I Need All the Advice (mostly just holsters, but I'm all ears for anything you have to say)

I’m a new gun owner, and am still awaiting my CC permit in the mail, so I have a bit of time left to try and get as much proper training and comfortability with my gun, despite my need for the gun is right now, not two to three weeks from now. Anyway…

The specific place I need this gun is a small room, and can only visually see one door. I’ve already deduced the need to have one in the chamber, and am getting comfortable with the idea right now. I suppose I could start now in my own house with getting comfortable with the idea.

I have read some very valid arguments for not carrying in a purse, and I honestly agree with them, but there are two reasons why I feel this is necessary for me. First, I have an awkward belly, and any sort of belt seems to not an option. I don’t even wear jeans because of my awkward belly (thanks fast food and pregnancy and laziness). Second is that the only place I think I will carry is in this small room that I’m in an hour a day, and having a cross body purse on during that time is reasonable. I can reach into my purse comfortably. I’ve started wearing my gun-less purse the last few days and, I guess, doing a “dry run” about how it would all work.

Now, thanks to these “dry runs”, I realized that sometimes after this one hour small room adventure, I go to the basement and quilt. I did this today and noticed that it was not reasonable for me to wear this cross body bag. Now what?

I have read about this “sticky” holster. This seemed to be a good solution - I could take the gun from my purse in the bathroom, and slip it into this for quilting. I was thinking the sticky holster because I wear leggings and there doesn’t seem to be a way to clip a holster. But I’m worried the sticky holster won’t protect the trigger well enough, or that it does, indeed slip out when bending over, or whenever.

I feel I’ve done a lot of research on all the different ways to carry. The bra carry seems it would not only be awkward, but getting to it through all my Wisconsin layers for winter seems like it would be quite the hinderance, while my purse would sit right by my right hand, and from practice from a sitting position, it seems I could draw from it very fast.

Ankle carry seems like my gun would be too far away, and also, I don’t wear any kind of clothing that would make this an option. Again, leggings.

Back to the room situation. The door I cannot see from where I sit, can be locked. It’s the smoker’s porch though, so if someone gets up to smoke, that will be unlocked again unless I “have to go to the bathroom” and lock it after they get back. If this individual decides to pull a gun out while in the room with us, or get into the room with the gun, there is no place to hide or run. This person comes in with a back pack, and today I noticed he had the backpack open on his lap during the whole hour, and it made me very nervous, but quite frankly, he could take all the time he needs to grab a weapon. Also, I usually sit by the door, but in order to stare a person down entering a building, it would be obvious I’m staring. I noted that at any time this chair is open, he chooses to sit in it, effectively being able to block the exit. Ugh.

I have also explored the idea of being slightly late to get into this room by way of having to “make my tea” or something, therefore him hopefully being in the room first. That way, I won’t feel like I need to keep my eye on the door at this point. Not sure how long I can pull that off, and at least one of the days in the week, I run the show and need to actually be in the room from the start.

I can avoid going to this hour room extravaganza every day, but my sobriety depends on being there. I’m also president of the building this meeting is in, and being around is just something I have to do. Even still, I could avoid the place, but avoiding the place on the chance of this person snapping and killing us all, seems drastic (although, here I am, taking drastic measures and feeling we’re all in danger). I do not scare easily, and probably to a fault. I’ve delivered pizzas with money for change in the ghettos near Seattle and wasn’t scared. I’ve been an over the road truck driver, walking alone through hundreds of trucks filled with lonely men, and wasn’t scared. I’ve done uber/lyft in the Minneapolis area at all times of the day and night, and wasn’t scared. This man scares me. I honestly can’t think of a time in my life I’ve felt such fear or paranoia.

There seems to be no right answers here for me yet and if you can help me sort them out, and give me ideas, and help me with holsters, so on and so forth, I’d be very grateful.

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Ok, first you’re going to be good at this.
I love your enthusiasm.

Start with this realization. You will spend as much on your first gun as you do on several holsters.

