New Permit holder - conflicted feelings - Page 4

New Permit holder - conflicted feelings

This is a discussion on New Permit holder - conflicted feelings within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Originally Posted by skandranon Hi all, I have had my permit for about 2 weeks now. I have conflicting feelings about carrying all the time. ...

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  1. #46
    Distinguished Member Array Jason Storm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skandranon View Post
    Hi all,

    I have had my permit for about 2 weeks now. I have conflicting feelings about carrying all the time. A bit of background.. I am in my 30s and until this year never had much exposure to guns. No strong feelings either way. Shot some when I was a kid, but never as a adult, till recently. Since the beginning of this year I have become very much aware of the increasingly chaotic times we live in. I decided then for various reasons, that I needed a way to protect myself and my family. I have also invested in other survivalist things such as food and water. That is not really related to this forum, but it is the original reason I decided to buy a gun.

    Knowing how little I knew, I have done my best to learn as much as I can. I decided the next logical step from gun ownership for self defense is a concealed carry permit. So I did my homework. More importantly I have thought long and hard about the responsibility's of carrying and the potential consequences of doing so. I have made my decision and I intend to carry 100% it is legal to do so.

    The problem I am having is since I started carrying I have been feeling slightly paranoid and focusing way too much on negative thoughts. In some aspects of my thinking it has been beneficial. I pay more attention to my surroundings and the words avoidance and alternatives have become somewhat of a mantra. No problems there. However I often find myself thinking, "I have never needed a gun before today, why now?" I know, the whole you dont plan on wrecking your car, but you still wear a seat belt argument, boy scout motto, etc..

    You see my main problem with this is I believe that we manifest in our reality, that witch we choose to see. The more I focus on a thing, the more I see a thing. So I end up arguing with myself in my head. Why do you think you need to carry this gun with you everywhere I go?

    I have lots of good reasons. I am sure I dont need to convince anyone here of why its a good idea.

    If I were not carrying and something were to happen to my loved ones I might have been able to stop, I am not sure I could forgive myself for that. It's thoughts like these on one side. Since I started carrying I find myself questioning the decision everyday, and feeling a little crazy for it, on the other side.

    Not really sure what my question is...

    I am looking for thoughts I guess. Has anyone else struggled with conflicting feelings like these? Did my best to try and put my feelings into words. Hope I made them clear enough for understanding. Thanks for any thoughts.
    When I first started CC back in 1998, I had some feelings about worrying if I might get caught. I was also trying hard not to make it obvious too. But after 13 yrs. of doing it, I have gotten used to it and now it's no big deal.


  2. #47
    VIP Member Array livewire's Avatar
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    I never really had the "I've never needed it before" moment, because I did need it once before I started carrying. I was mugged by two younger guys in the Seattle area, beaten pretty severely. I was in a "good" neighborhood, in front of a nursing home. It was after dark, but not particularly late (a little before 10p). I think that if I had been carrying then, I wouldn't have been in the position to have needed the pistol, as my situational awareness became considerably higher as soon as I started carrying.
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  3. #48
    Member Array whiteox's Avatar
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    Two years ago, I was where you are now. In some respects it does get easier. But I do still sometimes find myself wondering if I am really just paranoid. I don't know what the answer is. I just know that if I didn't carry and something happened I don't think I could live with myself. It hasn't been easy. My wife think's I'm nuts. I'm constantly on gun websites trying to learn all I can, and it's consumed a fair amount of money. I'd say trust your instincts. The fact that your concerned about doing it, shows that you can be trusted to do it properly.

    It does get easier and your comfort level will grow. I would also reccomend participating in competition like IDPA or USPSA, etc. That will give you a really good idea of how you will perform under stress should you have to use your weapon.

