Thinking Out Loud

November 13, 2015

Before the Kids are Born, Decide Which December Story You’re Going With

Filed under: Christianity, Faith, parenting — Tags: , , , , , — paulthinkingoutloud @ 7:38 am

jesus_asks_santa

Had an interesting discussion yesterday with the grandmother of a young girl who, although she has grown up in a Christian home, has been saturated with the Santa Claus story as well. And now that she is getting older, the reindeer are coming home to roost, so to speak.

The grandmother, caught between a North Pole and a hard place, is trying to ease the pain by — wait for it — buying the girl some extra gifts for Christmas this year. I hope she signs the cards as being from Grandma and not Santa.

This girl knows that Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ. But the jolly fat man with the red coat and white beard seems to be an equal part of the story. And if Santa isn’t real, what about the thing about the baby, the manger; and shepherds and wise men and sheep, oh my? In her brain, she is probably wondering when that ‘myth’ gets deconstructed.

So why do we do this to our kids? What do we introduce a narrative as if it’s true, knowing that at some point we are going to have to tell them it is false. Did you grow up with Santa? What are you telling your kids?

2 Comments »

  1. When my children would ask meI told my children that the “Spirit” of Santa Claus is real. It is actually much bigger than the man in the red suit. Some day you will understand but for now know that it is the giving that is more important than the receiving.

    Comment by Plant Electrician — November 13, 2015 @ 8:20 am

  2. I’m all for transparency from the getgo. Santa is fun and we celebrate but he’s never legitimately real. He’s part of the magic of Christmas. But…we don’t exist in a bubble and live in a world where kids’ friends are taught to believe. It’s hard to navigate at times.

    Comment by Grief Happens — November 13, 2015 @ 9:21 am


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