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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Ladies, I need your help. I know that there is no magical spell to "make" my wife become a gun nut but what got you ladies into guns in the first place?

So let me provide a little background to give some context. My wife grew up in a place where crime just wasn't an issue, period. She moved to the states in 2008 but I still don't think she gets that crime happens. We moved from a medium sized city to a large city a year and a half ago and it made me stand up and realize that I NEED to carry. Meanwhile my wife is still forgetting to lock the doors when she leaves or goes to bed.

I told her that I wanted to carry a few months ago. That is happening, I am just waiting on the license to come in the mail. But I keep getting these little disagreements about guns and carrying. She showed me a documentary by 20/20 about kids and guns, she insists that I carry without one in the chamber (I think I have her convinced against this one), and she really doesn't seem interested in concealed carry herself.

So I know that the path to take is through communication and understanding, but what (if anything) convinced you ladies to carry? or was it just how you were raised?

I am a bit worried for my wife's safety, now that we are living in a city were people get shot every day and we have been places where it happens.

Update: I was open and honest with my wife I told my wife I want her to carry, and that I understood that she was not comfortable carrying and that I would be with her until she did feel comfortable. She seemed to appriciate the honesty and I think we will be going to the range one day soon.
 

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Can guys comment too? ;D

Know any policemen who might be willing to discuss it with her?

Have you ever taken her shooting?
 
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Encourage her to watch the Miami local news.
 

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I spent my childhood with NRA shooting programs at summer camp, so it wasn't a stretch for me to be interested in carrying when shall issue passed in our state. My childhood best friend's brother was an NRA instructor, which really helped. Even in the 70's, it wasn't common place for kids to do this where I lived, so I was a lucky kid. My parents weren't interested in shooting, but apparently had no problem with me doing it.

As far as conceal carry goes, I was first, then convinced my husband to follow. Other factors convincing me to carry were increased crime in places I had to go, including a serial rapist in the area I had to frequent. An unfortunate encounter with a drug dealer with my teenage daughter along, walking down a sidewalk was the last straw. I wasn't even in a place that was considered "bad" at the time, and felt completely defenseless. Luckily a store owner saw what was going on and came out to "rescue" us.

My only suggestion is to lead by example, including gun safety in the home if kids are involved. Some investment in gun safe(s) may help her hesitation about gun safety too. As kids grow, teach gun safety. We started out pretty early with our kids, with BB guns at Grandma's house! I enjoy going to the range and shooting targets, maybe a few trips to the range may peak her interest. It's a fun thing to do as a couple, especially with things you can do together (like Battleship targets, etc.).

Give it time. Familiarity and education may help, instant acceptance may not be a reasonable expectation. It could be a process that takes a while. Patience and baby steps. Even if she never carries, even improved situational awareness, etc. would be of great value.
 

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Do you have kids?


Also, considering the cost of ammo these days, maybe it's a good thing she doesn't become a shooter. The new ones are always the most profligate with the ammo usage.
 
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Discussion Starter #7
An unfortunate encounter with a drug dealer with my teenage daughter along, walking down a sidewalk was the last straw. I wasn't even in a place that was considered "bad" at the time, and felt completely defenseless. Luckily a store owner saw what was going on and came out to "rescue" us.
I want to prevent something like this from happening at all.

We do have kids, two and a half and a 10 month old. We haven't been to the range together yet, I keep pushing for it because I think that is what it will take, but between a lack of interest and our mutual stricked feeling about child care (we don't let anyone but close friends watch our kids) we have not been able to go.

I know one of her major concerns is with safety, especially with her carrying.
 

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Your wife forgetting to lock the door is a more serious issue than her carrying. From what you've written I am sensing that she honestly just doesn't feel at all threatened, probably because she feels so comfortable with you being around to take care of things. You can't force her into gun culture, but you can get her pepper spray to carry in her purse all the time, and really try to get her to be more aware of her surroundings so that she'll think about locking the door when she leaves.

