Asking about guns in the home - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 8 Old 07-09-2013, 06:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Is this a regional thing or what? I've read on MDC several times about parents checking if there are guns in the house before allowing their child over at another kids house or a relatives home. I have never ever encountered this in person. I live in the midwest, so perhaps this is just not something people do here. I personally, don't have a problem with the idea of guns in a home so wouldn't ask. Right now my kids go to the homes of people I know to be responsible adults, so if they have guns I'm sure they are appropriately stored. My kids also know that they are never ever to touch a gun without direct adult supervision. So even if they encountered one they'd leave it alone. They have opportunities to shoot and can simply ask if they want to do so and my husband, my father, or I will take them. So the allure of guns as toys or as forbidden things just isn't there.

 

I've also never ever been asked this question. If asked I would be honest and say that we have a shotgun in the house in a locked case, but don't keep ammo in the house. However, I really can't imagine being asked. It would seem absolutely bizarre.


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#2 of 8 Old 07-09-2013, 07:46 PM
 
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I've never asked that question, or been asked it myself. But I don't think it's a bizarre question -- I would just answer truthfully and move on if asked (we don't have any guns in the house).

I'm not sure what ages your kids are, but I'm finding that as mine get older and make friends at school, I don't always know the parents as well as I used to when they were smaller and mostly played with the kids of my friends. Instead of getting to know someone organically over time, sometimes it's just a quick meet-up, so to me it seems okay to condense the chit-chat and get to the point of getting important questions answered before letting your kid spend time at someone's house.

Like I said, I've never asked that question, but a few months ago before a sleepover, the mom of my son's friend preemptively gave me a run-down that went something like, "It'll just be me and the boys in the house, we're going to watch Home Alone, we don't have any guns, pick-up time is around 10 the next morning," and I thought that was really cool of her. (I would have felt just as comfortable if the gun comment had been similar to your situation, where the gun is locked up with ammo separate.)

Although we don't have guns, I have taught my kids never to handle a gun at a friend's house, and to immediately get the parent if a friend gets hold of a gun. We've role played lots of different scenarios about what to do if they encounter a gun, but it still put my mind at ease to know the specific gun scenario at DS's friend's house that night, and that approach (providing the info in a matter-of-fact way without waiting to be asked) is something I really appreciated and will keep in mind to use myself in the future.

ETA: All that said, I'm sure it's regional to some extent. If you live in a hunting culture or a culture in which gun ownership is almost assumed, you'll have a different approach than if you live in an area where gun ownership is rare (or is discussed rarely/kept private).

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#3 of 8 Old 07-09-2013, 07:49 PM
 
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I have asked. I will continue to ask. I'd rather know for sure than assume or guess.

I don't think it's regional, most people just don't ask. But the mothering community leans towards many unconventional/unpopular things.
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#4 of 8 Old 07-09-2013, 08:45 PM
 
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With all the stories lately about kids who have shot other kids with guns, not realizing what they were, I can see why parents would ask. I've never asked or had anyone ask me, however.  

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#5 of 8 Old 07-09-2013, 09:04 PM
 
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I think it could be regional thing. I've heard about people who ask a lot of questions about other people's homes before sending their children over to play but have never encountered any question beyond "what time should I come get my child" and that is the question I ask too.
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#6 of 8 Old 07-09-2013, 09:28 PM
 
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My kids are young but when they get old enough where that is an issue I will plan on asking. It's not to offend anyone but my number one job is to keep my kid safe abd that is a factor. That's not to say I'd never let them go into a home where there is a gun but I would have to weigh the circumstances.
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#7 of 8 Old 07-10-2013, 05:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Perhaps it's all in the phrasing as well. I wouldn't think anything of someone asking "Are any guns in the home under lock and key?". But "Are there any guns in the home?" Would seriously raise eyebrows around here. People would want to know why you are asking.

 

Guns are valuable, some people live in the country where guns are considered a source of protection. It seems suspicious when someone wants details of your gun ownership. Honestly, a lot of people around here would wonder what you plan to do with that information.


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#8 of 8 Old 07-10-2013, 09:51 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JollyGG View Post

Perhaps it's all in the phrasing as well. I wouldn't think anything of someone asking "Are any guns in the home under lock and key?". But "Are there any guns in the home?" Would seriously raise eyebrows around here. People would want to know why you are asking.

 

Guns are valuable, some people live in the country where guns are considered a source of protection. It seems suspicious when someone wants details of your gun ownership. Honestly, a lot of people around here would wonder what you plan to do with that information.

 

This.  I posted about this before, the police blotter in my local paper ALWAYS has reports of break-ins where guns are stolen.  Gun ownership is so common where I live (big hunting area) that I assume every house has a gun.  Every gun owner I know well (close friends and family members) keeps their guns very secure.  They would no more leave $2,000 laying around than a pistol.  However, I know this isn't always the case.  NRA literature has made a HUGE impact on my son (we are not NRA members but got the handouts from a local police office) and I will continue to stress the steps with him.

 

No one has ever asked me the question but I am sure it will come up in the future as there are lots families moving into the area (due to a particular employer hiring lots of people) that are most definitely anti-gun, no exceptions.  We do have guns that were inherited.  My husband is very anti-gun yet he can't part with them.  Ours are secured and we do not have ammo so there is no chance of a child shooting it.


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