There has been a great deal of attention given to the subject of women and guns in the past couple of years and there are many resources available today to the woman thinking of joining the ranks of women who carry.
Undeniably a shift has occurred as more women are joining the ranks of Concealed Carry permittees and registered gun owners. Published figures indicate that throughout the US the numbers of women holding a CCW is growing at an amazing rate. Women are being heralded as star pupils in NRA classes, and from my own experience in the classroom – women are extremely dedicated to doing it “right” and “thoroughly,” at both the conceptual and practical levels.
I am not going to delve into the larger socio-political situation here, but want to focus on your personal reasons for purchasing and wanting to carry a gun.
I can think of nothing scarier to be a mature woman buying a gun and carrying it around in a handsome new concealed carry purse– or keeping it in the pocket of your coat or a fancy new conceal holster without the proper training and permit.
Fear of being able to handle that gun, and ignorance of how to safely and legally accomplish self defense in a tense and emotional situation, do not equate to the self confidence that will bring about an increased ability to actually protect yourself. Strapping on a pair thigh holsters like Laura Croft in Tomb Raiders will not give you her youthful agility and abilities.
Please take the time to go about the process required to develop a REAL self defense attitude, and gain the knowledge and information to equip yourself for your own particular situation.The purchase of and decision to carry a handgun should only be made after carefully and thoughtfully thinking through some of the following:
- WHY do I believe I need to own/carry a gun?
- What situations do I think are most likely to occur that a gun would be an effective method of self defense?
- Have I already learned the fundamentals of basic self defense, particularly how I can reduce the chances of putting myself into situations that increase my chances of becoming a victim?
- Do I have any experience with a firearm? Handgun in particular? If not, how am I going to gain that experience?
- If the laws and regulations of my jurisdiction restrict the owning, carrying and use of a firearm, do I know what they are?
- Am I physically able and prepared to handle and fire a gun safely?
- Am I emotionally and mentally able and prepared to shoot a gun in self defense?
After you have given attention to the preceding, then:
- What is the appropriate gun for my size, ability, physical condition and situation?
- When and where do I need to carry a gun?
- What is the best way to carry the gun, and where and how should it be kept?
- Where and how do I get training in the safe handling of the gun and ammunition?
- How often should I practice with the gun to maintain familiarity and develop the “muscle memory” necessary to be effective in a tense and emotional situation?
- What do I tell my friends and family? Law enforcement and emergency first responders if I am carrying a gun?
Carrying a gun should never be a rushed “knee jerk” decision to do because you or someone you know have experienced a bad situation, or something you have heard/read/seen about someone else going through.
You may find that after thoroughly examining your own decision to carry/own a gun, you may choose an alternate method of self defense. But if you do decide to own and carry a gun, or if you already have a gun, please join me as we delve deeper into the topic –and in particular– issues facing the mature woman
.I am not disciminating against or dismissing men who are graying and the changes age makes in a man’s situation. I am speaking from the experience and viewpoint of the “whitehaired” woman.
Happy and Safe shooting – Peggy