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Guns n' Brats

1day@atime's picture

My SS10 is obsessed with guns. He has a collection of water guns, nerf guns, airsoft guns, and shooting games. I told my husband he's exhibited too much immaturity, lack of values, disprespect, and irresponsibility to be so immerged with them and it be healthy. My husband disagreed. A year ago, when my SS got mad at a kid at school, he threatened to blow the kids head off. We got a call from the principal and had to assure him we didn't have any guns in the house. My husband took away violent video games for awhile (but my SS didn't have the airsoft gun at the time).

Now he has an airsoft gun. It shoots really obnoxious tiny hard plastic bullets. It actually hurts when you're hit by one. I have been 100% against it, but again, my husband allowed it. Well I just found out him and his friends were shooting birds. Also, all of their bullets have been getting in neighbors yard (next to impossible to find all to clean up). When confronted about it, he at first narcked out his friend. Then slowly but surely find out he did shoot "once or twice" When we asked if he actually hit a bird. He said "I don't know". I asked him if he ever told friends he hit a bird. He said yes, but he wasn't sure if he hit it or not. When we asked him why he did it, he said because his friend did it. This is unacceptable for more than on reason: First of all he is not the type to do what he doesn't want to. I've seen him boss his friends around and simply leave if he didn't want to play what they are playing. Of course secondly, blaming a peer for your actions isn't going to make me sympathize.

Anyway, he then said it wasn't that big of a deal. He didn't think it was wrong, and then had the nerve to say why would we let him shoot at his friends and not birds. Of course I never thought it was cool, but my husband had told him to wear goggles, not shoot at heads, and never shoot someone unarmed or hurt (or wanting to stop).

After being told to go to his room, he later came up to first ask to make a sandwhich. THen he tried to apologize in sort of a quick package. "I'm sorry for havin and attitude and shootin the bird". I said if he was sorry, he could sit down and talk it out further. I'm still concerned he didn't think shooting a bird was wrong (when he was 5 or 6 he kicked a small dog we were caring for because it chewed his football). I think because he thought it was the right thing to say, did he eventually say that it felt a little wrong. Anyway, he seemed to apologize for the attitude and everything. We told him that because he was taking responsibility, we would allow him to play with friends unsupervised (because if he continued to claim his friends make him do things then we should conclude he needs to be supervised).

Then we dropped the bomb that there will be no more airsoft gun. Suddenly he became quiet, with an attitude, and angry tears in his eyes. I swear this kid's whole life is the airsoft gun. We said if he's that into shooting, he can keep the water guns and nerf guns (with target). My husband also offered to take archery classes with him. We also suggested if he liked playing War or whatever, he can use the other guns as sort of a prop. Of course this wasn't good enough for him. You'd think his world is over. This only confirms to me that I'm ALWAYS right about him and he does, indeed have an unhealthy obsession with guns and is not mature enough to handle it. Not to mention my 3 year old, who worships the ground he walks on and copies everything he does, now talks about shooting people and shooting dead. My 3 year old told me a boy pushed him so could I go shoot the boy. He then turned to my SS and said, "Mommy doesn't have a gun so can she use your gun?" My son doesn't watch anything violent and his best friend is a 5 year old girl. He gets all of this stuff from my SS10.

Luckily, my SS is going to his Mom's for most of the summer. He'll be gone in a few days. I look forward to my BS3 being away from him (and not copying his every move). I also will enjoy the peace, and I will be delivering my baby boy at the end of July. This gives us a good month to bond (my husband, 3 year old and newborn) before SS10 comes back. I dread his return already! I really feel he is the type of kid that will never be able to be completely trusted. I really feel he'll continue to lie and do stupid things as long as he thinks he'll get away with it and we'll always have to investigate to get to the truth. I did start counseling so that will help. But my SS strikes me as the type who will one day snap and kill his stepmother (me!). He hurts animals, love guns, has a problem showing emotions, and gets really angry when confronted for doing something wrong. He's completely charming and manipulate anyone to thinking he's a great kid. But if a parent tells him he's in trouble, his true colors show.


1day@atime's picture

My husband decided to take it away! I'm just concerened that my husband waits until incidents happen instead of facing who his son is and his maturity level.

Pantera's picture

thats exactly what i did. all of the pellets and the gun must have gotten lost? (i threw them away, he had 2).

mamacat_30's picture

My DH has this story about when he was young, his friend had a BB gun and was shooting at some birds. Well, he actually hit one and it died. Kids parents found out, and made him pluck, cook and eat said bird. GROSS! But the kid stopped shooting at animals. Not recommending this!

But personally I don't mind nerf, water and airsoft guns, AS LONG AS the operators are mature enough to understand what they have. My S-Kids all have BB Guns, but they follow all the "gun" safety rules we have in place. Trust me when I say that if I found any of them misusing those things, they would never see it again! Keep trying to redirect his attention to something else, less violent, that he might grow to love just as much!

P.S. I would definitely continue to monitor the way he treats animals in the future.

