Is It Wrong To Lie to Kids About Santa?

Hi There, Dr. Markham! May I ask your perspective on Santa?

I remember feeling really sad and disillusioned as a child when I learned that Santa wasn't real. I don't want my own precious girl to go through those same feelings. At the same time, the idea is so magical and special for youngsters that it's easy to get swept along in the excitement.

I'm really torn about it and want to handle things in the most sensitive and nurturing manner possible.

I don't think there is a right answer on this. Some people feel strongly that from the beginning you should say Santa is not real. Others feel strongly that children benefit from the magic of the myth. My own feeling is that the myth is fine, but when your child asks you if Santa is real, you should say "Do you really want to know the truth?" If your child says Yes, you can say "Santa Claus was a real person, but he lived many years ago. He did wonderful things to help others so we honor his memory by "being Santa" and giving to others. Now that you know, you can be Santa also, by giving to others and making the holiday for others."

I don't think there is a right answer on this. Some people feel strongly that from the beginning you should say Santa is not real. Others feel strongly that children benefit from the magic of the myth.

My own feeling is that the myth is fine, but when your child asks you if Santa is real, you should say "Do you really want to know the truth?" If your child says Yes, you can say "Santa Claus was a real person, but he lived many years ago. He did wonderful things to help others so we honor his memory by "being Santa" and giving to others. Now that you know, you can be Santa also, by giving to others and making the holiday for others."

Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids

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