Talking to your kids about CC
This is a discussion on Talking to your kids about CC within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; I have a four -year-old boy at home. My wife understands why I carry, but she isn't exactly in love with the idea. My son ...
November 3rd, 2010 08:36 PM
Talking to your kids about CC
I have a four -year-old boy at home. My wife understands why I carry, but she isn't exactly in love with the idea. My son knows there are guns around the house, but we really haven't had a discussion about the fact that I carry a gun on me. Sooner or later (probably sooner), he is going to notice me putting it on or taking it off at one time or another. I am struggling to come up with a way to talk to my son about why I carry a gun, that is also respectful of my wife's position (since she is respectful of my decision). I am also concerned with him telling his friends, etc. Just because he thinks it's cool. This is exactly the opposite of what I want to happen. Any others out there with experience in the situation, or that have helpful advice?
November 3rd, 2010 08:45 PM
The conversation I had with my six year old daughter went sorta like this
6yo: daddy, why do you have a gun? Only bad guys have guns right?
Me: So, you know how Police officers have guns?
Me: Police have them incase they need to protect people or take care of bad guys right? Because thats their job right?
6yo: That sounds right
Me: So sometimes, good guys carry guns
6yo: Ok, that makes sens
Me: Well daddy's job is to protect and take care of his family right?
Me: well, what if daddy needed to protect the family from a bad guy? Wouldnt it be good for him to have a gun?
6yo: I guess so....
(I bring out my CPL card)
Me: This is daddys "good guy card" It says the police checked out daddy, made sure he knew how to be safe, and that he wasnt a bad guy. this lets daddy carry a gun where he wants to incase he needs to protect his family
6yo: (takes the card and checks it out) Ok, so you have a card that says your a good guy?
Me: Yep, now we dont want to tell other people about it though ok? and we dont want to tell other people that daddy carries a gun OK?
6yo: but why?
Me: because if the bad guys knew, they might try to take it. That wouldnt be good would it?
6yo: No, Ok, i wont talk about it
Me: good kid :-)
November 3rd, 2010 09:49 PM
Just had a very similar situation with my nephew, he’s almost 4, and he lives with us full time and we sole care for him (different story entirely). We (myself and my fiancé) sat him down and had a long talk with him about guns and basic gun safety, don’t touch without a grown up, if you see one go get a grown up, you know the very basic stuff. We explained to him that we have guns to protect us from bad guys and told him that guns were not bad and good people have guns to, not just bad people (just like booyah said above). As you said about him seeing you take it off I would go with the attitude that he already knows or at least has some idea of it because my nephew made a comment during the conversation something of the nature of us carrying them so I believe he had caught a glimpse somewhere along the lines of one of us arming or disarming without ever even knowing. We also told him not to talk about guns with his friends at school or his teachers because it may scare them and we don’t want to scare people, that was our only way to keep him from going out and telling anyone (we haven’t gotten a phone call from anyone yet so knock on wood its working fine). one of the other big things that we did with him though was we took a few guns out a Semi auto pistol, revolver, shot gun, rifle, all in different colors and sizes so he could see that guns look different but are still the same thing, we even used a toy gun or two to show him how much they look alike and that you will never know what one is which. we also told him that anytime he want to see one let us know and we will show him (did this to take away the curiosity of looking for them and wanting to hold it if he finds one) (that was some great advise I got from someone on here ). He has come to us a few times, probably about every other week and asks to see them and we always make time for him to so the curiosity is under control.
I hope this helped a little by giving you my experience with what I did. Maybe you can pick and pull from it and something will work for you. My only real suggestion is both you and your wife be present during the convo if possible. Good luck
November 3rd, 2010 10:14 PM
My 5 yr old calls it "my secret". He knows I almost always have it on me, and I carry it to be able to protect him and the rest of my family. He knows nobody else is supposed to know about it, and in the 8 months I've been carrying it, he's never once given me away. He knows it isn't a toy; he knows it could hurt or kill somebody; he's had the Eddie Eagle-ish gun safety talk, and knows not to touch it. I'm really proud of the way he handled the whole thing.
Like the poster above, he knows if he wants to look at one of my weapons, he just has to ask, and I'll make it safe and supervise him as he holds it (while talking about safety). He's probably only asked maybe 3 times, and he's even shot it once with my help (which he loved).
November 3rd, 2010 10:14 PM
Find Eddie Eagle to let him watch...talk to him a lot about 'tools' (that includes guns)...let him touch, hold, and when he's old enough, take him shooting.
Proverbs 27:12 says: “The prudent see danger and take refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it.”
Certified Glock Armorer
NRA Life Member
November 3rd, 2010 10:43 PM
IMO....forget about explaining your CC to your son. Get him out to the range with you and a nice 22LR for practice. He may brag about it at school, but so be it. One of those things you can't exactly (conceal). Bringing the next generation into the shooting sports, or educating them with firearms is the best way we are going to continue to exist the way things were meant to be IMO. It's the basic foundation of America and our heritage that should last a lifetime. Talk about concealed carry can come later after the basics are instilled. We've all got to start with a firm foundation.