There’s just no way for anyone to know what’s going to work for you.

I really like QVO Tactical holsters. They are high quality and slow on delivery.

In my opinion, you should not get a sticky holster yet. Get comfortable with safely handling guns, using traditional, OWB holsters Then you can transition to IWB or pocket carry.

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@LolaKinks First is there a way you could get court ordered Supervised Visits? My personal favorite is the JM4, but I’m suggesting that you buy your first Gun then buy yourself a holster. Belly bands are comfortable (ComfortTec); if you don’t have a gun yet, then go to the rental counter at your favorite gun shop and ask your counter person to try holsters and guns, they should accommodate your request. But I would get a gun first. Personally I have probably 30 holsters over the years. Most people do if they have had guns for awhile.
One thing about the Community if you ask a question you’re very likely to get 50 different people answering you. Good luck to you and Again Welcome to the Community.
Also; the USCCA App has MEMBER ONLY DISCOUNTS area try it there as well.

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A few basic points, and my humble opinions…

Purse, or off-body carry isn’t preferred for two main reasons. 1) it’s slow. 2) it’s hard to prevent unauthorized access (purse snatcher, kids digging in purse, nosy co-workers). As long as you can manage those two items, I wouldn’t write off off-body carry just make sure you maintain control of the bag. Carrying cross-body helps reduce the purse snatching element, but you have to be aware of it those times you do take it off like at home (kids getting into it) or the bathroom (dont leave it in the stall, some purse snatchers will reach over a door knowing people hang bags there). I myself will sometimes carry in a backpack/slingpack in really non-permissive environments.

It sounds like this is some sort of stalker situation? Or maybe a disgruntled co-worker? Not super relevant if you don’t want to say, but it sounds like the person might have seen what you wear/carry before and so would notice a change in your setup. If you didn’t wear a purse cross-body before and now you are, he may assume you have “something” in it (pepper spray, taser, firearm). One of the keys of being a concealed carrier is the concealed bit. No one should know you’re carrying. Something to consider.

Another “off-body” option to consider is the ubiquitous “fanny pack” or as I like to call them… “utility belts” :slight_smile:

As far as carrying on your person… The beltline is one place to carry, either 3 o’clock (your right hip), 4-5 o’clock (just behind your hip but before the small of your back), appendix carry which is 12-230 o’clock. I can’t comment on the feminine figure, but lots of men with a belly carry successfully appendix. Google a guy named “Spencer Keeper” who also makes holsters and he’s got quite a few articles on the subject. You can carry inside the waistband (IWB) or outside the waistband (OWB).

The do have the bra carry (“bang bra” i think they’re called) and another good option is a belly band. You will really have to try lots of options or hopefully find someone with a similar build to help. Your clothing choices play a big part in this too. If you commonly wear shirts that drape you will have an easier time. Clothing ideas -> https://www.stylemetactical.com/ Leggings with built-in CCW -> https://alexoathletica.com/

You’ve mentioned ankle carry isn’t a good option, but maybe pocket carry (with the right firearm) might be a good option as well.

The size and shape of the firearm will also make a big difference. You might not conceal a Glock 19, but maybe a Glock 43 you could. Maybe a semi-auto with it’s blocky shape doesn’t work, but a small j-frame revolver might be more concealable.

Another good resource -> https://thewellarmedwoman.com/

Have you also given thought to other options in addition to the firearm? Pepper spray, taser, etc? What if you cant get to your purse, or some other situation. You might be able to stash pepper spray in a drawer that you wouldn’t leave a firearm in. Also, is there anyone else around who is also concerned? Teamwork is hard to beat…

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There are options for those of us who have less than model figures… I wear Dene Adam’s phantom CC leggings and they will conceal anything including a full size firearm. These are good winter-wear weight but too heavy, I think, for summer. Since its winter, these are perfect:

I’ve tried a number of different brands… Dene Adam’s are what I actually wear, and actually carry with.

I also wear the carry tank from them… it’s my favorite way to carry, comfortable and secure.

