May 6th, 2010 10:56 AM
The story of my wife and concealed carry
Practical shooting was my game for about twenty years, and the sport lead to acquiring a few guns. My wife was kind of uninterested when it came to firearms, and they all ‘looked alike,’ so guns never became an issue in our family. Naturally, I gun-proofed all my children.
About three years ago - out of blue - my wife declares that she wants to learn everything about all of our guns. Prior to that she has been shooting twice with me during our marriage. She could have told me that she wants a divorce, and I’d not have been more surprised. Well, there was no way of hiding anything anymore, which was my initial fear, but it turned around to be a good turn of events.
I still don’t know what triggered her interest, because she is a garden/nature/animals (dogs and birds) kind of a woman.
My wife was initially rather surprised about the number of firearms we posses (my arsenal is rather limited), but she let that slide and seriously concentrated into learning every firearm thoroughly.
I’m not the most patient person, and I know that husbands usually are not the best spouse instructors, but I made it certain that our initiation to firearms went smoothly. Safety was obviously the most important issue.
We studied every revolver, semi auto, shotgun and EBR we own. I started firearms training by thoroughly explaining everything about how the pistol functions. It took some time for her to memorize the exact name and function of each part – she wanted to learn not to sound ‘stupid’ and ‘ignorant.’ She learned to disassemble and to reassemble, and she practiced a lot alone. Visualize her watching the Animal Channel and taking the Glock or 1911 apart.
After all the dry firing at home, it was range time. I was amazed how well she handled the handguns. E started with the .22 Ruger. She actually hit the target and started to tighten the groups once she got comfortable with each gun. Her hands are small and it took some effort from her part to adjust.
I was impressed. I’ve been a firearms instructor for years, and my wife - objectively speaking - was a ‘natural.’ It was a real surprise to me that she loved shooting the shotguns. She did not much care about my AKs, but mastered them regardless.
So, after the initiation we’ve been shooting regularly from spring to fall, because we only shoot outdoors. We really enjoy spending time together – that is has been the character of our marriage, but the range time added a new dimension to our life together.
Prior to the last elections, we had a long discussion and decided to improve our humble arsenal, so we enhanced our defense budget and bought more guns and plenty of ammo.
I can’t go into details, but something serious occurred last year due to my work that established a permanent threat to my family – FBI level stuff. My wife had to obtain an emergency carry permit. Things changed dramatically. I’ve been carrying for years here in MN (and our previous state), but my wife was not really interested in carrying prior to the life-changing event.
My wife became dead serious about carrying for self-defense and about our guns. Of all the firearms she tested, she chose an S&W 442 with a laser. Now, a J-frame is hard to master, but somehow she managed to make it her best friend. She is pretty good with all our 1911s, and even Berettas, but she handles best the 442.
My wife created her own practice routine and is dry-firing daily, usually 30 minutes with a timer. She cut these little cardboard targets that now litter our home, and thus created several ‘scenarios.’ You’d see her shotgun drills.
She is doing all this by herself without any persuasion from my part. At times she asks questions, but that’s about it. I’ve found her watching more and more gun-related programs and taking notes. In addition, she loves to watch my collection of old IPSC videos and DVDs.
Her gun follows her 24/7 indoors and outdoors. She prefers conceal carry, but in the forest with the dogs she occasionally OCs. I learned early not to even ask if she was carrying.
We’ve tried to upgrade her weapon, but her small hands kind of exclude many options. She bought a G26, but her trigger finger is a little short. She is adamant, though, to master the 26 this summer. Also, finding a perfect holster(s) for her has presented a challenge. Currently she mostly carries her 442 in a Tucker ‘Silent Thunder’ leather-lined Kydex, but uses a fanny pack, a pocket holster and an OTW too. She actually prefers 2 o’clock IWB – kind of appendix carry.
As we entered this new range season (spring arrived a month early), she wanted to learn how to reload. My wife is continuously trying to improve her shooting skills and contemplating intensely the law and the tactical situations she might face.
Creating a ‘fort’ out of our home has been an interesting endeavor. She has taken the time to navigate the house day and night accessing the stored firearms – mainly the 12 gauge – even if meant waking regularly up at 3 am just to experience the challenge.
I’m not pleased that my wife had to resort to carrying a firearm, but I’m extremely content that she’s met the challenge with dedication and skills to match.
(Sorry for the long post.)
May 6th, 2010 11:02 AM
Good post. Thanks for sharing.
30 minutes dry-firing a day? That’s really impressive. As long as she can hold her concentration to perform perfect dry firing drills that’s awesome. The danger is if 30 minutes is too long and the concentration slips. Bad-form practice takes a lot to undue.
Blessed be the Lord my rock who trains my hands for war and my fingers for battle. Psalm 144:1
Si vis pacem, para bellum
May 6th, 2010 11:03 AM
I'm sure its stressful having an ongoing threat. Its very good that both you and your wife are armed and ready to defend yourselves if needed.
Stay alert and stay safe!
May 6th, 2010 11:07 AM
Many of our wives will not reach that level of interest and diligence. Sorry about underlining motivation but her response to it is commendable. Sounds like a keeper!
Thanks for the post!
