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Would you let your child go trick or treating on halloween?

by Justine Crowley (follow)
Independent Business Consultant, Doctor, HubGarden Editor and Author/Publisher of four self help books: www.smashwords.com/profile/view/JustineCrowley
Parenting (215)      Family (309)      Motherhood (31)      Halloween (5)     


halloween, trick or treat
Image courtesy of Vichaya Kiatying-Angsulee / www.freedigitalphotos.net Trick or Treat indeed.


The concept of "trick or treat" is American to begin with, yet many Australian kids are nagging their parents (their mums in particular) at Halloween. "Mum, can we go trick or treating please?" Alas, more sweets in the house to hype them up, more so than what the iconic 'red cordial' is capable of doing.

Therefore, would you allow your child or go trick or treating on Halloween, knocking on every door in the neighbourhood for a free treat? Or not?

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# Halloween
# Parenting
# Motherhood
# Family
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Great Question. I believe you are teaching kids double standards. You teach them not to speak to strangers, yet you encourage them to knock on some stranger's door and ask them for candy. Not sure if I am okay with that!
Absolutely correct Dream.
Supervised it is not OK. Unsupervised it is not OK.
Does anybody read newspapers or watch the news on TV anymore ?
by fran.
I don't have children, but my mum never let me go trick or treating because she does not think it is right to knocking on people's doors asking for sweets. Even worse is if children decide to initiate the 'trick' aspect, which is definitely not on. It is also the case that children should not really be out at that time of night. For that reason, I would have to say no.
People think Halloween is American but in fact it started in Scotland, Ireland and Wales centuries before America was settled. My kids love to trick or treat so I developed a system for our street. I put a note, with a balloon attached, in letterboxes the week before Halloween asking people to put the balloon on their letterbox if they are happy for kids to knock on their door. We always get quite a few houses participating and its fun for everyone.
by
Halloween is not an Aussie Tradition.
I don't have kids but there are a few families in my area who let their kids go round to the houses of other families they know of that live around here. Usually it's families of other students or ex-students at school - any house where the occupant is known and likely to have no problem with the kids coming round, really. The system probably won't work everywhere but its does work here. We just keep one packet of lollies ready for anyone that turns up, and there's no knocking on the doors of stranger. Often there's an older sibling hanging round as they door-knock too.
YES! It's so much fun! I too don't like my kids having sugar treats....when they were really young we would do a circuit and keep one or two and deposit the rest outside our door for other tricksters, now older they do keep them...but apart from birthday parties it is once a year and if you are strict on sweets...forbidden fruits are even more exciting. We start making the costumes in the holidays which is fun and then carve pumpkins and then talk about what Halloween really is...yes the Americans started trick or treating but the history for us being British is far more significant.....it's really interesting and fun for kids to research about All Hallows Eve and you can even use it as a history lesson....my boys love the Medieval times! There are so many craft ideas that come with Halloween....treat it as a huge party that the whole neighbourhood can get involved in (we do teach the kids to respect those with religious beliefs). And it shouldn't be about knocking on strangers doors....we should all know our neighbours, although sadly that is not always the case, the ones we don't the kids use their biggest manners.....and their trick....leave a funny kids printed joke to make them laugh in the morning!
Just remember kids are kids and want fun...I would hate the idea of my kids stuck in looking out the window at all the other kids having a ball, if it goes against everything you believe in you can tailor make it to fit in with you beliefs, it is not about the devil etc. etc....teach you kids about the history behind it. I also don't like teenagers running round taking advantage, so mine can go.....but have to take the little ones, when they were all little we were always just behind them. Go on......let them have a go this year, the delight on their faces will be worth every minute of it!!!

As a child I could only dream of treat or tricking. I've had a few children dressed up knocking at my door but I didn't have any sweets at home so they left with muesli bars (didn't think they were too impressed). But there was a car following them as they moved from house to house which I think was a wise decision by their parents. If I have children in the future, most likely I wouldn't let them do the trick or treating part but perhaps a Halloween dress up party at home and invite a few friends over (adults have to dress up too!)
All awesome answers guys, thanks heaps :)

It is a tricky (no pun intended) one, as you don't want to impose on double standards, and I thought I'd throw this one in, as it is October now (Halloween month, as at the time of writing and publishing this question), and so to help you prepare in advance. I am a freelance writer, editor and publisher because I love to help people, its liberating. Sorry to digress. Now back on topic (again, no pun intended)...it's great as it is social, yet teaches some bad habits, and kids come home with way too many sweets, hyper as. Hence my red cordial analogy...
The feat factor kicks in for all of us. The treats it is, although (again) it does not encourage healthy eating habits, while leaving a kid empty handed could lead to some nasty tricks....
fear (glad I'm going on a holiday shortly)
trick or treating...no wonder when I read over my comment it looked a bit funny!
It;s all good Yvonne :) As an extra aside, many schools have Halloween events to coincide with trick or treating, like even a fete or similar. Watch out for those sugar highs coming up parents, you're on alert :)
I think that 'trick or treat' is a lot of fun, but I also don't think we've got enough of an established tradition in Australia. I wouldn't feel comfortable with my nieces walking around the neighbourhood by themselves knocking on doors they don't know. But we've sometimes done it with adults accompanying them, and only to houses that have decorations up.

