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To not let my children go trick or treating

(216 Posts)
Nolikeythespookey Tue 01-Oct-13 18:26:02

I really dislike trick or treating. It is not a British thing - it is a new thing from America and I think it's greedy and intrusive. I don't want my kids going to strangers doors and essentially saying 'give us sweets or we'll do something bad to you'. I think it's horrible manners and not even necessarily safe. I don't think children need a big bucket of 'candy' either.

My kids have been young enough to discourage this so far, but this year one has been invited out trick or treating with friends. I've said we have other plans. He's 6. When they get a bit older and are more aware of the whole thing I won't let them feel left out and will grudgingly allow them to go (with an adult) but I really, really hate this stupid non tradition.

We did used to have 'guising' on hallowe'en in the UK, where kids/guisers had to do a 'party piece/turn' to earn their treat, and I think that's a much nicer thing - bit of give and take and no demanding/threatening from the kids, plus the treat could easily be 20p or an apple.

Tailtwister Tue 01-Oct-13 18:49:10

Ours are too young to have done it, but we stopped having people a few years ago as the 'children' were older teenagers and started asking for money. They were rude and intimidating, so now we just switch the lights of at the front of the house and pretend to be out.


Bowlersarm Tue 01-Oct-13 18:51:18

Maybe it's a regional thing. I am approaching 50 and never heard of it as a child, let alone did it.

Tee2072 Tue 01-Oct-13 18:53:07

Don't blame America. Y'all did it first.

KeemaNaanAndCurryOn Tue 01-Oct-13 18:55:08


Been going on in Scotland for years and certainly in my neck of the woods for a very long time before anything vaguely American was mooted.


IT'S ONLY THE FIRST OF FUCKING OCTOBER!!! Sheesh, don't normally get this crappery until middle of October at least. This is like fucking shops shoving xmas decorations onto the shelves in August.

UnexpectedStepmum Tue 01-Oct-13 18:55:53

I have fond memories of my dad, who was a bit deaf and quite grumpy, shouting "trickle what? at them until they gave up and went home.

(He also loved having Jehovahs Witnesses call as he was a theologian and could keep them there for literally hours discussing obscure codexes)

wonkylegs Tue 01-Oct-13 18:56:51

It's not a 'new thing from america' - History here
If you don't like don't do it, if you do, do... Leave it at that

stopgap Tue 01-Oct-13 18:57:40

I'm 36, and we did a double whammy of Trick or Treating, followed by Penny for the Guy, and that was nearly thirty years ago in north west England. I think the dressing up in non-ghoulish costumes and parties for adults are new developments, but not going round houses dressed as a witch.

I now live in America, where Halloween is bigger than Christmas, and houses that wish to participate in Halloween are inevitably decked out in decorations. It's also usual for the whole family to go, not just unaccompanied kids.

queenjellybelly Tue 01-Oct-13 18:57:57

We all love Halloween! If its the weekend, we have a party at home but otherwise we take the kids trick or treating. Our street pretty much all make a massive effort with decorations. If a house isn't decorated, we don't knock on the door. Last year our neighbours dressed as zombies and hid under the car on their drive, reaching out as people walked past to knock on their door. Dead funny! Younger kids are always accompanied by adults and everyone, adults included get kitted out in some amazing costumes! It's brilliant. Door knocking always stops by 8:30 so no majorly disturbed bedtimes. I find bonfire night more of a pain in the arse. Fireworks going off for hours until after midnight for weeks before & after the 5th November. Both my kids are terrified of the loud bangs & end up camping on the living room floor with us sleeping on the sofa for nights on end.

And as an American, it's YOUR OWN FAULT.


We are just copycats and made it a bit bigger. But as far as I know, the US didn't invent guising or souling. Or the other similar activities in Portugal, Sweden, Germany and Denmark for example, which has been going on for decades.

hiddenhome Tue 01-Oct-13 18:58:45

We just lock the front gate. Nobody can get in round the back either. I think treat or treating is a ridiculous thing.

justanuthermanicmumsday Tue 01-Oct-13 18:59:54

I don't get Halloween I think it's just commercial bull I wouldn't go so far as saying it teaches kids to be greedy but it can be intrusive to some ppl. Still I would give them sweets or a bit of money they're innocent kids.

Is wise to have kids supervised by adults though which doesn't seem to happen with the kids I've seen.

My parents have never understood it , honestly thought the kids were begging so they'd feel sorry and give them money for food loool

picnicbasketcase Tue 01-Oct-13 19:02:13

I don't like it and don't let my kids do it but I do keep some sweets by the door because I'd rather give them a lolly than have my house pelted with eggs.

flipchart Tue 01-Oct-13 19:02:34

I used to go trick or treating with my dad when I was a kid and I'm nearly 50!

