive thoughts are behind all the good people out there. As we fight to overcome the bad, through educating the uneducated, and writing the wrongs others have done in the past to restore the Earth. So much love to you all.

I have not qualified as living off grid, so sorry if my post is unwelcome. I have a huge computer, and it pays my bills. I also am very (way too much so) fond of my kitchen gadgets like my instant pot, meat grinder/sausage stuffer, kitchen aid.... and my video games. If I didn't have video games to help me chill out, I would have died of stress long ago working 80+ hours a week and having a 10 acre farm all of my own.

I did however live by myself for years, and raised all of my own food (And the food for 5 families, including cooking oil!) except some occasional treats like a pineapple or pistachios that I just couldn't find room or justify heating a greenhouse to grow them in. I did run a large aquaponic system off solar, and had plans to take my farm off grid but I haven't gotten that far. I actually got a bit derailed teaching sustainability, permaculture, aquaponics, etc to others on the other side of the world.

I did have people show up, a few times it was even a bit intimidating. I am a big girl at 6' but I am no fighter, so it was a bit scary on two occasions but I sure didn't let it stop me from living on my own, and wrestling cows/pigs much bigger than myself when necessary. lol!



Oh my god, the MAN SPLAINING! Yes, I know what you mean...ugh
 
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I'm in my late 40s and am buying property with no services on it. I'll be off-grid while I build something to live in and put in the gardens, fruit trees, etc. I work on my computer though so I'll be tied to the grid at some point for internet and electric. I'd prefer to skip it, but what can you do...

Like Stacy, I'm more concerned about getting help with projects than my safety. That said, I've heard a huge mountain lion has repeatedly been spotted walking along the treeline where the mountain meets the valley across the road from the property. Between that guy and the bears, I may invest in a rifle if I get animals.

Jules, thanks for your excellent advice. It really resonated with me. I can't help but come off as scary when I react to being pushed, especially by men. I've lost count of how many have called me intimidating. I'm going to use that and the tools I wear when working to my advantage if necessary. So far though, everyone I've met has been okay. Maybe a little old-school sexist, but not threatening.

If there are any ladies (alone or otherwise) in NE Washington/N Idaho who want to connect, let me know. It'd be great to have some local permie friends, and I'd love to see and/or hear about what you're up to!
 
Aimee Hall
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Well, I did post a sign my sister made for me that said: "Weirdos stay out.... Except me, I'm ok here because it's my farm and no one can stop me! BUWAHAHA!!!"

It didn't seem to help unfortunately. lol!
 
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I am 75 now and have lived in extremely rural areas since I was 19.  I have always lived alone.  I have lived in wilderness in a tent, and now live in a cabin I built myself in the High Desert of California.  I have never had help, everything I have always done myself....and I am 5'4", 120 pounds.  I still do everything myself.  I have electricity and solar.  I can live entirely without it if I needed to...I use electricity as the back up source.  I grow a good deal of my own food.

I have never understood the fear factor that women have about this type of life.  You are a hundred times safer out here than in a Walmart parking lot. Those who are fearful about this lifestyle I think may be actually fearful because of not knowing how to live this way, to be entirely dependent upon yourself....rather than fear of violence.  You have to realize that this lifestyle is like anything you might do in life.  There is always trepidation at trying something new. But as you master skills and self-reliance, confidence comes with it.  Think how wonderful it is to be able to do everything yourself and not rely on others. It is Freedom at its finest.

There must be a realization that you can do anything. Do it all. You youngun's have the internet now which I did not have.  Anything you might want to learn, you can find instruction and video on the internet.  This is a life long commitment, you won't have time to do anything else.  You may have to learn to be comfortable with being alone...that it is nothing to be afraid of. The most wonderful sound in the world is Silence.

Anyone who needs to talk to someone who is doing this.....feel more than free to contact me.  This life is Grand....as an example, this whole situation in the U.S. now, has left me completely untouched.  Completely.  Would you like this to be your life too?  It can be.  
 