    Good luck, and know that you're not alone.
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  4. #49
    VIP Member Array BugDude's Avatar
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    This has been a great thread...a good read for both the "new to carrying" as well as the "I've been carrying for years" crowds. As I have read through ALL of the comments, it made me reflect on my maturation process and progression. I carry anytime and everytime it is legal for me to do so...whether it is to Grandmaw's house or lounging through my own house. For all of the reasons many folks have already stated here, but there's another reason I carry every minute I can. I really like guns. Always have, always will. I love the way they look, I love the way they feel in my hand, and I love knowing I have one (and often two) on my person at any given point in time. That's not the only reason, nor the main reason, but it's a reason that ensures I'll never catch myself in a situation where I just didn't want to or feel like carrying. I am passionate about firearms and I always want to carry, even if it is just for the sake of carrying one. I just thought that was one reason that I haven't seen posted yet.
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  5. #50
    VIP Member Array livewire's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BugDude View Post
    This has been a great thread...a good read for both the "new to carrying" as well as the "I've been carrying for years" crowds. As I have read through ALL of the comments, it made me reflect on my maturation process and progression. I carry anytime and everytime it is legal for me to do so...whether it is to Grandmaw's house or lounging through my own house. For all of the reasons many folks have already stated here, but there's another reason I carry every minute I can. I really like guns. Always have, always will. I love the way they look, I love the way they feel in my hand, and I love knowing I have one (and often two) on my person at any given point in time. That's not the only reason, nor the main reason, but it's a reason that ensures I'll never catch myself in a situation where I just didn't want to or feel like carrying. I am passionate about firearms and I always want to carry, even if it is just for the sake of carrying one. I just thought that was one reason that I haven't seen posted yet.
    I was just thinking about this. . . OP, if you make a hobby out of firearms, you'll find that carrying, researching, and blowing tons of time and money on proficiency won't be a problem for you. Okay, maybe that's not the best way to encourage, lol.

  6. #51
    New Member Array skandranon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snatale42 View Post
    Don't confuse the fact that your more alert of your surroundings and "scanning" every thing and person around you for Paranoia. Thats just being smart. You have been infected with a disease which all of us here carry. It's name.....REALITY! There are people out there that will hurt you and your family If they get the chance to gain something out of it. You'll also start noticing more on the news, papers internet (aside from pro-gun forums) about people being violently victimized, I know I did. I think the main reason people feel weird at first is both the knowledge that you now poses the power to end a life in a split second if you have too, while at the same time praying nobody puts you in a position to do so. As well as the fact (for me at least) that for a while it just felt like I was doing something illegal hiding a gun all the time. Soon enough you'll feel weird when your not carrying. For me that's when I'm paranoid. Congrats on the permit. BTW: What did you buy, and how are you carrying?
    Thank you. I bought a G19. I biased this decision on pure functionality. I researched and researched and could not come up with anything more highly rated in terms of "it just works". Drop it in the dirt, hold it under water (watched a vid still shoots and rechambers and shoots again), dont clean it, it really doesnt matter, it just works. Even people who dont like glocks usually say, they cannt really knock em. To me that says a lot. I am carrying it in a IWB Tagua holster, single clip anywhere from 3:30 to 5:00. I dont really like this holster nor the first belt I bought for it. I cannt decide on what to buy next. Really wish there were more local stores that had bigger selections so I could put my hands on them. The belt I bought is a Easy-Fit Frequent Flyer Belt. It is functional, but is just ugly as hell. It is also the only belt I have seen recommended that is fully adjustable, not just with different holes. Belts with holes never really work out well for me.

    Quote Originally Posted by whiteox View Post
    Two years ago, I was where you are now. In some respects it does get easier. But I do still sometimes find myself wondering if I am really just paranoid. I don't know what the answer is. I just know that if I didn't carry and something happened I don't think I could live with myself. It hasn't been easy. My wife think's I'm nuts. I'm constantly on gun websites trying to learn all I can, and it's consumed a fair amount of money. I'd say trust your instincts. The fact that your concerned about doing it, shows that you can be trusted to do it properly.

    It does get easier and your comfort level will grow. I would also reccomend participating in competition like IDPA or USPSA, etc. That will give you a really good idea of how you will perform under stress should you have to use your weapon.

    Good luck, and know that you're not alone.
    I appreciate your comments. I am not sure what those competitions are but I will look into them. I am looking forward to taking a real training course ASAP.



    Quote Originally Posted by livewire9880 View Post
    I was just thinking about this. . . OP, if you make a hobby out of firearms, you'll find that carrying, researching, and blowing tons of time and money on proficiency won't be a problem for you. Okay, maybe that's not the best way to encourage, lol.
    I do find firearms in general to be fun since I started using them. This is one damn expensive hobby for sure.

  7. #52
    VIP Member Array BugDude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skandranon View Post
    I do find firearms in general to be fun since I started using them. This is one damn expensive hobby for sure.
    Now, get yourself a couple .22 long rifle handguns (or a .22 conversion kit for your Glock) and have a ton of fun on the cheap. .22s are a blast and you can shoot all day every day without breaking the bank.
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  8. #53
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    I can relate as I am also new to CCW. My in laws also carry and it has been helpful for me to be around like minded individuals. This forum is also helpful as I can read what others have gone through and how they handle the responsiblity of gun carry/ownership.
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  9. #54
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    Appreciate your candor and courage.

