Halloween is a time when ghosts and goblins of all ages go out to play. Make sure your night doesn’t turn dark and stormy, share these tips with your children before they head out for some fun.
Travel Safely and Stick With Your Friends
- Use the buddy system. Not only is it more fun to go candy hunting and party hopping with your friends, but it’s also a good way to make sure no one gets lost. Walk around with a group and don’t go to a Halloween party without a good friend. Make a pact to arrive and leave together, and keep tabs on each other all evening.
- Carry a flashlight. At least one person in your group should have a flashlight. They come in handy when large sidewalk cracks suddenly spring up, and will make your group more visible to passing cars on a dark street.
- Walk safely. Stay on the left side as much as possible.If you walk on the left, traffic will always be coming toward you so you will always see approaching vehicles. Try to wear bright colors so you are easier to spot, or have a friend in bright colors lead your pack. Always walk on the sidewalk if possible and don’t run through the woods.
- Keep your phone on. Be sure your phone is fully charged before you go out for the night and make sure the volume is turned on in case a friend is trying to reach you.
- Carry emergency cash. Keep cash tucked inside your pocket or costume. It could wind up being cab fare or other emergency money.
Beware of Alcohol
- Stick with apple cider and soda. Know your limits. You don’t have to be drunk to have a good time on Halloween. Binge drinking is dangerous and can lead to much bigger problems than throwing up on your costume and waking up with a hangover the next morning. Binge drinking alcohol can lead to lead to some scary outcomes. Alcohol in any amount is dangerous for teens to drink because it can change the developing brain (which is also why it’s illegal). But binge drinking—five or more drinks for guys and four or more for girls—has the potential for more immediate terrors—it contributes to alcohol poisoning and car crashes.
- Don’t drink and drive. Never ever drink and drive. Never accept a ride from someone that has been drinking, even if they’ve “only had a couple beers” or say they’re “only buzzed, not drunk.” If you’re a designated driver, be extra careful on the roads. Other people who didn’t choose a DD may be breaking the law and driving while intoxicated, putting themselves as well as you and your friends in danger.
Don’t Be a Zombie
- You may be wearing a Halloween mask, but keep your eyes peeled. Never leave your drink unattended; take it with you no matter where you go.
- Never leave a friend alone, especially if impaired, and do not hesitate to call 911 if medical attention is needed.
- Fun times with friends don’t mean that you need to get wasted. Throwing up, falling, car accidents, possibly risking assault…definitely sounds like there are much better ways to enjoy Halloween with beasties and buddies. Check out the classic horror movies or hand out candy to trick-or-treaters. Whatever you decide, stay safe.
- Trust your instincts. On Halloween or any other night, if something “just doesn’t feel right” trust your gut instinct. Leave the party, don’t accept the drink, or just say no to whatever it is that’s making you uncomfortable. Your safety is more important than a party or possibly upsetting a friend.