HK USP .45
HK P2000sk .40
May 6th, 2010 11:14 AM
Welcome to DC!
I am glad that your wife has made the commitment to self defense.
It sounds like you have quite a story you can’t tell. Maybe one day you can share. I also hope that you and your family stay safe.
Don't do things you don't want to explain to the Paramedics!
Stupidity should be painful.
May 6th, 2010 11:41 AM
I'm glad she decided to learn about guns and their use before the life changing incident.
Trust in God and keep your powder dry
"A heavily armed citizenry is not about overthrowing the government; it is about preventing the government from overthrowing liberty. A people stripped of their right of self defense is defenseless against their own government." -source
May 6th, 2010 11:54 AM
Just what I would have said. It takes a whole lot of gumption for me to stay focused after about 15 min. or so of dry fire. If anyone can do 30 min. and stay on task! That is awesome! Wish I could..
Originally Posted by JT
Blessed be the LORD my strength which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight. PSALM 144:1
I CLING to my guns and my Bible.
May 6th, 2010 12:23 PM
My wife came to life about guns before me and even took her CHL class before me.
It surprised me also although we do not practice enough in MHO, really enjoy range time with her.
My wife and I both pack a lock blade folder that we have practiced with some and would use it necessary.
NOT LIVING IN FEAR, JUST READY!!!
I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness,
nor the arrow for its swiftness,
nor the warrior for his glory.
I love only that which they defend.
May 6th, 2010 12:23 PM
Thank you all for your replies.
JT – My wife is quite flexible with her practice time. At times it’s only 15 to 20 minutes, but she is trying hard to vary her drills, thus the multiple ‘scenario’ target stages. She combines the basic trigger pulls, draws, engaging multiple targets in different order and number of shots, moving (approach, retreat, and “managing the X”; changing your positioning in relation to the adversary’s attack.), etc.
EP – We’ve kind of taking it as part of our new life. I’d say that the initial stress and panic subsided rather well and all there is left is the increased SA and plenty more guns. Thank you for your concern.
Shotgun – I’m certain women would react like mine when the situation arrives. They’re like mother wolfs, ready to defend the pack with their lives. Yes, she is a keeper – lucky me.
Stevem – I’d so much love to tell the whole unbelievable tale, but I’ve been instructed not to, and I fully comprehend the rationale behind it. This is the Internet after all. Thank you for your well wishes.
Zacij – I can’t help thinking that all the sudden interest after twenty years of silence came from a higher power. Saved us a lot of time due to her being more skilled and in proper state of mind to accept that firearms can make a difference.
bsnow – I agree, I don’t practice as much as used to. I used to do an hour or so dryfiring when I was still active in the IPSC. Naturally, the issue forced me reevaluate my own practice. My wife is doing what she thinks is important for her, and I’m not going to intervene in any fashion. It’s like she is attempting to reach a comfortable level of expertise or something. She just told me the other day that we need to start practice all the firearms again. She does not feel comfortable with her skills, especially with the shotgun and the G26. I’m hoping a little range time will cure that. I think we’d concentrate in a few guns at a time, and main focus should be in her carry guns: 442 and G26, and the shotgun.
May 6th, 2010 01:17 PM
All that gun training and practice is great but have you thought about any other forms of self defense. Krav Maga perhaps? just in case she's in a situation where drawing her gun is not possible or at a location where guns are prohibited..
Another activity where both of you could do together.
May 6th, 2010 02:43 PM
I actually studied Krav Maga years back and that has been an issue we have talked about. She knows some basic moves, but mastering KM at this point is hard to fit to our schedule.
We do not enter a place where firearms are prohibited (feds) without proper precautions.
Excellent idea, though. At the present we rely on SA, carry and well-protected home. We do have plans to attend several firearms training courses in addition to our regular range sessions.
May 6th, 2010 03:10 PM
I know my wife well enough that if she unexpectedly decided to take an interest in my weapons and wanted to learn to fire them, it would make me a little nervous. I would go paranoid is she insisted that I raise my life insurance about the same time...jus sayin...LOL!!!
May 6th, 2010 04:18 PM
Wow...what a great post!
Thank you for sharing your wife's story.
I know her dedication to training puts me to shame.
The United States Constitution © 1791. All Rights Reserved.
May 6th, 2010 04:32 PM
Bravo on finding a great wife that understands the need to protect herself. I have this luxury as well. I cant keep my wife out of the range now that she is comfortable with the new G26 I bought her. Stay armed and safe.
When I carry a gun, I don't do so because I am looking for a fight, but because I'm looking to be left alone. The gun at my side means that I cannot be forced, only persuaded. I don't carry it because I'm afraid, but because it enables me to be unafraid.
May 6th, 2010 05:00 PM
Chief – Little humor is good.
Brass – You’re most welcome. Her dedication was a wake-up call for me too. I’m so proud of her.
B1780 – She found me, lucky me.
Good to hear that you both enjoy shooting. How easy was that 26 for her to get familiar with? My wife’s initial problem was a limp wrist. When we corrected that, we found that her trigger finger is a tad short and thus to reach the trigger she has to give up proper straight grip – the gun angles to the right a bit. It’s fine gun.
Thank you for well wishes.
Lots of Minnesotans here.
All the best to you and your wife.
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