They have kydex holsters for trigger protection for many models of guns, or you can get a trigger guard like this:

Elite Force Holsters Trigger Guard for Glock Models - Assorted Colors

The cord can be pinned into the corset or pocket and the guard pops off when you draw.

Any leggings, corset, or pocket draw is going to be slower than most holster draws so you want to practice practice practice. Wear the same clothing you would otherwise wear… you have to practice your draw from what you will be wearing or you may not get it done should you need to actually draw.

You can practice drawing at home with an unloaded and cleared firearm… dry fire practice in drawing and aiming is critical when you are try to build muscle memory. I recommend you put your ammo in another room or inside an inconvenient drawer when you do your dry fire practice… you do not want to inadvertently load live rounds.

Be VERY aware of how you reholster… people have accidentally caught the trigger on clothing and fired their gun while reholstering. Shooting yourself accidentally is not a helpful strategy, so Take Your Time, LOOK your gun back into position, double check clearance every time. Theres no reason to rush reholstering.

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Do you have a coach or trainer yet? If not, I strongly recommend you get one… USCCA has certified trainers listed, if you need help finding one let me know. A trainer is going to get you the fastest results in making sure you know what you need to in order to effectively defend yourself. Having a firearm, and the resolve to use it if necessary, is part of the picture, but having the knowledge of how to use it effectively, without unnecessarily endangering anyone else, is also crucial.

If you are not a USCCA member yet, join. If you have to defend yourself, the member benefits will help provide legal and financial support to make sure that the aftermath is not worse than the assault.

You may want to read this:
The Cornered Cat: A Woman’s Guide to Concealed Carry

In paperback, kindle, and on audiobook. Free on Kindle Unlimited. It’s my where-to-start comprehensive read for women. Some of the laws have changed since it was written, but its excellent and on point for everything else. Practical and no BS, straight up.

USCCA’s women’s concealed carry book is outstanding, great information on safety, safe handling, accurate shooting, as well as carry and self defense issues:

If you are going to wait for your permit before you carry (so you don’t break the law) you may want to have other methods at hand… get some pepper gel spray or taser or whatever your state allows.

Lastly, I know if you’re maintaining your sobriety with this meeting that one of the things you’ve been asked to address is how to make good choices that don’t put you at risk.

The first rule of self defense is not getting in the self-defence situation in the first place. Some put it like this - “Don’t go stupid places at stupid times and do stupid things with stupid people”. Violating even one of those 4 components elevates our risk. Sometimes a situation can’t be avoided, but more often people don’t avoid it because doing so is inconvenient in some way.

So I’d ask you to consider if going to this particular meeting at this particular place and this particular time is really your only option. Consider if you can attend a different meeting at a different place or a different time. It may not be convenient, and a part of you may not like the idea of avoiding the situation, but the only fight you can be sure of winning is the one you don’t get in.

That’s enough advice from me tonight, hope you have a peaceful evening and an uneventful weekend.

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For your small room issue, are you seated at a table or desk?

While you are seated at either a magnet underneath could hold your firearm in a very easily accessible place.

You would of course have to be absolutely religious about making sure not to forget it when you leave.

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This is a lot more help than I anticipated. I am very grateful for the time and knowledge you all have shared!

Sully, thank you so much. I’m trying to do everything the right way, and it’s through some FB pages and these forums that I’m getting great advice and tips, and realizing there’s more to it than just getting a gun for protection, but also thinking ahead and such.

Robert, I’m not sure about court ordered visits. What I do know is that involving the police will not help the situation because they can’t do anything (yet) and he’d know it was me, or someone else in the group, or a few of us collectively, that caused the police to go poking around to no avail. I will check out that discount page, thank you! Also, I did purchase a gun and have a Walther CCP 9mm.