I haven't got a problem. I just buy a few packets of mini mars Bars.and hairbos. It's great to see the effort some kids put into their costumes.

80sMum Tue 01-Oct-13 19:02:57

I don't like trick or treating either. It definitely IS an American import. It began to take off in the UK in the late '80s/early' 90s. Many Britons saw it for the first time in the film ET and it gradually started happening over here.
The popularity is almost entirely due to aggressive marketing, by greeting cards companies initially, of Halloween decorations etc. Such things were unheard of in the UK before about 1988 and had become widespread by the mid '90s.

NellysKnickers Tue 01-Oct-13 19:03:08

I don't like it. Dont let mine do it. I do buy treats for the trick and treaters that come round but don't ever open the door and scoff the lot. Every year.

DontmindifIdo Tue 01-Oct-13 19:06:48

Every year I add the same comment, it's not a new thing, I did it as a child and I am not young (sadly). However, I grew up in the north and it does seem my southern friends didn't do it.

Round here there's a porch light on rule for knocking, rather easy not to join in. But there are some who don't like that while they aren't joining in, aren't being bothered about it, they have to know about it and get all annoyed at other people having fun in a way they don't approve of (and even if it was a new thing, I'm still failing to understand why something being new and from America is a reason it shouldn't be allowed...).

Join in, don't join in, but don't get in a grump because lots of other people are having fun in a way you are not.

trixymalixy Tue 01-Oct-13 19:08:27

FFs!! Do we really have to do this every year?!?!

It fucking is not a fucking American import to the UK. Guising was taken to America by the Scots. We have been doing it for centuries in Scotland Scotland is part of the UK you know!!!!

elfycat Tue 01-Oct-13 19:08:40

I really don't want to be dragged round trick-or-treating --in all weather--with my young DDs, or want them out doing it when they are older. So I've been having a Halloween party in my house. Having friends over all dressed up, silly themed foods and too many sweets. We decorate the hall with stuff, and the doorqway with fake spiders in webs, carve pumpkins (I'm hoping to have some from my garden) and hand out sweets to people who do like traipsing round.

I'm dressing as Medusa. I have my toga and snakes good to go. I'm wondering if it would be a bit much to get prescription red contact lenses this year. I have done previously but I feel obliged to wear them for a month after the expense.

Jackanory1978 Tue 01-Oct-13 19:08:42

You are a miserable bunch!!

I loved it as a kid; a parent accompanied us & we only went to 'prearranged' houses where my parents knew we'd be welcome. We didn't do tricks or anything.

Personally I'm quite disappointed that where we live now there aren't any children that come knocking; I still put my carved pumpkin in the window though & stock up on sweets (which dh eats cos no one ever comes round).

Don't think teenagers should be doing it though, it's very much a little kid thing.

GeeTeeEff Tue 01-Oct-13 19:10:53

A new American thing, oh please.

Mine go out on Halloween, they love it. Our street has a lot of kids so don't venture far, I love it. I'm going to decorate the house this year.

ilovepowerhoop Tue 01-Oct-13 19:12:07

it is not a new thing and we did it as children in the 70's - I am in Scotland and we dress up and have to tell a joke, sing as song, etc to get the sweets. We only go to doors that have lights on/a pumpkin lit, etc and dont even knock on doors with their outside lights off.

TwoEightTwoEightTwoOh Tue 01-Oct-13 19:14:59

Remember Mischief Night? Now that was something to not let your kids do. I remember as a child my parents driving us back from somewhere on Mischief Night and there were bins on fire and stuff!

Ledkr Tue 01-Oct-13 19:16:14

I felt like the op until we moved here and I noticed everyone did it.
It's lovely. Lots if the houses are decorated and we only go to those.
People go to great effort to make little treats like homemade cakes or bags of sweets.
The kids honour in little groups with parents.
We always have a little party with hotdogs and toffee apples and we take them trick or treating after.
It's not late and I very rarely get older kids knocking on my door and if I do they are dressed really imaginatively.
It's just a bit if fun to break up the winter.

KatyPutTheCuttleOn Tue 01-Oct-13 19:21:35

Mine have never done it because we (I) had religious objections to it. Now we're atheists and so we could do it this year, DS has already noticed the Halloween stuff in shops so I am wondering if he will ask to go. I've not decided yet. We used to do pumpkin carving and a special dinner and have a family film night when others were trick or treating by way of a compromise.

SelectAUserName Tue 01-Oct-13 19:21:41

We did it when I was a kid in NE England, the only difference being we called it "Penny for Hallowe'en" rather than Trick or Treat.

I think it's a cute thing for younger children to do with a responsible adult and am always happy to get a few packs of sweets in and let them pick from our 'lucky dip' box. I don't agree with teenagers using it as an excuse to all but demand money with menaces, egg old people's houses etc.

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