My grandson wants to go hunting. I am so heartbroken over this.

United States
October 21, 2007 2:39pm CST
My daughter-in-law let my grandson, who is 10, get a hunting license. He wants to go deer hunting. This upsets me and I can't believe that he'd want to do this. I am such an animal lover, and his little brother said he's never gonna kill any animals, so that's a good thing, but I have always been closest to Zack, and this is so disappointing to me. His grandpa on his mom's side is a hunter, and so is his cousin, who is a year or so older than him, so now he wants to be. My son, has already told him, that he will not take him, my daughter in law, says she will, but she will make sure he doesn't get to shoot any, but the fact that my grandson, even wants to, hurts me so bad. How would you handle this situation, if you were me. I don't want to hurt a childs' feelings, but at the same time, it's something he knows that I'm totally against, and I've told him so many times, how I feel. What do I do? Please help.
8 people like this
22 responses
@pyewacket (44036)
• United States
24 Oct 07
I've read through a lot of the responses here...yeesh..LOL I tend to be very anti-hunting myself...yes I can see if a person hunts and does actually use the meat, but too many "hunters" I feel abuse the whole hunting practice to begin with...for instance I can't see killing an animal just to have its head stuffed and hanging on the wall as some kind of "trophy"--and I actually did know a woman and her boyfriend that did exactly this...they didn't use the meat..just wanted the "trophy" I too like another poster here come from Native American roots...and yes, it is in our tradition to be hunters...but did you know in many cases fines will be slapped on a Native American hunter but not on an "anglo" It was the custom that whenever a Native American hunted for food, when he killed the animal he said a prayer over the animal to forgive him for killing him..can you imagine the average gung-ho hunter today doing that? Yes, I do shoot animals myself....with a camera...for me that is the only way to shoot an animal in today's world I could go on about this..but I think you can gather..I'm anti-hunting
3 people like this
• United States
24 Oct 07
Thanks so much for your response. I know what you mean. I've seen alot of people like that too. All they care about is the trophy. You really don't see as many starving people out hunting, as you do those that do it for sport, do you? In the case of my daughter in law's dad. The man's got lots of money, he drinks constantly, and probably drinks when he hunts. I have heard him bragging about killing deer, and he dose it in a manner, that probably would sicken half the other hunters. In his terms, "he just needs to kill something every now and then". He's not really a stand up kind of guy. Even if my daughter in law, was for hunting, she wouldn't trust her dad to take her son with him.
3 people like this
@pyewacket (44036)
• United States
24 Oct 07
He says he just wants to kill something every once and a while...gee, how "nice"...with that attitude I don't think he's going to teach Zach respect for animals
3 people like this
• United States
25 Oct 07
No, he's not, and he's just a lousy role model, and it bothers me, because Zack's a good kid.
@Katlady2 (9920)
• United States
23 Oct 07
Granted, he is at a young age still. But you just need to keep on letting him know how you feel about hunting. Show him some of the websites on animal abuse that deal with animals that have been senselessly shot by hunters....just make sure it's not the super graphic ones. If he insists on wanting to go hunting, you need to keep instilling in him the respect for animals that you have in you so that he won't go out and do it simply for the fun of it to shoot an animal and leave it to die. I don't believe in hunting either hon, and I know how you feel. I would be upset over it too. But sometimes kids think that their grandpas are the absolute cat's meow far and above anyone else, and nothing but experience can ever change their minds or their behaviors. Good luck sweetie.
3 people like this
• United States
23 Oct 07
Thanks for answering. I ordered that movie, that deebomb, mentioned, and my daughter in law, said she'd make sure that he watches it. Hopefully that will help. I don't think he understands what will happen. He cried when he took his pig to the fair this year for 4-H, so I don't know why he thinks he could kill something. His grandpa, Ted makes hunting sound like fun, I guess.
2 people like this
@yanjiaren (9050)
22 Oct 07
Oh dear..my Friend..There is nothing much you can do when the young are hell bent on doing ehat they want to do..You cajn only voice your opinion. I have even let go of my son from the age of 12 lol.I try tosupport him in whatever he wants to accomplish but I can only guide him.At the end of the day I can only do my best and pray. Maybe as he gets older he may change his mind..Good luck my friend..
