Toy Guns Won't Kill Your Sons

When I found out that there was a little boy inside my belly, the first thing I thought was: I'm terrified. This was soon followed by: I am so excited! I will teach him how to cook and do ballet! He will appreciate art and literature! Lastly I thought this: We won't do any guns or violence in MY house.

Oh how I laugh at myself now.

The second my little boy started walking, he started turning things into guns. And swords. And knives. And weapons of any kinds. We go to an amazing preschool where the curriculum is weapon-free, but somehow, somewhere he is picking it up and I, as his mom, am powerless to stop it. So I don't try.


Writer Jillian Lauren addresses this issue on MSNBC and I agree wholeheartedly. Why bother trying to stop our sons from playing with guns?

I used to be anti-gun, too. Until I had a boy. I wouldn't say I am pro weapon now. It makes me cringe every time my son screams about shooting. I grew up in a very gun-free environment, after all. But I also think fighting your kid's interests is pointless. I don't know where he learned it, but he turns EVERYTHING into a weapon.

I would rather be the mom who played along than the mom who fought him around every corner. Of course, I also want him to learn about safety, which is where my husband comes in. He grew up around guns and is an excellent shot. So I put the training in his hands.

But I have also gone outside my comfort zone. I use water guns and let my son play video games at the arcade in which animals are shot. I still can't bring myself to let him use any people shooting games, but I also know I won't control what he sees for forever. I would rather he learn safety and be able to be open about it than feel like I judge him or his interests with anything but love. I am not interested in raising the next Norman Bates, full of mother issues because his mom refused to let him pursue his own passions.

He is my son, but he is his own person. Just as my daughter once gravitated toward pink and purple and princesses, he is moved toward guns and weapons. So fine. I surrender.

Sure, in my highly educated, liberal enclave of the country, there are those who try to maintain weapons-free homes. But watching my older child go into a princess phase and come out of it on her own, mostly because I didn't fight it, tells me something. My daughter is now athletic and strong. She wants to play sword fights and get dirty and play with bugs. She is no gender stereotype.

I am assuming my son will do the same. He may be a ballet dancer who loves guns. But I will never be the mom who fights him on what he likes. If my kids have an interest, I will be right there with them supporting it.

Unless it's taxidermy.

Do you support guns in your house?

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