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Is there such a thing as too early?

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by DeadLiver, Sep 14, 2009.

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  1. DeadLiver

    DeadLiver Member

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    I have two daughters, one is 8 months old and the other turned 2 a few weeks ago. My older daughter usually watches me as I get dressed and go out. She sees me holstering my carry gun before I leave and has taken to pointing at it and saying "Daddy's gun, pretty!" Pretty being her adjective for just about everything that she likes. A couple of days ago, she did the same thing and then said "Daddy, hold it please?" I wasn't going anywhere important, and decided to indulge her curiosity.

    I unloaded the gun explaining to her what I was doing and why, then let her touch and hold it with my "help". As we were holding the gun I told her about how to keep the gun pointed in a safe direction, not allowing her to look down the bore. She was intrigued with all the moving parts, and was very happy to try to manipulate the safety and hammer. She giggled when I showed her how the slide moves, and where the (empty) magazine goes. I locked the slide back and let her look in the chamber, even sticking her fingers in the mag well and chamber. I think we spent 10 minutes or so until she started to get bored, but by the time we were done she knew to keep her finger out of the trigger guard and could point out and name the sights, safety, and hammer.

    Afterward I did have to wipe down the gun to get all the fingerprints off and ended up getting home later than I wanted to, but I felt it was a rewarding experience, giving my little girl her first lesson about guns. My wife even got a good picture of it. Now I'm REALLY excited to be able to go out and buy that little pink cricket rifle for her in a couple more years.

    P9120658.jpg

    I think I was 12 before I got my first lessons in firearm safety, but guns were never an interest for my parents. How old were your kids/you when the first lessons were given?
     
  2. jakemccoy

    jakemccoy Member

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    It depends on the kid. You seem like a methodical man with calm children.

    I have a nephew who is about to turn 13. I'm just now ready to bring him to the range with me. I wasn't involved with his daily upbringing. As the uncle, I couldn't allow my nephew anywhere near my guns before now. I couldn't control his everyday environment and had no control over shaping his demeanor. When he was younger, he was borderline oppositional defiant.

    I also have a niece (same parents) who is definitely not ready at the age of 9. Her misbehavior and immaturity won't allow me to feel comfortable with showing her my guns. She does silly things just to get attention. We can't have such misbehavior when there are guns around!
     
  3. stchman

    stchman Member

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    It is important that we teach our children about firearms. We should teach them not to blindly fear guns but to understand them.

    I bought my first bun when I was about 19. My older brother was into gund and I shot them a couple of times.
     
  4. gunlaw

    gunlaw Member

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    As early as possible,but that will vary from kid to kid. Short lessons are best. Also you already taught her the most important lesson.Always wipe off the fingerprints.(just kidding rb).
     
  5. AK103K

    AK103K Member

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    Your on the right track. :)

    Our boys each had a Chipmunk rifle the day they were born, and were constantly with them from the point they could hold one on. The earlier you start, the better off you are. They both fired their first "live" rounds at 4. They had fired thousands in dry fire on the floor with me up to that point.

    Constant exposure, and explanations are the key. Always take time and allow them to handle what what ever they want when they ask (within reason of course). They learn guns like they do anything else. Your the programmer, so its not their fault if the come out wrong. :)
     
  6. Larry Ashcraft

    Larry Ashcraft Moderator Staff Member

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    Pax has some good info on her website about kids and guns: www.corneredcat.com

    It wholly depends on the kid. Our own kids practically grew up on a handgun silhouette range, wearing earmuffs and playing in the sand. When my son turned eight, I gave him a Chipmunk rifle. All he required was a quick refresher course on safety.

    We started our grandkids at around age six, with BB guns and one at a time. The ones who have the interest are doing well.

    OTOH, I've been around fourteen year olds who I wouldn't take to a range.

    BTW, cute little girl. :)

    Grandpa Larry
     
  7. chris in va

    chris in va Member

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    No offense, but I think you should take that picture off a public forum. It could be used against you at a later date.
     
  8. NinjaFeint

    NinjaFeint Member

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    ^^^^^^^^^^

    This or will show up on a bunch of anti-gun websites displayed in a negative light
     
  9. longdayjake

    longdayjake Member

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    If you are afraid of your beliefs and your rights then by all means take that picture off the internet!!!!

    I personally am proud to be a constitution loving American as well as proud to be a gun owning father. If you refrain from doing soemthing EVERYTIME others/the governemnt might say or do something then you should probably go put on your tinfoil hat and curl up in a fetal position in your basement. Keep your guns away from boats as they tend to make them sink.

