Want to bring a friend to the range, but his Mom won't let him. Any advice for me?


May 12, 2004, 04:24 PM
I keep asking my friend if he wants to go to the range. He says yes, he would like to go very much. (especially when I get my SAR-1/WASR-10 ;) )

The problem is his mother(he's 14, I'm 15) won't let him go. I said, "Ok, maybe next time." And she says, "No, never." I said, "May I ask why not?" And she says, "Because I don't like guns."

He's my best friend and I'd really want to share my hobby with him. She also knows that this is my hobby. She insisted that we go paintballing, but that's not my hobby, shooting is. Neither of us are bad kids, so there is little chance of us doing bad things. We're both pretty good students and can be trusted.

What should I do? I don't mind leaving her and the subject alone, but shooting is my life and my only hobby (other than computers and video games, but my friend also knows plenty of that). If I should talk with her more about it, how should I go about doing it? It really upsets me that she doesn't want her son to learn to shoot just because she hates them herself.

Please help!:uhoh: :confused: :( :cuss:

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May 12, 2004, 04:26 PM
Invite the Mom too!

May 12, 2004, 04:27 PM


May 12, 2004, 04:28 PM
I'd just leave it alone... but whenver she asks what you've been up to it sure wouldn't hurt to drop in as many references to shooting as possible. Hey, she asked! "Not much, went to range Saturday and put a few hundred rounds down. No holes in me, no holes in anybody else, pretty good day."

It seems to work.

May 12, 2004, 04:31 PM
Leave it alone.

Considering your ages I think the mom has every right to decide and dictate what her minor son does and does not do.

Personally, the range I use won't let people your ages in/on without direct adult supervision and for good reasons.

There is a logical reason why most states have laws regarding minimum hunting ages, minimum gun and ammo purchse age, etc.

I'm not saying you two are not mature enough to be responsible but I've seen far more less responsible, at your ages, than responsible.

Sorry if that offends you but I'm just being straight-up and honest.

Although I profess the need to educate the non-gunners there is only so much oyu can do with her.

If you push it on her she's going to resist every greater but if you two go out on your own then that is something you decide.

But, here is something to think of: It's twenty years from now and YOU now have a son that is fifteen. Would you want parental respect in being able to say what you want?.....or be in a position where the kid does something you are against?

May 12, 2004, 04:36 PM
Leave it alone. I'm a high school JROTC Instructor, deal with lots of kids, one family invited me to deer/coyote hunt on their substantial property, son is in program, was raised with guns, since I've gone hunting with him several times always with parents knowledge. Another good kid wants to go shooting sometimes,
I told him he can go when his father is there beside him. He knows where to find me. Father has not yet thought it necessary. As you get older you learn to handle the gun part of your life like politics and religion. Just because they don't see it your way does not make them an instant enemy unless they try to push their views on you nor should you push your views on them.


Henry Bowman
May 12, 2004, 04:53 PM
Does either of your parents have any relationship with his parent(s)? Why not ask, "Would you mind if my Mom/Dad talks with you about it?" And then they, too, should be very respectful of her wishes as well as reassuring of the supervision that you both would receive. This level of supervision may be much greater than it would be of you alone if you friend weren't there. That's the price you pay. If that doesn't work, leave it alone but continue to be a good friend and influence on you friend and a good example to his Mom.

May 12, 2004, 05:00 PM
Leave it alone for...at least 4 years.

Give your buddy all the data and information and let him work on her ... you working on her will probably only piss her off and harden her resolve.

May 12, 2004, 05:05 PM
Well, I could ask my Dad (who takes me to the range and would be supervising and teaching) to talk to her, but he'd probably say no becase he doesn't like getting into other people's business sometimes. I'm fine with not saying anything, but I wish she'd just let him go once to see if either of them like it.

(Anywhoo, I might just get some dry fire rounds for my AK and show him how to shoot it in my garage! :D That's not Going to the range :rolleyes: )

Zundfolge, he doesn't like to argue with his mom cause she's usually right. I don't think he'd argue on something like this anyway.

