Trish - posted on 01/30/2009 ( 18 moms have responded )
Trish - posted on 01/30/2009 ( 18 moms have responded )
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Audrey - posted on 04/17/2009
if you dont buy the guns they will use sticks, bananas or any thing else they can find, its like every other toy, they will use it + move on to the next thing, let them have the guns, its a toy your not training them for gun crime x
Melanie - posted on 04/17/2009
I have 2 boys, 13 & 8, and they have always enjoyed playing with guns, swords, lightsabers, etc. I really do believe that 99% of boys naturally enjoy playing with those kinds of things.
However, I agree with many of the other moms; they need to know the difference between real guns and toys. We do own a rifle and a pistol. They are kept in safe locations, however, my boys know that ANYTIME they would like to look at them, all they have to do is ask. My husband will sit with them and let them look at it, see how to shoot it, etc. There's no big mystery involved, and they know that they don't need to sneak around to see it. We also drill them on what to do if a friend ever shows them a real gun; ie: run away and tell a parent. I think it is much more helpful to kids to know what to do in the real world than to try to pretend that things we don't like don't exist.
Jennifer - posted on 04/17/2009
I think that not teaching a kid gun safety and hoping that they never stumble across a firearm is akin to not teaching a kid to swim and hoping he never falls in a lake. It's so simple to teach, using toy guns is a great way to teach it, and then you don't have to worry so much about situations that he may find himself in when you're not there.
Wendy - posted on 04/16/2009
I agree with the other posters. My son, 7 plays with toy guns. He loves Star Wars, ect and its just part of their playful expression. He has the sweetest disposition, and playing with guns has not changed that. He has been told the difference, and the consequences of what a real gun could do........he gets it. I think it is fine. I think the violent video games is another story.
Tammy - posted on 04/16/2009
I completely agree with both jennifer and rebecca. We have real guns in our home, they are for hunting, and my husband has taken both of our boys out to target shoot. My son also has his own pellet gun. They have been taught from a young age gun safety - even still they are all kept in a gunsafe, and the keys and ammunition aren't kept in our home.
He has tonnes of nerf guns and swords and shields and he and his friends are always outside playing with them. Activities that have the kids outside playing get my vote! I was quite the tomboy growing up and played guns and bows and arrows and rambo games alot, and loved it.
Karyn - posted on 04/16/2009
I have three boys and a girl. The boys rooms have several of Nerf guns, ninja swords and Star Wars Light Sabers. Their favorite activity is to dress up in costume and play with their weapons. They have very strict rules that they have to abide by if they want to play with the guns though.
My husband is an ex marine and takes gun control very seriously. The boys will lose their toy guns if they are EVER caught pointing it at another person. They still like to shoot fake bad guys. They also love drawing targets on the wall with sidewalk chalk and trying to shoot the middle ring with a water gun.
I think that guns can be a fun sport but having real knowledge of what a gun is capable of and how they need to respect the proper use of guns is very important.
Rebecca - posted on 04/16/2009
My son is 12 now. He had a real BB gun by the age of 9. Played with toy guns since he was a baby. As long as you raise them up to not to point guns at people in public and that real guns are not toys and they understand that they really do kill people. You just need to set some rules and abide by them every time don't let him get away with anything that you don't approve. If you don't teach them now as they get older then when he is old enough there could be real tragic accidents that you see all the time. Friends getting together and playing with a real gun in the house when other parents are out. Boys need to be able to be boys and playing cops and robbers is the best way to go about being a boy in my opinion. You need a toy gun for that.
Jennifer - posted on 04/16/2009
"saw how much they enjoyed playing with the toy ones. So, I let up a little but I taught them the rules on gun safety and what to do if they ever found a real gun; how they should handle it. I still quiz them every now and again. "
As a certified firearm safety instructor, I can tell you that this should be done with EVERY child in EVERY home in America, because whether you have toy or real firearms in your home or not, you can't be there every minute of every day, and if your child happens upon a cast-off gun on a playground, or a firearm carelessly left out at someone else's home, they should know, without a doubt, EXACTLY what to do.