    Here is a picture of my kid when he was a lot younger than he is now and I don't care what anyone says or does with this picture. I don't plan on ever shooting my son or allowing him to shoot anyone either. I could care less what the anti crowd does as their opinions are completely worthless.

    random288.jpg
     
  10. DeadLiver

    DeadLiver Member

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    Isn't it illegal to print/use pictures of children without the parent's consent? Either way, there's nothing illegal/improper in the photo. It's not like she's holding it herself, with a finger in on the trigger pointing it at me.

    We'll have to see how her temperament is in a couple of years, and hopefully I can take her to the range. We can't have any more kids, so I may end up with a pair of tomboys.

    I can't say that I'm methodical, except when dealing with firearms and other items that demand proper respect. My daughter however is pretty calm for a 2 year old, especially that night. She was almost in awe as she got to prod and probe daddy's pretty gun, the kind of wide eyed wonderment we all seem to lose as we get older.

    Larry, thank you for the reference to that site. I've read most of it and completely agree with her about dispelling curiosity and instilling proper respect. I just hope that I can do it well, with some help from THR on the way!

    Also, thanks for the compliments for my daughter....Fortunately both of them took after their mother, who's a beautiful and tolerant woman.
     
  11. jakemccoy

    jakemccoy Member

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    Someone somewhere will always have a problem with anything you say or do. You can either hide out in a cave or live your life.
     
  12. geronimo509

    geronimo509 Member

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    Deadliver, I had the same experience with my son when he was two. He watches me dress and put my gun on. He would comment like your daughter and one day asked the same thing yours did. So i let him do the same thing that you did with your daughter. He knows the most important stuff too. And to never touch them when I wasnt there.

    I agree, remove the picture just for (insert tinfoil hat comment)

    I was reluctant to tell this forum my story, but GREAT JOB.
     
  13. kdstrick

    kdstrick Member

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    Kids are very curious. Even more curious when parents make something a mystery to them... or even worse, FORBID it! :what:

    Since my daughter was very little she has been around guns. I'm a hunter and have had a CHL for a long time. It is irresponsible to have guns around kids and NOT teach them about them. Explain how they work and teach them gun safety. Our deal has always been that she can handle one anytime she would like... just ask me and we will do it together.

    By removing the mystery and satisfying their curiosity, the firearm really becomes less fascinating to them.

    One other thing I do with first time shooters, no matter the age.

    Fill up a 1 gallon milk jug with water and shoot it in front of them. It is a dramatic event that demonstrates the power of the firearm and helps them to respect that power better than a hole in paper or a can.

    Teach kids to respect guns... not fear them. :)
     
  14. Larry Ashcraft

    Larry Ashcraft Moderator Staff Member

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    One of my granddaughters:

    [​IMG]

    :neener:
     
  15. nbkky71

    nbkky71 Member

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    My son is 2 years old and while my wife and I don't let him handle any of my guns, we are reinforcing that they are not toys. He'll often be in the garage with with me when the safe is open and he knows that "those are daddy's...no touch".

    Just keep things relevant and put them in terms a child can understand and you're on the right track!
     
  16. ccsniper

    ccsniper member

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    my nephew is two almost three (January) I have guns all over the house that are out of his reach, but he can see them quite well. He already knows "I can't touch" while pointing at my guns. He also knows "thats a big gun!" when he looks at them. I seriously love my nephew and therefore he won't even touch them till I know he is ready, and I will not leave any around that he can reach or any ammo in them/near them while he is over.
     
  17. Impureclient

    Impureclient Member

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    If they are taught safety at that young, by 6 they will be teaching other adults about gun safety. I think it's a good idea especially if a little one gets a hold of one.
    At least they are more likely not to cause an accident being informed properly as the OP is doing. They may just bring it to an adult and point out that it wasn't
    properly stored to the adults dismay. Or by the time they are old enough to know where it is and how to use it, they won't mess with it because they respect it.

    To the OP: She is in good hands. She's lucky to have a father like yourself just as you are blessed to have her. Also even if posting the pictures publicly may
    not sit right with you after what some have posted, still get these good ones. She'll really appreciate it later. My son loves looking at pictures when he was younger.
    Especially when they are cool like the one you posted.
     
