September 6th, 2006 07:40 PM
I Need Advice
I'm recently single after being engaged for about three years.
In those three years I got to be a dad to a 5, then 6, then 7, then 8 year old. His first BB gun was from me. I taught him to shoot.
Mom isn't into the shooting scene and only paid half attention to any safety instruction I gave her.
Additionally, I've seen her as unable to pay attention to what he's doing. I taught him to carve and caught him in a dangerous situation when she was supposedly watching him.
She wants the BB gun. Errrrr... I dunno about that. I told her that she knows maybe half of what she needs to as a shooting instructor for a child, and of that half, I had to ram it down her throat for the couple times she shot my .22. I was then told I was calling her a bad parent. Errrr... Ok.
She had a boyfriend about a month after we split up, and it continues. I asked if he had any knowledge of guns and she said it wasn't relevant! How is this not relevent???
She's been diagnosed with ADD, depression, and PTSD. In other words, I'm just not sure about her mental ability to effectively parent, let alone supervise a learning shooter. I would still be taking him except she believes it's healthy to just pull a kid and a dad-figure apart after a three year relationship. I was the only one in his life as she ran to this state when she found out she was pregnant.
In other words, I have no legal claim to the child.
Sad to say, but I don't think the boy will be getting the BB gun. I believe it's a safety hazard. I hate to do the gun control thing, but man, I couldn't live with myself if the ex forgot to remind the kiddo to wear safety glasses and he caught a ricochet to the eye, or something similar.
Thoughts? Do you believe I'm making the right decision here?
September 6th, 2006 07:51 PM
It's your judgement Josh and by sound of it - justified.
Where young kids are concerned then we as adults, parents, Guardians, Uncles, Aunts etc - all have to assess what is safe or not and here, where you are out of the frame it seems, is a case where your responsibility has to be toward the child.
At eight years old now he would still IMO need tuition and overseeing with any gun. If you see no good and safe gun guidance in his future then I'd keep that BB a fair bit longer.
Chris - P95
NRA Certified Instructor & NRA Life Member.
"To own a gun and assume that you are armed
is like owning a piano and assuming that you are a musician!."
- a portal for 2A links, articles and some videos.
September 6th, 2006 08:12 PM
It would maybe make a great 10th B-day gift.
September 6th, 2006 08:28 PM
Joshua: You know whats best. Based on what you've stated, I agree with you.
September 6th, 2006 09:36 PM
Forget the BBgun, if shes got ADD, depression, and PTSD, you need to file a complaint with social services so they keep an eye on her/place the child where he can be properly cared for.
I don't know the law in your jurisdiction, but if you are interested in being the child's dad, you should look into filing a motion to gain custody in the court where the child is residing. I've heard of cases where theres no close family on the mother's side to care for the child and the court awarded custody to the live-in boyfriend (he lived with the child/mother for 3-4yrs), who ended up adopting him. Its hard, but if thats what you want, go for it. Otherwise just keep the BBgun.
Last edited by cagueits; September 6th, 2006 at 09:37 PM.
September 6th, 2006 11:38 PM
Ditto! Don't buy them a BB gun without a parent able to monitor them period.
Originally Posted by Rock and Glock
"If everyone is thinking alike, then somebody isn't thinking" - George S. Patton.
September 6th, 2006 11:39 PM
I feel for you (and the kid), but you are absolutely doing the right thing with the BB gun. I am the firearms instructor for my branch of the company I work for. I deal with adults only, but you can be sure that NO ONE gets issued (or approved to use) a firearm until I am satisfied that they are capable and mature enough to handle the responsibility properly. I would do no less with a child (much less one that I loved).
It is hard, but it is the right thing to do.
Watch their hands. Hands kill. (In God we trust. Everyone else, keep your hands where I can see them).
September 6th, 2006 11:46 PM
Suggest you lose the gun, and try to stay close to the boy. Sounds like a tough situation - Good luck to you!
September 6th, 2006 11:47 PM
based on what you say, I don't think he should be given the bb gun. they are not toys. and w/o you there for instruction, it becomes a dangerous situation. This isn't gun control, it is you doing the right thing as a step in dad, and a responsible adult
--people ask why I carry, and I show them this picture. I think it says it all.--
NRA Certified Instructor--many disciplines
September 7th, 2006 12:06 AM
Former Army Infantry Captain; 25 yrs as an NRA Certified Instructor; Avid practitioner of the martial art: KLIK-PAO.
September 7th, 2006 08:22 AM
As a grandparent I'll add my penny's worth that I believe your decision is a good one, but having made it, you now have the next matter of monitoring her mental state as a parent. In my opiniion that is potentially far more serious than the BB gun.
September 7th, 2006 08:43 AM
Is there any chance that you could still be in the boy's life? You, know like a "Big Brother" or mentor? It sounds like what the boy needs is some stability. Since you were his defacto Dad for a few years it would add some continuity to his life. He apparently trusts you. Would the mother be amenable to this?
"You can get more with a kind word and a gun than you can with a kind word alone." - Al Capone
The second amendment is the reset button of our Constitution.
September 7th, 2006 10:00 AM
I think everyone's opinion here is going to match mine. Keep the gun. If the mom is willing to let you see him, then maybe look at getting a .22 plinker and start drilling home gun safety for yourself. If you can do that and make sure the boy knows his stuff and make the ex a deal - if she can give a safety briefing to the boy without missing anything, then considering giving HIM control of the gun. If you are willing to, have the little boy be the judge of whether or not she missed anything.
-Personal responsibility and accountability are the two driving forces of safety for our hobby. You can NEVER be too young to learn these lessons.
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
September 7th, 2006 10:12 AM
I agree with most everyone else. Unless you see a clear and present danger to their safety, though, I wouldn't get DHS involved. I've worked in conjunction with DHS, and have relatives working in it, in various states. Occassionally DHS gets it right, generally, however:
DHS- placing kids in need with pedophiles and dopers successfuly, for 60 years!
September 7th, 2006 12:13 PM
This is always a very tough situation to be in.
I wholeheartly agree the BB Gun to stay with you with the option of taking the child to shoot and educate.
The issue about the relationship being disolved it is extremely difficult to seperate from the children although required as then the children loose all around no matter if you or she wins a battle.
Good luck in your choice.
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