Harvey, I agree. Especially when I went down to the basement to quilt and my cross body purse had to be removed. Thank you for pointing out the other situations to where a purse would not be the best option though - I didn’t think about having it snatched from the outside of a stall! At this moment in time, I will probably only carry in the small meeting room situation and basement for quilting afterwards, then securing it at home. Then maybe work myself up to carrying more as my holster situation improves. For now, unless I get on-body situated, I’ll have to really pre-plan and think if when taking the gun out in my purse, if I can realistically keep my purse on my body at all times.

The situation is that I attend AA meetings, and there is a man who has started attending every. single. meeting. around who has some very unstable anger issues. He shares about all the violence he may have inflicted upon other people (and even other members of AA) should he have not thought twice about it. And when I say “shares about the violence,” I mean it’s an elaborate description of curb stomping, bashing their heads and more. Any little slight and he can barely contain his anger.

I know that many people who come into those rooms aren’t exactly sane, but he’s proving himself to truly be the exception at the moment, and he’s pissing off people there left and right, and it scares me when they cut off his wild shares (violence, really out-there conspiracy theory rants, shaming people for not having the “right” politics or religion) during the meeting because this guy loses his ever-lovin’ mind. The guy has no family or friends, lost yet another job, recently has had run ins with the police for drunken behavior, so on and so forth. He has been in the program before, and wasn’t like this. I don’t know if he’s off medication, or drank himself stupid since we last saw him, or what. Oh, and another thing. He went from being militant atheist last I saw him to militant Christian. He also angerly shares about how awful people are to him at church, and I think he’s contemplating yet another belief system.

I’m also on his sh!t list because before I realized how dangerous this man seemingly is, I had disagreed about Michele Obama being transsexual outside of a meeting. He’s very angry at me about this, and I’m trying to be extra nice to him now to somehow combat all the crappy commentary he interrupts me with during meetings. I am just one of many people he dislikes there.

This man scares me. I’m having anxiety issues. On one hand, I want to say I’m overreacting, and the chances of him committing mass murder at our club and finishing himself off in the process is crazy thinking. On the other hand, I’m not the only person who feels this man is dangerous. It’s just that many who share my concerns do not know this ex-Marine is well armed. As far as I can tell, he’s only told two people. One told me out of concern for his own safety, and we discussed the pros/cons of contacting the police. The other is someone who is actually someone who might be able to get through to him and help him with his anger issues. Okay, that’s more than I was planning on sharing about the situation, but there it is.

Zee, thank you SO much for the links! I will check them out for sure. I didn’t quite want to buy spendy special leggings, but I gotta do what I gotta do for safety!

Zee, I would love a USCCA trainer. I did look at the listings here for classes and there weren’t any for around me. I buy a year’s worth of USCCA insurance/membership. I have one very knowledgeable friend locally that will take me to the range soon, and I know there’s an indoor range in the city next to me that offers classes that I will be signing up for today. Hopefully I can get an individual trainer through them also.

I would like to avoid the situation, like you said. I have reduced my meeting attendance, but that doesn’t sit right with me for a few reasons. But then again, none of those reasons are more important than my life. But then again, this threat is possible, but not likely, if that makes sense? Also, I’m the president of the building and heading up this quilting club… it’d upset and confuse a lot of people should I quit those. I am trying to avoid the place as much as possible until I can carry at least. I’m not sure what the right answer is at the moment - let fear and an abundance of caution rule my life, or take a possible risk and an abundance of caution and not let fear rule my life. Both seem reasonable and unreasonable at the same time. Also, this man attends all meetings in town. Day and night. Other meetings are very far away, but I can deal with low meeting attendance temporarily at this time.

WildRose, we’re just in a small room with chairs set in a circle against the walls. No tables or desks.

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@LolaKinks All of us are always here day or night, Singularly or group wise Lola, someone will always get back to you fast without delay. And we’re all very proud of you for standing up for yourself.
Sincerely,
Robert

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@LolaKinks just going on record that your fear seems entirely reasonable to me, my hair would be standing on end in your situation.

I don’t know what the AA rules are if a threat is made inside the room, but if a threat has been made outside the room that may be something you can act on. If threats have been made inside the room by someone who is a genuine danger to others, what are you expected to do? It can’t be the first time AA has had to address that.

