As a father, it’s my responsibility to protect and defend everything that my kids believe in even if it’s not real – like Santa. Every Christmas Eve, my two lovely children excitedly leave cookies on the counter hoping that their favorite hero Santa Clause will climb down the chimney, eat the cookies that they left outside for him and quietly put their Christmas presents that had been on their Santa wish list under the Christmas tree. Now, as grown-ups we know that Santa doesn’t exist and it’s always the parents who hastily gobble down the cookies while their children are asleep and leave their favorite presents under the Christmas tree before morning comes, but there’s something about that magical spark in your children’s eyes when they wake up the next morning to find their favorite toys tucked under the tree that keeps you from telling them the truth about Santa Clause.
Recently, I got into an argument with a friend of mine who believes that kids should not be lied to about the reality of Santa Clause and in an effort to defend my kids’ favorite Christmas hero, I made a list of reasons why believing in Santa can be a fun and enjoyable experience for kids and parents.
1. We all believe in something
Whether it’s God, Jesus or Flying Spaghetti Monster, all for us believe in something we don’t need facts to verify our beliefs. There’s something about how my kids yell around the house come Christmas morning, ‘SANTA CAME, SANTA CAME!” that makes me want to preserve their belief in their favorite hero.
2. The kids will figure out the truth themselves someday
When I first found out that Santa wasn’t real, I started on a whole new journey of discovering facts and differentiating between what’s real and what’s not. I was never mad at my parents for lying to me all those years, but I felt empowered to finally be on the other side of the myth. My kids will also figure out the truth about Santa one day, and when they do, they will start questioning things in life, expanding their cognitive abilities and learning about facts and their importance.
3. Children love magic
Kids love to push the boundaries of reality and believe in things that may not exist in the eyes of the adults because, for children, everything is possible – even magic. I know that if my kids keep on believing in magic and Santa, they will continue to explore their imagination and creativity before they have to grow up and face the harsh reality of this world.
4. Sometimes lying is justified
Especially when it’s the holiday season and your children’s happiness depends on it. Most parents believe that lying to young children is wrong but we cannot always be honest with them either. Kids are too young to understand how the world really works., As a parent it’s my job to convince my kids that they are always safe and protected and that their daddy will never die even if the truth may be otherwise. It’s all part of parenting.