Fentanyl-Coated Halloween Candy? Tips to Help Keep Parents From Going to Stress City This Halloween by Dr. Bethany Cook Clinical Psychologist
Halloween has always been a "scary" holiday, but becomes even more so with the threat of candy coated with drugs. As parents, grandparents and guardians, the worry of fentanyl-coated candy landing in your child’s bucket can ultimately change the trick-or-treating agenda. Here are some tips to make this year ghoulishly good and not stress city:
First, identify why you celebrate Halloween.
- "Everyone is doing it."
- "I LOVE dressing up and getting my kids involved."
- "I love stocking up on all the candy."
Then make sure you do activities that fill your "Halloween bucket" and that may not include trick-or-treating at random strangers' homes. Talk to your children before Halloween about your concerns and potential alternatives to any activity that gives you anxiety/concern. (Eating candy collected from certain people due to your concerns about X. Not attending certain parties because of Y. etc.)
Here are some Halloween ideas:
- Instead of going trick-or-treating with, you could host a party.
- Instead of eating the candy they could donate it to a shelter or somewhere local that could benefit and you’ll take them out for an ice cream sundae.
- If getting candy is a big thing in your family, identify trick-or-treating events that are sponsored by businesses, churches, schools, etc. These places are less likely to offer drug-laced candy.
- If you have kids who like the traditional trick-or-treating (collecting candy from random houses) or you like that experience let them know ahead of time that you’re not comfortable with them eating it, but you will happily exchange the candy for something like money, food gift card, another type of candy, non-candy item, etc.
Bottom line, this year, it’s all about your own comfort zone. Doing what feels right for you and your family and keeping them safe is the ultimate goal.
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