Prepping for Halloween: A Parents' Checklist for Teens

As we wind down from our Bullying Prevention Month series, I want to start to address the upcoming holiday…HALLOWEEN! It is a time to dress up, be spooked, and eat too much candy. This is a perfect time to enhance conversations with your teen, find out about their plans, and also lay down the rules for a safe spooky night! Here is a simple list to think about as you tackle this holiday with your teen:shutterstock_224429188

  • If your teen is going trick or treating, please make sure they are wearing a costume. I often see teens just going up to houses not dressed and up expecting candy. I know it can make adults a little uncomfortable and take away from the other kids’ experiences.
  • If your child is going to a party or dance, make check-in easy, like “Shoot me a text at 8pm” or set a reminder on their phone to text you at a certain time.
  • Talk to your kid about their plans. Have them talk about who they will be with and where they will go.
  • When it comes to their choices for costumes, have them explain why they are choosing their costume. If you have a teen girl, you might get into the uncomfortable situation that your daughter is a little too sexy for her own good. This will happen. Don’t ignore the pressure of a teen girl and how society has made Halloween into a promiscuous affair.
  • Have the talk about drugs and alcohol and being at an unsupervised party. Talk about what can happen and why you are concerned. Share your thoughts about underage drinking and what can go horribly wrong.
  • Ask your teen about any concerns they may have about going to a Halloween party, dance, or treat or treating.
  • If your gut is telling you something is not right then don’t ignore it. Sometimes teens will be leaving the house with one costume on and quickly change into a not so appropriate costume later. Or if your husband is missing all his shaving cream, I might follow up with your teen. Pranks are renowned during Halloween festivities and we don’t want you ending up with a mess on your hands.
  • Set rules and expectations for your teen and follow them. If you are clear and open, you can help your child make better choices when you are not around.

Those are some little tips that you might find useful as you navigate your teenagers at Halloween. Remember we have all been there and for them this night has a different meaning then dressing up and filling up your pumpkin with candy. They have a slightly different perspective of what Halloween is all about. The more we can connect and see their world, the better we can guide them to make safe decisions.

Until Next Time…
Kortney Peagram
Be Strong*Be Brave*Be a Bulldog

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