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Posted: 10/17/2001 12:29:32 PM EDT
Due to a condition that now exists with her ex-husband, I've started my wife on the process of getting her Concealed Handgun License. Since I don't think it's a good idea for spouses to try to teach each other anything, I've enlisted the help of a friend of mine who's an excellent shooter and seems to working well with her. After shooting a number of his revolvers, she decided on the one she likes best and I've purchased one for her that she seems to be comfortable with. Now on to my problem/question. While she's not opposed to the idea of learning how to shoot and getting licensed to carry, she's certainly not as motivated as I'd like her to be. With the state of affairs between us and her ex-husband, I'd be much more comfortable if she were taking more of an active interest. I'm having to drive the effort more than I'd like. Fore her sake, I'd rather she were the one to suggest shooting on a particular weekend rather than me. Now, I realize that some people just don't enjoy a thin as much as others. I, for instance, will never like brussel sprouts. But does anyone have any suggestions on how to make shooting more fun and enjoyable for her? I don't want it to seem like work when I take her to the range. I'm looking for ways to spark her interest. Any ideas would be appreciated.
Link Posted: 10/17/2001 5:26:54 PM EDT
sorry to hear about the situation. i pray that she will never have to use her firearm to protect herself. as for generating the interest, i can only offer suggestions and unfortunately, these aren't from experience, as i've always looked forward to going to the range. does your shooting locale allow reactive targets? nothing tripped my trigger (pun intended) more than seeing the gallon milk jug filled with water fly up and OVER the backstop!!!!!!!!!! as much as my next statement leaves us open to a lot of judgement and ridicule, i still think it's true: blowing things up is just cool! as she gets more comfortable with her firearm of choice, perhaps have her enter some shooting contests (if she's competitive at all, if not this could really backfire). or some action shooting classes. anything to "spice" it up from the "hum-drum" (is there such a thing?) as same ol' same ol' target shooting at the range. if she's not into competing against strangers, have her compete against you. for household chores, a backrub, whatever floats your boat. if you're exceptionally better than her, lose every once in a while. i can tell you, and this does come from experience, that no woman likes to be outshout by her man. [:D] this will at least get her more interested in accuracy! and if all else fails, go with the tried and true: accesorize! her firearm, that is.
Link Posted: 10/17/2001 6:13:56 PM EDT
Is it possible that because it is kind of new to her maybe she is a little unsure of herself, especially in a public setting? If that's the case either you or your friend working with her to get her more proficient will go a long way towards developing enthusiasm for range work. I sincerely hope that she never has to take up arms to protect herself against her ex, or anyone else. But in these troubled times we all need to be prepared. Good luck to you both.
Link Posted: 10/17/2001 6:29:00 PM EDT
ARLady - The voice of a sage![^] The first gun that I bought my wife was a Ruger MKII. When I gave it to her, she said "I don't wan't that, it's plain! All of your guns are customized...Do something cool to it." Well you don't need to tell a loving husband more than once to go out and buy some new toys. It is now suppressed, laser sighted, and with volquartsen internals, a reel shooter; SHE LOVES IT! On the second point of a little competition, it works wonders.
Link Posted: 10/18/2001 9:04:34 AM EDT
Thanks for the suggestions. I'd love to get her involved in some IDPA type shooting. I've located a range that's _somewhat_ in our area where several instructors participate in defensive shooting competitions. This is much like IDPA but without the gamesmanship and equipment limitations. It's on more of a professional level. They even run a hot range, which I like because I feel that cold range rules engrain tactically stupid habits. Anyway, I don't think she's comfortable enough to do that yet. She's still working on the very basics of handgun marksmanship. Reactive targets is a great suggestion, though I don't think the range would let me get away with water jugs. I use clay pigeons that for my 200 and 300 yard rifle work. (I like busting things up too.) That's the most I could hope to pin up and even then, only if I could find a couple lanes away from everyone else. East Texas (specifically the Houston area) really kind of sux for shooting. Unless you own a bunch of land somewhere there's no place to go where you can just tromp through the woods and plink like I could when I was a kid in South Carolina. I may be able to get her to try the competition thing after she's more confident, but not now. Again, thanks for the suggestions. I'll put them to use the first chance I get.
Link Posted: 10/19/2001 5:07:27 AM EDT
Check for bowling pin matches as well.
