Anyone Can Become Homeless

Yep, that’s one way of putting it.  It is kind of a short sighted and incomplete description of what happens, which may cause people to develop assumptions from that notion that aren’t exactly correct, but enough people are saying it, so we should just agree and move on from there.



Yes homelessness can, in one sense, happen to anyone, but we have to consider the difference between possibility and probability in regards to this idea.   Sure, anyone could win the Powerball Lottery, but will they?   Powerball happens twice a week, so there is potential for 104 winners every year, IF they happen to pick all the right numbers – a 1 in 175,000,000 chance.  Sorry but there just aren’t that many millionaires out there to think hitting the Powerball is possible. Of course, one way to assure you will never win the Powerball is to never play it.  And that’s important to know.

Becoming homeless requires that certain events take place in a certain manner.  And the potential of these things to cause homelessness can be managed in such a way as to guarantee that a person will never become homeless.  No one loses money playing Powerball when they don’t play it.

As long as people maintain healthy relationships with family, and friends, possess a hirable skill, and are careful with their finances, they will never become homeless – guaranteed, (barring any unforeseen acts of god or a total collapse of society – but if either of these things happen, being homeless would be the least of their worries.)

Most people in the US will never become homeless.  That is because most people possess or have access to, all the resources necessary to prevent it from happening.  Let me emphasis, “most people.” There are others in our society who don’t have such resources available to them, and these people are much more likely to become homeless.  Those who are under educated, those who do not possess any real job skills, those with out any base of support from family or friends, those are the people who will most likely become homeless.   And most likely they don’t have those things because they suffer from mental health or addiction problems – not always, but mostly.

If you really want to help the homeless to become non-homeless, help them develop those crucial aspects of themselves, that you currently possess that prevent you from becoming homeless.


About Kevin Barbieux

I have been diagnosed as being chronically homeless. I write about my experiences and opinions of being homeless


  1. I would also like to make it clear that the methods for avoiding homelessness are different than overcoming homelessness. Once you become homeless everything changes.


  2. As to this particular post, and the comment that followed, I want to bring up a few points.

    No one wants to be homeless, much like as I stated on my blog, no one wants to be unemployed. No one wakes up one morning and says, “Hey, I feel like being homeless today because it sounds like fun!”. As Kevin put it excellently, a series of events happened in a certain order with actions applied to it (or not) that led to the outcome of homelessness. On the flip side of that point is the argument that most people will try to get out of being homeless.

    I don't buy this argument that a solution is just around the corner if you just try. It sounds almost like what people say to me, “if you put more effort into looking for a job instead of your blog or videos, you'd be working by now”. Doesn't work that way. Chances are pretty good that if someone is making videos or blog posts about their job search, they are doing so because they have already tried so hard to find a job (or a home) yet it made no difference. Maybe the videos and the blog posts are to try a different approach that might work, or they need to get it out of their system, or they want to leave a record of what they are doing so people can in fact see there is a big problem and something must be done.

    Homelessness and unemployment are social malaises that are not easily explained, and neither completely unavoidable nor easily fixable.


  3. I maintain a job search blog on WordPress but I came across your blog about being homeless as part of my research to prepare for that eventuality in case I cannot find couchsurfing options by October 31st, 2014. I read up about TABS (to avoid being seen) during scouting for a shelter spot and to use the bus and libraries for napping and a gym membership for hygiene. I'll keep reading your blog for additional suggestions. I still have six weeks to prepare.


  4. As someone who's worked many years with the homeless population in Canada, and with some time spent learning about the same issues as they pertain to the homeless people and issues in the United States, I concur that it takes a series of situations and individuals' challenges to cause someone to become homeless.

    I've long applauded ( to no one in particular and to no one person or entity that could effect, bad or good, your personal circumstances) your willingness and ability to articulate your own personal circumstances and your journey of discovery in determining what factors may have been in play to create your present situation.

    However…and isn't there always at least one however?….no one can save a drowning man. He will take you down with him unless the one doing the saving has the skills and support necessary to not let himself get drowned as well.

    It's not possible to save yourself by choosing to be the spokesperson for the rest. It's also not possible to continue to be the spokesperson while you struggle for your own survival.

    No one listens to the person going down with the ship, unless he's telling the rest how to get saved. And he's being saved as well by the same actions.

    With great respect yours is not the voice of reason, or sanity, or of salvation in an otherwise faulted system of response to homelessness. Yours is but a voice in the cacophony of homeless voices. Crying for help.

    Crying to be heard. And as far as the response system goes, you're being heard from what you've shared on your blog.

    You seem to have much insight into the issues in general as well as your own. Perhaps you need to listen to your own issues and needs and get those addressed, rather than continue to rail against the dragon of the system, and get yourself housed and healthy. It's not impossible. You've said so yourself.

    You can do it. I for one would like to see you housed and moving on rather than sleep on the streets because of your challenges and the shortcomings of The System.

    You're not alone in living a challenging existence. You're not alone in having to combat personal demons and issues.

    You're also not alone in moving past those and getting on with the life of your choice, within your limitations.

    If that is homelessness as you define it, then maybe that's where it will be for you.

    If it is housed and comfortable, then maybe that will be it.

    The choice is up to you. You just have to make the choice.

    You've straddled long enough. I'd like to see you get past it.


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