No Santa?

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by yearroundteach, Dec 3, 2012.

  1. yearroundteach

    yearroundteach Companion

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    Dec 3, 2012

    I've been having a debate with myself ever since last year when there was a discussion on here about telling your own children there is a Santa or not. Luckily I have a couple of years before I need to address it but I really want to have solidly formed my opionion/decision by then.

    My question is, how many people here do not do the whole "Santa thing" with their own kids? And if you don't, what was your reasoning? And the last question is, how do you deal with family (grandparents, cousins, aunts/uncles, etc.) that do participate in Santa?

    I am just so torn about this topic. My in-laws are heavily involved in Santa. My mother-in-law still addresses gifts to all of us from Santa as well. I've always enjoyed Santa since I was a kid. I love watching my nieces and nephews get excited when Santa (family friend) calls on Christmas day. So I think it will be a very big deal if I tell them that my kid(s) won't participate in the Santa festivities. And I wouldn't even know how to handles that with a 2-3 year old who would be old enough to notice all the Santa stuff going on around him but not old enough to think "ok mom and dad said all this wasn't real but I'm not supposed to spoil it for my cousins by telling them that".

    On the other hand, when I think about telling my OWN kids that there is a Santa only to later have them find out that isn't true, I don't feel great about that. Somehow it feels like lying. Please don't think I'm judging those of you who do participate in Santa with your children. Remember that I said I enjoy seeing/talking about with nieces and nephews about Santa. My own parents and grandparents did Santa with me when I was younger. I certainly don't think of my family or myself as terrible liars so I don't judge anyone else who tells their children about Santa either. I think it is a very warm and fuzzy tradition. I just can't shake the feeling of weirdness when I think of telling my own children about it (or the tooth fairy, Easter Bunny, etc.).

    I am just so torn over all of it that I thought it might help to hear the experiences of those of you have went against the tradition and are "Santa-less" with your kids. :confused:
     
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  3. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Well, I hesitate to share my opinion because, yes, I still remember how hateful a couple people were to me when I posed a similar question in the past. No grudges...haha! :)

    But to answer your question, I don't have children but I would not "do the Santa thing" with them and I do not "do the Santa thing" with my cousins, nieces, and nephews.

    I don't agree with it ethically. I think you can tell your child you want to play pretend with them and then have fun with the various characters, but otherwise...no. I will not tell a child I believe in Santa because he, in the way children are asking, isn't real. Yes, yes...the spirit of giving and all that. But the children ask because they want to know if the fat-down-the-chimney-cookie-eating Santa is real and I cannot lie to children in that way. I just can't. At school I don't perpetuate the "myth" of Santa and dismiss related questions. At home I do the same...or say, "Go ask your mom."
     
  4. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    I think this link http://www.cozi.com/live-simply/truth-about-santa has the best explanation I've ever seen.

    My parents did Santa with me and we celebrated St. Nick too on December 6. I loved it and one of my fondest Christmas memories is when they put a piece of red fabric in our chimney and said Santa ripped his suit. We wrote a really nice letter to Mrs. Clause and sent it back to the North Pole. It's one of my best Christmas memories and one that I plan to continue with my own children.

    I never thought of it as my parents "lying" to me just like I didn't with the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy. I think it's a great tradition and I think the meaning is what's important. I will definitely do Santa and St. Nick (and the Easter Bunny and Tooth Fairy) with my kid(s) when I have any.
     
  5. lucybelle

    lucybelle Connoisseur

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    In Costa Rica it's Baby Jesus who brings presents to kids!
     
  6. amakaye

    amakaye Enthusiast

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  7. BettyRubble

    BettyRubble Rookie

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    Honestly, find me a parent who hasn't lied to their child at some point. Maybe the degrees are different but if you haven't at least told your kid a small white lie, well, kudos to you. I tell my kid the M&Ms are all gone all the time so I don't have to share them.

