Any Parent Who Lets Their Kids Trick or Treat By Themselves Is a Monster

Rant 36

kids trick or treatingHalloween is a pretty scary time of year. What with all the witches, goblins, and monsters lurking about. And no, I'm not talking about costumes.

As parents, we are constantly drilling into our kids not to talk to people they don't know. Don't take candy from strangers. And yet, on October 31 of every year, we dress them up and send them on their way out into the cold, spooky night to beg for candy from total strangers.

Okay, that may be a tad bit melodramatic, but the point is that in this day and age, there is absolutely no way I would let my kids go out trick or treating by themselves. I have no idea how other parents could even think about it!

When I was a kid, I remember dressing up and going out trick or treating with my best friend Chris. Sometimes it was his neighborhood, sometimes mine. It was just the two of us and we'd probably go out for two or three hours, filling up our pillow cases with as much candy loot as we could carry. Then we'd head back home, dump it on the floor, and start swapping.

More from The Stir: Why My Toddler Never Gets to Trick or Treat Again

There was never a concern from my parents about any danger. I certainly wasn't scared. In fact, I loved the freedom of just going out with my friend.

These days, though, the world's a much scarier place.

I may live in a real nice area but I'd still never let my kids go door to door by themselves. There's plenty of people in my neighborhood I've never even met. With so many horrible abduction stories filling the news daily, why would any parent even risk it?

I can understand when the kids are much older like teenagers, but for my two boys who are 7 and 9, I'd barely trust them on our own driveway by themselves.

Instead, my wife and I go with the kids and their friends (along with other parents) as they trick or treat from door to door. We stay in the street while all the kids run in packs from house to house. It's most definitely safer, but it also brings out a nice community feel for the neighborhood.

Call me ridiculous. Say I'm over-protective. Honestly, I don't care. Because it just takes a few seconds of you letting your guard down for some sick psychopath to snatch your kids and you will never see them again. Sometimes it really is better to be safe than sorry.

Do you let your kids trick or treat by themselves?

Photo via Eden, Janine and Jim/Flickr

safety, halloween, holidays


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talaricg talaricg

a monster?? SERIOUSLY? there is no evidence to prove that more kids are getting abducted now than when you were a kid. there's also a LOT of evidence to prove that the vast majority of abducted children are abducted by someone they know. I'm not saying let your toddler trick or treat by themselves, but is it really the end of the world if your 9 or 10 year old goes out in a group of 5 or 6 kids? this is a ridiculously obvious example of helicopter parenting.

Tracey Plummer

I agree! We always have a group of kids to run around together, and plenty of adults to keep an eye on everyone. It's always exhausting but fun, and I wouldn't dream of letting her out of my sight with so many people on the streets.


Tess Rooney

and the award for biggest overreaction goes to...

cmjaz cmjaz

Yeah. The author used 'monsters' for a Halloween reference. Not that the parents are monsters. My whole theroy is there is no way in hell I let my child trick or treat by himself. I believe that there ARE just as many child abductions now as there were in the 80s. HOWEVER, I think that more bystanders back then were more willing to jump in to help back then which is why it makes it more dangerous for kids nowadays. Bystanders now are fearful of being sued or being a suspect for trying to help so they hesitate too long. Of corse, that's not everyones thought process but I believe its true.. Its a sad situation

Jespren Jespren

Wow, then I guess your parents were the real monsters because child abductions and other such crimes as LOWER today than when you were a child. So, basically, you're just admitting that, because you are so easily swayed by media fear-mongering and hysteria you are willing to keep your kids from you did gleefully and safely even though they are in less danger now than you were. In related news parents who buy my specially discounted property on the moon are 14% less likely to have a kid come down with mitocondrial decompression sickness.

peanu... peanutsmommy1

I love parents with common sense vs those who overdramatize the dangersmof being a kid. Yes, I go with my child, but only,so I can steal his candy :-)

nonmember avatar Frankieblueeyes

Over reacting? Maybe. But at least they are letting their kids go trick or treating instead of trick or trunking. But maybe if people went out and talked to their neighbors they wouldn't be as fearful.

GlowW... GlowWorm889

Goodness, I went trick-or-treating by myself with my friends when I was 11 and 12. I don't think it should be any younger than middle school, but it's not unheard of to let a group of responsible pre-teens get candy by themselves in a trusted neighborhood. Loosen the apron strings.

sofia... sofia0587

Nope but than again she's only 1 lol but even older I still wouldn't let her

amazz... amazzonia

The only difference from now and back then is that now you have Internet and you hear all the bad things that happen AROUND THE WORLD, if you divide it by the people who live in this world you will notice that there at not as many bad people you wold think of, it's probably much safer now than it used to be! Relax and enjoy life, nd let your kids enjoy themselfs, than they are going around a neighborhood they now, you're not sending them in a ghetto with gangs shooting at each other! How can you live in a neighborhood you don't trust???

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