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When to Stop Lying to Your Kids about Santa Claus

Updated on December 4, 2010

Santa Claus

It took me years to try to understand how people could lie to their children about Santa Claus. Most of us realize that Santa Claus is the spirit of Christmas. We pretty much also might realize that the old man is probably not riding around on a sleigh delivering presents. At least not in the physical dimension. But it isn't healthy to tell your children at all that Santa is watching them and if you are good he will bring you what you ask him to.

This was told to us as children, but not surprising enough I do not ever remember a Christmas that Santa did bring the items I requested. Granted, I was a small boy and I really believed in Santa. I thought that my parents wouldn't lie to me. I trusted them to tell me the truth. Turns out that the Santa Claus thing was just the tip of the ice berg. I think we can generally assume that if your parents lied to you about the existence of Santa that they found room in their life to not tell the truth about other aspects of our life's. The time to stop lying to your kids is now.

Their is no need to lie to your children about anything. I have never told my daughter that Santa Claus was anything but the spirit of Christmas. I have never found a reason to lie to my kids. Certainly I didn't volunteer information that I felt they didn't need to hear either. So really I do not have a solution for the issue, because it has been a kind of sore spot for me. But it is a huge issue in the USA. Even the schools help perpetuate the lie. You never have to lie to anyone in case you were wondering.

Children are smart and even if you do choose to lie to them over and over again they will eventually figure it out. My father never talked about Santa either he was very content with celebrating the birth of Yeshua. Isn't that what Christmas is all about, the birth of the man who thought he was going to save all of us. What ever this day means to you remember its your right to celebrate it in the manor that you choose, no matter what anyone else says. As long as you take responsibility for your own actions no one should condemn you for telling the truth should they? Yes they will if you feel that you dont have to lie to your kids anymore about things like this you will be criticized for your actions. So be prepared most people are not ready for the truth. But the children are and they deserve the truth.

Is the the message you want to send to your kids?


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  • profile image

    Sparkina 7 years ago

    All points are valid, but, just one thing to sixtyorso. Yes, children need and love fantasy and enchantment and make-believe, but there is a difference. Stories and cartoons and pretend games are presented to children as fantasy and "pretend." We don't tell little "Caitlin" or "Owen" that Mickey Mouse or Peter Pan is coming to visit him or her or that Goofy and Superman are real, the way parents do with Santa, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. When a kid plays at being a superhero or a princess or an adult, we don't convince them that they really are a princess/superhero/adult. But many parents try to convince their children that Santa/the Tooth Fairy/The Easter Bunny are as real as the street their house sits on. So, that's not an entirely accurate comparison

  • profile image

    Daphne 9 years ago

    Hello I can tell you about Christmas. Christmas is a pagan holiday created by the Romans it was called Saturnalia. It was created to worship the sun god Saturn. The way they celebrated was very much like what is called today Christmas. I am not tring to be a stick in the mud but this discussion was about the truth and I believe this is the truth. Please look it up. If you take the letters of santa and change them a bit it spells satan. He has alot of us decieved. I mean think about it, for the sake of Christmas we start out telling our children a lie. Sweetie Pie your parents were right.

  • coolbreeze profile image

    Rik Rodriguez 9 years ago from Hawaii

    Well I never said that Santa didnt exist, because to me the spirit of Christmas does exist. The Tooth Fairy Ah ??? Isnt Christmas some other guys birthday?? I dont remember him saying anything about Santa in his teachings. Maybe someone can help me with how this guys birthday has anything to do with a dude named Santa.

    I really like Mishas comments. He's Russian, He said that lying to your kids is to prep you for Western society because it all based on a lie. Wow ! To me how insiteful and profound and right on the mark!

  • profile image

    SirDent 9 years ago

    Truth is always better than a lie no matter the circumstances. Good hub and I agree that lying to your children is a bad thing to do.

  • Eric Graudins profile image

    Eric Graudins 9 years ago from Australia

    What?You people are suggesting that Santa Claus isn't real? I've never heard of such garbage.

    Shame on all of you. And only a month before Christmas too !!

  • sixtyorso profile image

    Clive Fagan 9 years ago from South Africa

    Is Our world not harsh enough, that we need to take away the magic of Christmas, the tooth fairy and the easter bunny too? Children have innocence for such a short while. growing out of Santa, the tooth fairy and the easter bunny is part of the developmental and growth phase.The gradual exposure to to the truths of the world is a sad but inevitable part of life.Even now ,as an adult, do we not enjoy the hollywood santa stories. do they not bring a tear to your eye? If not I really feal for you, for you miss something in life!

    Remember truth can be used a s a weapon or it can set you free. But fantasy and fairy stories are not a lie, just an enchantment. Should we ban all fiction because it is a lie or is it escapist fantasy?

  • SweetiePie profile image

    SweetiePie 9 years ago from Southern California, USA

    Between the ages of three and seven my family belonged to a religion that did not allow us to salute the flag, celebrate Christmas, Halloween, birthdays, so I missed out on some things other kids experienced. I never believed in the tooth fairy or Santa and I do not feel sad about it. However, I had to be careful around other little kids because I accidentally told them Santa and the tooth fairy did not exist. If it had been up to me I would have wanted to celebrate holidays and do things other kids did, but I do not feel I missed out on Santa Claus. Part of me thinks it is better to be honest with your kids and tell them the truth from the start. However, I am not a parent, so maybe I have a different view on this.

