Carrying, responsibility, and change

Carrying, responsibility, and change

This is a discussion on Carrying, responsibility, and change within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; ***Mods, this seemed like a good place to put this, though I was not sure if this should be in the off topic section, please ...

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Thread: Carrying, responsibility, and change

  1. #1
    Member Array nkanofolives's Avatar
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    Dec 2006
    Northern Virginia

    Carrying, responsibility, and change

    ***Mods, this seemed like a good place to put this, though I was not sure if this should be in the off topic section, please move this if need be***

    So I have questions about you...yes you (all of you). How has your life changed since you started carrying? What things do you do differently today by comparison to what you did before you decided to carry? How have you become more responsible? Do you directly attribute carrying with "calming you down"/changing the way you do things?

    I am asking more than the basic situational awareness/not flying off the handle/ect...

    Examples -

    Used to have a beer or 2 when you went to dinner with your spouse, but now almost never drink in public.

    Used to speed...a lot, drive aggressively, now you obey every driving law to a T.

    Started working out again because you recognized a need to be physically fit.

    Feeling more confident in yourself.

    I am just curious to see if carrying "changed your life" in any significant manner.

  2. #2
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    Array Thumper's Avatar
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    Jun 2006
    Dayton, Nevada
    When I was a kid I was a Cub Scout. On days that we had a meeting we would wear our uniforms to school.

    My teacher noticed that on those days... I was one very good little boy!

    Yeah, I tend to have an entirely different attitude when I carry. Although legal to do so, I do not drink when I carry. I feel the weight of responsibility and enjoy it. It hasn't helped my "lead foot" yet but who knows!
    ALWAYS carry! - NEVER tell!

    "A superior Operator is best defined as someone who uses his superior
    judgement to keep himself out of situations that would require a display of his
    superior skills."

  3. #3
    VIP Member Array havegunjoe's Avatar
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    Mar 2005
    I don't let minor traffic incidents bother me. I am more aware of what is going on around me. I am more aware that evil does exists in this world and I keep an eye out for it. Not to point of paranoia, just cautious.

    Certified Instructor for Minnesota Carry Permit
    NRA Pistol and Personal Protection Insrtuctor
    Utah Permit Certified Instructor

  4. #4
    Distinguished Member Array Reborn's Avatar
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    Feb 2008
    Rowlett, Texas
    I have been carrying so long that its second nature. Most of that time I was an LEO. I haven't had a drink in many years but not because of firearms but something else (thats another story). I have a farm to take care of and with teaching tactical classes I stay in pretty good shape; plus I have a black belt and I am certified in a couple of self defense techniques taught in Police Academys.
    Psalms 144:1
    Blessed be the Lord my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight.
    Senior Instructor for Tactical and Defensive of Texas
    Retired LEO
    NRA member
    TCHA member

  5. #5
    VIP Member Array Janq's Avatar
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    Nov 2005
    I do/did nothing differently.

    After as a teen being hit by a drunk driving mom on her way to pickup her kid at day care I've never been one for drinking and driving. That is for the lose.
    Fitness has always been a part of my life and I'd never had a problem with self confidence.

    Pretty much the only thing I actively pay more attention to is the length of my outerwear casual shirts when I'm out shopping.
    I do the IDPA style check to see if the shirts bottom is long enough to act as cover when my arms are up and outstretched in a T formation.

    Beyond that minor difference really in the big picture no change at all.
    Like Reborn I too have been carrying for a long time and it's now just second nature like carrying a wallet or house keys. I stress more toward what to do with my cell phone and invariably leave it behind, a habit I need to break.

    - Janq
    "Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy

    "A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing

  6. #6
    Senior Member Array Cthulhu's Avatar
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    Feb 2008
    Brevard County, FL
    Attitudinally, no changes. Any potential change I could have made in that regard from starting to carry concealed would already have been made from my martial arts training. Most of that would involve situational awareness, threat assessment, etc.

    Carrying didn't really alter my mode of dress at all. However, there is a related change in that I check for printing a bit. So, I guess WHAT I wear hasn't changed so much, but HOW I wear it has.

    And, I am always cognizant of the fact that no matter where I am, there's at least one gun in the area...mine.


