Over the years, there have been countless times I remember my wife saying I can’t carry to an event. Whether it’s a family get-together or going to a coworker’s birthday dinner, I’ve been told a few times to not carry anything. Now, I know some of you are probably saying, well maybe it’s time for a new wife and well you’re probably not wrong. Honestly, there are ways to discreetly carry without risking your wife or people around you knowing.
The ultimate goal of concealing a firearm is to have a firearm without anyone knowing, but sometimes you need something that can be concealed even easier without bringing any attention to yourself. Obviously, I would NEVER encourage anyone to exercise their fundamental rights in gun-free zones or anything like that, so for legal reasons, we will talk about carrying a firearm when you’re not supposed to carry due to social reasons. Let’s jump into some ways of carrying without your friends or family knowing.
Less Is More
When you decide to carry around family or to an event where people may not be very welcoming to the idea of carrying a firearm around them, it’s important to keep discretion a top priority. Now, I can hear some of you writing in the comments below that if they aren’t gun friendly, you wouldn’t go or be friends with them. That sounds great until real life slaps you in the face and you have family obligations you need to be present at. It’s no fun to be sneaky but it’s important to still have something in terms of self protection. I can’t tell you how many times I went to my anti-gun aunt’s house for holidays. She always lectures us about not bringing firearms into the house and says they aren’t welcome.
Sub Compact Options
In these types of situations, it’s not always a good idea to carry something like a full-size or mid-size firearm. Even something like a Glock 19 is sometimes too big when you’re trying to be discreet about carrying. Having something like a subcompact or micro is most likely the best option. There are plenty of options on the market to choose from, but when concealability is key, the smallest carry options are oftentimes the best option for these situations.
My favorite options in the small handgun market are still the Glock 43 and SIG P365. I know plenty of people who enjoy carrying the Ruger LCP in 380 and those are viable options but I always prefer 9mm if it’s an option. Having something like the Glock 43 or SIG P365 with a flush-fitting magazine offers a decent amount of firepower without having a ton of bulk you sometimes get with other options. Combine a small framed firearm with a comfortable concealment holster and you have a winning combination.
Smaller handguns really do make concealment easier when you’re trying to not bring any attention to yourself around family. Sometimes I will carry something like a P320 X-Carry or Glock 19 to family functions. These are a bit bigger than something like a single stack or subcompact like the P365, so I will often layer up to disguise any printing. adding a layer or two with something like a quarter zip or button up shirt helps disguise the gun better because there are multiple layers to break up the harsh lines of the firearm grip.
If you really want to be safe, it’s never a bad idea to throw on an unzipped light jacket to add a buffer zone so there are virtually no signs of a gun. It may seem like a lot of work but when you’re carrying in situations where people don’t want you to, it’s better to have options than have to leave your gun at home. Other methods like pocket carry and or ankle carry are options as well. I carried my small Kahr PM9 in my front pocket for years and everyone thought it was a cell phone or checkbook. Some of the easiest times to carry around family or going out with friends is during the winter season. For a colder state like Michigan, it’s easy to layer up because people expect it, but it may not be as easy in places like Florida or southern states.
It may seem crazy to think there will be certain situations where people don’t want you to carry a firearm around them. The term what they don’t know won’t hurt them really does apply here. If people have no idea you are concealing a firearm, there won’t be any eyebrows raised but this is what you should strive for on a daily basis. Some people are better at concealing a firearm depending on body type and choice of firearm. When it comes to carrying discreetly, it’s important to think about carrying a smaller framed handgun that you can shoot efficiently despite the size.
In addition to a smaller framed gun, it’s important to keep your options open and layer up. Whether that’s a simple button up shirt with a light jacket or something similar to hide the firearm more effectively. Let me know what you guys do in situations where discretion is the priority and what you carry in the comments below. I know there are a number of times I’ve talked with friends about this issue so I’d love to hear what you guys do in the comments. If you have questions, feel free to shoot me a message on Instagram @fridgeoperator. Stay safe out there.