So you want to buy your girl a gun for Christmas…

My blog has been receiving a lot of hits from people Googling for information about which concealed carry gun to buy their girl for Christmas. The correct answer is: DO NOT BUY YOUR GIRL A CONCEALED CARRY GUN FOR CHRISTMAS!!!! Don’t buy her any guns for Christmas. No plinkster .22 handguns, no rifles, no shotguns, nada.

Now, before everyone jumps out of his tree, just hear me out on this. A gun you like, that has the stopping power you want and feels good in your hand probably won’t be the gun she likes, she can easily carry and feels good in her hands.

For example, GB carries a Springfield XD and I can’t even reach the trigger on that gun when its backstrap is properly seated in the web of my hand. Should he haul off and buy me one because it’s such a great gun and it would be a good Christmas present for me, I won’t like it. Shooting it will hurt because I won’t be able to hold it right and in an emergency, I’ll be throwing shots away because I can’t aim while wiggling my hand around the side of the handle of the gun trying to reach the trigger.

Another example is that GB carried a Bersa Thunder .380 before he got the XD. Me? I’m not carrying that thing! It pokes the crap out of me with the little nubby prominence near the hammer and the handle. If he had bought me this gun thinking it is small, easy to hold and hide, with decent stopping power in light of it’s weight, he would’ve bought me a paperweight. A gun I leave at home isn’t a good Christmas present.

One more thing to think about… You might think she needs a carry gun. What if she’s not into concealed carry and instead wants something she can hunt with? Shoot clay? Defend the house with? Plink? Attend an Appleseed shoot with? Before you think about picking up a gun for her, worry about not only if it’s the right gun for her, but also ask yourself:  “is it the gun she wants?”

Do I have you talked out of buying your girl a surprise gun for Christmas yet? Good. Instead, buy her a gift certificate to her favorite gun shop and let her pick out her new present. Or, if you don’t need the “surprise” factor in your Christmas experience, sit her down, tell her your plans and invite her shopping with you to pick out her gun.

When she goes to redeem her gift card or if you take her on a non-surprise shopping spree, there are a few things to keep in mind:

  • If she doesn’t (yet) shoot, go over with her some gun-store etiquette before you leave the house. Let her know the counter-person should check the gun to make sure it’s empty before handing it to her. Tell her that although it’s just been checked, she should check it too. Teach her how to check it and be prepared to be right at her side, patiently walking her through it at the store if she forgets or is unsure of herself. Train her not to sweep anyone in the shop, especially herself, you and the salesman. Demonstrate that looking down the sights is a good thing, but that it should be done when the gun is trained on an empty wall or the floor and not on any other shoppers.
  • If she isn’t too green, but you still shoot more than she does, she might try to rely on your opinion because she knows your expertise is greater than hers. Do not let her do that! Because, again, a gun you like might not be the gun for her. Try phrases like, “I think it’s a good gun, but you’re the one that is going to shoot/carry it around every day.  Does it fit you?” And, “What do you think, honey?”
  • No matter her experience level, be sure she tries every gun on in her hands and that she can easily manipulate all of its buttons. Be sure she can reach the trigger properly, even on that first double-action shot. Please take her to a gun shop with an on-site range and pay for her to shoot her top three chosen on looks/feel/button pushing to make sure she’s going to like her present for a long time to come.
  • Make sure the man behind the counter knows your honey is the boss of this shopping expedition and that he must impress her to get a gun sold to you two today. If he tries to hand you a gun out of the case, don’t take it from him. Tell him, “it’s her gun, not mine.” Force him to hand it to her. He wants to tell you about some awesome features? Bring your girl into it. “Honey, it sounds good to me, but you’re the one that’s going to be using it. What do you think?” The focus should be on her, not on you guys.

Buying your girl a gun for Christmas is one of the sweetest presents you can give her because it gives her confidence, skill, determination, protection, freedom, fun and more. But the gun is only able to give these things to her if it is the gun for her. Shopping without her there might end in you making an expensive, bad gift selection and therefore a bad purchase. To avoid such a disaster, go shopping with her and take your time in the store. Try everything on and put each selection through the paces, including shooting it. Doing this will show her you value her comfort, safety and opinion. It will make her a more confident gun-shopper and will increase the amount of brownie points you reap from Christmas gifts.

Merry Christmas! Happy Shopping!

10 Comments

  • Buy her a squirt gun and a promise to upgrade. 🙂 Then you have something to gift wrap.

    I let my wife pick out her first gun all by herself with zero influence from me. She loves that gun and it is _hers_.

    • girlsloveguns says:

      The squirt gun idea is a really cute idea. Gift wrap it in beautiful packaging and watch her face transform from confusion to joy as you explain that the squirt gun is representative of anything she wants in her favorite gun shop.

      With all four of my guns, GB has helped me pick them out, but with each purchase, I’m getting more confident on buying them on my own. The last one, I bought nearly independently. It’s been a great growing experience for me going from anti-gun to “hey I got four guns of my own now!”

      Thanks for being so supportive of your wife. Nice guys who help the women in their lives are a great help in getting the number of female shooters to grow.