  18. 1911swacp

    1911swacp Member

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    DeadLiver,

    I was raised around firearms all my life. When I was about 2 or 3 I was at a gun range with my father. He was shooting some kind of rifle with a hammer, while he was shooting it my curiosity of the hammer got to me. I stuck my finger between the hammer and firing pin about the time he pulled the trigger and was asking what it did. I found out the hard way what that hammer did! Smashed my little finger up pretty good. My father felt so bad that it had happened to me. It was not his fault but mine. Any ways, I first owned my first rifle at the age of 4. It was a Rosi pump .22, my father cut the stock down so it fitted me, and used a torch to burn tiger stripes on the forearm and stock and installed a Lyman peep sight on it for me. I could shoot it any time I wanted while my dad was home. I shot thousands of rounds out of that .22. I ended up loosing it when some one stole, it while it was over at a friends house when I was 16. Man was I pissed and up set and sick. My father died when I was 12. I could hit any thing with it I pointed at, even with that short stock on it. By the age I was 16 I was 6'3".

    Thanks for showing your daughter pic and story with it. It brought back many good memories of my father and us shooting. I believe it is really never to young to teach our young'ins about firearms, and we know when to teach them more about them too as they grow older. My youngest daughter is 13 and owns her own Citadel 1911 .45acp and a STI .22 conversion to use on it.

    Thanks,

    1911swacp
    Adam
     
  19. distra

    distra Member

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    You did good! :D Brings a tear to my eye...;) My boys are 4yrs, 15months and number 3 due in December. The oldest has seen and touched my guns with supervision. He has his own Nerf guns and exhibits great care in where and when he can shoot them. He knows the safe direction and when I test or try to fix a jamb for him, he tells me to make sure I point it out the back into the woods! :D It makes me very proud! He has even fired my pellet rifle from a bench rest of course. He loves lining up the sights and hitting the bucket! My youngest has been saying "Pow Pow" for about 4 months now. They spend at least one hour a weak at the skeet house at our club while dad shoots and mom watches (at least until January then she'll get back to shooting skeet). :D You can not teach them safety too young. We've made it very clear to the oldest when and where he can shoot his Nerf gun and why it is important that all guns, be it a toy or not, be treated as if they were real. Kids don't know the difference and keeping it simple ie the same rules for both, reduces confusion and could save thier life one day.
     
  20. conw

    conw Member

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    Just a tip. There are people who kind of prowl message boards and Google image search for images like this to ridicule and make fun of, and use for fodder for comedy of various types. If you're fine with that, and it doesn't get under your skin, fine by me. I don't think it's a big deal. OTOH your kid's pic could be on the internet with a "humorous" caption for years.

    Example:

    funny-condom-de-motivational-posters-kids-baby+06.jpg
     
  21. NinjaFeint

    NinjaFeint Member

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    Not afraid, sir. A remark about how others could use something against a cause is not fear. I guess I will never be a constitution loving American like you. How will I ever live?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 15, 2009
  22. Lovesbeer99

    Lovesbeer99 Member

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    I shoot a Nerf gun in the house with my 5 year old daughter at empty soda cans. I've reviewed all the safety rules and she learned most of them quickly. She still likes to pick up the gun with her finger on the trigger, but... We've been doing this for about a year and a half and I've been impressed with her overall.

    She knows not to point a gun at anyone. She also knows never to walk in front of a gun. Sometimes I'll be in the living room just shooting the nerf gun at the wall and she'll walk into the door way and wait for me to finish. If she is in a rush, she'll ask me to point the gun away so that she can get by and always double checks that I'm not pointing it at her.

    I think with proper supervision you can start them young, but only if they seam interested. I wouldn't force it on her.
     
  23. DeadLiver

    DeadLiver Member

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    Nice to see I'm among like minded friends here, by and large. Since becoming aware of gun safety and gaining a healthy respect for things I've been disturbed by the "toy" guns and how it's okay to shoot your friends with the nerf gun or the airsoft gun, but that different rules apply to "real" guns. I like enforcing the same rules even on the nerf gun, because I feel that children need consistency, especially on such important matters.

    I recently had a firm discussion with some young men of about 14 years in the neighborhood who were having an airsoft war in the park, they would occasionally miss each other and a bb would hit in the playground where my girls and I were playing. Since then my wife and I have come to same conclusion I've already mentioned, that so called toy guns will be subject to the 4 rules just like the "real" ones. Thanks again for the words of encouragement everybody, I've been on medical leave after a surgery for 2 months now and it's nice to feel that I'm doing something right.

    Conwict, thanks for the well worded warning...I'll take my chances.
     
  24. conw

    conw Member

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    On the other hand, I think it's great to expose your kids to guns. In fact, I'd even suggest making the kid bored of guns if possible. Don't let it be a novelty...
     
  25. flrfh213

    flrfh213 Member

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    i have a basket like that but not the rifle.... can i get one from somone if i sit in my basket????... cute pics and if tought correctly it is never too young. my 9 year old has his 22 rifle, it is all his (and it lives in my safe) but he has no access to it with out myself or my wife...
     
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