Don’t lie to me about Santa.

We lie to kids all the time. We should stop. I often talk to Chris about all the Hallmark holidays that have gotten out of hand. Maybe I am a buzz kill, but we are basically telling kids lies and then later expect them to trust us. My parents did it and I turned out fine (at least I think I did), but I think I might just stop the craziness when I have kids. I thought Stefanie Wilder-Taylor said it just right in “Gummi Bears Should Not be Organic:

“Early on their life is filled with fantasies they believe to be true, such as Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy (notice I capitalized Tooth Fairy—because, like God, the Tooth Fairy is still very much a real and venerable life force in my house.) And who puts those fantasies in their head? We do. So when your child tries to convince you that the reason they took all the forks out of the kitchen is because they needed them to help run the jelly bean factory in their closet, how can we be mad when we’ve convinced them that a fat guy with a sack of toys is going to be sliding down their chimney?” page 92-93

She is right. We lie and then we expect them not to lie to us. Besides I think most kids do not even know the true meaning of Christmas. They think of it as a plethora of gifts, a tree, photos with Santa, and whatever other crazy traditions we have started. What if instead we all went back to the true meaning of Christmas? Giving to those in need and being together. Sadly, because of all the crazy hubbub of Christmas, I have become a Grinch. I do not want to buy you a gift just to get you a gift, and I do not want you to do the same. I do not need a thing.

It is funny — I decided to Google “the true meaning of Christmas” and I got such an array of answers about Jesus, God, and lots of other religious babble. One site did give me an answer I liked — that the true meaning of Christmas is Love. Now that is something I can wrap my arms around. Can we show our kids that? Instead of telling them about a fat, jolly Santa, the North Pole, and lots and lots of presents, why not show them how to give to kids in their community that do not have as much? Maybe sharing a coat with someone who does not have one? Or selecting toys to give to children that do not have any. What then are you teaching your kids? Love, gratitude, sharing, and appreciation for all they have each day?

I do not want to raise kids that feel they are just going to get presents upon presents under the Christmas tree, and so many they cannot even begin to appreciate them. That is commercialism and consumerism at its best. I would rather dote on them throughout the year, rather than swoop in on one day out of the year. Besides it feels like a lot of pressure, and is it really worth it? Call me a Grinch, but I do not want to start that tradition.

2 thoughts on “Don’t lie to me about Santa.

  1. well – if we want to be accurate, true meaning of Christmas is that a growing religion call Christianity wanted to compete with pagan traditions and supplant pagan holidays with Christian holidays (i.e. Xmas = winter solstice). almost every Christian holiday has a parallel pagan holiday and it’s easier to get people to rebrand something than it is to get them to stop. not that easy? well, didn’t Rome go from boucoup idols and gods to one God? and it continued on. Makes sense that mythological creatures like St. Nick, the easter bunny, etc. have actual mythical histories.

    as far as lying to kids, i find the source more difficult and more basic. when a young child (3-5) asks about death specifically their parents death, it is a hard topic because they are still so reliant on you so if you die, they die (and yes kids are that black and white then). kids will become very angry with you equally whether they find that you’ve told them a white lie or a big lie. once you get into the discussion about heaven and the ability to reunite with family (religion in general), totally slippery slope. now, do i believe in a canned religion – no. am i religious, yes. then how do handle the training of my kids,

    simple. canned religion knowing that we’ll have different conversations as they get older.

    Like

  2. Pingback: Raising the truth | random olio

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