Postpartum and Beyond

Bah Humbug

Santa or No Santa?

Throughout the holiday season this year, I’ve noticed quite a few parents wondering if they were bad people because they weren’t labeling a lot of presents as “From Santa”. This made me realize that my husband and I hadn’t actually discussed the Santa topic. Luckily Little P is too young to even realize what’s going on this year. So, I was able to raise the question to my husband.

Should we teach Little P that Santa Clause is real?

We decided, after a surprisingly short discussion, that we wouldn’t be teaching her that Santa Clause is real and here are a few reasons why.

1. Christmas is Still Magical

You absolutely do not need Santa Clause to feel like Christmas is magical. It’s great to be able to spend time with family, get time off of school, and/or work. You can still feel like the time of the year is special without believing in Santa Clause. Now, instead of focusing on “What will Santa bring?” you and your kids can focus more on quality time with each other (and extended families that come into town to visit).

2. Santa is a Bribe

Santa is a bribe to get your kids to behave. Not much else to him.
You tell your kids Santa is watching all year round, but especially around November and December, you start reminding them that they need to be good otherwise Santa isn’t going to bring them any presents.

3. Focus is Not Solely on Receiving

If you understand from a young age that some magical man in a suit comes and brings you gifts just because you were good, you realize that someone worked to get you a present, and maybe you want to help that person feel good as well. Maybe instead of focusing completely on what you want, you get something (or make something) for the people who you love as well.

4. They Can Truly Appreciate The Gift Giver

If you put that Santa gave them the present then there’s nothing else to it. They don’t get to say thank you to you. It’s just a gift from Santa because they were good. When they know you gave them the gift, they know it’s because you love them and want them to be happy. Plus, if you both know who gave them the gift, then you get to take credit for it and not feel resentful that Santa gets the credit for your work.

5. Easier to Explain Why Present Wasn’t Received

Maybe one year your kid wants a bunch of things and you just can’t afford it all. It’s a lot easier to ask what the “big ticket items” are and work on making sure those are given and explain that maybe you won’t be able to find all of the items than to try to explain why Santa didn’t bring the items.

Some Thoughts

You’re not a bad parent either way. If you want your kid to believe in Santa, that’s great. If you don’t want your kid to believe in Santa, that’s also great. Either way, I’m sure you want your kid to have a magical holiday season.

Let me know what you think.
Are you teaching your kids Santa is real or not real and why did you decide on that?

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