View Full Version : Wife is not into guns - advice please!

Al Thompson
September 26, 2000, 05:46 AM
This is from a member who asked me the question on another thread. Many of you have far more experiance than I. Thoughts?

I was hoping you could give me some advice. My wife has only a passing interest in firearms. She is 100% in support of the 2nd amendment and will argue anyone down when it comes to gun rights (incluing her ulta-liberal mother..I'm so proud). She isn't afraid to hold or be around guns, but getting her to actualy fire one is like pulling teeth. I dont want her to do something she is afraid of or dosnt want to do to avoid any negative impresions of guns. She is very farmiliar with how to operate all of the guns I own. She know the proper grips/stances and how to make them function. However, her live fire experiance is limited to a few hundred rounds of .22 from a revolver and a magazine or 2 in my Sigma .40 and Glock 10mm. Out of the few round she did fire, they were all very accurate and quite controled...even with full powered 10mm defence ammo. When I'm sitting around cleanig my guns or something I'll sneak in a few dry fire leasons on sight picture, presentation, grip, etc..so I wasnt too suprised that she could hit well (given the eqivilent of 10-12 NRA basic pistol classes taken in our living room..lol). She comented that the recoil was way less than she imagined and not at all uncomfortable..but you could tell she just want having fun. I'm confident that in a bad situation she would know when to deploy a gun and how to use it effetively. Please note..she dosn't carry. But I keep a loaded gun in the car and of cource in the house. What I want to know, is how can I work around her timid nature towards guns? A really good set of earmuffs helped, but I found out that its not the noise or recoil that scares her. Its the gun itself that is intimidating. Some have suggested getting her a smaller, prettier, pocket style gun. To me this is like learning to eat for the first time with chop-sticks. I think a small gun, while less intimidating to look at, would be more so when it came to live fire.
I apreciate any advice you guys can give. I think it may just be a matter of time though. I tought my friends GF (who had never fired a gun and thought they should all be banned..period) how to shoot last weekend. She is quite proficant with my Carbon-15 and Glock pistols (her fav's) and hooked for life now. Her and my wife are good friends, and I think the estrogen challenge will soon end her timidness.

George Hill
September 26, 2000, 09:39 AM
The approach I took when I was in the same situation was to go about it from the SHARING direction...
Tell her "Sweetheart, I love going to the range and it would mean a lot to me if you would share something I enjoy with me..."
You may have to give a little on your part as a trade... Like reading a Catherine Cookson book or watching "Bridges of Madison County"... but look at it this way = At least Clint Eastwood is in it and you can imagine him going UNFORGIVEN at any moment.

Blue Heeler
September 26, 2000, 07:08 PM
My wife doesn't care much about guns either.She doesn't bother me about my hobby and I don't try to get her interested--I think I would hate it if she wanted to go shooting with me.Just think yourself lucky that she's not too keen and enjoy your free time with your mates.Don't encourage her to come to the pub either.

George Hill
September 26, 2000, 09:27 PM
DISCLAMER: I HAVE NEVER read any Catherin Cookson books or have had to sit through a blindingly boring CHICK FLICK.
I still wear the pants...

September 27, 2000, 08:05 AM
Right George.........of course you do. ;)

"Lead, follow or get the HELL out of the way."

September 27, 2000, 12:45 PM
I told my Girlfriend that I would be more comfortable if she practiced once in awhile so now she goes with me about once a month. Unfortunately, I shot extremely well the first two times we went and she says she doesnt need a gun since I can shoot so well. Of course she seems to miss all the times when I suck.

Shop Smart! Shop S-Mart**** That's right I'm a gear whore and proud of it***

September 27, 2000, 02:18 PM
As I'm sure everybody knows, you can't "make" her like guns and shooting. Since it certainly seems to me like the Mrs. has a good attitude, possibly you could stress to her that part of the responsibility of firearms ownership is proficiency, in addition to safety. If she appreciates the availability of a firearm for self-defense, she should appreciate the need for periodic live-fire practice just to keep up her skill level.

This is the approach I took with my wife. Her passing interest in shooting has slowly increased to the point where on occasion she will ask me to take her shooting, and appreciates the need to maintain a baseline level of proficiency.

I can only hope that by her getting more live fire experience, and by trying to make each shooting experience as enjoyable as possible for her, she will want to do more. So far, so good. But it has been a long, slow process.

September 28, 2000, 05:45 PM
I just got a gun for my wife. It's the best trade I ever made. <BSEG>

George Hill
September 29, 2000, 03:28 PM
I just talked to my wife... I asked her If I still wore the pants in this house...
She said "Sure you do, George. Sure you do."


oh, wait a sec...

duck hunt
September 29, 2000, 10:03 PM
Speaking as a chick, let me tell you what worked in my house.

I'll admit I don't love going to the range. Gizmo, I think I am a lot like your wife. I love to argue, I love "converting" anyone I can to RKBA, and it doesn't bother me that my house is starting to look like the National Armory. But, going to the range just is not my favorite pasttime. Sorry! There are just other places I'd rather be (though I know that's hard for you guys to understand)....flea markets...bookstores...county fairs...but I digress...

Anyway, the way myenterprising sweetie gets me to the range is by basically making a date of it. We schedule it for a Sunday afternoon. We go to brunch first. He doesn't make me stay all day (he understands that, with my short attention span, overkill is a sure way to make me hate something). Many times he's let me bring a first-timer friend and picked up the tab for them, which always makes it fun. I like to have company, and they always help reload magazines... :)

If that doesn't work, try the honesty angle, which has also worked on me: "Honey, you need to know how to load and fire all of my weapons, and you need to be confident doing it, just in case you're home alone and a BG gets between you and yourgun." That made me think...


September 30, 2000, 12:30 AM
Honesty? That'll never work. ;)

George Hill
September 30, 2000, 01:29 AM
Then your just hosed man... Find a Girlfriend.


Al Thompson
September 30, 2000, 05:37 AM
Ms. DH, actually my wife enjoys guns (has three of her own) and drives an hour north to shoot with her brother about once a month.

The guy who asked that question did so at the end of another thread.

(for the question "why does the wife shoot elsewhere" - divorce is final in three weeks :) )


duck hunt
September 30, 2000, 11:14 AM
Oops, sorry, Giz. I see now.

It wasn't in bold so I didn't recognize it as a quote.


Al Thompson
September 30, 2000, 02:19 PM
My fault - BTW, love your pic!


October 6, 2000, 08:22 PM
I have a spouse with similar views. I am an Army officer, and shooting/Close Quarters Combat instructor (www.tacticalshooting.com I apolologize in advance for the plug) My wife is a staunch supporter of the 2nd amendment, and was an avid IPSC competitor until the birth of our son. She regularly accompanies me when we take our son shooting and hunting. However, she is not yet mentally ready to carry concealed and does not feel that the crime rate in our area of the world warrants her being armed all the time. So.... I don't push it. When she is ready then we will proceed. Going around in society armed and willing to take another person's life in self defense is a tremendously weighty decision and one that should not be coerced on anyone. When we do go shooting together, or even when we train together I try to make it a special occasion. However, be advised that family members may not regard you as an instructor or source of expertise. This is a somewhat difficult postition for a family member to be in, the other family members see you as dad/mom/brother/sister; NOT as an expert in a given field, although your qualifications and experience clearly make you an expert; you are just dad/wife/spouse and your family sees you in that regard. Therefore, I often sign up my wife for classes with other premier instructors and sit back. The family member then has an easier time learning and practicing. Sometimes this is tough to take, but seems to work.