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Purity Lopez wrote:I am 75 now and have lived in extremely rural areas since I was 19.  I have always lived alone.  I have lived in wilderness in a tent, and now live in a cabin I built myself in the High Desert of California.  I have never had help, everything I have always done myself....and I am 5'4", 120 pounds.  I still do everything myself.  I have electricity and solar.  I can live entirely without it if I needed to...I use electricity as the back up source.  I grow a good deal of my own food.

...

Anyone who needs to talk to someone who is doing this.....feel more than free to contact me.  This life is Grand....as an example, this whole situation in the U.S. now, has left me completely untouched.  Completely.  Would you like this to be your life too?  It can be.  




This is kind of what I am interested in doing, though coming from having had relationships and being surrounded by people. But I've lived alone as much as I've lived with other people and I've also lived way out in the middle of nowhere at different times. I miss the quiet work.

I'm 40 now and just want to try living a life where I build things with my own hands and the people I have around me aren't interested. Doing it alone is a bit scary, more because building your own home from the ground up is just new and I'd worry about it falling over rather than having strangers come gawk at things. But I'd rather know my own land and what I've built up over time and see what I can do myself. I look for peace and just seeing my work at the end of the day and feeling that satisfaction and the laundry list of chores to look forward to the next day.

I think it's great a lot of women (or anyone) want to do this themselves. It feels nice to know I'm not the only girl looking to go do this.
 
Purity Lopez
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After I made my first comment in this thread, I've been thinking about the underlying consciousness some have expressed....being afraid.  First I would like to say....NO ONE is smarter or stronger than you. No one.  You have an innate ability to know anything and do anything.  I was surprised that in this day and age there is still the thinking that men are better at taking care of themselves, or that magically men never have to contend with violence directed at them while living off grid.  It isn't so much about size....either of your body, your gender, or the size of your gun.  It is about attitude.

I don't think that anyone, man or woman, who is fear based, will be successful in living in this kind of situation.  The consciousness has to be changed first.  Let me give an example.  The biggest, strongest man in the world is still, if he has any common sense, going to be quite hesitant about picking up a mad spitting, hissing cat.  So here we see it isn't about size at all, or gender......its about attitude.  There was a study conducted decades ago into why some women get raped and some do not.  It was a pretty exhaustive study.  The conclusion was that women who get raped do not carry themselves confidently.....they tend to have a fearful attitude and that attitude it picked up by by the predator.  It works just like this in Nature.  The predator is looking for the weak one in the herd, whether that be physically or emotionally.

On the other hand......who is the real leader in a pride of lions?  The lioness is, even though the male is twice her size.  She is the one who does the bulk of the hunting, she is the one who raises the cubs.  Do you see?

As I mentioned, I am a small woman.  I will transfer a spider from my house to a napkin to the garden....I am not aggressive by nature.  But everyone who knows me or has even just briefly talked to me in a store picks up that I am not to be messed with.  I look people in the eye when I talk to them, I am firm in my speech and handshake, and my voice carries one of confidence in myself.  I carry my body upright, shoulders back, I walk confidently. I do not scurry or hurry, I am deliberate in my movements. I talk slowly, with purpose.  

I have been in several situations in my life where I was severely threatened by a much larger man.  I became the mad cat.  For the most part, men don't want to mess with a woman who means business.  You have to cultivate the attitude that you are equal to anyone, anytime, anywhere.  Was David afraid of the giant?  No. In this day and age, a woman should know how to take care of herself. Whether it means carrying a stun gun, a hand gun, or being proficient in Aikido. But the trick is not to think that these are the things protecting you. They are just tools.  You are the handler of the tools.....whether it be the gun, or your voice when you say "you do not want to mess with me". A man I knew once tried to kill me with a large piece of wood - we were cutting firewood.  I had none of these tools in hand.  But I decimated him with my voice, I showed contempt, I assured him he was not going to find it easy to kill me.  I kept at it, then I could see, like so many who try to hurt us, they are nothing but bullies and if you show them you are not going down easy, they began to re-think their goal.  He all of a sudden wasn't so sure of himself.  He put down the log and walked away.