2nd Amendment
May 12, 2004, 05:11 PM
Another comment, in my view, on how things have changed. At that age we'd have never thought to ask a kid's mom if he could go shooting. We wouldn't have needed a range. Nobody cared if we packed through town enough stuff strapped to our bikes to start a small jungle war. Nobody asked our ages when we bought ammo. if there were any laws, and I'm sure there might have been, regarding ages and supervision nobody cared or bothered to enforce them.

And yet every single one of us made it home every single night without a single extra hole. This only 25 years ago. Funny how guns have gotten more dangerous, kids have gotten more stupid/violent/untrustworthy/niave/pick an excuse...

Leave it alone. It's really the only choice. Sad, sad commentary on things today, though.

May 12, 2004, 05:17 PM
I guess I might leave it alone (unless anyone can give me a reason not to).

But, I also fear for their safety. A mother and child unarmed living alone in not too dangerous a neighborhood, but there is much more gang activity over there than where I live. His friend was beat up while saving another kid from a gang assault. Knowing that my Dad packs some heat upstairs makes me feel relieved. And when he's gone on business, I feel scared, because I don't know the combination to the safe. I guess maybe that's my problem...

May 12, 2004, 05:18 PM
You're both minors, it's his Mom's call. Tough one, I know, but thems the breaks.

- Gabe

May 12, 2004, 05:32 PM
"...she's usually right..." Yep, and it doesn't matter how old you get or what you've done with your life, your ma will always see you as her baby. Until the day I found her body, mine always thought I couldn't do anything. Always made the wrong decisions and would never amount to much. Despite the Queen's Commission, owning wheels I paid for, cooking meals for her on occasion, etc, etc.
Relax. You don't live there. Your da takes you shooting and in a few years, you can take your buddy shooting too. Meantime, don't do anything that'll get either of you in do-do with his ma. Including playing with the rifle in the garage. All it takes is a nosy neighbour to call the cops after seeing two kids with a gun. She'll just say, "I told you so."

Fred Fuller
May 12, 2004, 05:46 PM
Tough one. IMHO about the only options you have are 'leave it alone' and HBowman's approach at the very outside. If none of the 'grownups' want to talk about it, then the ONLY choice you have is to leave it alone.

Sneaking around to do things his mother doesn't like him doing (which might even include dry-firing in your garage, BTW) does not demonstrate maturity and responsibility, even though it is the "teen rebelliousness" thing to do. Like it or not, you are still a minor and someone else is responsible for your actions. If you need a demonstration, try buying anything on your list (legally) by yourself. Heck, even TRYING to do that these days might be a felony, on second thought better not even try it.

I'm sorry, I really am. I wish it wasn't that way for you, it wasn't for me when I was growing up. I used to drive to high school with a shotgun hanging in the pickup's gun rack. Nobody ever even blinked.

You are so lucky to have a dad who is a shooter and is willing to share that with you, many young people today don't even have that. My last range session was with 11 college students (3 other instructors too, thankfully) and only ONE had ever actually been shooting before.

As to worrying about their safety, that's an adult responsibility as well. If your friend's mom won't take responsibility for that, then you for certain can't. It is good of you to have thought about it and be concerned about it, but there is very little you can actually do about it. Once again, if the adults won't TALK about it, you can DO very little about it.

Stay safe,


May 12, 2004, 05:58 PM
She is wrong, but she is his mom and he's a kid and that is the end of the argument.

Do NOT try to bend the rules or sneak around her restrictions - like dry-firing in the garage. That is most likely to cause trouble and entrench her attitudes even further.

The best way you can convince her that you are responsible enough to handle firearms is to be 100% responsible and abide by the rules in every other way. That may - eventually - open her eyes about gun owners and responsibility.

May 12, 2004, 06:16 PM
IMO, since he is not of legal age, his mom has the final say, ideologically right or wrong.

Well, I could ask my Dad (who takes me to the range and would be supervising and teaching) to talk to her, but he'd probably say no becase he doesn't like getting into other people's business sometimes. I'm fine with not saying anything, but I wish she'd just let him go once to see if either of them like it.

Your dad could convey to your friend's mom his concern for his safety. He could say he would like to teach your friend safe gun handling skills in the event he ever comes across one without adult supervision. It would be tragic ifhe happened upon a loaded firearm and harmed himself and/or others because he did not know the proper safe procedures that would prevent such accidents (negligence).

