Santa Claus and friends bad for the kids?


Hear me out on this one:

We tell our kids about fanciful creatures such as Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, etc. Not only do some take away from the true nature of the feast being celebrated, such as Christmas and Easter, but they also pose this risk. Eventually the kids will find out that you have lied to them for their entire life. At that time, why wouldn’t they also question if you’ve lied about other things to them. How do they know if God isn’t in the same category as the Tooth Fairy, and how much will it affect their ability to trust others, even God?


Isn’t it a little early for this thread? It isn’t even November yet! But then again, I’m not sure this topic came up last year so maybe it IS time for it.

I will just give my usual thoughts: make believe is not lying and “complete honesty” is often a sin.


No, it came up and boy did it get ugly:slapfight::blackeye: Think this will be my only post and I will now run away and hide…:frighten:


Oh my gosh! That you even have to ask the question makes me feel sorry for you!


Jeez, I’m 29 and still, very strongly I might add, believe in Santa Claus

You keep them believing in that as long as possible. You can, and should, do the religious stuff, but please keep them believing!


You’re probably right. I can’t keep one year straight from the next. But this is one of those topics that I can’t keep my fingers from commenting about.

My kids all know that many names are “the same”. They were told from a very young age that names like John, Sean, Ivan, Jean, and Giovanni were the SAME name. They were just in different languages. My son is Peter but half the time we call him Pedro because he spends so much time with his friend Jose. We told our kids that Santa Claus MEANT St. Nicholas. And we proceeded to tell them about how he was a bishop that helped people. We were very emphatic about that.

When it came to all the myths surrounding Santa we gladly shared them but were very vague and would simply neither confirm nor deny anything, even if our kids asked. We’d say things like, “We’re told that…” or “The story goes that …” or such things.

We were similarly vague about tooth fairies and Easter Bunnies.

[LEFT] --------------------------------------------------------------------

I am a firm believer in the principle of NOT having to answer most questions.


This just popped into my head and with my memory I can’t guarantee it’ll still be there in four months. :stuck_out_tongue:

Can it be called make believe if one or more parties are not in on the gag? When is honesty a sin? Even when a party is not entitled to the truth, that doesn’t justify intentional deceit.


YOU MEAN THER IS NOT A Santa Claus!!! Nonsense. hes been bringing me presents for 57 years.


Tell them the truth, and then teach them how to write thank you cards instead of wish lists.


A lot of people do use the questionable existence of Santa Claus as an analogy to the existence of God, but in my opinion eliminating Santa Claus will not solve the problem. Those who will question God *will *question God whether or not their parents have exposed them to Santa Claus or the Tooth Fairy.

I don’t have any strong feelings about Santa Claus either way. Some people grew up believing in him and they turn out fine, others grew up not believing in him and the still turn out fine, too.


We don’t “do” Santa, et al, for the very reasons the op mentioned and more. Those things were all I had growing up. No real faith. Santa is just too secular and all about “I WANT”. I don’t want that for my children, so we limit these fake people/ideas. This doesn’t limit their imagination or creativity or make it a horrible home life. We have normal, well adjusted children who celebrate St Nicholas, get Easter baskets from Mom and Dad (w/lots of religious stuff AND candy), and still get a few coins for lost teeth–and I leave it under their pillow (really, I have nothing theological against the tooth fairy, I just have forgotten to leave quarters often enough that it’s obvious Mom is the tooth fairy :p). We don’t “ban” Santa or the Easter bunny, we just shift our focus so that they really aren’t relevant. It works for us, but I understand others don’t and won’t agree. However, no need to say that we are terrible parents or deranged because we choose differently.



I don’t think it ‘harms’ kids to believe in this legend/myth/fairy tale…whatever you want to call it…but, I don’t think it’s necessary to add it to one’s Christmas/Easter season. So, if a parent chooses to ‘opt out’ of the whole Santa Claus thing, there isn’t anything wrong with it, just like someone who wishes to opt in. I grew up believing in Santa…until one night I woke up and saw my dad putting the gifts under the tree. I scurried off to bed so confused. I was about…6, I think. I remember that. I remember when opening the presents the next morning, my dad acting like Santa brought them. I knew it wasn’t. Did this news scar me for life? Yes…

I’m kidding, it did NOT scar me for life. But, I didn’t understand why my dad acted like someone else brought the gifts, when he did. I never ever sat on Santa’s lap at the malls, after that…my parents were confused. I never told them I knew, they died when I was 10. (my dad died a year before that) I told my sister when I was a teen what happened…she laughed.

