Mum furious her son received a toy gun as a birthday present.

The anonymous woman posted on parenting forum Mumsnet that she was torn over taking the fake weapons away from her seven-year-old as he appeared to be enjoying playing with them.

Revealing her discomfort with the toys, the mother received a flood of responses on the online community from parents who agreed with her views.

A minority of people argued that preventing children from playing with toy guns is unreasonable.

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‘Now I know it’s up to people what they give and that as the recipient’s parent I don’t get a say, and I should be grateful that these DC came to his party and brought him a gift (and I am), but I would never give a gun as a gift.

mumsnet gun

‘I think it’s really inappropriate and I’m very uncomfortable with having even toy guns in my house.

‘Seeing my 7-year-old running around with a gun (albeit a plastic one), and shooting at us and laughing is horrible. And of course he loves them and he was given them and if I took them away then I’d be the bad guy.’

A large number of parents revealed they discourage their children from playing with toy weapons such as guns and swords.

Do you think it is an acceptable birthday gift?

Share your comments below

  • The person who gave the gun as a gift may have seen him playing with their sons’ toy gun and thought he liked it so much, it would be a simple solution to what they should buy. If you don’t want your son to receive anything like that you should mention it to the parents with the invitation.


  • My son received a show bag full of army stuff including tons of guns. Here’s the thing. Up until then, he was NEVER allowed to have any toy guns but he would make his own guns using his fingers or sticks, a pair of rolled up socks and even my pillows. I never allowed him to own any toy guns before this but he made his own! I think we can over react around guns because of the awful atrocities committed by gun violence. Since receiving these toys, we have been super careful to teach him how to play with them. He knows he is not allowed to shoot anyone in jest. He is only allowed to shoot targets. Sometimes he’ll get carried away but we always explain that we never pretend to shoot anyone.


  • I don’t think I would let my kids play with these sorts of toys


  • Man people are becoming soft. Honestly, it’s a toy. What are water guns banned too? It was one of the most popular toys when I was growing up.


  • I wouldn’t give a gun as a gift unless I knew the child had a specific interest in them — even then I’d probably leave it up to the family to do that. Nerf Guns can be fun, but I think you need to be careful gifting such things.


  • I wouldn’t buy a gun as a gift. And you would think that the friends’ parents would have known the child well enough to know that this gift would not be ok.


  • We played with toy guns as children and so did my children. None of us own real guns and we all understand the damage they can inflict.
    Having said that, I would never give a toy gun to a child as a present unless I knew that the parents approved.


  • I hate toy guns yet we have them here and the kids make them out of lego and blocks so even if they weren’t already here they just make their own


  • Im not a fan of toy guns and wouldnt allow my children to have them present or not. They need to learn that guns are not a laughing matter and pretending to shoot someone is not okay. I believe really strongly about this as hubby and I have guns which i dont want them to think are toys.


  • Honestly not something I have thought about. I have had a Nerf collection pre kids, so no i wouldn’t mind my kids getting toy guns. To me, it’s up to us to teach kids to play appropriately with them, never to cause harm and it’s only pretend. No different to playing ”kitchen” or ”kings & queens”. My collection is still packed away because I don’t feel my kids would understand properly yet, but one day we will have big extended family Christmas day nerf battles.


  • In this day and age of PC I would be very careful of what I purchased as a gift for a child.


  • What is wrong with giving a toy gun as a gift? Would there be as much outrage if a little girl got a baby doll or toy vacuum cleaner?


  • I wouldn’t give it to another child as a present unless I ask but im in the same shoe, im not a fan of guns or nerf guns. it would up to the parent to give it to their own child not others.


  • It’s definitely not a toy to give as a birthday present unless it is your own child. I’d ask the parent if it would be appropriate to buy this for their child first.


  • I think it’s up to a parent to decide if they are happy for their children to play with toy guns. I did buy Nerf guns etc. for my son, but never as a gift, unless requested.


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