1day@atime's picture

That's funny. Good lesson. My husband told him unless he was killing an animal to cook it for dinner, he shouldn't shoot it. Unfortunately, the airsoft will only injure a bird. We explained to him it can mess up it's wings for flight and possibly make it suffer. My SS still asks for help from Dad to cut his pancakes, so I doubt he'll be killing animals for food.

We do encourage other things. Unfortunately he's obsessed with weapons. After the gun conversation, he asked his dad to help him make an small sowrd or axe out of wood. He already has a wooden sword they made and made a bow and arrow with his friend. I know those won't harm anything, but his obsession worries me. He talks about being in the army. He knows nothing about the world, and I think he just wants an excuse to shoot a real gun. My ex's friend who was in the navy admitted to joining so he could be gun happy. So I'm sure it does happen. Very disturbing to me.

pre_heated's picture

Wow, I totally hear what you are saying! I have a step daughter who her father has made his fishing buddy. A couple times a week they are out shooting target with guns, or bows. They go ground squirl hunting, fishing. Ever since she was 2. They watch hunting shows contantly together. So who thinks that this is too much bloodshed n a young childs life? I mean dad tries to explain the ethics of hunting or whatever, but to a 5 year old she just shoots to kill. (made me laugh when you made the snapping and killing the step mom comment, I have said the same thing!) I catch her being too rough with the dogs sometimes, can't tell if its normal or a for warning. Good for you for sticking with your guns (so to speak) and enjoy your summer of freedom, congrats on the new baby.
best wishes

mommyamor's picture

My BS9 has also had the gun obsession and probably still does. But surprisingly the guns have either been destroyed (by him) or have been confiscated (by me)and made to disappear along with the BB's due to an incident. Hey outta sight, outta mind right?

What urks me is that these things are sold at the local liquor store for crying out loud! From pellet guns to snap guns to water guns. Ugh!

1day@atime, At least ur skid chooses to be something with potential, my boy has this insane desire to be a HOBO??? But I'm staying hopeful that this is something he'll grow out of..... :?

1day@atime's picture

LMAO a hobo really?? Never heard of that as an actual goal. I guess with that as a goal, if he is anything else it's considered overachieving!

Old Timer's picture

I got my first gun, a 410 shotgun when I was 5. I got a 22 when I was 8. Dad did not believe in having toy guns as he thought it taught disrespect for real guns. We lived way in the country. I high school probably 2/3 of the boys in the school brought their rifles with them during hunting season. The world has changed ... I only own one gun today for home protection.

mommyamor's picture

LMAO!!! He can only go up from there...poor thing doesn't realize he loves money way too much for a goal like that! Biggrin

I am confused's picture

If you never buy a boy a gun, fake, real, BB, nerf, or otherwise, you're going to find him with a 2x4 that's chopped off, magic markered, with some nails on it, and he's going to use it to "shoot" rubber bands and he's going to run around going "bang, bang, bang, bang".

It's a boy thing. You might as well try to keep makeup off girls. The sooner he learns what they really are, what damage they're capable of doing, and learns to RESPECT guns, the better off you'll be. It's like trying to keep drugs from a drug addict. Ain't gonna happen. Take away the supply, and the demand still exists. Where's there's demand, some supply, somehow and somewhere, will be found.

I've had gun since I was 5 years old and went through an experience exactly like someone above's DH, where my Grandpa saw me shoot a cardinal and made me eat it (NASTY) and since that day I have never shot anything I didn't eat. I will say I hunt and have several guns for protection and hunting, but I'm not some cabin-bound nutso. I simply learned what guns are, what they're capable of, and how to use and maintain them properly, and I have a healthy RESPECT for them.

Old Timer's picture

DPW ... it's an odd thing - if you try to keep guns away from a boy he will find creative ways to make a gun or buy one without you knowing. It's better to give him one and then talk to him over and over and over about safety. Take it away when he isn't being safe and respectful.

ANother poster said it's like trying to keep make up away from girls. Yep, I'd agree with that.

Sorry, it's a guy thing.

1day@atime's picture

Excuse me, but you need to read my post carefully. I am his Stepmother and was against him even having the gun in the first place (due to comments made in the past and immaturity). This was my husband's idea, and I was very vocal about disagreeing with his decision. But, as you know, as a stepmother I can't call the last shot. Also, I have my own child to look after (and I'm pregnant) and it is not my responsibility to babysit him nor is it my place to overrule my husband's wishes towards him. I do not take responsibility for my Stepson shooting a bird. That's between him and my husband. I am, however, the one who figured out it was happening, because I've got great intuition. God knows the sh*t my SS would be getting into/away with if I wasn't here to investigate and tell my husband. His mother is even worse than my husband. She would call him out of school and tell him about her days of ditching. We now live several states away from her, and trust me, I try everything in my power to give my two sense to my husband on how this kid should be raised.

1day@atime's picture

My husband owns the house. My name isn't on it. I agree they're stupid. And now he has to sell it or ship it to his Moms Smile