May 12, 2004, 06:28 PM
As long as he is still a minor and lives at home, it's a clear-cut case of "her house, her rules." Leave it alone.

When you're both 18, then it's another story. Even then she has the right to make rules if he chooses to continue living with her. I did not own a firearm - indeed never handled one - until I left home. Similar reasons.

May 12, 2004, 06:52 PM
Yeah, I know. The only thing I plan to do is let him hold the AK. I do want to teach him how to clear a gun, and even said that in front of his Mom. We'll see how this plays out, and when we're both 18, go shooting and show his mom his target scores. :evil:

May 12, 2004, 07:01 PM
Ask if he can take a hunter's safety class with you.

Better yet, ask her if she'd take the class with the two of you.

May 12, 2004, 07:28 PM
Hmmm. I dunno about leaving it alone.

I would definitely NOT go behind the mom's back, but I would absolutely go back to her, framing it by saying "I'd like to know that [insert friend's name here] is SAFE with guns. After all, I am a responsible, safe gun owner, but what if he goes to another friend's or aquantances house who is not a responsible and safe gun owner? You can't guarantee that everyne will be open about gun ownership, especially if they have the old .38 hidden in the drawer."

My .02. Good luck, it's the same argument I'm having with my wife.


May 12, 2004, 07:55 PM
While I voted to keep trying, I'm questioning my choice.

It it were me, I'd leave it alone for a while.

If there is a good time that you can have a nice calm conversation about it, then do it... but study up on tact in these kinds of conversations. THR is full of it.


Baba Louie
May 12, 2004, 08:17 PM
Drop the firearm aspect for now.

Pick up the paintball marker, practice the exact same rules even when everyone's geared up w/ safety equipment... I'll probably take some heat for that from some since I've played paintball for years until my son decided my paintball marker was his... games are a hoot, even if you have to aim at someone and pull a trigger (I KNOW!)

You can practice and shoot in the backyard right there with his mom present, showing her how safe and responsible you and friend are, invite her to join you (she just might surprise you)... politics of gun ownership covers many things. Safety and Responsible actions being first and foremost.

I know you said you're not into paintball. Is he? Meet people halfway. The world is full of compromises (except HK). Don't shut him out of a part of your life because you're too stubborn to bend. Join him in something that's darned close, fun and allowed by his parental unit.

But be safe and responsible.

Try it. You'll probably like it.

Make sure you clean up any backyard messes too. She'll love you for that and the fact that you're abiding by her wishes.

May 12, 2004, 09:02 PM
Um... No, neither of us play paintball, nor really want to.

And someone suggested taking her to the range: Not happening.
Hunting Classes: Not happening (She's a vegetarian, so killing animals she doesn't fancy)
Shooting Classes: Not happening. She doesn't want him around guns no matter f*cking what.
I can't get him to do anything with guns until I can persuade her. She's like 100% on this. Gah. I like, never see him either. I live 15 minutes away and I see him once every 2 weeks, if I'm lucky. I want to hang out with him more, and taking him to the range would really help.

Now... if I asked his DAD, however, he'd probably say yes, because I do believe that he let his son shoot a rifle on his property. Only problem is, his parents are divorced and his dad lives in FLORIDA. Gah.

Someone ELSE said to shoot in the back yard. They live in a townhouse. I live in a house that's not even 10 yards away from the next home. I don't think we could do that without freaking people out/getting arrested.

May 12, 2004, 09:24 PM
This fight is your friends, not yours. Your friend can work on his mom. Perhaps ask his mom to speak to your parents. Regardless, this is his battle to fight.

If I find anyone of my sons friends trying to get him to do something I have forbidden, there will be hell to pay in my household. You're both minors. Sorry, but you don't get to make up your own rules yet.

Doesn't mean mom is right. Doesn't mean it's fair. It does mean it's her house, her son, and her rules.

Just my $0.02.


Baba Louie
May 12, 2004, 09:45 PM
Does he have access online to places such as this? Or would he get nixed by parental unit for doing so? It's a form of communication and is firearm related. It's not called "Oleg Volk's BBS on GUNS GUNS GUNS" if anyone looks at his computer history now and then. Simply The High Road.Org, a place where politics, law(s) and current events are always discussed and held in high esteem.

