being a mom

It Doesn’t Matter How Against Toy Guns You Are Because Everything Is A Gun

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127999253Whether to not you let your kids play with toy guns is a HOT TOPIC ON MOMMYISH™. I AM NOT SURE WHY I HAVE TRADEMARKED THIS. But anyway, parents have VERY PASSIONATE (™?) feeeeeeeligs about this topic and no matter what side you are on, PRO TOY GUN or ANTI TOY GUN I am here to tell you it doesn’t matter. Why? Because as a mom who has raised many a chile’ I am here to tell you no matter how anti-gun you are, your kids will turn anything into a damn gun anyway.

With Christmas fast approaching, you may be contemplating whether or not to buy your kid a squirt gun or a Nerf gun or a toy gun, even those of you out there who are extremely anti-real-gun. Even though I’m not a fan of real guns for me, toy guns that shoot toy darts don’t brother me because I know that almost anything can be used as a gun. Here are things that my children have turned into guns, complete with the bang bang pow you’re dead sound effects.

A carrot 

(Image: getty images)

(Image: getty images)

You think you are creating your kid a delicious, healthy snack and the next thing you know they are pointing it at their sister and shooting her for asking for someone to pass the hummus.

A hairbrush 

(Image: Getty Images)

(Image: Getty Images)

Excellent for removing tangles and pretending to shoot someone in the damn face.

A comb 

(Images: getty Images)

(Images: getty Images)

Excellent for being a gun when your mom confiscates the gun brush after you get busted for attempting to shoot someone in the damn face with it.

A toothbrush


See above.

A stick 

(Images: getty Images)

(Images: getty Images)

Nature’s gun.

A Doll 

(Image: getty Images)

(Image: getty Images)

 I have seen many a doll used as a weapon.

A spoon


(Image: getty images)

Basically, any piece of flatware, including straws and sporks.

A tampon 

(Image: getty images)

(Image: getty images)

If you have kids of a certain age and you share a bathroom with them and you had vowed to never buy them toy guns because they are against your principals you will one day hear them happily playing in their bedroom saying BANG BANG I SHOT YOU only to discover your personal feminine protection is being used as a firearm. Don’t ask me how I know this.

The cat



The cat is not a cat because you can take its paws and say pow pow pow it’s a cat gun.

 Their finger 



Trust me, this one is hard to confiscate.

So even though I’m not crazy about guns and real guns concern me and I don’t plan on buying my kids an actual gun that shoots even BBs, I can pretty much guarantee that if my kids wanna play cops and robbers, something will be used as a gun.

(Image: getty images)


  1. Krysta Dey

    December 16, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    My Duders have made “guns” out of mega blocks, a toy drill, a mini-hockey stick… the list goes on and on. They make “swords” too. Out of pretty much the same things. There’s just no stopping them.

  2. Kheldarson

    December 16, 2013 at 5:46 pm

    Heck, I fully expect to hand my child a foam funoodle made with a fiberglass core sword once he’s old enough to swing it and start teaching him SCA and Amtgard tactics. Better to recognize the type of play kids like (and frankly, I like) and harness it while teaching them what is and is not appropriate.

  3. Lackadaisical

    December 16, 2013 at 5:50 pm

    I live in a rather antigun country (UK) and my 4 year old daughter makes guns out of Lego and yet isn’t exposed to much by way of guns outside of playground play. She doesn’t even get it from TV as she really only watches the CBeebies channel, which is mostly educational and completely lacking in guns and violence. It isn’t a “bloody Americans and their love of guns” thing, it’s a how kids play thing. Not even our police have guns but the kids at school use pretend ones to catch bad guys.

  4. Tazlima

    December 16, 2013 at 6:06 pm

    Play is a way to practice important adult skills and historically those skills mostly fall into the categories of fighting or nurturing. Any healthy kid is going to play at both, regardless of their parents’ wishes or lifestyle. After all,what’s the alternative? Playing “cubicle?”

  5. Sam Inoue

    December 16, 2013 at 6:15 pm

    Yeah I live in Japan where people can’t even own guns and my daughter still makes guns out freaking everything. We decided if we stop her from wanting to play fight (cause really why try) we will just get her cool things to pretend to fight with. For christmas she is getting a wooden sword and shield, and a nerf crossbow thing. Plus she already owns water guns and such like that. Play is play, I want a kid with an awesome imagination.

  6. KayWren

    December 16, 2013 at 6:20 pm

    Just this week my son used an empty wrapping paper and a bunch of our wooden stringing beads for a gun and ammo. I was mostly just impressed with his imagination, while reminding him that leaving the beads scattered around the house was not the way this game should work.

  7. CrazyLogic

    December 16, 2013 at 6:29 pm

    Personally, I’d say let them have a toy gun, and then use it to ingrain gun safety into them. “Do you intend to shoot the imaginary robber? No? Then don’t point the gun at them and take your finger of the trigger.”