Parents that think they are protecting their children by burying their heads in the sand are raising children with latent curiosity. Making it taboo is going to make it exciting. Of course they are going to want to play with guns. Why do you suppose children are the victims of gun accidents? BECAUSE THEIR PARENTS DIDN'T DRILL SAFETY INTO THEIR HEADS FROM A VERY YOUNG AGE!!!
My kids have been shooting at targets since they were 4 years old. They have their own rifle, and at ages 6 and 7, they can operate it safely, clear it, field strip it and clean it. They know that they are NOT TO TOUCH any firearm without adult supervision, but when they want to go target shooting, all they have to do is ask, and we go out and shoot. If I can't right then, well, then, we schedule some time to do it in the near future.
What I have to worry about is their friends with over protective, paranoid, and, quite frankly, ignorant parents, who have turned a blind eye to firearm safety, coming to my house and doing something stupid and inappropriate. Our firearms are locked up and out of sight, but it is so ridiculous and so sad that these kids wouldn't know how to handle it if they found one.
Guns are a part of our culture and our heritage, and pretending that they don't exist isn't going to change the facts. I am looking forward to the time when my kids are old enough to handle a shotgun because I am looking forward to taking them trap shooting, and getting them involved in sporting. Whether or not they choose to pursue a hobby, I want to make sure that they are exposed to all of the fun and SAFE things that there are to do at the range and beyond.
In closing, I would like to say that you are doing your children a huge disservice by not allowing them to play with toys, and you are potentially putting them in harm's way by not drilling firearm safety into their heads. There was a time when it was taught in the schools, and I firmly believe that those practical lessons should be brought back!
Monica - posted on 02/01/2009
My 10 year old wants to buy toy guns and I don't feel happy abuout it. Am I being to cautious?
honestly trish if i had a 10 yr old and i was in ur situation i would agree with u. kids should not be playing with guns even if they are fake because if they like playing with fake guns it could lead to using a real one when they r older not neccessarily so but i think it is more beneficial to be cautious and caring then not!
Mindy - posted on 02/01/2009
I have 2 boys and I was very adamit that they would n ot have toys guns. Guess what? they use their fingers and sticks and anything else. Heck thay have even built them outta Lego's, Now they have a few and guess what. now they have them they don't play with them. My boys know that real guns are not to be touched and even when they played make believe with their fingers and sticks and legos
they knew that they were not allowed to point them at each other or any person and pretent to shoot and kill them.
I feel that its your child that you have the right to say nay or yeah. its totally your progative.
Andrea - posted on 02/01/2009
I truly think that the real problem is not with a child's imagination and a toy gun, but with the fact that they are exposed to more and more realistic and "shock" scenarios on tv and it literally numbs and desensitizes them to the real thing. It becomes part of life instead of some abomination of human beings. You would do better to make sure they didnt watch the news or CSI than worry about toy guns. As always, though, a serious heart to heart about the difference between toys and reality and what they should do if they ever see a real gun. The biggest problem with children is that they have no way to understand the concept of permanance of death.
Dawn - posted on 01/31/2009
My boys and the neighbor kids have all played with toy guns. We taught them right form wrong, real and fake, etc. I do have a friend that has a son that has Ashberger's (sp-sorry) a form of Autism. He isn't allowed to play with guns-he gets very violent. When he is around, my kids put them up (so do the neighbors) and there is NO ISSUE. They play something else. I do have to say this. Just recently my now 7 and 5 yo boys got through watching pink panther (the cartoon from my time) and saw the man chop down PP's tree. The went to the garage, got a golf club (we don't have an ax) and proceeded to chop down one of our oak trees. The tree was mutilated. Thank God it survived. Boys are boys-the genetic code and all. . .