I know many neighbourhoods organise trick or treating nights among residents so that any kids wanting to trick or treat know which houses are happy to participate.

Dressing up is a lot of fun, and I think Halloween is a great holiday. I don't think that it matters that it isn't an 'Australian' tradition. If kids get to have a fun time coming up with costume ideas and safely meeting their neighbours, I don't think there's anything wrong with it...
Growing up in the American South, we used to trick-or-treat on our own within our neighborhood. The majority of the neighborhood would join in and it was like a street carnival atmosphere.

Raising my family in Australia, trick or treating is not as popular. Our neighborhood has lots of families with young children so we all worked together to organise a safe trick-or-treating session. I walk my kids around and leave the house lights one with a big bowl of lollies with a note on the front step so any other little witches and ghosts can help themselves.
I would have liked to think we stop the 'American' ideas! That we stay loyal to OZ.
There are also a lot of bad folks out there...and they just might slip something into a lolly wrapper 'laced' with drugs! to have fun.
It has happened, will continue, so give it a miss.
Stay Aussie to the core.
Only if it were Australian Halloween (April 30).

This is Australia, I am an Aussie I don't believe in celebrating some other countries traditions

Aside from those of indigeous Australians, all of our celebrations are some other country's traditions. Do you celebrate Christmas or Easter?
No. I tell my kids not to take lollies from strangers why would I let them go door to door asking for lollies from strangers
I would. But last year, I decided that my kids stay at home and we opened the doors instead for trick or treaters. I decorated our door with halloween crafts for children to know we welcome them. I was so surprised to have many children come for treat or trick and as a matter of fact ran out of sweets. My children loved it and they got so excited offering treats and watching kids in costumes. I think we will just stay at home again andthis time. I'll make sure to load our house with treats.
definitely not, I dont believe halloween should be allowed in this country.
I can not believe all your insane responses. Halloween is loads of fun and should be done with a parent. Kids need to carry 2 bags one for strangers and one for people they know. When the night is over every parent goes threw the bags and the stuff that's not tightly wrapped gets thrown out. The fun is dressing up and running around with friends. Get your heads out of the mud and loosen up. Go have fun with your kids they are only young once don't miss it. And Halloween is not American and even if it was sounds like Australia needs some kid fun lessons.
If I knew the neighbours and had arranged it ahead of time, then yes, but never just knocking on random strangers' doors. Aside from the danger, I think asking random strangers for sweets is a bit rude. Also, it's pretty annoying if they wake up your kids by knocking when you're trying to put them to bed. There needs to be a clear signal whether people have agreed to participate or not, like the way they use jack-o-lanterns in the USA (if you have one lit you're okay with trick or treaters coming to your door).

When I was a kid we knew everybody in our street and our parents got together and arranged for us to go trick or treating chaperoned just in our street. That was a lot of fun and I'd be happy for my kids to do something similar when they're old enough.

I find it a little bit weird that some people object to Halloween just because they see it as an imported American tradition when you don't hear them complaining about Christmas traditions that are imported from all over the place (Christmas trees, for example, are a German idea), and we have things like Chinese New Year celebrations and the Panayiri Greek festival. Then there is the fact that (as someone stated below) it's not originally an American tradition anyway. Except for the pumpkins that is. They didn't have pumpkins in Ireland and Wales way back when. They're a new world crop.

Personally I do find the Halloween stuff in shops a bit irritating, just because I find it tacky. I don't like a lot of the Christmas stuff either. There's too much plastic junk made in China in our lives already.
If I knew the neighbours and had arranged it ahead of time, then yes, but never just knocking on random strangers' doors. Aside from the danger, I think asking random strangers for sweets is a bit rude. Also, it's pretty annoying if they wake up your kids by knocking when you're trying to put them to bed. There needs to be a clear signal whether people have agreed to participate or not, like the way they use jack-o-lanterns in the USA (if you have one lit you're okay with trick or treaters coming to your door).

When I was a kid we knew everybody in our street and our parents got together and arranged for us to go trick or treating chaperoned just in our street. That was a lot of fun and I'd be happy for my kids to do something similar when they're old enough.

I find it a little bit weird that some people object to Halloween just because they see it as an imported American tradition when you don't hear them complaining about Christmas traditions that are imported from all over the place (Christmas trees, for example, are a German idea), and we have things like Chinese New Year celebrations and the Panayiri Greek festival. Then there is the fact that (as someone stated below) it's not originally an American tradition anyway. Except for the pumpkins that is. They didn't have pumpkins in Ireland and Wales way back when. They're a new world crop.

Personally I do find the Halloween stuff in shops a bit irritating, just because I find it tacky. I don't like a lot of the Christmas stuff either. There's too much plastic junk made in China in our lives already.
I wouldn't let my kids go - don't know the neighbours well enough and I'm
not sure that many in my area even do trick or
treating. We have a little fun dressing up at home
and mock trick or treating where the kids knock on our door and I pretend to be a witch and sometimes give them lollies. It's a lot of fun.
I wouldn't encourage kids to go alone. If they were to go, then I'd go with them.
When children were young, their Father or I accompanied them. By the time they 'grew up' they'd lost interest.
Would never send child alone, even in a group of other kids'. Too dangerous & always has been.
Only if I was accompanying them.
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