It is alright to be afraid. I was afraid when I lost my paddle on a Class 4 river.  But we can't let fear immobilize us or keep us from realizing our dreams. Fear can motivate us beyond our comfort zone....and in doing so, we learn a new skill, or we learn that we trust ourselves and can handle anything that crops up.

First cultivate these character traits.  You want to get to a place where you just naturally think that someone would be pretty stupid to mess with you.  And after a while, it won't even occur to you that someone would try.....whether it be man or bear.....if it comes, you will be ready. And you aren't thinking about being safe, or not being safe.....you are just living life. Then think about moving from the city to this kind of life.  Otherwise fear is going to be with you in every form.....can I build this....does that snake frighten me.....The chickens are being attacked by wild dogs.....I am trapped on the roof because I was stupid and didn't fasten the ladder to the eve, and the wind is blowing 60mph, my phone is in the house and there are no near neighbors.....fear can come in many forms living out here.

I once cracked open my skull when the trailer hitch bucked......these are the things that will test you more than being afraid someone might hurt you.  
 
Purity Lopez
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Cellstone:  If I could give any advice, it would be this. Start small. When I was starting out, I also felt trepidation....could I do this? Really?  So what I did is I built my dwellings compound style.  The biggest is only 300s.f., the smallest is 120s.f.  And I just love it.  Everything is dedicated....I have a kitchen house which is the biggest one at 300s.f.  The idea has proven itself to be the easiest cheapest way to cool and heat them.  Each one has a small mini wood stove which actually I rarely use.  I live in the desert and have 40x40" windows on the South side and the majority of the year, its quite warm by 9A.m.  I built my own evaporative coolers that keep the places quite cool in the summer and are 100 watts each.  Keep it simple, keep it small. A 10x12 structure is within the realm of quite doable for most anyone. Flat roofs with a pitch is how I went, making it fairly easy to use 2x4x12's as the roof...with metal roof paneling. The paneling is short in width, very lightweight, easy for one person to get up there.

My plumbing is copper and because I need only one water source in each dwelling; pretty easy to install. I had to weld but now they have compression fittings.  There is PEX available now and anyone can do that. So I have one sink in the kitchen house, I used those big laundry plastic ones....and the line runs a little further to connect a clothes washer.  My toilet house is a compost toilet.....no water needed. Bedroom...no water needed.  My shower house is greenhouse style, small at 8x8. I used the heaviest greenhouse film and clear polycarbonate panel roofing.  Even in 30 degree weather, if the sun is out, its 70-80 in there by 10A.M.  I have a HERC candle oven in there for overcast or rainy days.  So I cook and warm the place at the same time.  There is a propane camping shower in there, a small stock tank sunk in the ground....water pumps out to trees.

I found the easiest way for me to build a wood structure is to modify the timber framing concept.  I put 4x4 posts in the ground, cemented them in good. Then built from there.  You just need to make sure that its square. So anyone mostly can put in 4 - 4x4x8's, right.  I am only 5'4" so 8 foot worked fine for me. Then get Simpson ties at Home Depot. They are little metal pieces that attach to the ends of the 2x4's making it so you can put the cross pieces between the 4x4's and have it be flush.  The only big thing is deciding if you want cement foundations. Depends on where you live.  I went with cement foundations but you can always go with dirt, cob or adobe for some, like the shower house or the toilet house.  If you go for cement, if you want to do it yourself, do it in grids.  Lay 2x4 or 2x6's in a grid, big enough for 1-2 bags of concrete.  Put the 4x4's in first, then do the cement.