  • Mighty Mom profile image

    Susan Reid 9 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

    From the title "lying to our kids..." I was intrigued by this hub. I never really thought of the myth of Santa Claus as being a lie. I totally bought into the hype of the man in the red suit. Couldn't wait to sit on his lap and tell him my list. And every Xmas Eve we kids mysteriously "just missed him" every year. Moving that magical belief into the realm of "spirit of Christmas" doesn't really diminish it in my eyes.

    Because the myth is so widespread, and I don't think there's really any harm in it, I tend to agree with Misty on this one. It's part of kids' developmental process to "grow out of" believing.

    Now lying to our kids about our past drug use or incarcerations... that's probably something we could debate!! MM

  • goldentoad profile image

    goldentoad 9 years ago from Free and running....

    I say let the kids imagine there's a Santa and a bunch of elves workin' to get the good kids of the world presents. I don't see any harm, why rush reality? Let them enjoy the fantasy while they still can. Christmas starts with simple concepts, like be good, give unto others, and as they grow older, let them learn the different cultures and religion and in all honesty, I never met a kid who didn't figure out Santa wasn't real and I never met anyone who was traumatized by figuring out that little truth. Remember you're only a kid once and you better dream and imagine a world that's a better place, before corporate America gets a hold of you.

  • allshookup profile image

    allshookup 9 years ago from The South, United States

    We made the decision before our son was born to be truthful with him about it. So, he's always known there is no Santa. At 12:01am on Christmas morning, we read the Christmas story from Luke, pray and thank God for the Greatest Gift He gave us, Jesus. And we thank Him for all that He has blessed us with including the gifts under the tree. Then we open Christmas gifts. We decorate the tree like most everyone else, except there's a 'happy birhday Jesus' banner on it. Christmas is our son's favorite holiday. He's always felt the magic of it. He starts wanting to put the tree up about the last of August. There's no magic lost in him knowing the truth. He's always known where his Christmas presents as well as everything he has comes from. And that is God. We love Christmas at our house. And although we celebrate Jesus all year long, that's the day we exchange gifts for it. We realize that it's not the actual day He was born, but we do like to celebrate Him on that day anyway.

  • coolbreeze profile image

    Rik Rodriguez 9 years ago from Hawaii

    You might have been more mature than I was as a kid Cindy. So glad you could stop by Thank you ;-)

  • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

    Cindy Lawson 9 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

    Hi Coolbreeze, thanks for the translation of IDK. I don't have children yet, so can only speak as having been a child myself, but I think Christmas would be missing something without the magic of believing in Santa delivering the presents in the sleigh etc, and like I said, I am someone who has grown up to hate lies, so it didn't teach me the wrong moral ideals.

    I too love Misha, great mate and fellow hubber. :)

  • coolbreeze profile image

    Rik Rodriguez 9 years ago from Hawaii

    Hi Misty And Misha I have been traveling So I havent been on that much. Misty IDK means (I dont know) I asked my daughter because I didnt know either.

    Misty I liked your post thank you and but I do think that you could tell your kids that Santa is the Spirit of Christmas that represents giving, joy, love and peace. I have never told my kids that there is a Santa. I have never fould the need to lie to them about anything either.

    Lies are Lies to me white or not, just my opnion. I totaly agree with Misha. Love that guy!

  • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

    Cindy Lawson 9 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

    Hi Misha, forgive my ignorance, but what does IDK stand for ?

  • Misha profile image

    Misha 9 years ago from DC Area

    IDK Cindy, I guess I did not suffer much, too - with Russian Santa Claus clone called Granddaddy Frost :D But what's the point? There are so many real things to enjoy, why do we need an imaginary one?

    On the other hand, kids do have a wild imagination, and at that age sometimes can't really tell between their imagination and reality - this thing should fit nicely here - IDK, you are right, it's a tricky subject :)

  • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

    Cindy Lawson 9 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

    No worries Misha, each to their own, but I personally loved believing in Santa, the Tooth Fairy etc, and yet I still totally believe in the 'not lying ideal'. I guess it comes down to whether the lies are malicious or the harmless fun that makes a childhood exciting and a big adventure.

  • Misha profile image

    Misha 9 years ago from DC Area

    Hi Rik, you don't visit us too often nowadays :)

    Yes, I agree to you (sorry Cindy), this blatant lie teaches our kids a valuable lesson that lies are OK... Well, all our civilization (Western at least) is built on lie, so we are just preparing our kids for their life journey, don't we?

  • mistyhorizon2003 profile image

    Cindy Lawson 9 years ago from Guernsey (Channel Islands)

    Tricky one, as part of the magic of Christmas for children is the belief Santa exists, just like fairies etc.

    Okay, so eventually they realise it's not true, but honestly, do you feel bitter towards your parents for not being completely honest with you? I don't, and would not have wanted them to do anyhting differently as it made Christmas so exciting believing in a Santa and Sleigh bringing us gifts each Christmas Eve.

    Also, for what it is worth I have grown up with an absolute phobia about telling lies in day to day life, so clearly this little white lie did not effect my integrity or my morals in any way.

  • hot dorkage profile image

    hot dorkage 9 years ago from Oregon, USA

    We never actually told our kids there was a Santa Claus. We told them that a lot of kids believed there was, and that mysterious presents tended to show up on Christmas eve. They said but is there really a santa claus. we said there is as long as you think there is. They chose to believe until about age 5 or 6 when they decided they'd really rather know what the "real" truth was. It was no great shock to them.