How does one engage a target without exposing ones self to the target?
I am going to have to take exception to all posters who envision staying in a bedroom at the top of the stairs is advantageous to confronting the bg on the stairway.
That is NOT a good decision, . . . in fact, . . . it is a very poor one
1) your entire family is in the master bedroom. the door is locked, you are "ready to go"(locked and loaded, etc, etc).....not even touching issue whether you decide to give a verbal warning or not, you know your home has been invaded by BadGuy(s) - if the door is breached the BG is toast. You have an obligation to defend your family...if it comes to that, it is obvious this BG had a bad day coming or was way out of line(for a numerous of reasons).
2) same scenario......you are basically evening up the odds Heavily if you are at the top of the stairway. You are exposed partially or part of the time(just one peak can be the last moment of your life)....you are guessing as the BG would've been if you were in the safe room. I know if I was a BG, you are an obstacle at the top of the stairs. I can think of many ways to overcome that obstacle. maybe you'll get lucky and I'll just leave. even if you have the top of the stairway in your sights from a better standpoint down the hallway(though I want to stress it seems many posters are advocating actually situating themselves upon the top of the stairs), you put yourself in a position of having to be at fire ready without a seconds lapse of concentration but even moreso would have to basically shoot immediately upon seeing any target(in my opinion).
bottom line: do NOT do the stairway scenario. you open a can of worms I haven't even mentioned...even if the can of worms is avoided, your odds are greatly diminished compared to safe room scenario. You are not hiding or being a coward in the safe room. You are setup for success if any idiot tries to break that threshold and you aren't exposed.
all the best,