My wife is a pediatrician and not completely supportive of the idea of having guns in the home, but she has become tolerant of the idea. She finds me carrying one comforting at times and she has her NC CHP, but they still make her nervous and she doesn’t like talking about them, why I carry, or seeing even my Glock carried openly (very rare). Because she is still caught in the middle, occasionally she will hit me with something she read about gun related risks to see how I respond. Last week it was elevated levels of lead in families of frequent shooters and reloaders.
This is more of an issue for us than many families because I don’t have a basement and therefore have my reloading set-up in a more “common” area of the house, but I was able to easily address the concern because I acknowledged that as a risk, explained lead casting process and the aerosolization of lead when a bullet is fired. I then explained that these risks are part of the reason I reload the more expensive complete metal plated/jacket bullets and always wash my hands and face with cold water upon returning from the range.
I then used this opening to say that I would like for us to be a family of frequent shooters and that I thought the additional familiarization would make her more comfortable around guns and it would make me feel better about her ability to protect herself and that ultimately she would get to the point that she doesn’t ask “Are you ‘pack’n'” when we leave the house but asks “Do you have yours too?”
Regardless if it is your wife, your parents, or anyone else you care about don’t miss the opportunities to talk about these issues when they come up. My wife’s comment let me know that she had been thinking about the topic, but that she had some concerns. I acknowledged her concerns explained the risks and how to mitigate them. Let her know 2 reasons why I would like her to shoot with me (family activity/security) and addressed its normalization.
Since our discussion she has not mentioned anything about firearms and we haven’t gone to the range… but it is just on more stone laid in the path.
For people raise in anti-gun homes or had an anti-gun education forcing your views might just make them dig in their heels and bunker down. Go slow and draw them out and respect their fears, I think you’ll have more success.