3 people like this
• United States
22 Oct 07
Yes, you're right. I'm hoping he'll figure out he don't like it, before he actually does. lol
2 people like this
• United States
21 Oct 07
Hi Brendakaya, I don't want to hurt a childs' feelings, but at the same time, it's something he knows that I'm totally against, and I've told him so many times, how I feel. I think the key words here are "I'm totally against". Hes not you, and your not him. Just beacuse you feel one way about something doesnt mean he will too. Im sort of shocked that had to ask advice on this one??? Your making this sound all about you and not your grandson. I understand your wanting him to be a certain way, but we all know that people are individuals, even at 10years old. I think you should respect his wants and desires. This isnt about what you want. I dont mean to sound harsh or disrespectful, I really dont, but its your grandson and his parents decision. I do think going hunting and obtaining a hunting license at 10 is a bit much. I dont think he is mature enough to handle this. Open your heart and let him be who he is. He just may come to find out that he doesnt really like hunting as much as he thought he would, and your wishes will be fullfilled. Bay xx
2 people like this
• United States
21 Oct 07
I didn't word my discussion right. Basically, what I meant, was how do I respond to him, if he mentions it to me, without hurting his feelings, but yet let him know that I don't like it.
• Canada
22 Oct 07
The best way to let him know how you feel is to be honest about your feelings, but he should bring up the subject. He is only 10 years old and will change his opinion about things many times in his life. It does not hurt him to know your stand on hunting. Hopefully he will respect your opinion as you should respect his.
• United States
22 Oct 07
Hi Brendakaya, I hope you know, Im really not trying to be rude, but your not his parent and you are not respsonsible for the decision. You have to step back, put your feeling aside and allow his parents to raise him. If they see this is a fit activity, then you have to work on accepting it and still love him. Has he actually gone hunting as of yet? Bless your heart, I know you mean well. Bay xx
@MsTickle (24993)
• Australia
24 Oct 07
I wish I knew what to advise you because I really feel your dilemma. You want this child to know the consequences of his actions which hurt you deeply but you don't want to alienate him. Your son might be able to help but the boys mother and relatives hold the balance of power. I do hope you get some answers from others here. I can only suggest you hold your problem in your mind as you go to sleep and offer it uip to your higher power. With luck, you will have an answer and know what to do by morning. All the best to you.
2 people like this
• United States
26 Oct 07
Thank you.
@cobradene (1171)
• India
22 Oct 07
Well, I guess you should try creating a feeling of love for animals in him. Maybe take him to a deer park or zoo. Or maybe even make him move around animals and get him the feel of being friends with them. You can even try explaining how beautiful they are and try telling him nice stories about animals. Maybe then he may not feel like hunting them anymore.
2 people like this
• United States
22 Oct 07
Thank you, good ideas.
1 person likes this
@RosieS57 (889)
• United States
21 Oct 07
If you can afford it, buy a middle quality camera for him. Let him know that a very good career can be made from shooting animals all over the world -- as a wildlife photographer. But only if he is good enough and that usually means starting young and learning the craft well. There's not a whole lot of careers that involve killing wildlife -- hunting has lousy pay. I believe in giving kids options and alternatives to steer them away from the bad and toward what is better for them in the long run. You'll also be teaching that your values are different but just as good as the other sides'.
1 person likes this
• United States
21 Oct 07
Thank you. That's a wonderful idea. I like it.
@TerryZ (22083)
• United States
22 Oct 07
Hi brenda! Wow thats a tough one. I feel the same way you do about hunting. All you can really do is just tell him how you feel about this and when he starts to talk about his hunting experiences tell him you dont want to hear it. Im sorry your upset.
1 person likes this
• United States
22 Oct 07
Thank you. None of my kids were ever interested in hunting, so I've had to deal with this before.
• United States
23 Oct 07
Woops, I mean, never had to deal with this before.
• United States
22 Oct 07
Let him go.. He is 10 and wants to be like some of the men in the family. He probably looks up to the cousin and loves his grandpa, so he wants to do the things they do. However, as we know most things are not what they appear to be. My dad and brother are both hunters, so when my brother's son was born (yes, before he even came home from the hospital) my dad bought him a lifetime hunting/fishing license. but after the first trip, my nephew refused to ever go again. Hunting is not that fun. Especially deer hunting. You get up early, walk a long way into the woods only to climb a tree, and sit in a stand. You must be still and deathly quiet. Not fun for a ten years old kid to do. Nothing you can say can really describe how bad a killed deer look and smells. then you have to carry the darned thing out. He isn't going to like it most probably, and his first trip will likely be the last. Ten is a bit too young to make the decision on moral terms. Let him experience the reality, that's the best deterent for a kid. When my nephew came home from that first and last trip, these were the things he said he didn't like about hunting, mostly the being still and quiet for hours on end lol. When he does come home and assuuming he doesn't like it, just listen to him tell you why then agree with him, tell him you think he is very smart and has made the right choice. This is the best way, not an 'I told you so' attitude, because it will help him learn that he can make right decisions and choices.
1 person likes this
• United States
22 Oct 07
I think you're probably right. Thanks for responding.
