JFF - When Do You Tell Your Kids They Are Too Old to Trick or Treat? SWH**

Updated on November 06, 2017
M.6. asks from Woodbridge, NJ
24 answers

We had our kids stop after 6th grade. They might go to a Halloween party or something like that, but we stopped the door to door. I get kids all the way to seniors that come to my door for candy, some aren't even in costume. We always have tons of candy left over, if a 17 yr old wants to walk around and knock on doors for candy, it is none of my never mind :) Plus, I know some of the older kids have to watch little siblings trick or treat and then they go out after they bring their siblings home and then go out themselves. We do turn the lights off at 8 p.m. as our special needs child goes to be at 8:30.

So, at what age (if any) do you put the kibosh on going door to door?

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So What Happened?

I hope everyone had a safe and happy Halloween! We didn't have many trick or treaters as it was only about 20 degrees - too cold for a lot of folks to get their kids out. Plus, our town does "trunk or treat" the weekend before Halloween at a local church. A few brave souls did come out, including older kids (whom, like I said, I personally don't care - we give candy to all who knock), and they all made out like bandits because we had so much candy on hand. *sigh* I will have to really step up my workout program the next couple of weeks to compensate for the extra candy I ate last night.

I was kind of bummed that a regular poster felt we were such "fun-suckers" by turning our lights of at 8 p.m. due to our special needs child needing to go to bed at 8:30. It is difficult for folks who have not raised special needs kids to understand the need for routine or our son's fear of being in bed and worrying about people who have scary masks banging on your door. Luckily we get that and put our child's needs above a kid who might need one last candybar at 8:40 at night :)

Happy November!!!!!

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M.G.

answers from Portland on

We haven't. It's up to the kids. My kids go in a group though of a bunch of ages and it's all in fun - they all dress up as a theme and have been doing this for years. I believe this will be the last year, but we think this every year.
So long as they still have fun - and they do - we're ok with it.

Added - love the responses. I agree with the moms here who like seeing some of the older ones out with friends, having a good time all in the name of good 'clean' fun. My older ones put a lot of thought into their costumes this year - and it's very funny. Clever really.

I think if I ever saw them misbehave or be disrespectful - it would be another thing entirely. My kids still love candy and this is still like a mini-Christmas to them. They still get excited over the big bars and cans of pop.

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5 moms found this helpful

P.L.

answers from Washington DC on

We haven't said no yet. My oldest(16) doesn't want to go, middle 12 yr old is going to her friend's neighborhood, and I'm taking youngest out. I old my older daughters as long as they dress up , have at it. Happy Halloween!
P

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N.B.

answers from Oklahoma City on

My granddaughter is 13 and still wants to go with her friends. I don't care. I hope no one is rude to them because they could be out tossing pumpkins or something. As long as they're nice to the other trick or treaters and mind their manners to the givers I don't think it should be a problem.

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M.D.

answers from Pittsburgh on

When do I think kids are too old to trick or treat? Never. There are far worse things that teens could be doing on Halloween night. I welcome kids (and kids at heart) of any age to my door on Halloween with a smile and a handful of candy.

ETA: My township sets a time for trick or treating - 6PM to 8PM - which I think is great because we can go to bed in peace at a reasonable hour (my typical, non-special needs kid goes to be at 8:30 too). Although I don't see anyone posting about your 8PM lights out.

ETAA: We had a fun evening. It was cold, but there were so many kids that we ran out of candy! We probably had a hundred kids come to the door.

11 moms found this helpful

C.T.

answers from Santa Fe on

I don't have an age that we will stop our kids trick or treating. I love the teens that come around with their friends. I love it that they still want to trick or treat. My son is a teen and he will probably go with his little sister and then go some more with one of his friends. It cracks me up how some of the teens will put on a funny hat or just grab something to be their "costume". To me they are the clean up crew if I bought too much candy and I like to joke with them and encourage them to take more. They always are surprised and happy! Happy halloween!

7 moms found this helpful

T.F.

answers from Dallas on

We never stopped our daughter. Most of the teens stop on their own when they start having Halloween themed parties. When my daughter got older she and her friends enjoyed coming to my house to pass out candy because I have boatloads of kids coming through my neighborhood.

Updated

We never stopped our daughter. Most of the teens stop on their own when they start having Halloween themed parties. When my daughter got older she and her friends enjoyed coming to my house to pass out candy because I have boatloads of kids coming through my neighborhood.

6 moms found this helpful

D.B.

answers from Boston on

We never did. We let the kids decide when they're done. If 17 year olds want to get in costume and go door to door, who am I to ruin their fun? Most of them opt out by 14 or 15, but it's their decision. We have a local dentist who collects leftover candy to send to the troops, so I don't worry about leftovers.

And if I had a special needs child, I'd let that child go out even later in life, as long as it was meaningful to that child.

I honestly think it's like Santa and Easter Bunny and Tooth Fairy - they all decide when they are ready to move on. What I hated was when our 14 year old and friends were yelled at by a homeowner who was "afraid" of 4 girls. Anyone who doesn't want to participate in the fun can do what you do at 8 PM - turn off the light and shut the curtains. Our trick or treaters are really done by then anyway.

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A.D.

answers from Minneapolis on

Never. My kids both enjoyed trick or treat a lot during their middle school years. They were old enough to go with friends without adults along by that age, and they had a blast! Of course, they were dressed in costume. Neither one continued past middle school, but I wouldn't have forbidden it. What's wrong with older kids enjoying the fun? As long as they are well-behaved, I think it's totally fine.

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J.B.

answers from Boston on

I don't. If they want to dress up, they're free to go. Middle school was the best time for trick-or-treating for my older kids because they didn't need to be supervised and had the energy (and long legs) to go really far. I think my oldest son went out in high school. My younger boys are in 6th and 8th grades and I don't see them stopping anytime soon.

