Tent Living as a Family
Due to recent chatter:
This will most likely be my only post about children living in tents, as opposed to long-term camping, so if it bothers you or if you are looking for more specific information about what is discussed below it probably won’t be on the rest of my site.
Back to the content:
If you are living in a tent with your family, and you have a little bit of funds – or just a great opportunity to acquire one – getting a bigger tent will save you money in the long run. It will be less likely to tear, will have more space for any belongings you have, and will make it easier as your children grow. The quality of the tent is also very important.
You may have noticed that more secure-looking tents I reference in this post are by Eureka! and there’s a reason. While they are more expensive than the standard-style tents, they also provide more fly coverage and better zippers. They are also less expensive than a lot of the ‘long-term tents’ you can find. A Eureka! tent will last, even with consistent and persistent use, for years while being a nice middle-ground on price.
If you are able to get another standard-style tent for supplies, that’s great! A supply tent can make more room in a smaller living tent, and can sometimes make storing perishables easier since you don’t have to worry about building up heat like in your living tent. Don’t disregard the simpler styles just to get the best you can immediately afford. I will talk more about supply tents in a later post.
Help! I have no money, but I need/want/crave a tent to live in!
Well, there are problems with easily acquiring a tent:
- They aren’t something people just get rid of when they’re still in good condition. A tent in bad condition can be worse than living in a smaller tent, on a friend’s couch, or in your car.
- Trying to explain to a support or charitable group why you are looking for a tent might bring trouble if you have kids.
- If you’re on your own, people may not believe that’s what you’re collecting money for.
If you are active in any organizations, you may be able to start by introducing the generic idea that you are in the market to buy a tent. If they don’t know about your financial situation they may be fully willing to match you up with their buddy who hasn’t used his in years, but would like to get that extra space back in the garage. If they are aware of the troubles you are going through they may be sympathetic, and help you set up a quick collection to get you on your way.
If there are good community-outreach programs in your area, you may be able to volunteer and earn rewards – or simply end up in a position where they want to offload old equipment and you’re right there.
Some cities have trips where they take the locals out camping. This might be a place for you to volunteer and get involved. The more involved you are, the more you get to know everyone, the more opportunities to move yourself closer to your goal.
Something else some locations have are tent cities. These are areas where a group of homeless have worked together to create their own subculture. If you have money, don’t go pandering for support or ideas. If you want to help them out, work with your local organizations. If you are currently homeless, or expect to soon be, then feel free to go and get to know them. Some may not talk to you, and many may start off suspicious. Make it clear you aren’t a cop, you are having difficulties, and are looking to see about living there. Ask questions, be nice.
******* I cannot stress this enough if you do visit: don’t be mean, condescending, an over-concerned SJW, or a terrible human being in any way. I am not discussing tent cities as a tourist destination, or a place where there’s no hope or help. Don’t be a ****. *******
Also, I do not condone or denigrate having children living in a tent. If you read my About Me, I had periods of my childhood where tents were involved. I can understand the worry over health and safety, but in some environments and compared to some situations whether or not the kids are in a tent would not be the prevalent concern – wouldn’t even hit the top 50. The mandatory reporting and/or general legality of children in tents depends on where you live. Please do your research before yelling at me or trying out the lifestyle yourself.
If you have any questions, comments or stories, please leave a comment below! 😉
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