How young is too young?

Discussion in 'General Rifle Discussion' started by redteck215, Jan 28, 2012.

  1. redteck215

    redteck215 New Member

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    Well me and my girlfriend have gotten really serious and have talked about our future and the possability of kids some day. I personally want my kids to start shooting young but she wasnt raised around guns so shes only heard what the public schools and the news has said about them which we all know were they stand. I told her how serious and how big of a part guns play in my life abd that it would all depend on how mature i believe they are. She thinks 13 is too young even with supervision. I want my kids shootin at 7-8. Ive for the most part got her to understand that it is truelly the vad people that make guns look bad and shes starting to see that and how safe i am with them. What are your thoughts?
     
  2. winds-of-change

    winds-of-change The Balota's Staff Member

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    It depends on the child. Some are more mature and responsible than others at any given age. I have a 5 year old granddaughter and I think I will be getting her a pink Cricket when she's about 7 or so.

    Have you taken your wife shooting? I was very anti-gun most of my life. It wasn't until I shot a gun and had so much fun trying to 'beat my best' that I realized how wrong I had been about guns. :eek:
     

  3. Sonic82

    Sonic82 New Member

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    Don't sweat it and don't push it. You've got plenty of time and let it come naturally...don't bring it up too much, she may begin to think it's an obsession..you wouldn't want her to know that :D

    ...just like some may go golfing or bowling once a month...you go to the range...don't make a big deal out of it and she'll get used to it. And letting a supervised child of 8 yrs old become familiar with a .22 isn't a problem in my mind.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2012
  4. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    Well, if you had been here for a bit longer, you would have seen me post photos of the Anarchist-in-Training. She has been my shooting partner for a bit over 5 years now. Grandaughter. She is now 15.

    It varies from kid to kid. Some are not old enough at 27.

    May I humbly suggest that you gradually, gently introduce your significinat other to shooting herself?

    A few years back, one of my Daughters-in-law called, and asked- would I take her teenaged son to the range- AND TEACH HIM HOW TO HANDLE A FIREARM SAFELY? Food for thought there.
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2012
  5. Minionsram

    Minionsram New Member

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    My grandfather had started taking me out shooting and hunting when I was around 6, but that was me. When its time ask the youngn' if they would like to hit the range or not, dont force it. And if they do be sure to do as C3 said, teach fire arm safety.
     
  6. TekGreg

    TekGreg Lifetime Supporting Member Lifetime Supporter

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    Redteck215, it's always a problem when a couple is diametrically opposed regarding the same subject. It sounds like your wife is willing to accept that the media has perverted the public view of shooting sports, so the next step should be to take her shooting with you, put a .22 rifle in her hand and let her start to enjoy the sport for herself! After the two of you have been shooting for 5-10 years, bringing your child with you will be a moot point.

    Also, I used to bring my children to the shooting range even before they were old enough to shoot so they would be exposed to guns and we could talk about safety. At 5, my daughter decided she wanted to try shooting and after 15-20 minutes she was done. Because of her exposure from birth, she didn't have the "forbidden fruit" syndrome that draws kids to the things we hide and whisper about. Early exposure makes a much safer household because the kids just aren't interested in something they can use whenever they want, even if they need parental permission.

    So think about involving the wife and I think this problem may fade away as she realizes the truth and accepts that it's safer to have kids involved as a family sport. :)
     
  7. ScottA

    ScottA FAA licensed bugsmasher Lifetime Supporter

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    Take for example my two sets of nieces and nephews. My younger sister's kids, I wouldn't have had a problem sticking a gun in their hands at 7 or 8. On the other hand, I would not have felt comfortable sticking a gun in the hands of my older sister's kids until much later.
     
  8. 303tom

    303tom Well-Known Member

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    My boys were 5 & 6, but thats BB gun time............
     
  9. Belltactical

    Belltactical New Member

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    Daughter shot youth length 22 at 10 and ran an AR at 13 and competing in High Power at 16. At 22 she used to hustle guys for money at the range. Was shooting a 22 Buckmark when they laid down the bet and then pulled her STI 45 out of her range bag. Way to make Daddy proud.
     
  10. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    Bell- the Anarchist-in-Training does that- but only with grownups that are not bright enough to consider that the little girl is shooting a Mossberg 46B, and using a deliberate sling. :D
     
  11. Belltactical

    Belltactical New Member

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    I'm not sure if you just complimented me or insulted me.
     
  12. Rick1967

    Rick1967 Well-Known Member

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    Your kids have not been born yet, right? You have 6 or 7 years to warm her up to the idea. I don't remember exactly how old my son was when he started. Maybe 5 or 6? But he is 13 now. He shoots pretty much all of my guns. And he can give me a run for my money on acuracy.

    Just ease your lady into it slowly. Let her shoot a 22 rifle like someone else suggested. If you get her into it...the kids will naturally join in later. But, dont pester her about it. Don't be a nag. Women don't like that any more than guys do. Just invite her come when you go. But be cool about it. When she does decide to go don't give her a high powered gun for her first experience. Less is more!!!
     
  13. Vikingdad

    Vikingdad New Member

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    We (Mom and Dad both) started from day one with firearms safety. For the first few years it was basically the NRA's Eddie Eagle program. Then at about 5 or 6 I printed out the 10 Rules of Firearm Safety and gave it to them, telling them that when they could recite the rules they would be considered eligible to begin shooting "real guns". Prior to that they had their BB guns and cap guns, etc. and were expected to treat them just like "real guns". Exactly like "real guns". The were told that any breach of firearm safety with their "toys" would mean that they would have to wait longer to move up to the real ones.

