Monday, November 23, 2009

The Santa Dilemma

We're the weird ones.  We don't "do Santa" in our home.  I know, I know.  I'm stealing all the magic from Christmas.  I know.  I struggle with the idea too and I have since the twins were born.

It comes down to this.  I want Christmas to be Christmas.  I want it to be about the birth of Christ.  I can't block out every cultural influence and I don't know how to make Christmas totally about Jesus but I can take some of the distractions out.  For our family, that major distraction is Santa.  The other issue is that I am committed to being as honest as possible with my children.  I would have a really hard time playing along with the whole Santa thing.  Anyway, enough of my issues.

Here's the Santa dilemma...As committed as I am to our family's decision not to "do Santa", I don't want my kids to ruin the fun for the others.  Last year (when they were 4, turning 5) was the first time this became an issue.  I heard Boy Wondertwin ask a friend if he believed in Santa.  Then BWT proceeded to say, "Well, you know he isn't real, right?"  Fortunately, the boy thought he was talking about a ceramic Santa that happened to be in the room.  We played it off.

Afterward, I threatened BWT with his life. 

I have a feeling that this year is going to be even more awkward with their increasing verbosity and inability to guard their tongue.  We've been invited to a friends' house where Santa will arrive and presents will be given out. 

Suggestions?  Should I duct tape my kids' mouths so they can't speak all day?  Or bribe them with lots and lots of candy?  Fortunately Little Dude is still a little young to spill the beans and maybe...just maybe, the twins are old enough to understand.

From what I hear, the magic of Santa starts to fade around age 6 but I still don't want my kids to be the ones responsible for their friends' loss of youth.


  1. My oldest is 7 and still believes. My nephew is 10 and still does.

    Maybe tell them the legend of St. Nicholas and explain to them how people like to act out his generosity, to remind us of how we ought to give in secret, without expecting anything in return. Tie in to Bible stories that go with this concept. Maybe that will make it less awkward for them if they have a vision of a real historical person tied to the man in the red suit.

  2. I'm THAT mom, too. My then-three-and-a-half-year-old got in a argument with the 60-something lady in line with us last Black Friday at Kohls. The 3-1/2-yr-old defended to the death that Santa was NOT real. The 60-something-yr-old defended to the death that he WAS. Crazy, I tell you. And a bit embarrassing, too. But at least it's not your kid wandering around believing in something untrue.