Thinking of a new toy for your significant other? Do they want one or do you want them to have one? So often people come to a beginner class with a gun their SO (usually Husband) bought for them. I’ve seen women come in with a Desert Eagle, a Judge, and a Ruger LCP (or similar .380 “pocket pistols”). These are women who have never shot before! I’m sure there are a few men in this category, but I haven’t had one admit it (although I did buy my husband a shotgun for home defense without talking to him first but he loves it).
Common theme? Buying what you want, or want them to have, not what is best for their partner. I don’t know very many women who really want a Desert Eagle. Me, I like my 9mm. For a new shooter, or to introduce someone to shooting, you don’t want to start them without something that is overpowering or so tiny it is difficult to control. A .44 Magnum is probably not a great start, either. A Double Action Revolver, with a 12 pound trigger pull is also not a great way to start. Those are for after you master the basics, if you really feel the need.
A gun must fit securely in the hand. Can you really judge for someone else what is a comfortable and secure fit? No! Your SO needs to first, have an interest and be willing to at least consider it, otherwise is a bit like giving your SO golf clubs in your size. Second, let them participate in the shopping experience, trying a gun in the hand, getting comfortable... This goes for holsters, too! Unless they have told you what they want…don’t go there. There is a reason most of us have “the holster bag”.
I know, it takes the fun out of it, doesn’t it? Consider, instead, a gift certificate to a training class. A NRA First Steps class (you don’t need to own a gun to take the class) is a great way to start and they are offered all across the country. If you are feeling a little bolder, a Combat Focus Shooting class (probably should have the gun, or arrange in advance with the instructor to borrow gear) teaches great defensive techniques and accommodates all skill levels. Both of these courses, and more, are offered in the Northern Virginia area by Innovative Defensive Solutions, LLC., but you can also find them at the embedded links above.
Follow up with a promise to take them shopping for their first gun. You always remember your first, you should have some say in what it is.
Wishing you Safe and Happy Holidays!!