I Let/Don’t Let my Children Play with Toy Guns


I bought my son his first gun when he was barely two years old.

It was the first summer that he could walk and he was also really into bubbles. I came across a clear plastic bubble-maker with colorful tubes and wheels inside, and I remember being so excited to bring it home and fill the yard for him.

At first he watched and chased the bubbles as I pumped them out—the toy was very efficient—then he wanted a turn at the trigger. And that is when I realized what I had bought him was actually a gun. A bubble gun.

Suddenly, this idyllic afternoon in the yard seemed off. There was my toddler, with a gun in his hand, chasing me. Yes, of course, I know it was just a toy, but it felt wrong to see his hands on the trigger, to hear him make little poof-poof sounds (how does he even know what sound a gun makes?), and the fact that the gun was pointed at me made the situation even worse.

At the end of the summer I made the gun disappear and since then our house has been a no toy gun zone. No water guns. No bubble guns. No wooden guns. No. Guns.


Read the rest of my debate with Lauren Apfel on Brain,Child

2 Comments Add yours

  1. omnimom says:

    Such a pleasure to write with you.

    1. zsmc says:

      The pleasure was all mine!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s