    I would also periodically run a test on them where I would place an unloaded gun somewhere in the house and monitor it one way or another. Without fail they would run and get me or mom when they saw it. They never once would touch it. If they had, they would have been told what they did wrong and not to do it again, and then tested again in a few months or a year or so.

    They started handling real guns when they were ready. Every person is different. For my kids that was 6 or 7 years old. Today at 14 and 16 they fire everything that we have, except for the .454 Casull (their choice). The rule still stands that if they have a safety failure the guns will be taken away, if it is serious enough they will not be allowed to shoot until they are 18 and I have no further control over it. I don't have to remind them of this because it has been so deeply engrained in them.

    So, in a nutshell it is something my wife and I worked out together when the kids were born. You are wise to be working it out now. Oh, and absolutely introduce your wife to the sport! It will make things much easier in the long run if she has a working knowledge of firearms.
     
  14. redteck215

    redteck215 New Member

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    Thabks so much for all the imput and i have taken her a couple of times and its kinda funny shell shoot my .22 but if im shootin it ill do you wanna shoot it and shell say its ok so ill do another clip and hand it to her and help her with safty instructions and such then i darn near cant get her to give it back to me cause shes havin fun with it then later in the truck ill ask if she had fun and shell say eehh its alright. Im so confused. Im all for seeing how mature the kids are first. And i started with a bb gun at 8 so if my kids are young like that ill problly get a bb gun for them and train them fire arm safety. Thanks again guys.
     
  15. Hookeye

    Hookeye Active Member

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    I got my first first .22 rifle in 1st grade, got my 10/22 in 2nd grade. Got my first handgun in 5th grade, and a .357 in 6th.
    I got my first centerfire rifle in 5th grade too.

    But I had a very strict dad (who was a collector/dealer), who didn't allow me to do the junk other kids did.

    He told me on my first .22...........if you want a gun you HAVE to be different, can't act like the other kids....."You get a gun and you're not a kid anymore."

    He gave me the choice, which I accepted, with no "turning back".

    I don't see what the big deal was, even as a kid I remember it being apretty dayam logical thing, a simple Yes or No and go from there.

    There were rules, ABSOLUTES..............things NOT open to any interpretation. Pretty easy to understand IMHO.

    Different time, hell maybe different planet, considering what I see nowadays.

    I see too many adults that shouldn't have guns ;)
     
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2012
  16. redteck215

    redteck215 New Member

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    I have to agree i have also seen way to many people with guns that are either not trained properly and some that just shouldnt touch them period.
     
  17. Belltactical

    Belltactical New Member

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    I think that's exactly the point. She grew up with a house full of guns and used to come to the range with me on weekends when she couldn't see over the firing line guard rail. It seemed logical that educating her the right way from the start made more sense than having her be a curious child (which can lead to problems around guns) plus it turned out to be a great father/daughter thing. She took to reloading around 16 or so but once she mastered the fundamentals and understood what was going on it was something she did with me just so we would have some quality time together more than something she wanted to do. In any case, I'm confident my 27 year old can grab almost any weapon and know how to handle it, clear it and most importantly, hit what she's aiming at. The last time we had lunch she had her 3" Kimber 45 with some practical add-ons in her purse and a Sig in her glove compartment. She has no problem visiting me at my shop and if I've got a 1911 barrel that's waiting to be fitted, and I'm backed up, she finds an empty bench and gets it tight,locked and polished without breaking a sweat. It's almost second nature. Honestly, I'm happy she became a psychologist but if I hired her as a smith, she could run circles around some of the guys that have been here a while and I could leave her to run the shop and go fishing.
     
  18. c3shooter

    c3shooter Administrator Staff Member

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    Bell- earlier post was compliment. I never insult folks on a forum.
     
  19. jpattersonnh

    jpattersonnh Active Member

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    My boys had BB guns at 5 and 7. They got there 1st .22's at 7 and 10. My 15 year old got a custom 6.5x55 built on a 1942 receiver for Christmas 2010, at 14. I really depends on the kid, but the earlier the better. I started at 5 w/ BB guns, moved up to .22 pellet rifles and then .22's at age 10. I started shooting NRA compitition at 11 w/ pellet and at 12 moved to .22's.
     
  20. Paladin201

    Paladin201 New Member

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    The way I see it there are two levels to teaching kids about guns. One that should be taught as early as possible. The other, when the kid indicates that they are ready for it.

    I taught my sons about guns at a very early age. Not how to use one, but what they were, and what they could do if misused. I taught them that a gun was something that could hurt them or someone else, badly. I taught them if they ever saw an unattended gun anywhere, they should leave it alone and tell an adult. Too many cases you see where the cops are chasing a bad guy and he tosses his gun in the weeds, only to be found later by a curious kid. I also taught them that if they were ever at a friends house and they see a gun, or someone with a gun, get away from them as quickly as possible. All too often kids fall victim to someone else's stupidity.

    As to actually teaching them how to use and handle guns, that didn't happen until they let me know they were ready......"Dad, can you take me to the range with you some time?". Even then, best to go easy. The first time I took my youngest son to the range, he was scared out of his mind. All the noise and guns intimidated the hell out of him. So I let it be. A couple of years later, he brought the subject up again. This time he took it in stride. He learned quick and can now outshoot the old man more often than not.