Link Posted: 10/19/2001 5:30:28 PM EDT
Link Posted: 10/21/2001 11:56:44 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/21/2001 11:52:25 AM EDT by warlord]
How about getting your wife to shoot with an air gun in the back yard. My children and I have a lot of fun knocking over tin cans in the backyard. There is a lot of guns that look like the real McCoys, but of course they use the 5 gram CO2 cartridge & 177 pellets. After she is comfortable with that, try a 22LR revolver such a Smith 617, then progress to a 38SPL etc. But bottom line is, if she is not really interested there is nothing you can do.
Link Posted: 10/21/2001 10:04:52 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 10/22/2001 6:19:32 PM EDT by KelleyR]
If your wife don't want to learn to shoot a gun, how about pepper gas/foam. Code4 of Orem, UT 800/499-4050, [url]www.code4pro.com[/url] sells 3/4 oz stream $12, 3oz pepper foam $15.
Link Posted: 10/25/2001 9:58:27 AM EDT
Let her start with a small bore pistol at very close range, maybe 10-15 feet, at paper targets.....as she improves, move the targets back farther and farther.....25 feet or so. And get some of those exploding target squares...everyone at the indoor range turns to see what the tremandous BOOM is, when one gets hit, and it always makes my students grin with success. Make sure it is a pistol she can easily load, and unload, and one that is unlikely to jam, nothing is more frustrating than having to have *some man* clear your gun for you, if you lack the skill and strength. Gradually increase caliber, and distance, and be sure to praise effusively at every success. Tell her how being a good shooter is very *liberating*... and kind of zen too. Concentrating on hitting a tiny spot with a shot blocks out all the other stresses of the day. These are things that have worked for me in the women's classes I teach.
Link Posted: 10/25/2001 10:10:50 AM EDT
Fear of the gun, recoil or noise is not her problem. She's doing quite well with her 3" .38 spl. revolver, working on trigger control and other basics. Her biggest problem is making the time to go practice. I'm operating on the principal that if something is important enough to you, you WILL make the time to do it. To be honest, I've fallen somewhat short in that regard myself, as of late. I haven't been to a IDPA match in several months and haven't been to the range in a number of weeks. Just too much stuff to do around the house. (I haven't even gotten to shoot my brand new Bushmaster yet and I got it 3 weeks ago.) On a side note... I'd love to get some of those exploding target squares. Who's got them?
Link Posted: 10/25/2001 11:10:19 AM EDT
Our local indoor range sells them, about a buck apiece, not sure of the maker. Maybe they can be found at gun shows though. Yeah, they are a riot!
Link Posted: 10/27/2001 7:22:39 PM EDT
Exploding targets - here's a link to some I've used in the past (bought them at a local gun show for ~ $1 each): [url]http://www.arrowanaproducts.com/target.htm[/url] They are pretty tough to hit and explode (don't think I've ever been able to set one off myself, but the people I take out shooting with me always hit 'em fine - grrr!) Great attention-getter at the range, however! I'll second the bowling pin shooting idea. My wife and I have been shooting weekly at a local club, and it's been a lot of fun. The group at the shoots is great - when we were starting off, we would hold the whole match up while reloading magazines, missing pins, etc., but we got support instead of sighs and hassling. You mentioned that she was OK with revolvers. My wife has shown a big interest in Cowboy Action shooting. It would require the purchase of some more guns (never a problem!) and (unfortunately) some clothes, but the bottom line is that it's still a shooting activity. We've been to a shoot once (as observers), and had numerous competitors come up to us and ask if we had any questions, and invite us out to shoot. It seemed like a really friendly bunch. The shooting itself doesn't appear too demanding. I've even heard and read that participants will gladly let you borrow guns until you get your own. As I mentioned, the dressing up part doesn't really interest me, but it sounds like at some of the big matches, the costuming becomes almost as important as the shooting (they have pagents and costume competitions, etc.). At any rate, might be a less "threatening" competitive shooting sport to check out than IDPA/IPSC. Certainly not as practical, but will still involve shooting, and emphasize gun-handling skills and safety. I think the big thing here is not to try to force her into it (that never seems to work with women). My wife started off a bit more interested than it sounds like yours is, but as shes found things she likes (picking out her own guns, cowboy action shooting, pin shooting, etc.) she's really gotten excited about it. I don't know anything about your current situation, but perhaps part of her reluctance to become involved more deeply in firearms is the potential for having to use one in self-defense against her ex (or others). If this is the case, getting her involved in other "non-threatening/non-combative" shooting areas might help.
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