When I was your age guns were good, but I'd have to say that members of the female persuasion and cars took a higher ranking... of course we didn't have the Internet as Al Gore hadn't invented it yet and I had access to all the firearms I wanted and all of my friends were allowed to go shooting with my Dad and I whenever we wanted because their FATHERS went with us. Whazzup with his Dad? Is that a path of remote possibility?

If not, it's tough noogies it looks like. Stick with girls and cars (oh... and school) and maybe his Mom will be a happy camper. She sounds like a bit of a hoplophobic control freak to me, but some Mom's are like that (and sometimes its necessary and good). Think of it as good practice for dealing with anti's in the future. Keep it logical and always take THR. Even if that means changing the subject matter when ya gotta deflect authoritarian heat.

May 12, 2004, 09:45 PM
Boys have a habbit of becoming men, weather mothers like it or not. Let it be. If you two are true friends, he'll be around down the road. Then again friends, will come and go out of your life, and you might make another who can go shooting with ya.

May 12, 2004, 09:57 PM
That's a tough one. but unfotunatly i am going to have to cast my vote on the leave it alone side for now. and it is due to your age. i know it sucks, but i just recently exited that age restriction boat myself. and know exaclty what it is like. I had a safe full of rifles and shotguns yet when i would go to the gun store some places wouldn't even let me touch a handgun. yet i had my 870 at home that i could throw a slug in and do a whole hell of a lot more damage than the 9mm Sig that i wanted to fondle.

I am having the same problem with my girlfriends mom. My girlfriend can go with me no problem. I am 21 and she is 19. But i want to take her little sister who just turned 16 but that is a no according to her mom. it was too the point where i was just going to take her eventhough her mom said no. On the account of her "I don't like guns" rhetoric. But i invited the mom to come along and she agreed. now if i can just get some time off work to get them out there.

May 12, 2004, 10:22 PM
Best let it alone. It is one's duty to honor their parents so you would not want to interfere with that duty. You don't want to sabotage the growth and learning on both sides of the relationship.

With an attitude like that chances are very high this is not their last conflict and she must grow a great deal as a person. The time will come when she's old and decrepit and he will be tempted to interfere with her life "for her own good". Perhaps the memory of how much this chafed will teach him to be kind and considerate and not a tyrant to her when she is old and weak and senile. Perhaps he will do for her one day as he wishes she had done for him.

May 12, 2004, 10:58 PM
he'd probably say no becase he doesn't like getting into other people's business Smart man. Good policy

It's her son and she has the right to raise him as she sees fit,
Put yourself in her position, How would you like it if somone tried to influence your family in a way that you disaproved of.
At least she's wiiling to let him do paintball so she's not trying to make him a total Lib.
However it should be noted that several noted pro- gun people disapprove of paintball because it teaches you to point a gun and pull the trigger on a human being. In other words it's politically incorrect

May 13, 2004, 01:43 AM
Like books. You do own books about firearms and shooting, right? I think In The Gravest Extreme by Ayoob is one every gun owner (or future gun owner) should have. Get him a membership to JPFO. And have him come to THR.

When he turns 18, he'll be able to make his own decision about going to the range, hopefully (assuming Mom doesn't pull a "Not while living under MY roof!" routine.) You've planted the seed of desire in him. Now all you can do is water and nurture that seed, and a book-and the ideas contained within-is a far more powerful weapon than any gun.

And you might want to read those books yourself, so you can discuss and debate those ideas with him.

May 13, 2004, 03:54 AM
You should mostly leave it alone. Don't pester her or not only will she never say "yes" to him going to the range, but she may start to get generally annoyed with you. If you must try again, wait 4 or 5 months (minimum), bring up safety training (you were going to do some of that, right?) to alleviate a likely concern and when she says "no" again, drop it. At best, at that point you can have your father issue the invite (and maybe make it an invite for both of them).

Oh, and one more thing....
What should I do? I don't mind leaving her and the subject alone, but shooting is my life and my only hobby
Do yourself a favor and do something about that. Shooting is a wonderful hobby, a ton of fun, and one of the few hobbies and pastimes that might actually save your life someday. However, there are many other wonderful things in life as well. Make yourself more interesting, give yourself more things to talk about and more things to do with others- find a few other hobbies to add to shooting and computers.

