The Great Santa Debate: What do you tell your kids?

Christmas Eve is nearly upon us and my kids are filled with glee (and busy cleaning their rooms to make space for their new toys) and excitement about "Santa" coming to visit tonight.

I know I've mentioned before that my kids are still young. They are 6, 7, and 8. But they don't "believe" in Santa. Never have. My husband and I had "the talk" about Santa, Tooth Fairy, Easter Bunny, etc., when I was pregnant with our oldest. He was pretty adamant that we didn't lie to the kids. We went back and forth on this for a while. I felt that Santa, etc., was part of American mythology and I wanted to pass on that tradition to our kids. But then I remembered quite vividly the instance when I knew Santa wasn't real and I can remember those feelings of "wow, he's not real" and how sad I felt. Remembering those feelings, I decided that my husband was right and I agreed that we'd not do the whole "Santa thing."  I have never ever said to my kids, "SANTA IS NOT REAL."  Rather, I've said, "some people believe in Santa, and some people don't, and you get to believe whatever you want.”  This gives them the control to make up their own minds and it also gives them a tool to handle tricky discussions with friends who are adamant that Santa is real.

Rather than Christmas being about Santa, we embraced the festivity, our elf Elvis, family, friends, great food, cookies, presents and cold weather (well, as cold as it gets in Florida) and the FEELING of a new year approaching and that anything is possible if you BELIEVE that it's possible. And of course, the most important part of Christmas for us, goodwill towards man and we embrace that by donating to Toys for Tots, food banks, coat/blanket drives; giving to those that are less fortunate than us. That's what Christmas is all about and that's what Santa would want.

What do you tell your kids about Santa?? Do you remember how you felt when you learned Santa wasn't real?




Comments (1) -

  • Tif
    Merry Christmas, Jenny!

    We don't do Santa either. When Keira and Scharae were 2 and 1 K started to clue into discussions and when people started asking her if Santa was going to come down her chimney or leave toys in her stocking she absolutely freaked out. She has always been an anxious kid and even that young it was evident-she was NOT OK with the idea of some man coming in her home while she was sleeping!  So that year we just didn't do Santa. We've never picked it back up. They have stockings, we fill them up, they know other kids believe and we've talked and talked and talked to do our best to not have them become "those kids"-the ones who ruin the magic for all the other kids! But for us, Santa is just not something that gives the happy fuzzies that it's supposed to-same with the toothfairy, easter bunny, etc.

    I remember exactly when I KNEW for sure that Santa was my parents-I got my first bike...except it was my brother's old bike with a new spray paint job on it. I knew it was from my parents because I had seen that color of paint-it was my dad's engine paint from the shop. My brother and I were the oldest so we did a good job of pretending for the younger kids for a number of years. I don't really associate any feelings towards finding out about Santa-negative or positive-just more so about the fact that my bike was a BOYS BIKE! lol
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