October is upon us. With October comes Halloween! Traditionally, Halloween safety is thought of in terms of younger children, trick-or-treating, and supervised school parties.
However, Halloween season is not just for the little ones. You may find your teenager wants to help decorate the house. They may want to go trick-or-treating or go a Halloween party. Here are a few things to help them (and you) have a safe and fun experience.
If they are driving home from school or practice on days your community is trick-or-treating, make sure they know to pay extra attention. While parents of young trick-or-treaters try their best to keep young ones safe and orderly, sometimes the urge to get to the next house, to dart into the street because they got spooked, or to run and see the costume of one of their favorite characters can be overwhelming. If your teen is driving on these days, encourage them to drive slower than usual or have them drive home a little later after most kids have gone back inside. Be sure to strictly enforce the “no texting and driving” rule. If they are new drivers, you may want to consider driving them or picking them up.
If your teen is going a Halloween party, make sure they are costume smart. If they are dressing up, make sure they are not driving with a costume that impedes their ability to see while driving. Ensure their costume allows them to turn their head completely and does not affect their ability to operate the vehicle safely. This may require them to get completely dressed once they reach their destination. The same applies for any passengers in the car. Make sure their costume is appropriate for the weather or that they bring extra layers with them. Although usually not a problem, make sure costumes will not impede the ability to use or carry their phones.
Remember that some costumes may alter the voice or mask the appearance of their friends. Make sure they verify individuals at parties before interacting with them. If you are hosting a party at your house with teenagers, limit the party to individuals who are invited and/or can be identified. Advise teens to never leave drinks or food unattended. Lastly, review with them all your expectations about alcohol and drugs.
Halloween is an exciting time of the year. Let’s be sure to have a fun and safe Hallow-teen!