  7. #7
    Senior Member Array dairycreek's Avatar
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    Nov 2005
    North Plains, Oregon
    I am 71 years old and have been a concealed weapons carrier for a long, long time. One thing did change for me and that was situational awareness. Even after such a long time I still find myself sizing up people and situations and mentally going through what options I have and what I will (or won't) do if such and such a situation arises. That has become second nature to me. It's with me always. Other than that I really have not changed that much in other personal ways.
    De gustibus non est disputandem

  8. #8
    Senior Member Array wvshooter's Avatar
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    Jun 2007
    Charleston, WV
    I would say no change. I never did drive fast. If I want something with alcohol I go ahead. Of course, it's been a very long time since I over did it with drink. I ALWAYS have a gun with me so it's not like I have to think about being armed or not. The one thing that is different is I stay very consious of who is around me not wanting to ever have to use my weapon. Of course we all carry for the one event we hope never happens.

  9. #9
    Member Array Zach and Holly's Avatar
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    Apr 2008
    We just started carrying yesterday, so we'll have to post something another time. A great rise in confidence though I can tell you just from the couple hours we were out.
    It is utterly illogical to believe that passing laws to reduce gun violence will be successful when those who are commiting the gun violence do not obey the law.

  10. #10
    Lead Moderator Array limatunes's Avatar
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    Feb 2007
    Many MANY years ago someone wanted to do something to me I didn't want them to do. I told him, "no."

    He laughed at me and did it anyway because I was powerless to stop him.

    I was very young and I learned something important that day. It didn't matter what I said or wanted or even needed, if people who are bigger and stronger than me want something they will take it whether I give it or not.

    I erroneously decided it was better never to fight when I couldn't win anyway.

    That mindset spiraled me down, down and down until I was a broken little girl. My fight instinct was stripped from me, even my flight instinct was beat out of me and I was little more than a dog coming when commanded to be used and abused.

    That mindset nearly got me killed.

    I knew I needed to stand up for myself. I hated every inch of what I was. I knew that I would always be used and abused if I didn't change but every time I tried I was worse off because of it. I attempted suicide twice but I seemed even to fail at that and what's worse is that I knew I didn't want to die. I just wanted a normal happy life. I knew what they were doing was wrong. I knew I had the RIGHT to say no but no one seemed to listen or care.

    Finally I realized that my inability to say "no" and to fight was going to get me killed. But even worse was my inability to stand behind my "no" and defend it.

    The first time I ever told someone, "no" since I was nine years old I was eighteen and in college. I was so scared I was shaking like a leaf and all I could think about was how little of a will I had to really back up my "no." I had nothing. I didn't even have a flight response I was so broken and I knew I was bluffing.

    But for once in my life my "no" worked. I was left alone. I was respected.

    I felt like a queen. I felt like I had real power on earth. I was in control of my life.

    But I couldn't forget that in actuality I still had a lot of work to do. Sure, it worked this time, but like before, I might have someone that laughed at me and took what they wanted anyway.

    I started looking for ways to build my confidence, ways to learn how to stand up for myself and assert myself and make my timid little cowardly "no" into a roar that anyone would respect.

    After nineteen cowardly years of life I developed a flight response. If, "no" didn't work I discovered that I actually had the power to leave! I exercised the right quite a few times and each time I felt emboldened and like a little piece of dignity had been given back to me. Even if I couldn't make someone respect my decision I certainly didn't have to stick around to see what they would do.

    I knew I still didn't have fight in me but we were working on that. I had a lot of years to recover from and it wasn't all going to magically disappear overnight.

    When I got married (just after my twentieth birthday) my husband, knowing my weaknesses and everything that caused them, deliberately started forcing me to make decisions by refusing to give his opinion. He respected my decisions and praised me for the right decisions I would make.

    I still had never considered concealed carry because, to be quite honest, I didn't even think of it. JD carried but it never even occurred to me that I could do it to if I wanted.

    Then JD asked me if I would consider it. I said I would and consider it I did.

    This was a gift. The last huge threshold I had to cross. My last real fear addressed. What did I have to respond with to those who were bigger and stronger than me and didn't respect my "no" and I couldn't just leave? I had nothing. But I COULD have a gun.

    I told JD I would get my carry permit under two conditions: we would have to practice.... A LOT, and I would have to have proper and continuous training. If anyone knew what it was to have no skill or will behind what they were doing or saying it was me. I wasn't going to need my gun and pull it out and be shaking like a leaf I had the day I said "no" the first time in eleven years. I wasn't going to bluff. I was going to have something that was mine that demanded respect if it wasn't just given. I was going to be prepared to fight if I had to.