      • A guy getting involved with a girl obtaining a gun can’t make the mistake of that gun being even remotely his. Don’t “let her use” one of your guns. Don’t buy it for her but then have possession of it most of the time. Don’t loan her ammo.

        She should have her own box/safe. Her own ammo. Her own oil/tools. If you buy her lingerie you don’t keep it in your sock drawer with your mismatched socks, only bringing it out when you think it is needed. She needs to know that the gun is 100% hers, (especially if it is a self defense gun) even if you screw up and are no longer her boyfriend/etc. [Which would be stupid. Dude. She has a gun.]

        • girlsloveguns says:

          I completely agree with everything you said and I love your nightie/sock drawer analogy. Well explained!

          GB couldn’t understand why I wanted to by my carry gun although we’re on a very tight budget. He said, “but you can use my old Bersa.” I tried to explain to him that I needed my own gun. Not just because if we broke up, I’d be SOL, but also because there’s an important sense of ownership there that I’d be missing out on.

          I bought my own gun. I bought a cleaning kit too, even though I could use his. While it was cheaper for me mooching his ammo, I buy my own now too. I need to have my own stuff.

          I can’t help but agree, it would be stupid to let a gun girl go. 🙂

  • James says:

    The moral of the story here is……..
    Buy as many guns as you possibly can. That way, your significant other has plenty of options when it comes time for them to find something they want, they can try one of yours. Then, you have an excuse to buy even MORE guns.

    • girlsloveguns says:

      I agree, purchasing a wide gun selection is an admirable goal. But, depending on your gift-recipient, negative brownie points might be earned from gifting her a used and beat up gun out of your collection as a strategic move to give you an excuse to go get yourself an expensive, shiny, brand-new toy. To pull that one off, you’d have to be sure your girl doesn’t mind used presents and that she doesn’t think mean thoughts about you when you go blow tons of money when the family needs a new washing machine. 😉

      • girlsloveguns says:

        To my honey, I don’t mind used presents. I’ll take your shotgun!

      • James says:

        How’d you know we needed a new washing machine?

        Almost every gun I have ever owned has made its’ way into the ol’ lady’s hands for trial. Used, new, she is indifferent.
        As a result, she has developed a taste for some and outright hated others. (See also Skyy 9mm compact. Feel free to ask GB about that one, he hated it too, to the point where he broke it. 🙂 )

        And I am not advocating giving her the used and beat up gun while I keep the shiny new one. Much the opposite.
        In fact, I have lost a couple of firearms to her because she shot them and fell in love with them, and then I wound up buying a used version of that same thing for myself, such as when I bought that Bersa back from GB last time. 🙂

        Out of her collection, only one of the guns was bought used, and that is only because it was a very difficult to find rifle that is no longer made and has not been made in many years. Everything else was bought new. The reason she wanted what she has is because, surprise, she got to try someone else’s used firearm first.

        Just sayin’. I’m fortunate that my ol’ lady doesn’t discern the difference, she just likes guns. So, go buy (or build) more. 🙂

        • girlsloveguns says:

          We almost need a new washing machine. For some reason, ours was getting stuck in the agitator cycle. I ripped it’s face off and everything looks okay in there. What tinkering I did must have fixed it because it’s working now. I haven’t put its face back on yet. I have a superstitious theory that if I do, it will just quit working again.

          GB broke a gun!!! How scandalous. The only thing of his I hate is his HiPoint. My hatred has faded recently. Perhaps I should go shoot it again so I can remember how much I don’t like that gun.

          That’s good that you’re not advocating giving her used just so you can have new. Believe it or not, it’s a common strategy on some of the blogs, forums and websites I read. lol. As is the buy her a “gift” and when she doesn’t like it/can’t use it keep it for yourself theory of Christmas shopping.

          I’m like your lady; I don’t mind used. If it’s in good working condition/not too ugly or fix-upable. 🙂

          • James says:

            If you are short on hate for the Hipoint, just imagine yourself shooting at targets with a toaster. It’s pretty close to the same ergonomics, and the Hipoint probably used to be a toaster at one time in its’ existence.
            All kidding aside, I have a Hipoint carbine you should try. I bet a dollar you would love shooting it. Fairly light, accurate as heck, and almost no recoil. Ask GB about it.

            Yes, GB broke my Skky 9mm. Although, it should be mentioned that the part that broke was pretty well known across the internet for breaking on those guns. I took it back to the guy I bought it from, they shipped it back to Skky, and I had a new gun in a couple weeks. So, GB breaking my gun actually worked out just fine.
            I sold it back to the store a couple months later. What a piece of crap.

            Item of note, a new Academy sports opened up here recently. While perusing the hunting section (namely looking for a good deal on .30 carbine ammo for that new-to-me M1a carbine I bought), my significant other looked up at all the rifles on the rack and spotted a Remington 770 series rifle (well, she saw the whole rack of different calibers of them), and while I was standing there, she asked to look at one of them. She then requested a new Christmas gift in the form of a rifle.

            Yes, this is my smug face.

            Well, not as smug as it could be, as the .30 carbine ammo was 47 bucks for a box of 50.
            Ouch.
            Note to self: M1a carbines are not only useless, they’re expensive to boot.

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