Why Are Preppers So Paranoid?


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Preppers, or survivalists, are often portrayed in the media as paranoid individuals who stockpile food, water, and weapons in anticipation of the end of the world.

But is this really the case?

In this blog post, we will explore the reasons why preppers are often seen as paranoid and whether or not this is a fair characterization.

The Public Image of Preppers

To the extent that one exists, the public image of a prepper is of someone who’s getting ready for the collapse of society, at which point money and electric grids, along with all the things that depend on them, will become unavailable.

Preppers are ready to purify water to drink, hunt and butcher for food, and defend themselves and their families against any threats that may arise.

Are Preppers Paranoid?

The answer to this question is not as simple as a yes or no.

While some preppers may be paranoid, it is not fair to generalize all preppers as such.

In fact, Michael Mills at the University of Kent suggests that preppers are motivated by non-stop media coverage of natural disasters, as well as a government that encourages them to prepare for the worst.

Prepping is Prudent

Survivalists are not paranoid.

They are people who are prepared for a future that would be difficult to live in.

Survivalists are also prepared for natural disasters, economic collapse, and other emergencies that could disrupt their lives.

In fact, prepping is a prudent thing to do.

It is always better to be prepared for an emergency and not need it than to need it and not be prepared.

We Are All Doomsday Preppers to Some Extent

In 2022, Fetterman et al.

showed that prepping is correlated with “paranoia, cynicism, and conspiracy mentality”.

However, it is important to note that prepping is not just for survivalists.

We all engage in some form of prepping, whether it is buying insurance, having a first aid kit, or stocking up on non-perishable food items.


In conclusion, preppers are not necessarily paranoid individuals.

While some may be, it is not fair to generalize all preppers as such.

Prepping is a prudent thing to do, and we all engage in some form of prepping.

So, the next time you see a prepper, don’t judge them too harshly.

They may just be more prepared than you are.


  • 3 Reddit: Prepper’s are paranoid
  • 4 The Week: Preppers: Meet the paranoid Americans awaiting the apocalypse
  • 1 Ars Technica: What exactly are “preppers” prepping for?
  • 5 Backdoor Prepper: Are Survivalists Paranoid or Prudent
  • 2 Big Think: Like it or not, we are all “doomsday preppers” to some extent