Tips for a Drug Free Halloween

halloweenBoo! Did we scare you? Probably not. Words on a screen tend to not be too frightening. But it is the fright season. Oh yes, it’s Halloween. The leaves are falling. The days are shortening. The ghosts are coming out of the shadows. Fake spider webs deck porches. Parties are being planned. Costumes built and designed. It’s exciting. In a short while the streets will be filled with small vampires, werewolves, ghosts, superheroes, princesses, characters, puns, and other disguises of all sorts. They’ll walk from door to door, coming for your candy. Beware, some really will play “tricks” if they don’t get their “treats.” It’s time to prepare yourself.

History of Halloween

According to Halloween, Halloween has changed a lot over the years. The celebration of All Hallow’s Eve, or Samhain, started as a Celtic festival. October 31st was believed to be the day when the veil between the worlds of the living and the dead was the thinnest, or even that the worlds overlapped. This enabled the dead could walk amongst us living folk. People would leave food out for the dead in exchange for the dead not attacking or haunting them. People stayed inside their houses. Over time, people started to dress up as the dead in order to go out without being recognized by the dead. They thought that if they looked like the dead, they wouldn’t be attacked and could go from one place to another with relative ease.

Halloween Today

Of course, today Halloween is all about dressing up, getting candy, and having fun with your friends. However, a study from indicates that over five years of college students showed that these parties can truly get out of hand, and those that dress up and get into the holiday are more likely to drink and use drugs on Halloween. This is easy enough to see, after all, it is a party. You are going there with the intent of having some fun, and maybe getting a little crazy. And the people that tend to stay home and not dress up tend to not be the kind of person who finds entertainment from drugs and alcohol (not to say that none of them do).

Both drugs and alcohol can make it easier to be social. They dissolve your fears, help handle social awkwardness. There can also be peer pressure. Adolescents and adults alike may be tempted down the path of dark fun. It can be especially dangerous for the younger crowd.

As the Host

If you are hosting a party, you can do a lot towards helping people to have an alcohol and drug free Halloween. Try to avoid making alcohol the focus of your party. Provide plenty of non-alcoholic beverages so that people have better options. Get foods that are high in proteins and carbohydrates to help slow the effects of the alcohol. Have a cut off time. And, if you know that some of your guests won’t be drinking, you and the non-drinking guests can help ensure that everyone has a safe ride home. It might not be a bad idea to get the number for several cabs so that everyone has a sober driver as needed.

As a guest

As a guest, you can also do a lot by setting your own limits, watching how much you are being affected by the alcohol that night, not getting entirely wasted, ensuring you have a ride home, and you could even get together a group of friends dedicated to having fun without alcohol. Remember, your host was kind enough to have you over. Don’t become a problem that he has to deal with.

There are a lot of ways to help make this holiday a little bit more safe, without taking away from the fun of getting to be someone else for the night. What can you do?