    It’s actually what my uncle did with my cousin, and that kid has characters he draws posing with guns practice gun safety.

    • Paul White

      December 17, 2013 at 12:44 pm

      That’s what Grandpa did with us. Worked ok.

  8. candyvines

    December 16, 2013 at 7:14 pm

    Cats ARE laser guns, though.

  9. DeanaCal

    December 16, 2013 at 7:31 pm

    Yes, a cat is definitely a weapon. One if mine is really mean, and seriously, if somebody broke into our house all I would have to do is chuck the cat at him and it’s over, man.

    My daughter is 12 and has recently gotten into archery. Prior to this, she had nerf guns, LARP swords, shields made out of old pizza pans, etc. Now that she has a reason to learn and practice real weapon safety, she’s actually calmed down the play fighting quite a bit.

    • Just me 2

      December 17, 2013 at 10:00 am

      Can I be your kid? I want a LARP sword

  10. Meghan

    December 16, 2013 at 8:11 pm

    My personal favorite is chewing a sandwich into the shape of a gun. Classic.

    • FormerlyKnownAsWendy

      December 16, 2013 at 10:25 pm

      or just the slice of very dangerous cheese

  11. Kay_Sue

    December 16, 2013 at 9:01 pm

    We have epic m-fing Nerf battles. Just beware, if you set foot in my home, you have made yourself a target…

    …and I am a very good Nerf marksman.

    • Natasha B

      December 16, 2013 at 9:39 pm

      Yassss! We get down with the Nerf wars over here 🙂 my all time fav is the little six shooter, never jams and always hits my mark

    • Kay_Sue

      December 16, 2013 at 9:44 pm

      We found their Koosh line for my preschooler. That…is amazing. It shoots balls, they go SO FAR! And because it’s intended for the preschool sect, it’s easy to shoot to boot. Harder to load though–no clips or slots for multiples ones. But it’s my current go to. 😉

    • Natasha B

      December 16, 2013 at 10:14 pm

      Oooh I’m going to have to look into that!

    • Fuzzy 'n Broken Mirror

      December 17, 2013 at 1:55 pm

      Who needs nerf when you have tennis and golf balls?

    • Kay_Sue

      December 18, 2013 at 8:21 am

      Coincidentally, those guns I mentioned to Natasha B shoot a variety of round projectiles besides the approved ammunition they come with. Don’t ask me, or my husband’s shins, how we know this. 😉

  12. AP

    December 17, 2013 at 1:28 am

    The cat gun cracked me up!

  13. FF4life

    December 17, 2013 at 6:11 am

    Tommycat gun. PEW PEW PEW PEW.

  14. allisonjayne

    December 17, 2013 at 9:30 am

    We’re pretty anti-violence/anti-gun in our home (my wife’s a counsellor for assaulted women, plus we’re both wimpy urbanite Canadians), so we don’t have any gun toys and we have Netflix so basically the only thing my kid watches is Sesame Street. But she looooves ‘shooting fire’ with her hands. I’m assuming she got this from daycare…it started with imitating the older boys who were pretending to be spiderman. Anyway, quite frankly it doesn’t bother me.

    I guess I take the approach that I’m certainly not going to *encourage* violence/hurting people, but I don’t want to tell her how she can and cannot play.

    Plus she mostly does it to the cats and they’re assholes anyway.

  15. Polyamorous Mom

    December 17, 2013 at 9:49 am

    Yes! my kids will make anything a gun….or s a sword….. or an ax,,,,

  16. Alicia Kiner

    December 17, 2013 at 11:36 am

    This is so true. My son will build a gun out of anything. The kid wrapped pipe cleaners around Lincoln Logs to tie them together. Ingenious little bugger. What are you going to do? We had nerf guns for a while, but the darts just seem to vanish. We had some epic battles though.

  17. Janok Place

    December 17, 2013 at 12:45 pm

    The rule growing up was always “Do not point ANY gun, toy gun, or otherwise at anything you do not intend to kill.” We grew up in a family that hunted, so we knew what that meant and the consequence of aiming, and shooting a real gun at a living creature. Guns are not games, and even your play guns are to be treated with respect (only for target practice etc)…. Pretending to kill people is not fun, etc. I think they let water guns slide…

  18. Teleute

    December 17, 2013 at 2:49 pm

    I grew up playing with all sorts of toy weapons — air rifles, phasers, nerf bows, plastic nunchucks and swords — and I love ’em to death. But I don’t want my kid playing with toy guns until I’m confident he understand the difference between a real gun and a fake one.

    My son and I play with swords instead of guns. Last count, he had twelve of them. My rule with these is “it’s not a sword unless it is a sword.” A sword is a sword; a stick is not a sword. I don’t want my kid picking up sticks on the playground and whacking his friends with them, and when he gets older I most certainly do not want him picking up other objects — say, a poptart — and declaring it to be a gun. That sort of crap is liable to get my kid expelled and my ass busted on suspicion of being some sort of arms dealer.

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