We finished up our Ladies Only class recently, despite some nasty weather it was a great class. Skill sets varied from some who carry a firearm in the performance of their duties and others who carried for personal protection. Some who had been shooting for a while and some who attended their first formal class.
I received lots of feedback both during the debrief and privately after class. One that I was very happy to hear was the difference in mindset the training had for them. I cannot emphasize enough how important the proper mindset is regardless of the class, weapon system or gender. As we see the world around us decaying on a daily basis you really have to take a long hard look at what that means to you at a personal level. Are you prepared to protect yourself, whether with a gun, knife or other tool? If there is one thing we can all agree on is evil will find a way. No draconian gun laws, “gun free zones” or the coming together to sing kum-ba-yah will change that.
As social creatures we interact with the world around us on a personal level, it’s not reasonable to put up walls both figuratively and literally. As we interact with each other we have two main methods of dialogue; you can either persuade me to your viewpoint through logic and reason. If that should fail and you are still hell bent on getting your point across then you will have to force it upon me. This is where the sidearm or pistol comes into it’s own because without it you would be free to impose your will. With it at my side, I maintain my freedom of choice.
From a mechanical point of view it really isn’t as hard as some may think. In fact, I find women learning exponentially faster than men. Maybe it’s their lack of ego or lack of preconceived notions, I don’t really know because I’m a guy, but as an instructor it is awesome. I provide them with some feedback and boom, they take it on board and can see their performance improve. We had many make huge gains in the class with little to no previous experience.
Selecting the firearm you feel will serve you best can be confusing and intimidating. I discourage the smaller and lighter choices, they seem like good choices until you have to use them. Training with your firearm is incredibly important obviously, that’s where you see the negative side to some of these smaller guns. However, with that being said, a gun is better than no gun. Magazine capacity, type of action and size all have advantages that should be exploited. Try to define what you expect out of your purchase. Will you carry it on your person, in a purse or leave it at home? All of these factors will affect your decision.
Lastly, once you have made your purchase; seek out qualified training. One thing you will learn as you get more involved with shooting is that it is a very family oriented activity. Classes from reputable instructors create an open and positive learning environment. You might be a little nervous, but so is everyone else. In our classes everyone cheers, supports and competes with each other. You will make new friends in the blink of the eye.
In the end, your personal safety is your personal responsibility.