    You may not have realized it from your perspective when you composed your OP, but I think what you expressed is, or has been, felt by many of us.

    Those conflicted feelings actually drove my behavior. To resolve them I sought more and more information and training . . . and holster buying!!!
    It took me a couple of years to get the "toolset" just right - a good gun belt contributed more than I ever thought it would - and just one inch difference in the location between "3:30 and 5:00" really mattered.

    Best money I've spent has been on defensive gun fight training - it's not a paper target and it won't be sitting still for you.

    I would encourage you to give it some more time and effort - it will come together. As far as:
    You see my main problem with this is I believe that we manifest in our reality, that witch we choose to see.
    I suggest ceasing to 'see' all of the things they might do to you, and choose to 'see' what you will do to them . . . . and get the training that will give you the confidence that you can actually manifest that.
    "It is easier to resist at the beginning than at the end"____Leonardo da Vinci 1452-1519

  10. #55
    Member Array The Dark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gaius View Post
    First Sgt and the Dark. Thanks for your thoughtful posts. You both make very good and valid points. I'm not sure, however, that we are really all that far apart. Clint Smith of Thunder Ranch fame is found of saying that carrying a concealed weapon is not supposed to be comfortable. it is supposed to be comforting. Now, and on a purely individual basis, what if we have a guy, for whatever reason, who is completely uncomfortable in carrying at a particular time or in a particular place. Personally, i would tell him to leave his weapon at home. I guess for me, it's a quality of life issue. I am willing to accept certain risks if the benefit outweighs those risks, at least in my own judgment. I also agree that statistics can be a pretty slippery slope, if for no other reason than people are not numbers. The insurance example may be a good one. I would buy flood insurance if i lived in an area that, for example, experiences a flood every one hundred years. Would I also buy that insurance if I lived in say Death Valley, where statistically a flood may have never happened? (I guessing about that but you get the idea.) Probably not. However, they can give us some direction, albeit not necessarily conclusive, as to what we may do or encounter. It's absolutely true that bad things happen to good people all the time, and the clearly known risk is the easiest one to prepare for. It is the surprise encounter with the unknown, or at least the unexpected risk that causes the greatest harm. For many of us, carrying all the time may be a very small inconvenience at worst compared to our perceived risk our there. For some, however. i can respect a different judgment.
    All good. My main point is simply that the true probabilities are not knowable and we are working with imperfect estimates - absolute prediction is not possible, error is always in the equation (and these days I would not be surprised to see a flood where it has not been likely). If one is willing to risk being unprepared for rare events, that is a personal calculation. Statistical significance and real-world significance are not always consistent with one another. Most life-threatening conditions are exceedingly rare and we predict them most efficiently when we assume they will not happen. But when they do...? Crime-free neighborhoods are crime-free until crime happens there - then the whole equation changes.

    I have always taken Clint's comment to mean that one should be taking comfort in always being prepared and get beyond expecting it to be comfortable to do so. But we each make the decision for ourselves. I certainly have no need or desire to tell others to do as I do...but I carry everywhere it is legal for me to do so and I never for a moment think "I do not need to carry THERE...nothing will happen". That is my comfort-zone and I do not take time or effort to second guess it.

    Best of luck!
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  11. #56
    Senior Member Array MotorCityGun's Avatar
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    skandarnon, yes, there is a certain amount of cash outlay in order to own a firearm, practice with it, train with it, holster it, etc. However, rather than view this as a expense, you should consider this an "investment" in your preparedness and self defense. Even if you're going to the range "for fun", you are still reaping the benefits of familiarization and practice with your weapon of choice.

    I agree with what everyone else has stated about the natural process involved/necessary in becoming accustomed/comfortable with CCW-ing as much as legally possible. It is a challenge to deal with the mental, physical, tactical and (yes) emotional aspects of CCW. And everyone deals with each one of these aspects in their own unique way.

    There is a youtube dude named "nutnfancy", who helped me work through these (head/mind/heart) issues. He considers himself a consumer advocate for guns, knives, tactical gear, etc. But he also has some "philosophical" things to say about the responsibility, make that "obligation", of being an armed citizen, (ref. "sheepdog", et. al). Look him up, it will be well worth your time.
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  12. #57
    Member Array Snider's Avatar
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    I just started carrying a little over a week ago myself, and I went through remarkably similar emotional steps before I actually picked up my gun, put it into my pocket holster and walked out of the house. But it felt remarkably normal once I stepped out of that front door, for me.

