Sunday, October 10, 2010

Too Much "Boo"ze in Halloween

I don't know how many people are reading my blog. I think after this posting, I will find out!

I’ve written this one in my head for 4 years now and finally have the guts to publish it. Putting these words on paper will mean one of the following:

Someone will;
  1. Call me a "stick in the mud"
  2. Agree with me
  3. Think I should live on another planet
  4. Defriend me, either on Facebook or in real life

At this over 40 stage of my life I worry less and less about others’ opinions. (Wait til I’m 80).

Here goes. I just have a question.

When did Trick or Treating with children become a drink fest? I am not talking about the tots running amok with Grey Goose and Bud Light. I am speaking of the parents who carry a cooler on their backs while the kids are running door to door to score some sugar. Seriously, it’s everywhere. No matter which neighborhood you venture into; the high class and the not so high class. The parents are chugging beer while the kids are chomping on Charleston Chews.

When exactly did this happen? Has it been going on for years and I was just unconscious?

Here’s the thing. I do not drink at all. Was never much of a drinker before I had kids and then once I did have them, I somehow developed a strange allergy to booze. I might have a sip of wine and seriously, that is more than my body can handle. So, it’s easy for me to sit on my wagon and judge. Alcoholic beverages are not my thing. Now, if you’re going to criticize people who eat chocolate excessively.....

I digress. I don't judge people for drinking responsibly. BUT....

I think that childhood is a very short ride and kids only have a very brief window of time to be innocent. And I look at Halloween as a fun and carefree childhood activity. Why do parents have to infuse alcohol into it? Is Trick or Treating so stressful that you need to get through it by drinking a 6 pack? I just. Don’t. Get it.

And it’s not just Halloween. It’s kids’ birthday parties, it’s play dates with mommies drinking margaritas, it’s the “It’s 5 o’clock somewhere” attitude. It’s those damn “Real Housewives” on Bravo TV. Whenever the ladies get together you never see anyone drinking a cup of coffee. They are too drunk, hooked up to Pinot I.Vs. One couple could not endure a family photo shoot without a gallon of burgundy red on the side. I don’t find it funny. I find it pathetic and I think it sets a horrible example for children. Growing up thinking that this amount of alcohol consumption is normal, is not normal. And I really feel like part of the minority.

There's a time and a place for everything. Children's events should be just that; for children. The adults should plan their adult parties another time.

I’d love to know what the audience thinks. Does it bother anyone else? Please share your comments below!

14 comments:

Nancy said...

Bravo, Beck! I don't drink, either, and cannot understand the need for some people to involve alcohol in everything they do....especially when there are children involved. I loved your blog and have also been searching for an appropriate venue to come out as a *non-drinker*!! Cheers! LOL

Anonymous said...

I definitely agree with all you've said. Halloween is for BOOS and not BOOZE.
Fill up your coolers with apple juice, put on a costume and take your kids out "Trick or Treating."
Good Job, Becky!! It's about time someone came foward and spoke the truth. AMEN.

SHARON ELLEN BURTMAN said...

I totally cannot relate to the combo of alcohol and trick-or-treating. I guess I've lived a sheltered life! LOL. Seriously, this beloved activity, really is for the children, and should be sweet and innocent, creating cherished memories for a lifetime. Wishing everyone who celebrates this holiday, a happy and safe Halloween.

Kimberly Mellor said...

Yeah, Bravo, I totally agree that parents should find a different time to have a beer or a glass of wine. They should not be doing it while they are taking their children trick or treating. If they are taking their kids trick or treating they need to have all of their senses in order to make sure that nothing happens to their child(children). If they are drinking how fast are their reflexes if their child happens to walk in front of a car. They should make a different time to get together with other moms/girlfriends or parents instead of at Halloween or a morning play date. Just have coffee at a play date or water. I agree that this is great Becky and glad that you came forward with this issue.

Becky's Big Bytes said...

Thank you all for your wonderful and right on the money comments! I haven't heard from "the other side" and guessing I won't!

Anonymous said...

Honestly? I think you need to get a hobby. There is nothing wrong with drinking alcohol as long as you're not getting frat party drunk. If the parents aren't handing out shots to their kids then who cares? Since when did having kids mean everyone has to become a hermit?

Becky's Big Bytes said...

Dear Anonymous,
Thank you for posting and sharing your opinion. You might want to read the blog again. I never said parents shouldn't or couldn't drink and that they should become hermits. Again, time and a place for everything.
I guess we can agree to disagree on this one. But perhaps you might pay attention more to the masses out there who are toting around the coolers. The fact that it's become "normal" doesn't make it right.
Thanks for reading my blog.

Becky

Goal Getters said...

To the person who thinks that having kids doesn't mean you have to live like a hermit,
Having kids means you need to an example for your kids and be a role model. Stop leaving the raising of your kids to their others. By drinking in front of your kids while trick or treating, you are sending the message that in order to have fun you need to drink. I hear that some parents have drinking parties while their kids are at the prom. And we wonder why the kids are drinking? Wake up. Having kids doesn't mean you have to live like a hermit, but it does mean that you have to behave like an ADULT. Your little ones are watching you.

betsy said...

Hi Becky - lovely to finally meet you, but sorry it was at a not-so-happy occasion; my condolences to you and your family.

Re: drinking while taking
one's kids Trick or Treating - I have never ever heard of such a thing. I lived in DC when my son was Trick or Treating age (and he is now around your age). A bunch of us Moms took our bunches of little kids around Capitol Hill and environs and I don't think any of us (and we all were women who enjoyed a glass of wine or two now and again) ever even dreamt of taking any form of booze with us. This was before the days that everyone walked around with either a water bottle or a 'bucks cup, so we didn't even have one of those. Our most egregious sins back in those days were scarfing down our kids candy (when they weren't looking, of course), but certainly not sipping a thermos of beer or wine. So, I repeat, I've never heard of anyone doing this, but I'm a lot older than you, so maybe it's de rigeur these days among the young parent set to get a bit of mother's helper to help get them through the long night of Halloween. Hopefully this behavior is not widespread. Becky, I think you've hit the bigtime with all of those
anonymous responders, not to mention the ads I spied on your blog!!! Bev (the other one)

Goal Getters said...

I guess Becky's on to something here:http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/39938704/ns/health-addictions/

Rich Legault said...

Great article!

People seem to have forgotten that alcohol is a neurotoxin and effectively a carcinogen. It is not good for your body to drink every day.

Also, I'm not a parent, but... If you need alcohol to get through a few hours with your children, why did you have them in the first place? Shouldn't seeing your kids having such a good time make you happy? Perhaps I've misunderstood.

;)

Becky's Big Bytes said...

Rich, I totally agree with you on all fronts! Yes, children bring along stress but if you can only cope with that stress by drinking then there is a problem. (And yes, they do bring a lot of joy.)
Thanks for commenting and feel free to share my blog with your friends : )
Becky

Anonymous said...

Not only on Halloween, but why do some parents have to drink whenever their kids are around? I think the notion of caring for a child's innocence has been replaced with a cynical slap of "reality" to grow the kids up and off their backs. I fear for my children's ability to mature in their own time while in a world with other kids who have been exposed to their parent's "reality" for so long.
I don't want to homeschool, I'm too tired for all that, but that option is looking better and better all the time.

Becky's Big Bytes said...

To my latest "Anonymous" poster (I wish I knew your names, but that's ok : ), thank you so much for your input. I couldn't agree more. Very well said! Do you blog? If not, you should!
More and more I feel like an outcast in terms of this and many issues and it's nice to know I'm not the freak in the bunch anymore.
Thanks so much for reading my blog.
Becky