This guy sounds like he needs help for his own safety as well as everyone else’s. Having the police see he gets in on a 3 day hold may be the way HE gets help, its not just for protecting yourself and others.

Is it possible to move your quilting group to another location for a while?

On the expensive leggings, I get it, just remember it’s not leg coverage you’re paying for, its life coverage.

Good on signing up for classes - that is going to make a huge difference. What area are you in? I’ll see if I can find you a USCCA teacher close by.

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That’s a legit question.

Anti-gun people often say “you must be afraid all the time since you feel the need to carry a gun.” We usually answer something like “Not afraid, because we know bad things can happen, and we are prepared.”

For me, when I know I am prepared, and yet I am STILL afraid in a situation (not nervous but genuinely afraid) that’s a pretty good sign I shouldn’t be there.

Fear, and learning to deal with it, is my big lesson in this lifetime. Fear Absolutely HAS Run My Life in the past. On one end is letting fear make all your decisions. On the other is foolish bravado and willful naivete. One will steal your life just as surely as the other.

Fortunately there are more than just those two options. For me, the opposite of letting fear run my life isn’t foolish risk-taking, it’s prudence.

It’s not letting fear be the single factor in making choices. Instead it looks like:

  • Acknowledging my fear
  • Challenging my fear to see if its reality-based, usually with input from people I trust
  • Honestly assessing my capabilities
  • Getting whatever kind of coaching I need to correct my thinking or my skills
  • Not letting the fear make my decisions for me

Fear is an extremely valuable and powerful tool, rightly applied. And like any powerful tool, it needs to be used well.

I respect the legitimacy of your fear. Keep working through the process of discovering your options. :+1:

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I would suggest then with this being the case the smallest “pocket gun” that will fit your hands and you can shoot accurately.

Someone posted above a trigger guard made for pocket guns that has a lanyard on it. You pocket the gun, leave the lanyard hanging out where you can quickly get to it to retrieve the gun.

In that setting you’re very exposed and with your build issues other than something like that or a small Derringer that you could perhaps hide in your bra is about all I can think of. The same trigger guard with a lanyard could be employed but worn as a necklace.

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Thank you, Zee. You’re giving me some tools to further think upon things. I wrote up a reply to your other post, left it on my screen, then clicked some things and lost it. Quickly though, AA does endorse calling authorities whenever you feel it’s appropriate, anonymity be dammed. Quilting club is a whole basement full of stuff, and moving it temporarily would not be an option unless I told everybody why. I’m still not convinced the police could do anything at this point, and the only direct threat made was to another during a share he made about all the violence he’d like to inflict upon some unnamed person… semi long story to that, but the only threat there was that he made unflinching eye contact with a person during it. That person confided in me that he was debating calling the cops, but ultimately decided that it would probably not come to anything due to no direct threat, and the guy claims the story of violence wasn’t directed towards this man.

This person, however now that I think about it, has written in email to a prosecutor (or someone) that he had a bullet with their name on it, and has complained that he now gets semi regular calls from law enforcement about that threat. So a) he must already be on someone’s radar and b) maybe that’s why nobody has gotten really direct threats… he’s learned to carefully word himself at this point.

I need to do some (more) serious thinking about this. I need a cop friend who can help me decide what can and cannot be done, so that none of this is on the record until I say it can be on the record.

This person was not like this the last time he was in AA. He’s either off medication, or drank himself violent and borderline insane since the last time we saw him. Something is very much not right with him.

I PM’d you my location for help finding a nearby instructor. Thank you.

WildRose, thank you for your ideas. I didn’t think about a lanyard deal worn like a necklace. That would work for down in the basement area if it’s something that could be done with a Walther CCP 9mm sized gun. As for the small meeting space, I feel the cross body bag will still be my easiest and fastest option due to not having to dig through the top of my shirt, or through layers of Midwest cold weather wear from the bottom. But, I won’t know for sure unless I get these items and practice doing it each way, huh?

essential information right there ^^

I don’t think I’d trust these for that purpose… not what they’re designed for. they’ll do a fine job of preventing accidental firing of the gun in a soft enclosure, though.