I have electricity to the kitchen and bedroom houses. I had that done by an electrician but as the years have passed I see that it wasn't such a big thing that I couldn't have done it myself.  As I mentioned in another post, I have stand alone solar.  This makes it easy for me to maintain and if one goes out, I still have others. Some are lithium batteries, some are lead acid.  Critical ones are the lithium.  I went with camping refrigerators - I have one ICECO and one Ausranvik. They use only about 60 watts each.  I also have what they call Zeer refrigerators.  You make them out of clay pots within clay pots with play sand in between the pots. If I was in a cold climate, I would put in a root cellar.

Insulation.  I went with wool insulation.  I used drywall but I put the studs every 16". This way I could cut the drywall and a piece wouldn't be too heavy to lift into place.  For the ceiling...I went with double wool insulation but I used construction styrofoam 4x8 pieces instead of drywall. Everything I do is predicated upon what I can do alone.  Get creative.  

You can do this....you can.  Start small. Go simple so you don't get overwhelmed. And never ever (LOL) work when you are angry, distracted, tired or hungry.  If you try to push through on days like those, or even if you are in an anxious mood....I can attest from experience, it will not go well and you want this to be a calm endeavor, one you enjoy.  Instead, on days like that, or days I just don't feel 100%, to do little things like cook or clean.
 
Aimee Hall
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I do agree with a lot of what you say Purity, and you have done an absolutely epic job. There are a few things I would like to add though, as I have done everything myself as well. I have had woofers, and while I am out of town for business a farm hand for 10/hr a week but that was mostly for the indoor rescue cats with special needs. Though I had them check on the other critters while they were there.

I think you CAN do other things with your life too if you want to. It does take a lot of time, but if you set systems up to work for you, then you can run a business on the side for example. Mine usually sees me working 60-80 hours a week. At first, with establishing my farm I was working myself to death but that was my choice. The work on the farm, that was a work of love, which kept me going. I believe we can do more now because we are fortunate to have people who have gone the path and share their wisdom, as well as the internet for us novices to look up literally anything we have questions about. "What's this bug?" snap a picture with your phone and reverse image search it on your local search engine. "How do I attach wheels to this thing? I love wheels, and I am pretty sure this needs wheels..." local search engine or youtube. "How do a propagate grape vines?" (that and about a million other questions) are answered in exacting detail with questions answered by the awesome permies community. So do not be afraid to go this lifestyle thinking you can never do anything else. You could if you wanted to, there will be MORE than enough to keep you busy if you choose because the work will never be done, unless you want it to be. But you CAN do this and still do other things if you are willing to work hard and go to people like Purity who know how to do it all.

Having fear is healthy. I agree that we should not be fear based, but fear has saved me in intimidatingly situations. I haven't ever let it rule me, but it is in my opinion what tells you WHEN to be that hissing cat. An example in my case, a truck full of drunk guys tearing up my yard mudding, I came out to see what was making such a horrible racket. They decided to harass me and as you say, I became that hissing cat. They decided to take their fun elsewhere and quit tearing up my beloved plants and trees thankfully. But my initial anger could have easily have made a bad situation worse if I hadn't had that fear kick in and remind me that I was not invincible and entirely unarmed, I was not much of a match for 6 guys, 2 of which were visibly holding guns (not pointed at me, they never threatened me with them. I want to be clear about that, but I could see they had their hunting rifles with them. My guess is that they were deer hunters that had gotten a bit too much to drink in them to think clearly.)

Also, thank you for sharing Purity. Your story is amazing and you are inspiring and I do agree that any of us, man or woman or other can find a way to live in harmony with nature on our own if we so choose and are willing to work hard for it.


 
Purity Lopez
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Aimee Hall, very good post.  I agree with everything you've said.  I may have been too generalized on the "this is all you have time to do" statement.  I did what you did, for many years.  I had a cleaning business for rich people down the hill in Palm Springs.  The job was Perfect as I was getting paid $25 hour cash and I only cleaned 1-2 houses a day, 7 days a week.  I had already completed the compound houses when I started working so mostly it was agricultural projects that I tackled while working off site.  But I was Blessed.....all my house cleaning clients were gone in the summer, so I had all summer to catch up.

