Question of the Day: How Does A Firearms Enthusiast Live with An Alcoholic?

I have this friend who owns lots of guns. Keeps one on his hip and the rest in a safe, as well he should. His wife is a binge drinker. Hard core. Nasty drunk. One day he told me he’s always worried about his wife somehow gaining access to one of his guns and doing something stupid with it. He wouldn’t say what. I told him a safe’s not safe enough. Remove all the guns from your house save your EDC, and maybe even that. And then remove all his wives from his house bar none. He nodded. But I don’t like to leave her alone in the house without access to a gun, he said. Imagine that.

comments

  1. avatar Kirk says:

    In fear.

  2. avatar ready,fire,aim says:

    lock em up at all times (guns) …get some help….

  3. avatar Chach says:

    I’m a college student and live with one as my roomate. He sleeps till 5pm everyday working off his hangover. But he doesn’t go nuts and kill people when he gets drunk, he just talks to loud and complains about liberals. He has more guns than me in this little college apartment. In total we have 6+ guns in the house including an AR, 3 Glocks, and XD 45, LCP, 2 remington 700’s, and a savage 110, no one has died in 2 years and no negligent discharges have occurred. We even bring them downtown to the bars since both of us have been robbed at gunpoint coming home from downtown where the scum target the students, knowing many are drunk, unarmed, and underage. But all in all, the choices my roomate makes may be poor for his health and life, but he respects his guns and knows the rules. How do alcoholics live with cars? knives? They respect them or lose them or their lives.

  4. avatar PM says:

    I dont think you do.

  5. avatar Ralph says:

    Nobody can live with an alcoholic. It’s just impossible.

    1. avatar Chach says:

      for me it isn’t that hard, he sleeps all day. I just have to keep my booze locked up in my room or it’ll disappear. every night he drinks a 6 pack of tall boys and often a bottle of wine on top of that, depends on how much money his parents give him. Only thing I worry about is boredom since he is always sleeping, probably due to depression and the hangover. Hell he doesn’t even make dirty dishes since he eats fast food and pizza every night.

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        Living with an alky roommate isn’t the worst thing in the world, as I recall (I went to college in the 60s, when almost everyone in school was high on something at one time or another). Living with an alcoholic family member (spouse, child, parent or significant other) is a test of one’s ability to tolerate pain.

        My most-recent GF’s daughter was a drug addict. Having the daughter in the house was pure torture. I loved the girl, but she turned everything into sh!t.

  6. avatar O.N. says:

    You don’t. Abusing chemicals that affect judgement is forbidden near my firearms. It’s that simple.

  7. avatar Jonathan says:

    I’m working on the firearms “law book” for CT and attend all our firearms board hearings. Last hearing we had an issue where a woman was denied simply because of who she was married to (granted, she was her own worst witness and she is an enabler) but I have a hard time with the “you don’t” type of comments. You can be careful and have a safe. If you’re working through a situation, you shouldn’t have sacrifice personal defense.

    I’m finding it interesting to look at the naysayers, but many say they can secure firearms from a kid. You can separate your firearms in a decent safe. But it is only a short term fix.

    1. avatar tresmonos says:

      A safe is just as much of a deterrent as the door locks on anyone’s house. The only difference between the door locks and the gun safe is the nay sayers have a false sense of security when they’re ‘in their domain.’

      You lock up firearms when they’re not on your sober, aware body. I have a hard time even leaving my unsecured firearm close to me while I sleep for fear of someone messing with it when I’m asleep. I need a biometric safe in the worst way. A kid was convicted of manslaughter at my school when he was playing with a housemate’s firearm he kept in his night stand. Gun went off and killed a friend sleeping on the floor. Tragic.

      1. avatar BARSTOW COWBOY says:

        Gun “went off”? Interesting.

  8. avatar Omnia Vincit says:

    I am a gun collector and have a substantial amount of guns. The think is, i also am a wine, whiskey and beer enthusiast…Most of my friends drink and own weapons.
    Never a single accidental discharge occurred. Weapons and Liquor should be treated with respect. When we go out drinking we don’t take our CCW with, for one simple reason, in Brazil we have very restrict CCW permits, it costs U$600 per year to carry and it is against the law to CCW while drinking, 6 to 10 fellas!
    The collectors and professional marksman are regulated and controlled by the Brazilian Army and the CCW permits and defense weapons by The Federal Police.

    Post Scriptum: For TTAG, been reading this blog for a long time, very good job guys! Cheers from Amazonas/Brazil!

    1. avatar Omnia Vincit says:

      Sorry the post if for alcoholics and i though it was guns and alcohol.
      You just have to secure your weapons at all time, which is also obligatory here. If it not in your holster, it should be in a Safe.

  9. avatar tresmonos says:

    Guns safes and trigger locks for guns not in the safe or in your possession. This is how my house mates and I lived in college. It’s easy.

