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Old June 29, 2013, 09:28 AM   #1
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Loaded gun within reach of bed. Bad idea?

I've always resisted keeping my gun loaded and within reach of my bed. Why? Well, I've been known to have very vivid dreams, sometimes involving imminent threats. I'd hate to reach for my gun when I'm half asleep, not fully certain of what's real and what's imaginary.

So, I've always told myself that I need to be awake and cognizant enough to walk a few steps, insert a magazine and work the action, or be able to work the touch keypad on my pistol safe. I figure if I can do either of these, I'm alert enough to make good decisions. Obviously, this isn't as fast as keeping it on a nightstand, but it seems safer to me.

How do others deal with this issue? Thoughts? Comments?
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Old June 29, 2013, 09:56 AM   #2
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I dont eat pizza before going to bed. I keep a loaded FNX-45 under my pillow. I sleep very well knowing its there. It does make quite a lump though...
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Old June 29, 2013, 10:03 AM   #3
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If you have to get out of bed to get it what good is it? If its not loaded when you get to it what good is it? I keep a loaded 1911 cocked and locked within reach plus a loaded and chambered pump shotgun.
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Old June 29, 2013, 10:38 AM   #4
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I have two furry burglar alarms, Max and Bandit. If they didn't wake me up then it isn't real. Seriously, I don't suffer from vivid dreams but I couldn't sleep well at night without my little "Guard Terriers". As long as they are on duty I will never be "surprised" by an intruder.
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Old June 29, 2013, 10:45 AM   #5
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My wife keeps her 92fs on her night table and I keep my Glock 22 on mine. Both are loaded and ready to go if needed. In all the years theyve been there neither of us has ever reached for them in a dream panic. I too suffer from extremely vivid dreams like yours involving imminent threats. My wife wakes me regularly because I'm shouting or moving around.

However if you find yourself waking regularly and reaching or looking for your gun due to a dream you had maybe you shouldn't keep it within reach. I would think that if the behaviour was possible, you would already have done it regardless of where you keep the firearm.
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Old June 29, 2013, 10:52 AM   #6
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I think you've made a wise decision. Most intruders are discovered long before they get into your bedroom. I think having it in the same room with a loaded mag next to the gun is sufficient. Really, how long does it take to insert a magazine? I teach firearm home safety and I support what you're doing. People have been known to do some bizzare things in their sleep and the extra 30 seconds needed to retrieve the gun may be a good decision. Others may disagree but you know your own circumstances best and you're better off following your gut instinct.
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Old June 29, 2013, 12:14 PM   #7
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I too have a 4 legged burglar alarm, very protective.

I keep my Sig next to my bed.
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Old June 29, 2013, 12:19 PM   #8
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I believe it is up to the individual and there perticuler circumstance. For example I have three children in the house who like to come in my bedroom at night. Due to this reason my 92fs is locked in a safe next to the bed and the loaded mag is sitting on the top shelf of my closet which is also right next to the bed. Not ideal but I also have 2 German shepherds that will buy me some time.
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Old June 29, 2013, 05:43 PM   #9
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One way for one may not be the way for someone else. Good point and I've thought about this for some people. Mine is beside me when I sleep.
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Old June 29, 2013, 05:53 PM   #10
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Nightstand gun and German Shorthaired Pointer. Both within reach.
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Old June 29, 2013, 07:07 PM   #11
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Always have the Glock 19 with a TLR-1s next to my bed on the nightstand with several mags.
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Old June 29, 2013, 07:33 PM   #12
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If someone took Ambien or other "vivid dreams" substances, (or psychedelics) I would hope they kept all of their weapons well secured elsewhere and not at bed side. Otherwise it's not a bad idea IMHO.
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Old June 29, 2013, 08:02 PM   #13
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My early warning system sleeps at the foot of my bed. And a 45 ACP sits by my alarm clock on the night stand, snap cap in the chamber and full mag in the gun.


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Old June 29, 2013, 10:33 PM   #14
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I have an acquaintance that told me about an incident that happened to him that changed his mind about keeping a loaded firearm next to him while he was sleeping.

It was early in the morning and apparently he was having a dream about someone breaking into his home. In the dream his wife was yelling at him that they were trying to get into the bedroom through the locked door. In his dream he reached over and grabbed his 1911 and aimed it head high at the door and fired. A loud noise woke him up and much to his surprise there was a hole in his door right where he was aiming in his dream and a 1911 in his hand. He said it really scared him but he was lucky since his wife had already left for work and he was the only one in the house.