I think I probably should have said that if you want to be completely sustainable and not rely on the outer world in any way, at some point this becomes a life's work.  Of course, now I am retired but this farm keeps me busy for at least 8 hours a day, even in winter.  In Spring it is a nightmare (rolls eyes)...I have so much growing here, along with the chickens, ducks and goats, and I water everything by hand.....that it truly is my only job. I've had no success with interns....or even paid helpers....they just don't meet my criteria of knowledge, productivity, creativity, or even a basic understanding that you have to show up and work, rain or shine, sick or not. If I have to spend hours showing someone how to do something correctly, I could have done it myself.

I found at some point I wasn't really eating properly so I went whole hog and bought every kitchen appliance known to woman - (raises hands to heaven).  As I make all my food from scratch, and I live alone.....the appliances are my spouse.  Now I eat like a queen. So for me, that was a saving grace.  That is why I advise, if you can have electricity, do so.  If you live alone....it is really a life-saver.  I have solar, I have many generators, I have rocket stoves and solar ovens and I can live without electric if something untoward happens in this country....but having electricity, to me, is like having an on the job spouse available 24 hours a day..never complains....never too busy.....never any arguing about priorities (laughs)

I also want to mention that I feel having a relationship with a male doesn't often allow the woman to come to her full powers so to speak.  Nothing pushes you faster than only having yourself to rely upon.  Women have such an extraordinary aptitude for creativity and multi-tasking.....and from what I've seen around me, there are a lot of women that seem to be more Joy-Full when they are the boss of themselves. Just my opinion.....I am certain there are always exceptions but this old lady has seen a lot and this is the conclusion I've some to.....nothing derogatory meant toward men....they have there place....just not at my place (chuckles)

Thanks for posting Aimee!
 
Mari Henry
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Purity Lopez wrote:After I made my first comment in this thread, I've been thinking about the underlying consciousness some have expressed....being afraid.  First I would like to say....NO ONE is smarter or stronger than you. No one.  You have an innate ability to know anything and do anything.  I was surprised that in this day and age there is still the thinking that men are better at taking care of themselves, or that magically men never have to contend with violence directed at them while living off grid.  It isn't so much about size....either of your body, your gender, or the size of your gun.  It is about attitude.

I don't think that anyone, man or woman, who is fear based, will be successful in living in this kind of situation.  The consciousness has to be changed first.  Let me give an example.  The biggest, strongest man in the world is still, if he has any common sense, going to be quite hesitant about picking up a mad spitting, hissing cat.  So here we see it isn't about size at all, or gender......its about attitude.  There was a study conducted decades ago into why some women get raped and some do not.  It was a pretty exhaustive study.  The conclusion was that women who get raped do not carry themselves confidently.....they tend to have a fearful attitude and that attitude it picked up by by the predator.  It works just like this in Nature.  The predator is looking for the weak one in the herd, whether that be physically or emotionally.

On the other hand......who is the real leader in a pride of lions?  The lioness is, even though the male is twice her size.  She is the one who does the bulk of the hunting, she is the one who raises the cubs.  Do you see?

As I mentioned, I am a small woman.  I will transfer a spider from my house to a napkin to the garden....I am not aggressive by nature.  But everyone who knows me or has even just briefly talked to me in a store picks up that I am not to be messed with.  I look people in the eye when I talk to them, I am firm in my speech and handshake, and my voice carries one of confidence in myself.  I carry my body upright, shoulders back, I walk confidently. I do not scurry or hurry, I am deliberate in my movements. I talk slowly, with purpose.  

