Santa Claus Is My Problem
I know all you old timers on the board probably get tired of me saying I have 5 adult children and then adopted JJ who is 10. We raised all the children to believe in Santa, the easter bunny, the tooth fairy, goblins, leprechauns, and every wonderful magical thing we could think of. They grew up and learned from their friends, tv, and others that those fantasies are not real life. I play pirates with my grandsons. They all think I am an aging ninja. We sword fight and pretend that we are vikings. When my brother and I were children in the forest in the Tennessee mountains we pretended we were tarzan and G I Joe. Some much fun. Such a magical time.
Everyone of my children thank me for that magical time. Everyone wants me to recreate that time with my grandchildren. Not one of them is angry thinking I lied to them. We play. We imagine. We have fun.
One day JJ asked me was Santa real. I told him no. We bought his presents. He told me he was going to believe in Santa anyway because it was so much fun. Then he told me that Nanu, (my mother), told him to never stop believing in magic because then the magic would go away.
I think we have all gotten too hard, too politically correct too everything.
We are only children once in life. We have a life time to be adults with adult responsiblities. We have wars, poverty, death, so many sad times in life. Sometimes the believe in magic or our childhood magic can get us through in life.
To each his own but this day I am going to embrace the magic and encourage the imagination of my son and grandchildren.
Thank you, Tam, ever so much for sharing your wonderful story of warmth, love, and inspiration; it truly refreshes the spirit and soul!
Good article Roto. I think all people are different. Where some children may be traumatized for life over the Santa lie or their parents religious beliefs others just go with the flow. I'm sure it is all in how it is presented to them and how they deal with life in general.
Excellent! That article says what I was trying to get at very well.
"What she (and the others who makes similar arguments) fail to recognize, however, is that the thing she is defending—The Santa Lie—does not actually promote imagination or imaginative play. Imagination involves pretending, and to pretend that something exists, one has to believe that thing doesn’t exist."
"But encouraging your children to literally believe the Santa lie is the last thing that encourages critical thinking and effective reasoning in children."
"Think about what many parents do to keep kids believing. When a child brings doubts, parents often encourage the child to stifle those doubts and continue believing: “Just believe what you want to. After all, isn’t that more fun?” They will sometimes plant false evidence (or show terrible fake “scientific” documentaries that do so), make up faux ad hoc explanations, or—worst of all—just say “he’s magic.” But all these things are directly contrary to what parents who want to develop critical thinking in their children should do. Stifling doubt, believing based on desire (instead of evidence), being convinced by bad evidence, being fooled by ad-hoc explanations, and appealing to magic—these are all “bad habits of lazy thinking” that I have to drive out of my critical thinking students every semester."
I think one of the reasons my daughter figured out Santa at such an early age is because I taught her to think critically from day one - to question everything! This does not mean I stifled her imagination one bit, rather I encouraged her individual imagination by allowing her to make up her own mind about things, and how they relate to the world.
Kids deserve that respect of their thinking skills just like adults. I think in this current era we must teach our children to think critically and to not believe something just because someone tells them it's true. Our future depends upon people who won't follow those who lead them like sheep.
It isn't about being traumatized.
Again...................Good Grief. Y'all need to lighten up.
My parents never told me Santa, the Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy, etc, were not real.
Kids figure things out and continue to enjoy as should the adults enjoy the "spirit" of it all.
I never once said to anyone: You lied to me about Santa, and I will never trust you again>"
Santa and fantasy rehab for all Grinch's!
"While Moyerbut is right that many children suffer no ill effects from learning the truth, she is wrong that none do. In “Against the Santa-Claus Lie: The Truth We Should Tell our Children” (Chapter twelve in Scott Lowe’s Christmas and Philosophy) I document some horrific stories about the “big moment”—stories that show discovering the truth about Santa is often not with consequences--everything from the erosion of parental authority and trust to turning a child into an atheist. For example, Jay defended Santa’s existence in front of his whole class on the mere basis that his “mother wouldn’t lie” to him, only to read the encyclopedia entry on Santa in front of the whole class and simultaneously discover that she indeed would. "
This was my experience. I devoutly defended Santa because I believed my parents would never lie to me. So yeah, it does affect some kids. Not just me. The "spirit" for some isn't just innocent fun - it's fun at the expense of a child's trust.
Everyone's experience is different - this isn't "fantasy rehab." Nor have I called anyone names in this thread for their beliefs.