He sold the 1911 and keeps an AR15 close but not close enough that he can reach it from bed.

I on the other hand keep two handguns close to me while I sleep since I have had two attempted break-ins in the last 1 1/2.
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Old June 29, 2013, 11:09 PM   #15
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I'm with the OP ... what is the point of preaching the 4 rules and firearm safety if one is going to let paranoia trump safe practice at night. Some, such as me, have to be concerned. Back in the day what a serial rapist was traveling through the community I kept a loaded revolver on the night stand. That is until one morning I woke up to find it cocked. No memory of this happening. Right then and there I sided with the OP ... I must get up and open a drawer a few steps away to get a loaded gun. I also adopted the dog alarm system to assist me in waking up.

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Old June 30, 2013, 12:28 AM   #16
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Re: Loaded gun within reach of bed. Bad idea?

Originally Posted by Pilot View Post
Nightstand gun and German Shorthaired Pointer. Both within reach.
I'm the exact same way (including dog breed), but my handgun is loaded and locked in a quick access safe. If I have to get up to get to a firearm, it means that I am going for my AR or 12 ga - both of which stay loaded close by.

She's a sweetheart, but she does not like strangers creeping around the house.

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Old June 30, 2013, 01:22 AM   #17
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In answer to your question, I wouldn't have it any other way.

If you're worried because of your dreams, I suggest you have a talk with your doctor.
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Old June 30, 2013, 01:24 AM   #18
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Loaded gun within reach of bed. Bad idea?

I have a S&W FS M&P .40 caliber with manual safety.
I sleep with it under my pillow with 15+1!
I also have a Ruger P95 9mm with decock/safety that is under the same pillow also with 15+1.
It does make for a lumpy pillow but I don't mind.
So far, I'm still here.... For now.

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Old June 30, 2013, 02:13 AM   #19
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I feel like a loaded gun under the pillow is ALWAYS a bad idea. It would break the rule that you never let the muzzle cover anything you don't want to destroy. I guarantee your head moves in front of it at some point during the night.

Loaded gun by the bed, that's an individual decision. I'm an incredibly light sleeper. Even if I'm dead exhausted, if I'm woken up to someone answering me a question, I'm answering that question as soon as they're done talking. I just "boot up" quickly. Others don't.
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Old June 30, 2013, 05:41 AM   #20
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I too have a furry sentry, LSD (little [color=#FF0000]█[/color][color=#FF0000]█[/color][color=#FF0000]█[/color][color=#FF0000]█[/color][color=#FF0000]█[/color] dog) as my son calls her. I keep a loaded Sig P220 in a clam-shell type metal case with a combo lock right under the bed. The case came with a cable which is looped around the frame. The case is unlocked while Im home, locked when I leave. Simple matter of reaching under the bed to retrieve the firearm if necessary.
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Old June 30, 2013, 07:38 AM   #21
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Right next to my head. But I didn't start that practice until the children were gone. And I put it away when the grands come to visit. No dogs and we live in a semi-rural area. No protection except what I can provide.
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Old June 30, 2013, 08:33 AM   #22
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Not always a bad idea!

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Old June 30, 2013, 09:40 AM   #23
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Mine is on my nightstand cocked and locked, as always. I put it in my Desantis pocket holster at night and lock my bedroom door.
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Old June 30, 2013, 10:13 AM   #24
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Old June 30, 2013, 11:06 AM   #25
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Loaded gun within reach of bed. Bad idea?

+1 on Dakota.
I would Never sleep with loaded gun under pillow, but that's just me. I once heard of a guy that accidentally shot himself in head. I think he lived, but that cured me of even thinking of it. I wouldn't like the comfort of something hard under my pillow either. The nightstand or next to bed is certain though.
I've heard of people driving cars asleep on ambiean ect. Shouldn't be a problem handling a gun, but I wouldn't recommend it.
I'm a light sleeper, alarm sustem,two big dogs outside with attitude and the meanest, loudest bad tempered one inside. This cute little guy has drawn more blood from me than all the dogs I've had combined.

Last edited by Garycw; June 30, 2013 at 04:16 PM.
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