I have been in several situations in my life where I was severely threatened by a much larger man.  I became the mad cat.  For the most part, men don't want to mess with a woman who means business.  You have to cultivate the attitude that you are equal to anyone, anytime, anywhere.  Was David afraid of the giant?  No. In this day and age, a woman should know how to take care of herself. Whether it means carrying a stun gun, a hand gun, or being proficient in Aikido. But the trick is not to think that these are the things protecting you. They are just tools.  You are the handler of the tools.....whether it be the gun, or your voice when you say "you do not want to mess with me". A man I knew once tried to kill me with a large piece of wood - we were cutting firewood.  I had none of these tools in hand.  But I decimated him with my voice, I showed contempt, I assured him he was not going to find it easy to kill me.  I kept at it, then I could see, like so many who try to hurt us, they are nothing but bullies and if you show them you are not going down easy, they began to re-think their goal.  He all of a sudden wasn't so sure of himself.  He put down the log and walked away.

It is alright to be afraid. I was afraid when I lost my paddle on a Class 4 river.  But we can't let fear immobilize us or keep us from realizing our dreams. Fear can motivate us beyond our comfort zone....and in doing so, we learn a new skill, or we learn that we trust ourselves and can handle anything that crops up.

First cultivate these character traits.  You want to get to a place where you just naturally think that someone would be pretty stupid to mess with you.  And after a while, it won't even occur to you that someone would try.....whether it be man or bear.....if it comes, you will be ready. And you aren't thinking about being safe, or not being safe.....you are just living life. Then think about moving from the city to this kind of life.  Otherwise fear is going to be with you in every form.....can I build this....does that snake frighten me.....The chickens are being attacked by wild dogs.....I am trapped on the roof because I was stupid and didn't fasten the ladder to the eve, and the wind is blowing 60mph, my phone is in the house and there are no near neighbors.....fear can come in many forms living out here.

I once cracked open my skull when the trailer hitch bucked......these are the things that will test you more than being afraid someone might hurt you.  



I like a lot of what you were saying, but had to stop reading after what you said about rape. Rape is the fault of rapists, not the victims. No one deserves to be raped or causes it to happen. The rapist causes it. Not the victims.
 
Purity Lopez
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Mari.  I think you misunderstood. The statement wasn't about the woman being the fault....it was about what cues the predator male looks for when he chooses a victim. It was neither a philosophical nor a judgmental statement or one that was applying fault or no fault....Please look at my signature.  For the last few decades I have learned that if I am unsure of what the person is meaning by a statement...I check with them so I can ascertain whether I really heard what they meant.  When I was younger, I often ended up looking like a fool because I wasn't really hearing what they meant....we see that a lot now in comment sections....
 
Ceil Stone
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Mari Henry wrote:

Purity Lopez wrote:After I made my first comment in this thread, ...

I once cracked open my skull when the trailer hitch bucked......these are the things that will test you more than being afraid someone might hurt you.  



I like a lot of what you were saying, but had to stop reading after what you said about rape. Rape is the fault of rapists, not the victims. No one deserves to be raped or causes it to happen. The rapist causes it. Not the victims.



Not to speak for Purity, but I've been through and assisted with several self defense classes and they'll all tell you the same things Purity has said. Rape and murder and other crimes are not the fault of the victims, and they could be men/women/other people doing the the raping or the murdering or being the victim. We also know that it doesn't matter what you're wearing or what you look like. So what's left can be not having the confidence and not knowing what to do when faced with situations versus knowing situational awareness and being assertive and knowing what to do if you become a target. Defending yourself may not work every time, but data and the information we have shows that being more aggressive and defensive in most situations helps significantly.

Often people won't speak up or take action in uncomfortable situations due to "maybe I'm wrong" or that self imposed fitting in with society mentality, and sometimes to the point to where it's too late and you're face to face alone with a rapist who is intent on doing whatever they do. Even rape within the home is usually mostly mental breakdown of the victim over time by the assailant, not because the victim can't defend themselves, they just don't think they can or are so broken they don't try. Teaching people to defend themselves is basically the defense in the moment. A rapist or murderer won't care if you shake a finger at them and blame them for doing what they will do in the moment. It's never the victim's fault, but it's also not a person's fault if their house gets broken into and items are stolen. But we lock doors and set alarms and we do different things to protect it. They didn't fail if it doesn't work, they try their best. But what Purity is talking about is being on top of being defensive from go where possible.

