My 3 Year Old and Guns

This is a discussion on My 3 Year Old and Guns within the Basic Gun Handling & Safety forums, part of the General Firearm Discussion category; Like most 3 year old boys, my son is fascinated with guns. He has a slew of toy handguns and rifles. I frequently let him ...

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Thread: My 3 Year Old and Guns

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array NY27's Avatar
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    My 3 Year Old and Guns

    Like most 3 year old boys, my son is fascinated with guns. He has a slew of toy handguns and rifles. I frequently let him know that daddy's guns are not toys and he is not to touch them unless daddy is right next to him and gives it to him. I have unloaded my guns and let him hold them to get the curiosity out. Stressing to never put his finger on the trigger and to point it in a safe direction.

    Being that he is always playing with his toy guns I wanted to give him a little test. So I unloaded my G19 and put it in an end table where he could see it and reach it. Three minutes later he came running into the kitchen saying, "Daddy, daddy, you left your real gun on the table. Go get it." I praised him for not touching it and was very pleased.

    Note: None of my weapons are left out, EVER! They are either in one of the safes or on my person. But just in case he is in somebody else's house one day that is not as careful, I want him to know.

    He also makes me proud with his knowledge of firearms. He knows the difference between a rifle and a handgun, a revolver and a semi-auto. He also knows the difference between a holster and a magazine pouch and knows that the magazine is for the semi.

    Some may think that a 3 year old has no business knowing about guns. I personally think that it is importnant that young kids know about gun safety if there are guns in the house.
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    VIP Member Array SIGguy229's Avatar
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    I've done the same with my boys...while always keeping an eye on the gun. Start them young, get the curiosity out...teach them, educate them and you won't have problems. YMMV
    Magazine <> clip - know the difference

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    VIP Member Array NY27's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SIGguy229 View Post
    I've done the same with my boys...while always keeping an eye on the gun. Start them young, get the curiosity out...teach them, educate them and you won't have problems. YMMV
    Yes, the gun never left my sight. I was watching him out of the corner of my eye from the kitchen.
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    VIP Member Array HKinNY's Avatar
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    I too let my kids see my guns anytime they ask to see them. I will show them that Daddy has to load it, check it in front of them,let them check it and play with it.

    The ammo once removed from the gun resides in my pocket or in the safe. I too have left the guns out in the open unloaded to see if it piques their intrest. No attempt to handle it without asking first.

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    The NRA's Eddie Eagle program for kids. Every parent should run their kids through it. Sounds like your son passed with flying colors.
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    it took my daughter until she was 9 to even want to be in the same room as any of my guns...if she walked into the kitchen while i was cleaning she would scurry right back out....she knew that she was never to touch a gun but she had a fear of them...once she started getting curious and started asking questions i tuaght her how they worked and explained how bulets are made and work also...now at 10 she has her own rifle and has spent some time shooting the .22 pistol also....shes not a die hard but shes working her way into shooting and has a respect for it...she is always conscious of my gun on my waist when we are out and never mentions it if she happens to run into it while walking or sitting with me...

    i learned about guns at a very early age from my father and think it has great value...youre doing it right and your kid will be better for it....

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    You're doing a great job NY27. I do similar with my daughters, ages 3 and 2. Everytime she sees it my 3 yr old says, "Daddy, that's your gun and I never ever touch it. Only you touch it". Of course, her 2 yr old sister will mimic her and say exactly the same thing.

    Good and bad, there are times she'll tell me that my gun is to stop the "man with the mustache". That's her refering to the man that was prowling the property that I held at gunpoint until the police arrived. This happened in August. Good that she is so aware, alert and can formulate such recognition at 3 yrs old. Bad to know as a father that she was affected by that event enough for it to still be weighing on her little mind at only 3 yrs old.

    I would assume that as defensive minded people we raise our kids a little different than most. So I am glad that my kids will have that advantage growing up.

    In the end, we do what we feel is right and do the best we can. I say good for you NY27. And you are correct, start them young.

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    When you think about it, back in the old days when everyone was educated about firearms from an early age, we didn't have a "gun problem".
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    Years ago, I performed the same test on my three-year old - and she picked it up as soon as she saw it lying there! I knew I had some work to do!

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    VIP Member Array HKinNY's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by medicineball View Post
    Years ago, I performed the same test on my three-year old - and she picked it up as soon as she saw it lying there! I knew I had some work to do!
    I take it she did not drop the mag, field strip it, clean it and lube it up? That's what I need to teach them to do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NY27 View Post
    Like most 3 year old boys, my son is fascinated with guns. He has a slew of toy handguns and rifles. I frequently let him know that daddy's guns are not toys and he is not to touch them unless daddy is right next to him and gives it to him. I have unloaded my guns and let him hold them to get the curiosity out. Stressing to never put his finger on the trigger and to point it in a safe direction.

    Being that he is always playing with his toy guns I wanted to give him a little test. So I unloaded my G19 and put it in an end table where he could see it and reach it. Three minutes later he came running into the kitchen saying, "Daddy, daddy, you left your real gun on the table. Go get it." I praised him for not touching it and was very pleased.

    Note: None of my weapons are left out, EVER! They are either in one of the safes or on my person. But just in case he is in somebody else's house one day that is not as careful, I want him to know.

    He also makes me proud with his knowledge of firearms. He knows the difference between a rifle and a handgun, a revolver and a semi-auto. He also knows the difference between a holster and a magazine pouch and knows that the magazine is for the semi.

    Some may think that a 3 year old has no business knowing about guns. I personally think that it is importnant that young kids know about gun safety if there are guns in the house.
    IMO you are doing the right thing
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  13. #12
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    My twins are around 3 and have plenty of exposure to guns, Eddie Eagle, and all that. My girl even knows the difference between a clip and a magazine and I couldn't be prouder. We all have Nerf dart guns that they think are toys, they don't realize they're learning gun safety with them.

    I did a "leave an empty gun out" test with my girl a week ago or so. I left my .22 bolt action "armadillo gun" on the dining room table to see what she'd do. I was at first disappointed to see her go over to the table and climb on the chair, but she reached over the gun to grab some cookies on the table and left with her snack without caring a bit about the rifle. They get to see any of the guns whenever they like (even at inconvenient times, twin toddlers make you late a lot) and there is no mystery. I have to shoot an armadillo tearing up the yard a couple times a week and they don't even get up to watch anymore.
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    NY27, nice work with the little one...
    My boys, now both in their 30's never touched my guns unless I was there (they have confirmed that). I did take them shooting and did let them handle my weapons under my supervision.
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    VIP Member Array NY27's Avatar
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    Thanks everybody. It's nice to see that many of you have done the same thing. I cannot wait until my daughter is old enough to understand. She is only 13 months. I also cannot wait until my son is old enough to take to the range with the .22 Mossberg.
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    Our son is only 22 months and we let him play with toy guns... even blue trainer guns. He LOVES guns and he BEGS to play with the real things. I think the best thing parents can do for kids when there are guns in the house is to educate them and take the mystery away. If they have safe and responsible access and are taught from a VERY young age the rules and handling and care of a firearm the chances of an issue go WAY down.

    It's like teaching about crossing the street or the stove or negotiating the stairs or electrical outlets or any other danger to our children. Educate.

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