Many of you are parents—and some of you have daughters. My step-father once told me about the birth of his only child, my stepsister, that when the doctor placed her in his arms the day she was born, he looked up to the sky—horrified: “A girl?” expecting a boy, but held a pink blanket and snuggling child, “God… this means responsibility!”

I’m sure if you have a daughter you feel the same—having a daughter is more of a “responsibility” than having a son. Albeit funny, in all seriousness there are some things you should understand (if you don’t already) about what your daughter is going to face in this world. She is never going to have the same encounters as sons—never. And that’s just how the world is right now. So what do we do? Teach them responsibility, teach them to shoot, and give them a gun.

5. It’s scary out there.

About 80% of women encounter harassment before they turn 18. (In fact, I recently read a blog about how a 20-year-old woman, in response, started taking selfies with her catcallers on the street, and well, go read it yourself. Here’s Buzzfeed’s link) This is still happening. According to RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network), college-aged/younger women are at a higher risk than any other demographic to be assaulted, especially sexual violence.

This is number 5 because it’s beat into the dirt. However, it is relevant.

4. The goal is for your daughter to become independent

I’m waiting for the, “But she doesn’t need a gun to be independent” statements. Hear me out though: You may give her pepper spray (and she might be more comfortable carrying that around with her everyday), but what about when she moves into her first apartment, alone? What about when she wants to go camping by herself (I’m not just talking about the two-legged predators). It is important for her to feel safe. (But especially at home.) Teaching her how to shoot should incorporate situational awareness, too—which if she is off doing her thing, she will be confident thus becoming a much more difficult target.

3. Teaching her to shoot gives her a sense of responsibility for herself

Why do we send our daughters to karate? For the same reason I’ve previously touched on: personal defense. And it also teaches her discipline, responsibility, coordination, and confidence.

2. It is a sport she might be more interested in and it might be a stress reliever

When I was growing up, I hated sports. But I loved to shoot. It’s interesting to note that some of the top shooters in the world are women. This can give you the opportunity to spend time together doing something you both enjoy. If you both take the time, she will become a better and more responsible shooter as well.

Additionally, an hour at the range can turn around a bad day. After an hour at the range, you both will be more relaxed and focused. “Group therapy” right?

1. Empowerment

Knowledge is power. The more you know how to protect yourself, the more empowered you are. Empowered, confident people are not soft targets.

 

What was the first gun you decided to have your daughter shoot, and why?

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