    I had a dream last night that verged on a nightmare. It wasn't a rational dream at all, but I was involved in an incident in an airport and was forced to draw and kill someone, and once it happened I realized I was cc'ing in an airport and was in deep trouble for that. I woke up as I was panicking that I was going to jail for a righteous kill in the wrong place. Talk about a bad situation. I guess this has all been on my mind more than I thought!

    It sounds like you (the OP) are a mature adult with a wise outlook on cc'ing. I hope you can be encouraged by this thread, as there are many others like yourself here with kids, in the middle of life, not able to cite a major incident or cause to need to carry, but feeling it was a wise course to take. Take heart in the knowledge that just as you find it disconcerting to have such an instrument at your disposal, that many others around you do as well, and you are not in a situation so disparate as you might think. Once your mind settles, your heart will follow, if you are anything like me.
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  13. #58
    Senior Member Array Gun Bunny's Avatar
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    My advice to you and all the "new" to carrying is get as much training with firearms as possible. Remember that you are legal to carry and use the best judgment if you ever need to use it.

    I have carried off and on for over 30 years, and I grew up around firearms all my life. I also come from an area that carrying is prevalent, so it was always easy for me. But I do understand how you feel, I carry all the time except at work and am quite comfortable with it. Trust me it will come with time.
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  14. #59
    New Member Array Medic624's Avatar
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    This is perfectly normal...

    I can only speak for myself when I say that I had almost the same reservations when I first started carrying about 2 years ago. I thought like you, well, I've never been in a shootout, I've never needed to use deadly force ... Etc. But then when I made the conscious decision to carry 24/7 other issues arose, do I carry with one in the chamber? I then found myself a little paranoid thinking, I KNOW everyone can see my gun, am I concealed enough, is anyone looking..then I realized, huh, I've never noticed anyone carrying and mine is pretty darn hidden.

    The only 0.02 I can give is it is a process that needs to play itself out naturally. I eventually became fully comfortable and at ease with carrying and now I can't not carry because I feel un-natural without having that weight on my hip and a sense of ease with the tremendous responsibility of being a conceal carrier.

    On the issue of whether to carry daily or not I saw a tag line that sealed it for me...
    "If you're not going to carry 24/7 then you'd better hope you guess correctly"

    On the possible eventual issue of carrying with one in the chamber I asked a friend who also carries and he said...
    "well, if you don't and something happens then you only have the rest of your life to put one there"

    Bottom line it is a growing process and it only comes with time.
    Spend a lot of time at the range and get VERY comfortable with your weapon and maybe only wear around the house at first and then out to the store then all the time...

    I hope this helps a little to know a lot of us go through this same process.
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  15. #60
    Member Array loneviking's Avatar
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    I wonder, is the OP left handed? He mentioned that it was tough to wear the gun in the car, that it kept hanging up on things and that's one of the problems we lefties have. Besides getting comfortable with carrying, which takes time, finding out what gear works for you is also important. Keep looking around and trying out new gear. I use a Tommys Gun Pak about half the time as it's really convenient to just buckle on and go. If you're a parent hauling the kids around, there's places such as schools, where you can't carry. You just take the Gun Pak off, stash it under something, alarm the car and go on in. It's also easy to wear in a car. Here's a link:

    [HTML]http://www.tommysgunpack.com/ProductDetails.asp?ProductCode=1[/HTML]

    Holsters like the K-Holster and Crossbreed Supertuck are very comfortable because the height of the holster and the cant can be adjusted to fit just about anybody and any gun.

    Like so many other posters, it took about two years to get really comfortable with carrying and to get the gear that works for me squared away. As for the worry that carrying somehow induces Karma of it's own, I'm not sure I'd buy that. Bad things do happen and there's no way to know when (or IF) your time will be up. I started carrying after a Mexican butcher shop I frequent was held up. The vid was put up on You Tube and it really was a wake up call. I'm a middle aged guy, and the vid showed a middle aged guy leaving the store, passing by the two robbers coming in. I was just in that store the day before the robbery, and I couldn't help thinking 'that could have been me!'. For years I had kept a gun in the car, and I would carry out in the boonies as protection against snakes and other unfriendly critters. But after that robbery I began thinking 'why not carry all the time?'. Life is uncertain, and I want to make sure I have a fighting chance to come home alive to my wife and kids.
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