Halloween is Optional

Stop before you go blowing a bunch of money on Halloween candy or costumes. Halloween can be skipped with absolutely no ill affects. As a matter of fact, as parents, you can use this holiday as a teaching opportunity and build on your family identity in the process.

But everyone else is doing it. We have always done it this way. Yes, there is an overwhelming urge even as adults to do things just because other people are doing it or because these things are just things that we have always done.  We don’t want to be the weird one in the bunch. We don’t want to have people make fun of us. We just want to have a little fun. These are all very common response when I ask why people participate in halloween activities. The truth is that not everyone is doing it and you should not feel guilty if you choose not to do Halloween.

Halloween provides an excellent opportunity for parents to build on family identity. If you are not certain why you participate in Halloween activities other than “just to have fun” or “because it is what we have always done” then you might consider letting the October 31st pass by in your house as if it were any other day of the year. We have done this for several years now and have seen no negative affects.

Why pick on Halloween? Why use this holiday as teachable moment or as a way to set your family apart from other families? For our family it is a personal conviction that stems from our faith in God. I first wrote about this five years ago and received some very positive feedback and encouragment from readers of my personal blog The Land of Ozz. Here is an excerpt from that original blog post titled Halloween – Should Christians Participate?:

A few days ago I was involved in a conversation where someone said that “everyone needs a spooky computer background for Halloween.” I simply said, “I don’t do Halloween”. The response of another person was, “to each his own” in a gruff and grumpy sort of way. The amount of truth from that comment is staggering even though it was delivered to me with a very disapproving tone. For the purposes of this article I will define this phrase “to each his own” as a person’s right to choose.

I have already made the choice for my family based on prayer, research, and discussions with my best friend (my wife). We no longer buy or make costumes, attend festivals, go trick or treating, and we do not give out candy. We just plain avoid the whole thing all together. It has actually been a pretty simple deal once we committed to the decision.

Not all Christians share our convictions on this subject. As a matter of fact I would guess that a majority of Christians disagree with our response to Halloween. As you can see above I have wrote in much more detail about what line of thinking originally brought us to a decision to stop participating in Halloween. I encourage you to read more of my thoughts on the subject if you are looking for encouragement to stop participating in Halloween. Not everyone is participating and you should not feel obligated to do so with your family. And this is not just a narrow minded Christian view point either. Many people of other faiths understand the roots of this holiday and choose not to participate. Here are a few other blog posts from years past on this subject:

Halloween and Christian Families
Halloween II – Why Christians Should not Celebrate

As parents we can be different and should be different. We should strive to be the best parents that we can be and not settle for “at least as good as Fill in the Blank“. Doing thing like everyone else will result in raising kids just like everyone else.

What will you do to help your family stand out as unique? How will you rise above mediocrity as a family? Are you considering a change to your response to Halloween?


About Hank Osborne

I encourage dads to rise above mediocrity in marriage and parenting. I write and speak on technology, biblical parenting principles, education, and parenting medically special needs kids. My wife Sherry and I co-host the Home School Support Network.

  • http://passionatefather.com/ Brad

    We have not participated in Halloween for the last ten years or so. My six kids don’t complain much and it opens up the door for some good conversation and teachable moments. That said, we have plenty of friends who do participate. We respect their decision and they respect ours. The key for me is being intentional and thoughtful about your view. Don’t just do it (“it” being either participation or non-participation) because you’re following the crowd.

    • http://DaddyLife.net Hank Osborne

      Brad, That is an excellent point about being intentional. I am glad to hear another positive response from a parent with similar convictions. Thanks for sharing.

  • http://twistedchristian.ca/dadblog twistedxtian

    I like the intentionality of your decision. You didn’t stop doing Halloween because someone told you it was evil, you researched, did your homework, came to your own conclusion. It’s nice to see that.
    Something I work hard on is intentional living, and when I see it in others, it is a trait I respect highly, and try to learn from. 🙂

    Happy #CommentDay!

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