Approach the gun culture from a hobby point of view. Shooting for recreation, target shooting, is a personal challenge for each individual. Formal competition is not necessary, as each time one goes to the range you try to be a better shooter than the last time. If she likes challenges, then go on a few dates to the range and then dinner. Make it fun. Let her rent a few different handguns so that she can see what works well for her. Then - stand back - next thing you know she'll be taking you to the range and her targets will be better than yours, too!:D
 

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I know one of her major concerns is with safety, especially with her carrying.
This is a good thing in my opinion. With kids, especially at that age, you really have to think your carry methods through. I wasn't able to carry due to state laws when our kids were that age. I can see where it could be a challenge with young active kids, especially lugging around a diaper bag and two kids. Her concern with safety is a good thing. Getting used to shooting would be the first step. Until she's comfortable with that, she probably won't be comfortable with the idea of carrying, at least I wasn't.
 

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The first thing to focus on is being aware of your surroundings.Accepting that everyone is NOT your friend.Learning to read body language and not being afraid to make eye contact when needed to let someone know you are aware of their presence(People watching with her and pointing out things to look for may help).Locking doors and not blindly opening them without knowing who is on the other side.Staying away from certain parts of town and types of businesses.Knowing what time of day it is unsafe to be in certain parts of town.
Getting her comfortable with carrying pepper spray and or a whistle may be a good start as well.

Bottom line is listen to what she is telling you so you can respond in a thoughtful manner with evidence to the contrary.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
This is a good thing in my opinion. With kids, especially at that age, you really have to think your carry methods through. I wasn't able to carry due to state laws when our kids were that age. I can see where it could be a challenge with young active kids, especially lugging around a diaper bag and two kids. Her concern with safety is a good thing. Getting used to shooting would be the first step. Until she's comfortable with that, she probably won't be comfortable with the idea of carrying, at least I wasn't.
You are absolutely right, safety is THE most important thing, I don't want to make it sound like I don't like that. It just feels like my wife doesn't think it can be done safely. I think you are right, she has to shoot before she will be ready to carry.
 
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My wife was originally against gun ownership because of some bad childhood experiences. My chilhoood was the opposite. When I finally woke up and began to carry she was concerned about our children's safety. I explained to her how my semiautomatic pistol and ammunition worked. This was done in phases when she was ready to listen. Once she got comfortable with the safety aspects, the rest followed. I originally asked that she be abe to defend the kids at home at night if I were not present or able. She agreed that was important and she bought her first firearm. I didn't say anything about price or her choice though I had plenty of thoughts on both. We went to the range a few times and she began to get comfortable. Once she was able to observe and perform gun safety her apprehension decreased considerably.

Next we discussed various unsafe happenings locally and across the nation. She began to consider the need to carry, but was still concerned about her ability to do it safely with the children. I suggested that she take a gun safety course with a third party. She finally did. Having someone else praising her ability raised her confidence and another positive role model helped to re-enforce what I had been telling her.

Then we had conversations about how a firearm was just a defensive tool, like pepper spray or a stungun which she already carried. We talked about how other things in the home are dangerous and potentially lethal, but they were still present because we understood the risks and took the necessary precautions and firearms were no different. Things like cleaning chemicals, knives, scissors, beauty products, fertilizer, plant food, heavy things on shelves, etc. We both needed to be aware and help each other maintain a safe environment.

Because my children were older I was able of teach them firearms safety and they became part of the safety team as well. I taught about the parts of the firearm and ammunition. I let them hold the parts, help field strip and reassemble it without ammunition of course. I test them periodically to see how they respond and we talk about how to improve. Now they view the firearms as another potentially dangerous item in the home and they respond accordingly. This helped my wife to become even more comfortable.

The final thing that caused her to actually take the CFL class was the realization that her best chance to protect her children was to actively carry. You can not force her awaking. All you can do is help guide her at her speed.
 

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Take her to a bad/ghetto/drug infested neighborhood and say you left your gun at home.
 
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My wife was raised in a gun home, her dad was a LEO. So she can shoot but was NOT GOING TO CARRY... That changed, and SHE decided to get her CHL and carry her gun. Also since we both wear hearing aids I added door chimes and alarms, so she sets them every night. We have couple of house guns in safe but convenient locations in the house.
Some other suggestions.... show her the home defense stories like those found in the American Riflemen.
Subtlety keep her aware of local news, home invasions, parking lot assaults etc.
Educate her on being aware of her surroundings especially when she is out and about to and from work or shopping! In parking lots, garages and shopping centers.
Get a 22LR like a Browning or Ruger and get here to plink with it, indoor if possible... all for the fun of it.
Get others close to her involved, my kids all shoot and even the grandkids. I have introduced a few others as well!
Don't push, urge and educate.
 