    The best explanation I've seen for doing Santa came from a Jewish friend, actually. :) She said she always loved the idea of Santa because it really is a bit of magic in a child's life. She sees kids just experience pure joy at the idea of Santa and thinks if parents want to give their kids that joy without taking the credit for it themselves, then they should. That's what it's about for me. It's fun for the kids and the parents. My son isn't old enough to "get" Santa yet but I see with my niece and nephews just the pure excitement and happiness that comes with the anticipation of a visit from Santa Claus. I have very fond memories of growing up with Santa coming every Christmas and to me it's just a special part of my childhood that I want my own kids to experience it, as well.

    Sure, I felt sad for a little when I learned Santa wasn't real but I didn't have any ill will towards my parents for perpetuating the myth. In fact, I found it fun to be "in" on the secret and keep it alive for my little brother because he was still getting so much joy out of it.
     
  8. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    :eek: Santa's not real???
     
  9. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    I don't consider traditions to be lying.

    We 'did Santa' with our kids. Neither dh or I felt we had been betrayed by our parents when we found out the truth, and neither did our sons.

    Like most parental decisions, what you choose to do should be what's right for you and your family. People will always have opinions about how others raise their children. I remember unsolicited advice about my weight gain during pregnancy, prying questions about my birthing choices, rude opinions about my choice to not breast feed. Truthfully, it's no ones business about such things and how you choose to celebrate family holidays and traditions. Do what feels right...
     
  10. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    She's asking for opinions. For the record, I don't make it a point to tell everyone I think they're making the wrong choice by Santa-ing it up. :)
     
  11. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Yes, I know she asked for opinions. Mine is that parents should make choices that are right or their families. Unfortunately, sometimes people criticize those decisions once a family has made them....it was hurtful when acquaintances criticized my feeding decisions, for example. I wouldn't question your personal decision to not 'do Santa'...that would've be your choice. :) I have a friend who celebrates Festivus ( Seinfeld episode:haha:)...I love celebrating everyone's traditions! Enjoy!
     
  12. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I celebrate Festivus! Lol! Pole and all. :D

    I also don't think kids should be given cokes to drink. We all have our opinions...not necessary criticism, just opinions. I doubt too many people care what I think of their parental choices. Sure doesn't seem that a lot of families are listening to me! :)
     
  13. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    I think no matter what, someone is going to judge your parenting skills and try and butt in. It's so interesting too because those people are usually the last ones to take their own advice!

    Do what makes you happy :)
     
  14. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    So fun!

    My Festivus friend's son decided he wanted a blow up Santa ornament for their lawn...she bit the bullet and bought it since it made him happy!:D
     
  15. 3Sons

    3Sons Enthusiast

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    I did the Santa thing with my kids, and didn't really consider it lying. Actually, my kids are well-grounded enough that I don't think they ever really believed it.

    My son 3 just lost his first tooth, and thought the tooth fairy was really his older brother son2 because son 2 was so excited to tell him about the tooth fairy (and after S3 had fallen asleep, S2 came to my room to tell me, "Dad, I think now is a good time to leave the money!"). I'm pretty sure S1 didn't believe in Santa even the first time it was brought up.
     
  16. Harper

    Harper Companion

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    That letter was truly perfect. I saved it as I expect to have conversation in my not-too-distant future. :(

    I was not going to "do Santa" with my kids, but like others said - it was about magic. When they are ready for more of the story, I know what I will say! Thanks.
     
  17. geoteacher

    geoteacher Habitué

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    Who says Santa isn't real? To me, the figure of Santa embodies the spirit of giving - part of what is important during the Christmas season. I'm still a 'believer', and my now-grown children still get gifts from Santa.
     
  18. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    I didn't read all of the replies, but I say let them figure it out for themselves. I plan on having Santa come when I have children. IMO, it's a fun tradition.

