This is one part in our series of articles about reasons why those with a concealed carry permit stop carrying concealed. Please visit this introductory post to learn more about this series of articles.
If you felt after some attempts, that carrying that firearm in a way that others really wouldn’t notice it, was really far more difficult that it first may have seemed than you learned what many of us have had to learn. Carrying a concealed firearm is a lifestyle change. You can’t expect to be able to move forward carrying a gun without having to make some other substantial changes to your lifestyle. What you wear and how you move during the day are both significant factors in keeping that firearm concealed.
Go through your wardrobe and identify 1-5 outfits that will work well. Go ahead and try on the clothes with your firearm and stand in front of the mirror to confirm if they prevent the firearm from being visible and/or discernible. They may be shirts that are a little looser fitting or pants that have a little extra room in the waist etc. Decide that you are going to carry concealed once or twice a week and wear one of those outfits when you do. This will help you start to develop the habit and figure out what works and doesn’t work with your wardrobe. Next time you shop for clothes take those factors into consideration.
When you put on one of those outfits, and conceal your firearm, stand in front of a mirror and move around. Take notice of the different movements that give the gun away. You may have to practice bending over differently than usual or sitting and standing up differently than normal. Identify the key movements you need to work on and make a commitment to practice them. For awhile carry concealed when you are with friends or family that will be more forgiving and a little less likely to “call the cops” if they discern your firearm. Potentially go so far as to ask them to let you know if at any point they see your firearm.
Depending on your own personal “style” you may also find that different types of holsters and concealment techniques work better for you. Try shoulder, ankle, pocket, apparel, belly band, and other IWB holsters before you fully throw in the towel.
As a last effort if you still feel frustrated let me suggest that you consider a smaller firearm. The smaller the firearm the easier it is to conceal.