A person can do their best to protect themselves and learn techniques to make themselves either 'undesirable' (ie the mad cat example, when feeling like you're in trouble) or knowing self defense and being more assertive goes a very long way in personal protection. Is it a victim's fault if they fail to defend themselves? Never. But that's also a very big reason for people to be very aware, very 'mad cat' like, very ready to protect yourself. Even if you don't look confident (are shy, aren't sure of yourself, looking down at the floor), just knowing how to flip someone over who has a hold of you, how to become a heavy log if they try to pick you up, things like that, it can make a real difference.
 
Purity Lopez
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Very well said and explained Cell Stone....thank you for the step in.  Sometimes it is hard for me to explain things that are learned as societal norms.  I've never been part of outer society, I more or less was raised by wolves....(laughs)...certainly had no parent intervention. During my formative years of schooling...I was there but not there and never had any close friends so explaining some things to people who have grown up within the arms of society, having imposed gender no-no's imposed upon them, or just being a shy person....those are things I just can't relate to and I appreciate your intervention to explain it where more people can understand the situation. I've just always had the attitude of "yeah, you can try to take me down but I am going to do some serious damage to you also" kind of gal.

My main purpose was trying to impart Wisdom......that if you are not also that kind of person, this lifestyle may not be right for you. It does't matter whether you are male or female.....you have to be really proactive and assertive to live this kind of life successfully. Even in little things. There are no goat vets here. I had a doe dying and I had to put her down....will they be able to do that?  

The reason why I also mentioned that perhaps it is not always a good idea to have a man on the property, and the reasonings behind it, are twofold.  A woman who depends on a man, who leans too much and won't take responsibility is just as unfair to the man.  So I was suggesting that if a woman hasn't already learned this process of standing upright in their Beingness, to do so first.  A relationship shouldn't be a "needy" kind of situation.  I suggest that women watch the movie "The Homesman" with Hillary Swank and Tommy Lee Jones.  It is on Tubi for free. It is a movie that really explains and shows what happened during the pioneer days with women isolated on homesteads...and the consequences of not being strong enough to do what needs doing. The consequences of not having enough perseverance. It also shows the ramifications that happened to the husbands when the wife went crazy.
 
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Sarah Koster wrote:Hah, love the secondhand boots idea. I actually want to live off grid on my own, but don't have the resources or motivation necessary to pull it off at the moment. One of the biggest reasons I fantasize about becoming a hermit is because of being a victim of gender based violence.... so of course I would not want to advertise the fact that I'm female and all by my lonesome without a way to call the cops and have them arrive in a timely manner. I think most women who aren't autistic or traumatized enjoy the company of other humans.(EDIT: I also know that many women who are in fact traumatized or do have autism also enjoy living with fellow humans.) I also believe many women prefer watching a man split wood to splitting wood themselves. Not because it's hard work, but because it's just fun to watch. I got a chance to spend a couple days alone this weekend.... it really helped me realize how stressful it is for me to constantly hear other peoples' noises, and to have to focus my attention on them whenever they talk to me.



Chopping wood is fun for sport, but the real deal is in putting in a little thought and building yourself a handy dandy wood splitter. Here's  
  a good tutorial - then firewood forever :)
 
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My ex girl friend upon split-up told me that men are only good for one thing and most are no good at that.  Many men are morally bankrupt and quit scary.  As a man I would not want to have to  live with a gun at my side 24-7.  If I were a woman I would be a lot more skittish than I am now.  I live in the inner city where I grow fruits at ground level, vegetable on my 1000 square foot roof and citrus in my south side lean too greenhouse.  I also grow food in my basemen under lights that heat my house with their heat loss.  I guess I'm about as of grid as can be and still live in the big city.
 
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