Originally Posted by KSCarry
I personally don't have any kids at home these days. In a way, I wish I had now. But the past is past and I'm looking at the grandfather ordeal through marriage, and I can't say I have any regrets. Thing about it is that my wife is with me on the whole firearms ordeal. I somehow feel for your position. I truly wish I could give you more insight to what you're asking.
November 4th, 2010 01:30 AM
I told my kids that there were bad people in the world who might do bad things to good people. And it was my job to keep them from doing bad things to them. I OC around my kids and now my wife carries. We have had no issues. I have girls though, and I think it makes a bit of a difference. I don't make it a big secret, so they don't think it's worth talking about I guess. And as always the obligatory Cornered Cat link to the kids section. Great stuff there!
I prefer to live dangerously free than safely caged!
"Our houses are protected by the good Lord and a gun. And you might meet 'em both if you show up here not welcome son." Josh Thompson "Way Out Here"
November 4th, 2010 02:43 AM
My biggest fears 20 years ago were keeping my kids from undue curiosity about Dad's guns, and telling their friends. The first fear was resolved by familiarity training; they got to handle my guns, see how they came apart, had them help me clean them (wet the patch, put a drop of oil here, that sort of thing), and then some limited shooting to hear the boom and see how the target blew up or jumped when hit. The latter fear was a tougher nut to crack and took a lot of repetition... but, I liken it to training your kid to be polite, use good table manners, and respect elders. Between 2 boys and many years, I'm only aware of 1 kid who found out about my guns, but (lucky me) the other kid's dad was a hunter so the boys ended up comparing notes.
Just remember that the more you try to hide stuff or keep it secret, the more kids will rise to that challenge.
AZCDL Life Member
NRA Patron Member
NROI Chief Range Officer
November 4th, 2010 02:55 AM
My daughters were born after I started carrying. They grew up seeing my guns, holsters, and cleaning sessions. They never gave it a second thought. Now both are grown and have their own guns and CCW's. It was just a fact of life to them, no explanation needed.
Treat me good, I'll treat you better. Treat me bad, I'll treat you worse.
November 4th, 2010 08:23 AM
My dad took the mystery out of guns when we were growing up by letting us see/handle them when he was around and explaining that it was the only time we were allowed to do so. Try to hide anything from a child and they're certain to become curious and they'll almost always find a way to get at it. The more they know about it, the more comfortable they'll be and they'll likely come right to you with any questions they might have instead of trying to answer it themselves.
November 4th, 2010 08:28 AM
I started taking my daughter shooting when she was 6. 22 rifles and handguns. She also observed me shooting larger calibers. We talked about gun safety, what to do and not do if she saw a gun, the purpose, carrying, etc. She hugged me and said I was the best Daddy in the world for keeping them safe. That was awesome!!!
Know Guns, Know Safety, Know Peace.
No Guns, No Safety, No Peace.
November 4th, 2010 09:44 AM
With my kids it is much the same as you have heard here already. Mine were young (4 kids under 8 years old at the time) when I started carrying, but they just saw it as part of life. They know gun safety and can handle any firearm responsibly, down to my youngest. For the CC question, we all also study martial arts so the kids know that (unfortunately) bad things happen and bag guys exist. So dad carries a tool for that possibility that is pretty effective. And frankly, just like most kids don't talk about the hammer that dad carries in his toolbox to fix things, my kids don't talk about my firearm. It's just a tool I carry, like a leatherman or pocket knife. It's part of my self-defense tool kit.
Here in AZ there is no need for a "good guy" card to carry concealed (even with Prop 109 failing this year, I love my state...super with gun laws). Anyone who is legal to own it is legal to carry it for the most part, so we're all good guys by default. :) That said, I have my CCW so I don't have to leave it in the truck when I go into a restaurant. And my kids appreciate that as much as my wife does. Heck, I even got her to carry occasionally!!
November 4th, 2010 01:58 PM
I had this talk with my son when he was about 5. (He's now 17) I compared carrying a gun with having fire extinguishers in the house. (We heat with a couple wood stoves)
I explained to him that we hope that we NEVER have to use the extinguishers because fire is a scary thing to think about, but we have to have them just in case.
Same with carrying a gun, hope and pray that we never use them, but still need to have them just in case.
November 4th, 2010 02:03 PM
I suggest you "NOT" hide the fact you carry from him. When he asks questions. "answer" him.
Tell him that daddy loves him and wants to do everthing possible to protect him and his mommy from bad people. My kids have understood this concept since they were very little.
Also take the time to tell him about "no-no" don't touch.
You can also play the "secret" game. Tell him the fact that you CC is a secret that only mommy, daddy and him share.
November 4th, 2010 04:22 PM
I've started Eddie Eagle with my twin 3 year olds. The girl does it a little better than the boy. Both know not to touch unless mom and dad say so, and even if it makes us later than usual they're allowed to see guns anytime they ask. The Girl knows the difference between a clip and a magazine!
Now its routine for them. I tested them recently, left an empty rifle laying out on the table. The Boy ignored it, the Girl went right up to it, reached over it to grab a snack on the table, and left it alone.
Try not to screw up so bad they name the screw up after you. (Station 15 saying)
NRA Certifed Instructor
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