    I don't, however, believe in going crazy at Christmas time. My own parents each spend about $50 on me at Christmas, and I tell them not to buy me anything. My fiance's parents still spend about $300 per child. To each their own, but I don't like to spend a lot of money at Christmas. It gets expensive and stressful. I keep it simple and enjoy the season. :)
     
  19. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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  20. yarnwoman

    yarnwoman Cohort

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    Started with Santa with mine but then switched to St. Nicholas (Dec. 6)! St. Nicholas brought the gifts. Santa came on Dec. 25 and left fruit and candy in the stocking and still does even though the kids are 19 and 20 yrs old. THey said they like the tradition.

    But we also have a little friend Orbie who is an alien who would also visit at christmas. Orbie would visit and leave a letter explaining why he could not stay. THis started when they were 3 and 4 yrs old and just stuck.
     
  21. yearroundteach

    yearroundteach Companion

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    Dec 5, 2012

    Thank you to everyone who replied with your input. I know I have to make my own parenting decisions and I also know that no matter what I do there will be people who don't agree. I guess I was hoping that there was someone here who had done it and knew how to navigate the issues that will inevitable come up when family does in fact "do Santa" and you're trying not to. I think that is a huge part of the conflict I'm struggling with internally. Yes at first thought when I think of telling my own kids about Santa I feel a bit uncomfortable with the thought. But I'm also not interested in starting WWIII with my family so I'm just hoping to find a way that everyone can be happy. That's part of why I was asking for opinions and experiences...I was hoping someone had already done the work for me and had a neat little solution to this dilemma. :lol:

    I want to clarify the lying thing... When I say lying I'm not really talking about telling your kids there is a Santa or putting presents under the tree from Santa. I mean yes that still bothers me a bit to do myself but it isn't really my main concern. My issue mostly comes in when kids start asking questions.
    Kid: "Mom, how does Santa get in our house when our fireplace doesn't have a chimney?"
    Mom: "Ummmm...he must have magic to come through the front door, window, etc."
    Kid: "Mom, why does this gift say it's from Santa but I saw it in your closet last week?"
    Mom: "Ummmmmmmmmmm...Santa must have been storing it there." or "I bought that gift for ______. The one under the tree must have been from Santa."
    It is when that all starts happening that I know I'd get uncomfortable. I'm not a great "liar" and I don't know how well I'd do with the inquisition! Again I'm using "liar" loosely. I don't think anyone who "does Santa" is a liar in any real sense of the word. It is a tradition that many people find fun/worthwhile and are carrying on. I think that is great for those who choose to!

    Thanks again for everyone's input. I hope I can come to some sort of decision before I need to. It doesn't help that DH really doesn't care either way. :rolleyes:
     
  22. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    We do Santa at my house...I always told my kids when you don't believe he doesn't come anymore...my 19 year old son still claims to believe. My kids aren't stupid. They both were told by classmates in kindergarten that there wasn't a Santa...but they pretend to believe to keep part of the holiday magic.

    The other thing we do with my children that started with my son's first Christmas is bake a birthday cake for baby Jesus. My kids love to make and decorate it Christmas eve. They blow out the candles and eat it in His honor on Christmas day.
     
  23. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    I am an old guy and I STILL believe in Santa Claus. When little kids ask me I tell them that and how I heard him when I was 5 years old and checked my parents room and they were still asleep (I was a child of the night) and then saw all the toys. I have watched Miracle on 34th Street a million times. And then there is this which perfectly explains it even 105 years later.


    "DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old.
    "Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
    "Papa says, 'If you see it in THE SUN it's so.'
    "Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?

    "VIRGINIA O'HANLON.
    "115 WEST NINETY-FIFTH STREET."


    VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.


    Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no VIRGINIAS. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

    Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.


    You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

    No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.



    Oh yeah, Polar Express and Charlie Brown's Christmas do a great job of explaining it.
     
  24. donziejo

    donziejo Devotee

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    Everyone believe's in Santa at my house!
     
  25. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Nice, stephenpe!
     
  26. Harper

    Harper Companion

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    Embarrassed to admit this, but I have never seen Miracle n 34th Street. Maybe I will watch it this year! Question - is it ok to for 6 and 7 year old to watch?
     
  27. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    Dec 6, 2012

    You have the new one and the original with Natalie Wood. Original is best.
     

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