• United States
22 Oct 07
I'd take him to a petting zoo, let him see and touch a real deer. I'd talk to him about the deer and let him see how beautiful and gentle creatures they are. Then ask him if he really wants to kill a magnificant creature just because his grandpa and cousin do it. Maybe if they had a baby, you could ask how he thinks the baby would feel if someone killed her mother, or father. Heck, even if you could only pet a goat, or if it's a regular zoo where you can't touch anyone, you can still admire the animals and let him know what he would REALLY be doing. Maybe at that age he doesn't quite understand the sensless killing for sport. Maybe he just looks up to grandpa, but doesn't realize the horrors that he commits for the sake of feeling the power over another creature.
1 person likes this
• United States
22 Oct 07
I think you're right. I don't think he understands. He gets upset over seeing animals killed, which is why it's so upsetting to think he actually would kill something. I really think if he does, it will bother him.
@theprogamer (10539)
• United States
21 Oct 07
Sorry Brenda but its not your son. I know how you feel about this so I can only comfort you. Your grandson might make his own decisions about hunting be he for or against it, so let him grow and decide that on his own. You can continue to tell him and your daughter how you feel about it, but in the end its in their realm, their sovereignty. Don't guilt trip them over it, and do not project yourself onto your grandson in this fashion.
1 person likes this
• United States
21 Oct 07
I won't guilt trip him. I just find it hard to believe he truly wants to kill anything. I just think his grandpa on the other side is a bigger influence than me, and he wants to please him. His grandpa is also an alcohiolic, and I'm afraid that will come next.
• United States
23 Oct 07
After reading through the rest of the comments here after my initial comment I had to come back with one more thought. Could it be that you are a little bit jealous that your grandson wishes to emulate the livestyle of his grandfather on the other side of the family. Could you be feeling hurt that he wouldn't rather "take your side". Maybe you feel like he loves his other grandfather more and are a bit jealous? It's just I see many times in your post and replies where you keep saying how no one in your family hunts and how it's just the grandfather, and sometimes you might not even be aware of your own feelings, but you might just be feeling hurt and confused down inside. Well don't worry, boys will look up to other men and his cousin is close to his age, this is a huge influence. It's not that he doesn't love you, he just "wants to be a big boy". Since we are both women we maybe can't understand this, but believe me it is completely natural. It doesn't mean he doesn't love you or respect you. You have nothing to feel disappointed over. Like many have said, perhaps he won't even like hunting, just let him explore his interests and be supportive. When he tells you about his hunting trips just smile and nod and say "Really?" Or ask questions like "Did you have fun?" etc. I mean it's not that hard? I'm sure there's been thousands of times when your children and grand children have been really excited about something that you could really care less about. Just put on a fake smile and give a sugary sweet voice, like everyone does to their children. You don't even have to pay attention to what he's saying. Just put your mind elsewhere. Goodluck he sounds like a good kid.
1 person likes this
@badkat83 (1621)
• United States
21 Nov 07
I am an animal lover too, and my husband hunts. My 15 year old son is now hunting. What can you do. This is how we used to eat. That is why my husband hunts, to fill the freezer for the winter. Not just to kill. So I guess you can look at that. Just this morning as the boys were leaving for hunting, they wanted me to come. I won't go as I would probably cry if I saw the deer get killed.
• United States
22 Nov 07
I know there's nothing that can be done, but it's still hurtful that someone with my blood running through their veins would want to harm an animal.
• United States
11 Jan 08
It's OK for everyone to have their own opinion...But that is it...EVERYONE including your grandson should have his RIGHT to have his own opinion...Not everyone likes the Color Red, but some of us do... Not Everyone like the Color Blue but some of us do. It's our choice...If you do not give a child the opportunity to make a simple choice of his own hobby, then your destroying his opportunity to become who he needs to be. I don't hunt, never grew up with it...But my son loves it, his father has taught him all the rules and safety rules. They hunt all season long. It's GREAT Father son time for them and he is proud of his accomplishments and growth he has developed from his hunting. I am proud of him too. My son rides dirtbikes...I never grew up with that...I don't like them at all...But he loves it...We make sure he has all his required protection and his father takes him...I don't go, I cringe when I look at the photos they take when they go ride. But that is who my son is...I will never get in the way of who my son wants to be. I don't have that right.