Kimberly - posted on 01/31/2009
I have 2 sons, now adults. I never once bought them a toy gun. My reasoning? Not 100% sure why, I grew up with guns in my home, my dad hunted, but we never saw them. I was a teenage mom, now 46, and I remember when I was younger, reading a story about a toddler boy finding his dad's pistol in a drawer and accidentally killing himself. I had always told myself that I would never allow guns in my home. Kids are curious. Young kids don't know how to rationalize really what is right and wrong so even if a parent is responsible about gun ownership, kids will be kids & accidents will happen, so why put them in a position. I know you are talking about toy guns. So what I am saying is my boys never played w/toy guns, were fine with never having played w/toy guns, do not own guns as adults and never even really broach the subject. And my boys are big and tough and athletic and all about being "manly." :) I guess I say, why push the idea. They will see enough of that play on cartoons, movies and video games. Hope this helped.
Jennifer - posted on 01/31/2009
I never wanted my boys; now 10, 9, 9 to get involved with guns when they were little. I about flipped when somebody (who didn't know my opinion) bought them each one for their birthdays. I saw how much they enjoyed playing with the toy ones. So, I let up a little but I taught them the rules on gun safety and what to do if they ever found a real gun; how they should handle it. I still quiz them every now and again. Even with video games and tv shows and movies, I will see them really getting in to the game and they'll brag about something that jsut happened. I'll say, you know that's not okay in real life? And they'll say yes and tell me that it's just a video game, mom!
Irregardless, I would take the approach of teaching him the difference between the real and fake guns. Let him know how dangerous real guns can be if not used properly and under direct supervision and how they can hurt or even kill somebody. Teach him to respect the reality.
Melanie - posted on 01/31/2009
My mom was very strict when we were growing up, especially when it came to toy guns. Even so, my older brother made guns out of whatever he could: sticks, rocks, paper....anything! Sometimes...I think our efforts as mothers are futile. :) However, I agree with the previous mom's that have written that it's important to teach the difference between real and play so that whatever he encounters...he is knowledgeable.
Thao - posted on 01/30/2009
I had the same feelings about guns. That was before someone told me that you'd rather have them play with play guns than real ones. So, now my son has nerf guns and he's loving it. He's not building guns out of twigs, legos or whatever else he can find in the house anymore. He's less fascinated by them now that he has them.
Pauline - posted on 01/30/2009
I was behind the 8-ball from the start - my husband like first person shooter games on the computer, so my son has been immitating his dad for years (he's 8 now - been playing (much to my disapproval) since he was about 3). So, since I wasn't able to fight it, I took the opposite approch - the one similar to what my dad did with me.....I let him, but he learned respect for what it was. He KNOWS that there is aHUGE difference between play and real - and even tho he is constantly buying guns (water guns, nerf dart guns, cap guns, etc), he doesn't desire to even touch a real gun. If/when that time comes, I'll take him out to my parent's place (they have a couple acres in the valley backing a hill) and teach him how to properly hold, fire, and respect a gun.
If you can't beat/fight them, turn it into a lesson and join them I say. (ie if you are handed lemons, make lemonade). IMHO (and feel free to disagree at will), the unknown is more dangerous than the known - if he's really that interested, why not have him do a little research into different guns, and turn it into a learning lesson (there goes the homeschooler in me - gosh lol) - who knows, the 'lesson' part might turn him off the whole idea, and if it doesn't, at least he'll know more than just 'point and shoot' which could be a bad thing. KWIM?
I hope that all makes sense - I'm getting tired and my thoughts are starting to run together.lol
Good luck finding a solution that fits your family dynamic.
Rebecca - posted on 01/30/2009
Hi, I don't have a boy; and My oldest is 7 on tuesday; but I clearly remember back in the '70's when I grew up, we all had guns and played cops and robbers all the time, or cowboys and Indians; so, I think you have to go on what you think your child is like and your own instincts...Today in society, I do hear other mom's talk about this and they all fret about this, but all the boys in my daughter's 5 and 6 year old class want to play with guns and all the mom's and teacher's discourage this... maybe it is natural for boys and Okay for them to pretend, They say violent video games and TV, etc.. lead to violent activities, but I think manly for those unstable ... but I am by no means a professional and don't even know if this is what i would actually think if in that situation since both my girls never play with guns cause they are both super girlie!