My son has gone to several summer camps where archery was one of the special once-a-week activities (YMCA and similar type day camps). He enjoyed it. He seemed to have learned the basics of technique and safety in those camps.
Half a year ago we bought him an archery set and a separate, big padded target. Here's what the bow looks like:
He enjoys practicing in our yard and has been using it with good safety consciousness. He has never had the fantasy of bow hunting -- perhaps because we don't know anyone who does this, perhaps because of the context in which he learned to do archery.
We live in the suburbs of a college town. There are some bow hunting enthusiasts in our area, but we don't happen to be personally acquainted with any.
Recently I was chatting with the mechanic who keeps my ancient Toyotas going. He lives waay out in the country, and he said my son should be attending archery classes, which are held at sporting and hunting stores. I would just as soon avoid those places, because my son does have fantasies of going deer hunting with firearms, but I am uncomfortable with firearms (for personal reasons that I won't get into here), and I'm afraid going to such a store on a weekly basis would inflame his interest in deer hunting and it would become an obsession. (He has OCD.)
Another thing is that, although my son hasn't stopped to think about this yet, the truth is that he would find the blood and the death of the deer EXTREMELY distressing. (He has heightened reactions to blood, and death, due to his OCD.)
Can we continue the way we've been doing, or do we really need to take him to archery classes?