• India
22 Oct 07
Well if you are taking this personally then I can say nothing as I believe in individual freedom and would not like to impose my views on anybody, no matter how close. Or for that matter, the fact that somebody close has done something that will not meet with my approval, can not stop me from loving that person for who he is. If your grandson wants to go hunting and your daughter-in-law encourages that, you should not play spoilsport. After all, she would want her son to imbibe something from her Dad too! This should not make you look at them with sadness and close your heart to them. Instead, you should become all the more close to your grandson and if you genuinely want to increase his love for animals, you should gradually and subtly try to wean him away from this. But on a broader perspective, I must admit that I was shocked that a 10yr old can actually love and want to go hunting. Its such a cruel sport and we know that children are very impressionable. As parents we should do all we can to make them love nature and animals, abhor bloodshed and be gently to all. I definitely don’t support this, but as I said, you cannot take this personally either.
• United States
22 Oct 07
My son and daughter in law, are not supporting him, in reality, they are both against it. It is my daughter in law's father and other grandson that are encourageing him. He loves animals, so I don't think he understands how gory it is. That is why my daughter in law said that she will take him. She is just taking him out, to sit in the place where the hunters sit. SHe said if they see a deer, she's making noise and scaring it off. SO it's really not gonna be hunting, so to speak, she's not letting him kill one. I am just sad that he's thinking about going. They won't let him go real hunting with her dad, thank goodness.
@ElicBxn (60895)
• United States
21 Oct 07
I had a co-worker who's father-in-law hunted, but her husband never did. Her son wanted to &, in fact, was proud to be able to put some food on the table of his family with the deer he shot. They were not rich & the meat did help, so they felt if he felt he was helping his family that he should be able to do so.
• United States
21 Oct 07
He's not gonna kill any, my daughter in law, is just taking him out and acting like it. My son says he don't think he will actually want to shoot one, he's just being influenced by his other grandpa. They won't allow him to go hunting with him for real.
• United States
21 Jun 08
This boy may see hunting a right of passage into manhood. This is as ancient as man. Men used to HAVE to hunt for food to feed their families. I do not think your grandson wants to KILL. I think he wants to do the right of passage into manhood. Make a rule that what he hunts, he MUST process himself totally AND consume/share with family. I do not think , once he sees the truth in what he does, that he will want to hunt more. The fact is..whether you are a meat eater OR a vegetarian, something must be killed (plant or animal) for YOU to consume it. Your granson will come thrugh this time and learn. HE must come to his own realization of hat hunting is about. But to him, this is cultural and a part of his heritage. ..amke sure he has to do ALL of the work..gutting what he gets and processing/cutting up all of the meat.freezing it and consuming it. It is ALOT of work and he will learn it is not as much fun as what he anticipated? Some have to learn the hard way! But always trust..he will come through smarter and he will learn. This animal may be here to lead your grandson to a gentler way of life AND let him feel balanced as a young male. When he hunts, anythig he hunts loght a candle for it to go quickly ot a better place. You cannot protect yyuor grandson form this experience, if he is adamant. But I doubt he will want to go again, once he watches his catch pass away. Sounds like he is very loved.
@ddzdvd (361)
• United States
18 Jun 08
just help him eat the deer and tell him good shot! it goes to show how you dont need a grocery store to eat.learning to feed yourself is a great feeling.positive side is your grandson will never die from starvation
@laglen (19782)
• United States
17 Jun 08
I can't believe that you think this has anything to do with you. hunting is a necessary part of our world. Someday when things go bad and you can't get food in a grocery store, I am sure you will be ok with that then. You can be an animal lover and hunt. This is not a cruel action, it is actually more humane than feed lots! What about when resources are down and the animals are starving. I don't think that your grandsons decision had anything to do with you. I don't think you should take this personally.
@jerzgirl (8030)
• Gloucester City, New Jersey
26 May 08
My grandson is 8 and goes hunting with his dad. My son was 4 the first time his dad took him hunting. We would eat everything they got, so it wasn't just a pleasure of killing involved. It was food for the freezer. What fries my soul is those who simply love the killing and don't even bother to take the animal. My ex would come home fuming about a deer he'd come across that someone had killed and left because all they wanted was to kill. He wasn't there for that reason - he was there to supplement our food supply. It's good exercise, it develops an appreciation of wilderness and even for wildlife, if approached properly. If your grandson has a heart like yours, though, he'll find that he doesn't like it as much as he thought he would and won't go back. In the meantime, try to get him to focus on the wildlife in general that he sees up there and to focus on how we share the land with them and how destroying their habitat will destroy them as well. Most hunters aren't looking to eliminate species - they're combining sport with food provision. It's the few who ruin it for the rest.
@jezzmay (1845)
• United States
13 Nov 07
Is he going for the sport are will the meat be eaten? I do not agree on hunting for sport,but hunting to use it for food is another thing. This is good in away,here the fire department will give the meat to food banks to feed the hungry.I am a lover of animals,but God did give us some to eat.This is only my appendion I would not try to force it own anyone.He might find out he does not like it after all.