My dh and I did the whole Santa thing…my husband gets angry at me now for not continuing this. I said…uh, the gig’s up…the kids are 13 and 16…they know there is no Santa. He said, yes there is!

:rolleyes: There IS a saint nick, but he wasn’t a ‘give everything a kid asks’ for genie in the bottle kind of invention that America has created him to be over the past 40-50 years.

I told myself, I was not going to get involved in this thread this year. :rotfl:*


*I SO admire you for this, Jennifer. I really do. If it were up to me, we would have shifted the focus as you mention…but my dh was so into this…so I went along. But, I never liked the idea of ‘I want’ this or that, and then parents scurry to the store to buy it, pretending “Santa” sent it.

However, I love the Polar Express…my husband tells me the bell doesn’t ring for you anymore, Sharon. :frowning: (if you have seen the movie, you know what I mean by that statement lol) Yes, it does! Jesus is the reason for the season, not Santa!

Every year we get into this same argument…:shrug:

But agree–if you want to do this with your kids, not a bad idea…but, shifting the focus more on Christ, seems the better route to me. :)*


Can it be called make believe if one or more parties are not in on the gag? When is honesty a sin? Even when a party is not entitled to the truth, that doesn’t justify intentional deceit.

I don’t know that young children are entitled to the truth about the Easter Bunny. A “gag” sounds like something done at the expense of another.

And I believe that if I absolutely hate Mary’s hideous dress that I am under no obligation to tell her so, even if she asks. Because in many** cases** (yes, there are exceptions) telling her what I think is more harmful than helpful. So it is not lying to make some comment about how the dress brings out the color of her cheeks, or whatever.


:smiley: aw.


*In addition to my dad pretending to be Santa…I think I know why I didn’t want to carry this on. (here’s a shrink moment) I had to deal with a lot of harsh truths…my dad struggling to beat cancer, watching him slowly die…my mom’s death…by the time I turned 10. I think maybe it hardened me to myths, legends, and so forth. I guess I got used to the stark reality of life…:frowning: :shrug:

Ok…that’s enough for me on this. :o :wave:*


I agree, it is far too early to be concerned about this–heck, summer isn’t even over! I say, lighten up, folks. Some on this thread are beginning to sound like Jehovah’s Witnesses. Santa Claus is harmless. His legend started with St. Nicholas, a bishop…this can’t be all bad. Kids will eventually outgrow him…I did when I figured out that “Santa’s” handwriting on the cards I received with my presents was strangely similar to my Mom’s. Same with the Easter Bunny when I caught my Dad preparing the baskets early in the morning. We also had the Tooth Fairy. None of these fictional characters affected my faith in God in the least. Now, if families emphasize gift-giving and candy at Easter and Christmas to the exclusion of making sure their children know what those holidays are really all about…then that can be a bad thing. . Otherwise, let it be. Don’t borrow trouble. Peace.


:twocents: then I’m out. :stuck_out_tongue:

**Fact: **Telling children stories is not the same as telling them lies.

However, on the day – And it will come – When your child comes to you and asks *"Does Santa Claus really exist? Johnny at school says he doesn’t’ *or *“I think maybe it’s you and Mom” *or whatever, if on that day you look your child in the eye, and not wanting to let his childhood escape, you say *“Of course, Santa Claus is real!” *that will be a lie.

Here endeth the lesson.



Okay, not quite endeth. :stuck_out_tongue:

The correct answer on that day, and the one I gave my first-born, is:

:wink: Don’t tell your sister. :wink:



Actually I think that Santa Claus should be in a different category from the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy.

Santa Claus IS real because he’s Saint Nicholas and Saints are ALIVE even if their bodies are “dead”. Jesus said,

‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? He is not the God of the dead but of the living."
Matthew 22:23

But that requires that parents tell children the truth that Santa Claus is St. Nicholas’ name from another language. And it means kids need to know who St. Nicholas is.


Since I’m really the only one who has really posted about not doing santa, I’ll assume you mean me (I could be wrong :p). I find the fact that you had to call names, disturbing. I didn’t say no one should do it, just that in our family and how dh and I were raised that we would de-emphasise Santa and all. We, personally, don’t find Santa harmless, if you do, that’s your family’s choice. I’d thank you not to cast asperstions at those who have come to a different conclusion

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