Post # 62
- Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL
Awesome article! This part got me:
According to Dr. Condry, “The most common response to finding out the truth was that they felt older and more mature. They now knew something that the younger kids did not”.
Believing in Santa as a small child and then learning that he isn’t real as you get older is a right of passage. With so few rights of passage left I couldn’t imagine taking this one away from my own child. As an only child Santa was one of the few magical aspects of my childhood and I absolutely loved sharing my family’s Santa traditions with my young stepdaughter (my dad always drank a bit of milk and took a bite out of the cookie I left for Santa). I never lied to her about him and always answered truthfully that Santa was magical because I knew that one day she would realize that magic is pretend. It was a sad day when I could tell she realized Santa wasn’t real anymore because while she felt proud to have figured it out, I realized a major chapter of her childhood was over.
Post # 63
We had the Easter bunny, tooth fairy and Santa Claus, but I don’t recall ever really believing in them. At least, I don’t recall it being a revelation that they weren’t real. I never felt lied to. It could have something to do with the fact that we had to leave crackers and diet coke out on Christmas eve because “Santa was a diabetic” 😉
I want Christmas to be magical for our little ones. We’re still trying to figure out what that will mean for our family though. I want to emphasize how good it feels to give and serve others, instead of worrying about what presents you will get. I want them to experience the joy of having family around. I want them to feel hopeful when they hear the story of baby Jesus’ birth. I want them to get more out of this holiday than just “Santa brings me presents.” But I do want them to experience Santa too. I want to see their faces light up when something they believe is magical happens. Hopefully I can find a way to tie it all together 🙂
Post # 64
I definitely don’t justge those who choose not to go the route of Santa, etc, but I do feel sad if it were my kids involved. lol
I had no issues with finding out Santa wasn’t real, and it added so much more magic to the season. To be completely honest, I have more trouble with the fact that the winter holiday has been warped into a celebration of Christ’s birth…when he wasn’t even born in December. The only reason we celebrate it as Christmas, is because Christians wanted to convert pagans who celebrated Yule (and I am a Christian!)
Anyways, back on topic.
I have a 2 year old who is just starting to grasp the concept of Christmas. She wanted to see Santa this year, and wants him to bring her a ball. It melts my heart. She is so darned excited for Christmas, and gets so happy when she sees Santa on TV. I love to see her having so much fun with it 🙂
Post # 65
If you decide not to do Santa, etc, the key is to be upfront with your kids and make sure they understand the importance of not ruining the fun for their friends.
We have decided to minimize Santa Claus a little bit, to refocus the holiday on Christ and on giving. We are going to do stockings and one gift from santa. The rest will be from family. I want to teach our kids the importance of gratitude and giving. Unfortunately I feel like Santa gifts play more to a sense of entitlement. That’s just us, though!
Regarding Christmas in Australia, I grew up in the South pacific. We did Christmas the same as anyone else! We would decorate a tree, sing carols, bake cookies, write letters to Santa… the only difference was that we did not have a fireplace and we would all be wearing flip-flops and shorts on Christmas. When Santa Claus came to town he usually wore board shorts 🙂
Post # 66
@worldtraveler: My parents raised all 4 of us kids without santa, easter bunny, tooth fairy myths… They were very christian and could not get down with the idea of lying to their children and feeding into the consumerism around those holidays. They also felt the true meaning of christmas (christs birth) was to be the only emphasiss around the holidays. They told us stories of St. Nick and made sure each season we did alot of service work to give back to those less fortunate. Personally, I loved growing up this way and felt I didn’t miss out on anything whatsoever. DH & I will be doing the same with out children, minus the religious aspects because we are not religious.
Post # 67
My parents never told me that Santa existed. My dad wanted to play along but my mom thinks it’s silly to tell kids, so they just never told me he didn’t exist… but didn’t really say he did either. If I talked about Santa they went along with it, but they didn’t label my presents “from Santa”, it was always “from Mom and Dad”. As far as the tooth fairy, my dad couldn’t resist putting money under my pillow haha. But I sort of figured out that they weren’t real at a younger age than most kids.
Post # 68
@worldtraveler: i am jewish, so i grew up knowing that the easter bunny and santa didn’t exist. my mother taught me to keep my mouth shut and not ruin it for other kids.
she wanted me to believe in the tooth fairy but i was too smart for her.
Post # 69
I certainly won’t be lying to my kids about them.
They will have them though, but as fun imaginary characters, like cartoon characters.
We will have to explain to them that it would be rude to ruin the magic for other kids whose parents do things a different way (I don’t really think there’s anything “magic” about deceiving kids and think the world is magical enough as it is, but I don’t want my kids to look down on other kids for something that’s none of their faults) and not to get into conversations on the reality of those characters.
Post # 70
We don’t have kids, but if we did we probably wouldn’t play into it too much. My parents never went out of their way to try to convince me of Santa, the Easter Bunny, or the Tooth Fairy. My ILs go over the top with it though and I don’t think it’s helpful. My nephew is getting to the age where many of his classmates probably already know the truth and he’s still a strong believer. My Mother-In-Law thinks it’s cute but I’m worried he’ll make himself look stupid in front of the other kids.
Post # 71
I grew up in the US without having Santa, the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy. I didn’t have a problem with it and in fact never got a chocolate easter egg until last year. Yeah, that was weird. My husband also wasn’t raised with Santa or the rest of the gang. We have decided not to raise our future children with it either. I think it’s a bit silly and don’t see a problem with it for us. For what it’s worth, I always appreciated what my parents did for us kids around the holidays more as they had to work hard to provide for us. I don’t think the magic of childhood and the wonder of imagination was ruined because I didn’t have Santa come visit. I beileve that we told our friends that Santa didn’t come to our house, that my parents got our presents. No big deal. Also, I freaking love Christmas. My tree has been up since mid-November. So being raised without Santa certainly didn’t ruin the holiday spirit for me.
Post # 72
Christmas isn’t nearly as much fun without Santa! I don’t think it’s the end of the world (as long as they’re taught not to spoil it for other kids which is likely inevitable) but it’s probably something you should be on the same page about.
Now, elf on the shelf is NOT something I can get on board with. Maybe it’s just the people I know, but I cannot stand bribing your kid into good behavior for a month by telling them an elf is watching. I also can’t stand the whole Santa won’t come if you aren’t good either though.
Post # 74
I enjoyed believing in all those things growing up, but either way I think kids turn out fine whichever way you go. However, I will be bringing up my children with Santa and the toothfairy (even though I ws too smart to know the tooth fairy was real). Every year our family made it a HUGE deal with Santa. My uncle stood outside with a red flashing light to resemble Rudolph’s nose while my aunt said, “Look! Santa’s coming!” My mom was Santa and would come in and give us each a gift as long as we gave a hug.
I get teary when I think of those times still and when I watch home movies because the look on our faces was priceless. We believed so hard in something, and I’m glad I got to experience such a magical thing.
Post # 75
I wasn’t raised with any of those things. I didn’t know any different so it wasnt a big deal. They were just pretend characters like the ninja turtles and my little pony. We still had wonderful Christmas traditions like baking cookies and singing carols and I got to pick out a toy when I lost a tooth so I don’t feel like I missed out. Your kids will be fine whatever you decide. 🙂
Post # 76
Absolutely we will be doing the Santa, Easter Bunny and tooth fairy thing. I LOVED it as a child and I certainly wasn’t traumatized (LOL) by there not being a real Santa, etc. neither were my 7 siblings. I think the magic of it is wonderful.