May 13, 2004, 04:37 AM
Shooting is a wonderful hobby, a ton of fun, and one of the few hobbies and pastimes that might actually save your life someday. However, there are many other wonderful things in life as well. Make yourself more interesting, give yourself more things to talk about and more things to do with others- find a few other hobbies to add to shooting and computers.

Teach yourself to play the guitar, chicks dig that!:D

May 13, 2004, 05:43 AM
The only thing I plan to do is let him hold the AK.


Flat, no qualifications, no leeway or room for discussion, no.

There is nothing wrong with legal gun ownership.

There is nothing wrong with shooting.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with sharing a pastime with friends.

There is EVERYTHING wrong with going behind a parent's back--no matter if you agree with them or not.

Let me put it to you this way--if it were my son, and I found that you let him handle a firearm without my express permission, I would make sure that he never set foot in your house again.

I would also do everything in my power to ensure that YOU lost the use of your rifle, at least until you were 18.

It has been said before, and I'll say it again: Under NO circumstances try to circumvent the mother's wishes.

Sorry if it's a bit harsh, but that's the way it is.

May 13, 2004, 08:28 AM
Mom rules. Your life should consist of more than guns and your friendship with him should be based on other things too.

May 13, 2004, 09:40 AM
I really wish I'd had advice like this when I was Roc_Kor's age.

Roc, I hate to say it but everyone here has the right of it. Moms have a terrible thing about the spirit of her law being even more important than the letter of it - and handing your pal an AK in the garage is going so hard against the spirit of it that the letter won't matter an iota.

Look at it this way - as a 15-year-old ambassador for responsible gun owners of all ages, you've got a prime chance to show her how responsible, mature and intelligent you are.

Also, as much as it may stink (sure did when I was 15, I'm not so far o'er the hill that I can't remember it), her house - her kid - her rules. Believe me I know - it's a major pain.

I say leave it alone. The more you push things, with a certain type of person (and she sure sounds like the type), the more the inputs to their brain squeeze shut, until finally all she has to do is hear the sound of your voice to have a "no!" forming on her lips.

Heck, try paintballing. It's good exercise, good fun, great for the hand-eye co-ordination and situational awareness. The ammo's cheap, the markers tend to be cheaper than firearms and, as stated, having more than one hobby's good for you.

Hope it all works out, chap.

May 13, 2004, 11:20 AM
Not much else you can do right now. "Mom" is in charge. Her home, her sandbox, her rules.

Now, if someone could arrange a meeting for "Mom" with THR members Pax & Tamara......:D :D

May 13, 2004, 12:12 PM
Man, I think you came to the wrong forum for advice on this situation! Listen, most people on here are going to try to convince you to drop it, and do as you're told. Setting you up to be a good, law abiding, order-taking American when you grow up. Unfortunately, most of the people on this board, whether they admit it or not, know that they are going to hand their guns over to mom, big brother, uncle sam, or whomever, when they're told to... and they think that you should, too. I say you're old enough to know when it's time to take a stand. The very fact that you even thought about asking this question shows that you are ready to make your own decisions. You need to figure this one out for yourself, keeping in mind that while mom may be right, blind allegiance to authority is never a good idea. In the end, you must do what *you* feel is right.

2nd Amendment
May 13, 2004, 12:42 PM
Heh, well the above is sure to get Flamed...due to its brutal honesty. :)


May 13, 2004, 12:47 PM
Time will fix this problem ....

May 13, 2004, 12:50 PM
In the end, you must do what *you* feel is right.

Well, that much is true.

Not sure about the rest of it... I don't see a lot of people saying "Gosh, well young man, you'll have to do this or the Authorities will Have Something to Say About It", more to do with getting along in a social situation.

Sure, the "Bull in a China Shop" option's always there. I'm just not convinced that this is the right option at this point. Yeah, Roc could drag his friend to the range, and Just Not Tell Mom. It's an option that's available. I'm not convinced that it's the right one.

Then again - not my kids, eh?