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For my 30 years of firearms ownership I have tried to live by the mantra don’t be where I don’t belong. It seems to me that if you are that afraid of being there you don’t belong. Is there no way to remove him safely or go somewhere else yourself?

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Well for safety’s sake you can always put a ring on the bottom of the grip and attach a lanyard there.

In the military we used to refer to them as “dummy cords”. The joke was that they were invented so Second Louie’s would still have their side arm when the dropped it an ran.

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@LolaKinks I’m not familiar with how AA is setup, but is there someone higher up the food chain you can ask? This is surely not the first time something like this has happened and they may be able to provide more guidance.

If he is disturbing others attending the meetings (I assume you aren’t the only one sketched out by him?), it becomes an issue where for the good of the group, he has to go. If others who need AA can’t/won’t come because they fear him or are intimidated then they may stop going and that’s not good. Once he is on some official “not welcome” list then its easier to enforce with the police. On the flip side, that may really make him angry…

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Yes, I can remove myself, but I’ve many obligations to the club itself, as I’m president. I also chair a meeting there, and am heading up our quilting club (we quilt with donated material to auction of to fund the club). All of which is definitely not worth putting my life at risk for.

As I wrote above, I am torn between letting fear and an abundance of caution rule my life, or take a possible risk and an abundance of caution and not let fear rule my life. Both seem reasonable and unreasonable at the same time. I don’t think what I fear is likely to happen, but it’s possible. Surely there are unstable, violent speaking people like him all over that manage to not mass murder/suicide the people who have made them mad. Then again, dude fits the profile of someone who would do something like this.

I could consult the board members and we could no longer grant him access to the club building, but given the fact that even the slightest of anything happening to him sets him off into violent fantasies, I, particularly would be in even more danger of my perceived risk.

Every AA group is autonomous. The AA Worldwide services does not dictate or guide any given group. They do have safety guidelines that basically says to call the cops if needed, and that’s about it.

An AA group could individually decide to not allow a person in their group, but that is almost unheard of. I know of one instance in a town next to us that a sex offender was banned, but that’s it. There’s probably a few more instances that I do not know about though.

[quote=“Harvey, post:17, topic:16046”]
If he is disturbing others attending the meetings (I assume you aren’t the only one sketched out by him?), it becomes an issue where for the good of the group, he has to go. If others who need AA can’t/won’t come because they fear him or are intimidated then they may stop going and that’s not good. Once he is on some official “not welcome” list then its easier to enforce with the police.
[/quote].

4 people, including me, are extremely disturbed/scared, because we know he has all these guns (I think I previously said 3, but I misspoke) and have listened to his violent and unreasonable rantings quite a few times.

Everybody else, I’m not entirely sure. I have had a few discussions with people where they’ve expressed annoyance with him, are weirded out by his shares, find him mentally unstable and such, but for the most part, I’m not seeking out these discussions.

And that’s what I really don’t want to happen. He flies off the handle about the most petty things. I can’t imagine what he’s like if something really really makes him angry. If the police are contacted and they can’t correct the situation, I have to imagine he’ll know it’s because of AA people (we’re literally the only people in his life at the moment) and he knows exactly where and what time to find us all. He could use a weapon, fists, just shout? Who knows.

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You make a very good point. You are there to help so you accept a certain amount of risk.

You’re also making a keen observation in that barring him from the building could be the final trigger than sets him off on a violent streak that could end badly for all.

You’d be wise to discuss the situation with the other board members for sure.

At some point though you have to consider if he’s doing more harm to the group as a whole and perhaps driving people that can be helped away.

Tough calls all the way around.

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Know your states laws governing self defense. All states are not the same. In a must retreat state a Prosecutor can argue that you knew there was a problem and continued going or letting him go.

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