Never too old to trick-or-treat

October 17, 2017 — by Alexandra Li

Teens should not recieve condemnation for bringing out their inner child

I tip-toed through the spider-webbed entrance, watching for hidden scares in the bushes. Dressed in a pig-onesie, I greeted the house owner with an excited, “Trick-or-treat!”

Contrasting my excitement, she glanced at me and responded, “Aren’t you a little old to be trick-or-treating?” Although I shrugged off her comment and continued on, a part of me couldn’t help slouching a bit in an effort to make myself look younger.

After this experience last Halloween, I quickly realized later that her attitude toward teens out trick-or-treating struck me as odd. Why should there be an age at which we should stop trick-or-treating?

In 2016, the U.S. Census Bureau reported 41.1 million children between the ages of 5 and 14 trick-or-treating, but did not even mention or collect data on those over the age of 14. According to a survey conducted by, 73 percent of respondents agreed that somewhere between the ages of 12 and 17, children should stop trick-or-treating.

Those who stand against teenagers trick-or-treating may be convinced that with age, people tend to get malicious intentions on Halloween night, such as destroying decorations or stealing candy. While this may apply to a few, the majority of teens who choose to throw on a costume and trick-or-treat simply want to spend the night outside, relaxing while also getting candy as a reward.

As pressure builds up in high school, Halloween should continue to be celebrated by those who would enjoy walking through neighborhoods and taking a rare night off. Growing up does not mean losing a love for candy and lighthearted fun. There shouldn’t be a negative stigma when teens decide to dress up or go trick-or-treating.

As high schoolers grow older, having another opportunity to be able to recapture their childhood innocence is more important than ever. Sure, since we’re no longer little, we may not look as cute as pumpkins or ghosts, but inside we’re not that different from the 6-year-old who stood on the same door step a decade before.

Even if teens stand above the average crowd on Halloween night, they should be able to spend the night collecting candy and doing whatever “Halloween-y” activity they wish to do without condemnation.

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