May 13, 2004, 01:04 PM
Ask her if she would like to come to the range and bring her son with her. i.e. Ask her if she would like to take her son shooting.

Don't push it. Let her come around of her own volition. If she has her mind made up, regardless of all facts to the contrary, she will never change.

May 13, 2004, 01:07 PM
You need to figure this one out for yourself, keeping in mind that while mom may be right, blind allegiance to authority is never a good idea.

Blindly doing what your government asks is not the same thing as respecting your parents. Some level of obedience is the price you pay for your parents raising you, which is not that cheap (financially or emotionally).

In the end, you must do what *you* feel is right.

Great advice, you should always do what ever "feels" good.

May 13, 2004, 01:28 PM

As an interesting exercise I'd suggest you archive that post and look at it in 10 years.

May 13, 2004, 01:50 PM
Zundfolge, he doesn't like to argue with his mom cause she's usually right.

It's good to hear some teenagers realize that their parents are usually right.

In this case, it's not so much a matter of right and wrong. She has the right to dictate that her son doesn't go shooting with you.

My suggestion is to go shoot paintballs with your friend. :)

You can't have the fun you prefer, but you can still have lots of fun.

May 13, 2004, 02:14 PM
The range I frequent won't let me bring in a guest unless they're at least 18 and even then, I'm responsible for them.

I think the mom may be wondering whose going to be responsible if something (knock on wood) bad happens and someone gets hurt.

May 13, 2004, 02:37 PM
I am not familiar with the laws in your state but I would advise against letting him handle out in the garage. If his mom is rabidly anti and she found out She could notify the police. In some states your father could be in serious trouble for not keeping the guns unaccessible to children.It is not worth possibly getting your shooting pardner in trouble!
Hang in there, if Dad is willing have him ask to take him and extend the invite to Mom.If you ask do so politely, no pressure or she may try to keep you two apart. Let him read gun related material if he's inclined. Maybe she will peak at these and see most of us aren't bad.
Good Luck

May 13, 2004, 04:17 PM
True. I won't let him hold it. I'll just tell him, "Your Mom won't like it," if he asks to see it. I won't do anything against his mother's wishes. I don't want to play paintball, though, it doesn't interest me. I also don't, like one of you said, point the gun at a human and pull the trigger. I don't want that kind of habit.

May 13, 2004, 07:39 PM
Blackrazor, I can only assume that you've spoken with all the righteous indignation and immaturity you could muster.

If you're going to suggest someone take a stand, I first suggest they be in a position to do so on their own two feet. Unless, of course, you're volunteering to raise someone else's children.


May 13, 2004, 07:52 PM
In the end, you must do what *you* feel is right. I would edit that to add "and be man enough to accept the consequenses"
That's the difference between an adult and a catterwalling instigator with more mouth than sense.

The only code that I consistantly try to live by is to ask myself how would I feel if somebody did that to me, not just what's in it for me, and then act accordingly. It has saved me alot of regret in the past

May 13, 2004, 08:11 PM
I agree with Powderman 110%.

With that said, if one of my kids friends (or parents) started questioning my decision regarding my child I would no be a happy camper so I say leave it alone with the firearms.

I know you said no paint ball (can't blame you), but what about BB guns? Nothing fancy, just a cheap $40 daisy or something. After a bit of that she may change her mind; that was the trick I used to get my wife to let me take my kids to the range.

May 13, 2004, 08:31 PM
As long as he lives at home his parents make the rules and he is supposed to follow them.

When I was a kid I was absolutely not allowed to shoot on my own. I was allowed to shoot in the yard when my parents were home but I was never allowed to leave the yard with a gun and was not to touch a gun unless I had their permission. When I got older my best friend was allowed to shoot whenever and wherever he wanted to. My parents told me that when he was shooting, I was not to go with him.

I shot pretty much every day from the time I was nine years old with my own guns, and friends guns. I fired 10s of thousands of rounds of ammunition behind my parents back.
Should your friend follow my example ? No, on a certain level it was wrong of me to do it. Would I think any less of your friend if he did follow my example ? Not for a second.

May 13, 2004, 08:49 PM
Well, I will sparingly talk to her, but in the meantime, you have no reason to worry about me sneaking anything behind her back.

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