    As I trained I saw my fight response come back. I saw the righteous indignation to defend myself flood back into me and the hatred of the evil of my past replace the indifference and apathy I had accepted as a coward. It had nothing to do with CARRYING the gun, but everything to do with training to use the gun. With each skilled shot, with each fighting draw, with each new tactic or practice I felt what I'd NEVER felt before... READY to stand up for myself.

    I then learned that I could apply that same preparedness, that same will, that same skill to defense that was non-gun related as well.

    I'm now 23 years old and still have a LONG way to go. But I look back at myself five, six years ago, and I thank God he gave a cowardly little girl the courage to decide she was done being a victim. In the grand scheme of things it was a very small decision but it facilitated a HUGE change.

    And three years ago, before I even got my permit, another tiny decision, the decision to carry a gun in self-defense, did it all over again.

    I have my flight back.

    I have my fight back.

    And though I may always be developing them I'll never take them for granted. They are hard little stinkers to find again once you've lost them.

  11. #11
    Distinguished Member Array SixBravo's Avatar
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    Jun 2006
    Prescott, AZ
    Many people noticed that I became far more patient and that little things no longer bother me as much. Someone else mentioned that minor traffic stuff doesn't bother them anymore - thats a big +1 with me as well. But I got serious about carrying about the same time I started racing cars, so that may be dual-cause.
    The Gunsite Blog
    ITFT / Quick Kill Review
    "It is enough to note, as we have observed, that the American people have considered the handgun to be the quintessential self-defense weapon." - Justice Scalia, SCOTUS - DC v Heller - 26 JUN 2008

  12. #12
    Distinguished Member Array Tally XD's Avatar
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    Feb 2008
    Tallahassee, FL
    Cant say much feels different about being legal to carry. I have had a gun with me for quite a while now even though I did not conceal it on my body. I still had it readily available beside me in my vehicle.

    Since I was in the military I have been much more alert as to my surroundings. I have most of my life been one to watch carefully what people around me are doing and how they are acting. I have always been careful not to get myself boxed in anywhere where I could not maneuver or see entrances/exits clearly.

    Having my CWP only gave me the full capacity to carry my weapon most anywhere instead of leaving it in my vehicle.
    “I am consistently on record and will continue to be on record as opposing concealed carry.”
    - Barack Obama Chicago Tribune, April 27, 2004

  13. #13
    Distinguished Member Array SubNine's Avatar
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    Jun 2006
    Anchorage Alaska
    When I was a kid, I was often teased and humiliated for my short height, race, and my last name. I was occasionally physically attacked, but the only thing I could do is tell an adult, and let them deal with it. Needless to say, the adults never really did anything other than tell the other kids to stop, and what good did that do? None at all! I was taught that if I was being verbally and/or physically attacked that I must rely on adults for help, and never take matters into my own hands. It went that way up until 10th grade when I decided it was best to keep to myself.

    Then in April of 2006, I was nearly stabbed to death by a man that either wanted my car, or wanted whatever was inside it. Only then did I decide that I have had enough of letting people walk all over me. I no longer wanted to be the shy little kid I once was, and I know there are good people out there who will lend a hand, and there are also very bad people out there as well who will do whatever it takes to get what they desire. I learned that I cannot rely on anyone else to be there to help me at all times, and I'm certainly not in physical shape to put up a fist fight with anyone, because of a bad left hip joint that limits my movement quite a bit.

    I no longer let minor traffic offenses get to me, and I am more aware of my surroundings, and know that I carry an extra responsibility. I have also accepted the possible consequences of using a firearm in self defense, and pray that the only time I fire my gun is either at the range or when I am hunting game.
    USMC rule # 23 of gunfighting: Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet.

    I am the God fearing, gun toting, flag waving conservative you were warned about!

  14. #14
    VIP Member Array cdwolf's Avatar
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    Dec 2007
    There is a few times where I would have opened up a can of ***************** But didn't since I was carrying.
    It has calmed me down,but I still drive way to fast!
    I have to stop and think about it sometimes, but with the right medication I don't let these idiots bother me as much.
    I still have a few problems I'm working on

    A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Array rdoggsilva's Avatar
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    Mar 2008
    Being from Kalifornia I was always alert to my surrounds. But since getting my CFP have notice that I am more sensitive to my surrounds. I also seam to not get up sit as easy just keep my cool.
    John Steinbeck: Don't pick a fight with an old man. If he's too old to fight, he'll just kill you.

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