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I'm not a lady but it was simple in my case. I took my wife shooting. She had never
shot a gun until she met me. Now, she is a proud CCW permit holder and she loves
shooting her LCR and my handguns too, especially my 1911s and Taurus 66. Show
her how the basics, start her out on small calibers with low recoil if she is recoil shy
and be patient. Good luck with your quest!
 

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I'll echo that you can NOT push them into it. We just had our 32nd Anniversary; 2 years ago, my wife suddenly became a gun nut, all on her own. She encouraged me when I was looking at my PT1911 and shortly there after dropped the bombshell that she "wanted a 9mm". When I asked if she even knew what she was asking, she gave me "that look" and said she'd been researching on Google.

I'm no dummy - I bought her a 9mm pistol. Now she wants a .45 too. Preferably a "Sig". I'm thinking a matched pair of RIA 3-1/2" bbl compact 1911's for carry. BTW - the first 30 years? No interest in guns at all, whereas I'd been born with a gun in my hand. Ya just gotta love 'em either way!
 

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My wife is very anti gun. The first time I showed her a gun, just the sight of it made her throw up. The liberal anti gun influence is driven by guilt. To people that have never been around guns or ever thought about guns the anti gun "logic" makes sense. It took nearly twenty years to even get her to touch a gun. Since then she has asked a few questions now and then, and she even took a handgun safety course a couple of years ago. She does ask me to leave a gun with her when I'm out of town, though it's always exactly where I left it when I get home. So in 22 years she has gone from deathly afraid of guns to barely tolerant of them. I shoot every week. In the beginning she was continually applying the libtard logic that goes with gun control. I have never argued with her but instead simply applied logic in the form of questions to her statements and when possible corroboration from data and articles, etc. I have consistently shown her the proper way to handle firearms safely and with respect. I started carrying before I even knew my wife. At first that made her uncomfortable but now when we are going out she will often ask if I'm carrying. When I ask why she wants to know, at first she wouldn't say. That too has changed and now she says it's because some places in town are a bit dangerous at night. We've made progress, but it's been slow progress. She is never going to be a shooter or like firearms. But, she respects me and my right to own guns and shoot them. I have always respected her right to not be involved with firearms. I never push it on her, but I do occasionally ask if she'd like to come shooting with me. It's not that I ever expect that she will say yes, but I do it so that she will know that she is welcome to go with me if she chooses. It has been a long slow uphill process to convince her that the problem is people not guns. The fact that crime rates have dropped as concealed carry has increased has probably done more to loosen her up on that concept than anything else. Also the fact that other women she knows have gotten on board with concealed carry has open new avenues for a different perspective too. I guess what I'm saying is some people will never be shooters or willingly shoot a gun. That's OK. It's their right to choose. And, after all isn't the reason we have guns in part, to protect that right?
 

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She may accept hobby shooting by you and you may get her to try shooting.
But until she sees or feels a need, her feeling comfortable with carrying is probably not going to happen.

Example, my neighbor is an avid hiker, he goes on group hikes in the mountains. He has a CHL.
When hiking he carries his .44 mag and keeps it in his backpack because there were a few folks who were scared of guns.
They knew he and another hiker carried guns in their packs. But some didn't like it.

While hiking they came across some fresh bear tracks and steaming scat. Talk about fear.
He says "I have my pistol in my pack, if a bear attacks, the bear would be on us before I can get it."
Well guess what... the most antigun woman of the group insisted "From now on please wear it and keep it loaded."
Now it is not an issue.
 

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Sorry for drifting off subject, but this just made me realize something else I took for granted in my life.
My wife's father taught her to shoot at an early age. We started shooting together as soon as we got married over 25 years ago. We still shoot together today. She consistently out shoots me. Then again, so does my son and daughter lol. I never said I was good, I just enjoy it lol. I am a lucky man. One less thing I will take for granted now for sure.
On subject, I really have nothing to offer you advise wise that hasn't already been said. Just don't push her too hard.
Rick
 
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