UNITED STATES—Halloween is almost here America, and as I reflect on Halloween when I was a kid compared to being an adult, things have vastly changed. Something that many people might be surprised to hear about is that growing up as a kid I did not always go trick-or-treating. Yes, I know this might sound crazy, but it’s true? My mother used to throw epic Halloween parties for me and my siblings. I mean these parties were epic; our house was like a haunted house, spider-webs, spooky lights, decorations galore, pumpkins, candy, the works people; and that was the inside of the house.

On the outside, we had fake dummies, graves and blow up projectiles. Our parties were so much fun I don’t think we cared if we went trick-or-treating on Halloween. I also think it was important for my mother to keep me and my siblings bonded, while also hosting family celebrations at the same time. I honestly can’t remember how many Halloween parties we had at our house, but I recall them dating back to the age of 4. In addition, the idea of watching scary movies never even crossed my mindset as a kid, nowadays people have horror movie-thons on Halloween to get in a few good scares.

As an adult I’ve come to the realization that horror can scar a child for life; I’m one who doesn’t think it’s wise to allow a child to watch a horror film because the separation from fantasy and reality is not the easiest to transpire. In addition, you can run into situations where you have those inquisitive minds, but it’s safe to wait till the child is in his or her teen years before letting them indulge in such depravity (as some people would call it).

The notion of trick-or-treating is a must for most kids, they plan all year long for the perfect costume and once a child has a fixed person or thing they want to be, it’s impossible to rid that notion from their mindset people. If they want to be Wonder Woman or Harley Quinn there is a good chance the parent is going to go all out to ensure the child has that costume of choice. That is the great element of Halloween; rather you are a kid or an adult you can dress up as someone else for the day and it’s so much fun. I mean Halloween has always been one of my favorite holidays; it’s not my all-time FAVORITE, but I do indeed love the day America. To be honest I think adults love the idea of dressing up much more than kids do, rather it’s something spooky, sexy or goofy, the ideas are limitless.

However, we do have to discuss the issue of safety. Trick or treating then compared to what it is today has vastly changed. People don’t always give out treats like they used to do in the past. In addition, you have to actively check your children’s buckets or bags. Why? There are some sick people out there. First and foremost, if the item is not securely wrapped it needs to be tossed. Never allow your children to eat ANY candy or treats that are not wrapped. They could be tainted and that’s no fun. Fruit is a no-no in my opinion. I guess I get why some adults give it out, but I would never allow my child to eat any fruit given to them on Halloween.

Now, here are some very important issues that we must discuss. Don’t allow the kids to consume any candy or treats until you have carefully combed through their bucket or bag to ensure all are safe. Next, be vigil while allowing your child to trick-or-treat. They should NOT be allowed to go house to house by themselves. You should be in tow with your children, and if there are homes that you feel uneasy about, then don’t allow your child to visit that house. There are people out there who unfortunately like to indulge in things sinister and if that is the case, you have to take the precautions to ensure your child is safe and forget about everyone else.

Whatever your plans are to celebrate Halloween, be safe and have plenty of fun. Remember it’s a holiday that only happens once a year so live it up a little, but don’t do anything stupid that you’ll regret it the next day America.