    I trusted my alcoholic friends (they had respect for the weapons), but I didn’t anyone else that may had been around when responsible inhabitants were away. Said drunk friends also shared the same view on their ‘situational un-awareness’ and the risk it posed.

  10. avatar Bill Witten says:

    Move or keep your guns elsewhere. A safe for your carry gun and (secure) offsite storage for your others.

  11. avatar Drew says:

    When I worked at a bar and partied all the time, I either sold off or stored my guns at my folks. Just seemed prudent. The only one I regret selling was my Python (and maybe my Delta Elite), but they were readily available at the time and I never dreamed they would be selling for $2500 plus when I wanted to replace it. Still kicking myself over that one.

    1. avatar O.N. says:

      I think the Delta Elite is back. Check the Colt site.

      1. avatar Drew says:

        I’m over the Delta, but I’d kill to get another Python. Unfortunately the ones in my price range are late model stainless, which I basically consider a crime against humanity.

  12. avatar Aharon says:

    I once lived with an alchy roommate though he never thought that about himself. I kept my guns hidden and secured in my room, and I never told him I owned any guns. After that year long lesson, I’ll never live with another nightly drinker and will only consider a house mate if they are an occasional drinker. BTW, I will not live with anyone who smokes weed, etc.

    1. avatar Drew says:

      I would 1000% rather live with a stoner than a drunk myself, as long as they don’t deal or constantly have people over. Obviously, legal considerations make that impossible, but I’m pretty anti social myself so I don’t mind a nice quiet zombie for a roommate.

  13. avatar mikeb302000 says:

    An alcoholic in the home needs to be treated just like a child as far as guns go, no access, period.

  14. avatar Mr. Lion says:

    As smashed as I regularly got when I was in college, and for a time there after, breaking out the firearms never occurred to me.

    I don’t care how drunk someone gets, or how regularly, they’re still fully aware what happens when they pull the bang switch.

    It’s pertinent to secure weapons when in an environment not completely under your control, period, but I wouldn’t consider someone drunk off their butt to be anywhere near as much a risk as someone under the influence of hallucinogens or medications that can significantly affect brain chemistry.

  15. avatar ScottA says:

    Next question. How does a firearms enthusiast live with a fat person? Clearly the fat person has no self control and might shoot someone. How does a firearms enthusiast live with a woman? Hell, once a month they get super emotional and might shoot someone! How about a spouse that is on Lexapro? Sleeping pills?

  16. avatar Derek says:

    I live quite well with myself 🙂

    But seriously. I’ve never lived with someone who abused the drink but I’m with Omnia up there. I probably have in the ballpark of $500 in various liquors from various countries in my house and I have a drink after work almost everyday. The guns are put away in the other room long before the drink comes out, not that I’ve ever had the urge to play with a gun while intoxicated, just being prudent.

  17. avatar Don says:

    It is important to mention that not all alcoholics are created equally and not all alcoholics have the same problems associated with them. Some are not externally problematic at all, some are nothing but problems.

    If they are a dangerous or abusive alcoholic, dump them, leave them, kick them out… in other words, don’t live with them, for more reasons than gun safety.

    It is most reasonable to keep guns out of the hands of anyone in or who has access to your house by using something like a good gun safe. Everything is either locked or on my person even if I have company over.

    -D

  18. avatar Tom says:

    If the alcoholics with guns are scary, wait until they get in their cars.

    1. avatar NR says:

      That’s all there is to it. If you’re drunk, don’t drive or handle a gun. If your friend is drunk, don’t let him drive or handle a gun. Same rules apply, with one possible exception- it’s illegal to drink, even in moderation, while driving. Where I live, it is legal to carry and drink at the same time, and if it’s just one beer, I don’t see a problem with it.

      If the guns aren’t normally kept in a safe (no kids around), then they should be locked up under the same circumstances that would lead you to confiscate your friend’s car keys.

  19. avatar pair-o-dee says:

    The day I can’t do my job drunk is the day I turn in my badge and my gun.

    1. avatar Derek says:

      Oh jeez… the laughing… it hurts… I.. can’t.. stop..

      That’s the funniest thing I’ve read in weeks. Thank you sir.

    2. avatar Cameron says:

      You win the internet today, sir.

  20. avatar bob says:

    Biometric high capacity gun safe

  21. avatar NCG says:

    Since it’s a given that no alcoholic could possibly actually own a firearm, no worries.

    Seriously, I like to drink a beer while cleaning my guns after a day of shooting/hunting, but basically, it’s a personal responsibility issue. I hope you all use good judgment.

  22. avatar JohnR says:

    The gentleman’s EDC weapon needs to be locked up and inaccessible to his wife when it’s not actually riding on his hip. Heavy drinkers have been known to be resourceful, smart, and quite likely to do things others don’t expect (e.g., “something stupid”). Leaving his wife alone in the house with access to a firearm will likely not end well.

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