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J.K.

answers from Wausau on

Mine are in 17 & 15 and will be out tonight for trick-or-treat. They came up with their own creative costumes for it, although I'm working on crafting a prop for one of them today. There are a couple 14 year olds on the block who will go too.

It makes sense to tell a teen 'No' to ToTing is if they have shown to be irresponsible/destructive if allowed out without supervision. Other than that, I can't think of a good reason.

We're a college town and sometimes the young adults will dress up and ring some bells too. I'm totally cool with that too. I usually keep some food near the door because some of them are collecting for the local pantry.

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M.C.

answers from Chicago on

I never did. Mine trick or treated through high school. It's very common around here and I have no problem with it. In fact, I, myself trick or treated until senior year!

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B.C.

answers from Norfolk on

We never got into going door to door with our son.
Where he was born - the neighboring town had a Halloween parade.
Everyone of all ages would dress up, it was well lit, safe, police, EMTs and firetrucks were in the parade among many others and floats threw enough candy that you got plenty without hiking all over town.
I really missed that parade when we moved away.

The county where we currently live says Trick or Treat is for 12 yrs old and younger and must have an adult with them.
Although if older kids or adults are taking younger kids around, they get treats too.

Here are our local rules:
"Young ghosts and ghouls under the age of 13 across Hampton Roads can go house to house trick-or-treating as long as they have an adult with them.
Here are the times for trick-or-treating in Hampton Roads localities on Oct. 31:

Norfolk: Ends at 8 p.m.
Virginia Beach: Begins at dusk, ends at 8 p.m.
Chesapeake: 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Portsmouth: 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Suffolk: Begins at dusk, ends at 8 p.m.
Hampton: Begins at dusk, ends at 8 p.m.
Newport News: Begins at dusk, ends at 8 p.m.
Williamsburg: 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Gloucester County: 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
James City County: 6 p.m. to 8 p.m."

We live out in the middle of a soybean field so no one goes door to door out here - it's too much walking just to get to half a dozen houses.
We have our neighborhood Halloween party - and that's great fun!

There's a nasty side to Halloween that can just spoil it for every one.
Soap on windows - washes off - but wax on windows is a pain to get off.
Egg throwing on cars/houses, toilet papering, shaving cream in mailboxes, pumpkin smashing - the general vandalism is a reason some places have laws that try to keep the teens from getting out of hand.

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J.C.

answers from Anchorage on

Whenever they feel like stopping, but they only get to go if they are in costume.

2 moms found this helpful

T.S.

answers from San Francisco on

Never told them they were too old. They just grew out of it, at around 12 or 13.

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N.G.

answers from Boston on

I 've gotten bummed due to no one dropping by to get candy. I miss those days but I'd give out candy to any age.

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C.N.

answers from Baton Rouge on

I never set an age for mine. She developed an interest in attending other events that superceded her desire to go door to door.

As for my policy on handing out candy, if you come to my door, you will get candy. I don't care if you are in costume, I don't care if you live in my neighborhood, I don't care how old you are.

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W.W.

answers from Washington DC on

I've never told mine they are too old. I have a senior and a sophomore. They are out now.

I don't have a problem with them trick or treating - much rather them having fun with their friends than getting in trouble....

1 mom found this helpful

L.U.

answers from Seattle on

My son is 15, my other son is 12, and my daughter is 6. They are all trick - or - treating together tonight.

Updated

My son is 15, my other son is 12, and my daughter is 6. They are all trick - or - treating together tonight.

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M.J.

answers from Sacramento on

We don't, although I suppose I'd cut if off at college, if it came to that. Our son decided this year at 14 that he's over it. I suspect his younger sister will still be into it much longer.

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M.S.

answers from Oklahoma City on

Hope everyone had a safe and fun Halloween! I have no age limit on trick-or-treating. My sophomore went to a party and my 6th grader went trick-or-treating. My hope is that my youngest keeps going for a few more years. 🎃

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H.M.

answers from Dallas on

We never have. Our youngest 15 has not gone for the last few years but he was at the gym practicing the several years. Last year we went to Sea World that weekend so I said no trick or treating. But my oldest still went with us when he was 15. I think mine are done. When we would take them my husband and I dressed up. Some insisted we get candy since we dressed up. I think if they are dresses up they should get candy. But keep in mind also some special needs kids wont or can't do costumes but still should be able to trick or treat.

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D.N.

answers from Chicago on

They decided when to stop. My son would have loved to go too but he thinks that at 18 and over 6 feet, it would have just been too weird-plus he didn't get home from classes until almost 7. N my area, and a lot of surrounding, T&T is done by 7 with just stragglers going around. If someone is willing to dress up and go, good for them. The only time I refused to give anything to someone was a time a woman came to my door, first yelled at her kids then opened her purse for me to fill it. Another when 2 boys, maybe 12 or 13 yrs, pushed past little kids on the stairs to get to my door first. Be polite and play the part. Its all in the name of fun.

A.W.

answers from Kalamazoo on

I haven't and won't. My son stopped at 12 or 13 I think. He's 15 now. My daughter is 13, 8th grade and went with a group of girls this year. They all dressed up and had a blast. I went with them, walking our dog. Only had one person (an older man) comment that they might be a little old, to which I replied "at least they aren't out getting into trouble". :) so that's my opinion.

S.G.

answers from Los Angeles on

I don't want my kids to stop! As long as they wear costumes and are polite, then they should absolutely go out and participate in the fun!
If you want/need to shut the lights off early and go to bed that is your right. I can't believe some of these communities that have such strict rules about who can participate and at what time! Sounds miserable! And trunk or treat? How sad!

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