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Old 11-19-2004, 08:13 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Lie to your kids or not?

Ok, most of us have believed in Santa at one point or another and then figured out the hoax soon afterwards.
Do you believe that by telling your kids that there is a Santa Claus, you are lying to him/her?
I have no opinion on this, myself, but I think it's interesting to think about.
As a parent, you would want to present yourself as a person your child can trust.
I'm not sure that having one of his/her first memories being that his parents lied to him about a fictional character bodes too well for the character of the parental units.
On the other hand, I believe a child should have something to believe in.
Whether it be God, Santa Claus, Tooth Fairy or the Great Pumpkin *not that all of those should be in the same category*
Sometimes a child needs that something to believe in. Enhances the imagination, stimulates brain growth and fills you with a sense of something magical.
Just wanted to hear the thoughts of others.
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Old 11-19-2004, 08:23 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I cannot imagine what it may be like to grow up without fantasies and dreams... I would not dare deprive my kids of this. Eventually, when they are able to make their own judgements and conclusions about reality, all things will be made right.

I do not believe this will make you a liar in the eyes of the child... At least, I never saw my own parents as liars... I just sort of grew out of it. There are clearly other factors in this, rather than just "to tell or not to tell".
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Old 11-19-2004, 08:33 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I plan on telling my kids the truth early on and explaining to them why parents do that and so forth. Otherwise you're setting yourself up for failure later on when you try to get them to believe other things.
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Old 11-19-2004, 08:49 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JSwiss
I plan on telling my kids the truth early on and explaining to them why parents do that and so forth. Otherwise you're setting yourself up for failure later on when you try to get them to believe other things.
But by the time they must abandon their childhood fantasies, why would you need to coerce them into believing something that they can reason out on their own? There comes a point when they should start deciding what is worth believing and what is not. Perhaps I misunderstood?
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Old 11-19-2004, 09:26 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I grew up being told about Santa, and believing it for a time. I don't think of the Santa/Tooth Fairy/Easter Bunny stories as lies, and I will tell my daughter to be good for Santa, and put her lost teeth under her pillow, and to find the eggs the Easter Bunny hid. I will also enjoy watching her anticipation and wonder as she lives through the experiences that I so fondly remember.
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Old 11-19-2004, 09:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I don't think I'll be supporting the Santa thing. From what I can remember I was devastated when I found out there was no Santa. I got over it but I'd rather not subject my kid to that. Just tell them I bought the gifts and leave it at that.

I'll just have to make sure they learn not to spoil someone else's fun.
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Old 11-19-2004, 09:52 PM   #7 (permalink)
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hmm..i STILL believe in santa *blink blink* ...

when i have kids i'll raise them believing in santa, the easter bunny, the virgin mary, aliens, faries, angels ect...and i'm jewish...

i think its just something wonderful and magical and it certainly made my childhood more fun
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Old 11-19-2004, 10:46 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I think that people aren't thinking clearly when they believe it will devastate their children to find out the truth. Honestly, I was never crushed by the realisation. I was probably 8 by that time when I found out, and I was just like "Huh, I guess it makes sense..." It was never something horribly bad to not have Santa. It just became a joke with my parents. Those who say that it'll kill their children's hopes and dreams are being irrational if you actually think about the fact of the matter.
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Old 11-19-2004, 11:03 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Gatorade Frost nailed it!

When I was a kid, I believed in Santa and all of the other childhood fantasies. Eventually, as I got older, I discovered that they weren't true. I wasn't permanently scarred by this, and I definitely didn't trust my parents any less because of them telling me that these characters did exist.

In fact, from being around younger children during the holidays I saw why my parents would tell me those things.

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Old 11-20-2004, 12:05 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I won't come out and say, "there's no santa! and this is why junior." However, if my son/daughter asks me pointe blank I will not lie to them and I will explain the reasoning behind Santa.
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Old 11-20-2004, 06:41 AM   #11 (permalink)
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I was relatively young when I found out there was no Santa that's why I said I was crushed. I believe I was like 5 and something like that to a 5 year old is pretty depressing. At that age you don't really get the concept. I don't think knowing and then telling them would crush their future hopes and all but I don't see the point in willfully hurting my child by leading them down the path and then having it yanked out from under them.
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Old 11-20-2004, 07:23 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I can remember not being able to sleep on the night of the 24th because I wanted to wait for santa. If I had really known that all the gifts were just carefully hidden in my parents closet, the next morning would not have been as exciting or fun in my opinion. As for a lie, I think its just a fun custom and until your kids ask, enjoy the fun. I was never broken up or thought my parents lied to me when I found out. I'd probably say there are more issues at heart then just santa not being real if your kids are distruting of you.

I know I really got a kick out of playing santa several years ago and talking to the little kids at a family reunion. I look forward to hopefully doing it someday with my own kids.
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Old 11-20-2004, 07:44 AM   #13 (permalink)
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When I have kids, I'll never lie to them about things like that. I'll have too much respect for them to do that, and I want them to be able to trust me. I don't think kids need to believe in fictionnal characters in order to have fun or to enhance their imagination. So, no santa, no toothfairie, no jesus, etc.
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Old 11-20-2004, 09:04 AM   #14 (permalink)
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What do you mean there is not Santa Claus? Thats news to me!! haha

seriously though...I have no idea how old I was when I realized it was my parents...I remember when I asked (Im thinking about 12 years old) my parents told me that the day I stopped believing then he'd stop coming and my present count would be WAY less hehehehe and that if I still believed then he'd come see me until I was married

and he did...The year I turned 22 was my first year without him

my daughter still has all the thank you letters that"Santa" wrote her thanking her for being such a good girl all year and for the the cookies and eggnog that she left out
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Old 11-20-2004, 02:39 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I'm not really sure. I might explain to my kids that there's the spirit of Santa Claus which is basically the holiday spirit but I'm not sure about a fat guy coming down our chimney.

I think it's a good idea to tell your kids if they don't know after a while, however. A friend of mine grew up to be 14 before he knew Santa wasn't real. He got made fun of profusely at school when we got into a discussion about Santa.

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Old 11-20-2004, 03:45 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Wow, I'm glad people responded to this
I guess it's all just a matter of perception on if it's a lie or not. Hmm, I was told from the beginning that he wasn't real, then again, we didn't celebrate Christmas.
Though I knew there wasn't a Santa Claus, whenever Christmas would roll around, you could almost feel that magical wonderment of belief floating in the air.
That to me was always the coolest thing about it.
And then again, you could always tell your kids that Saint Nick was a real person and did drop gold coins down people's chimneys. That actually happened and where the fairytale began.
So, it started from a good deed to a global tradition.
Not too shabby.
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Old 11-20-2004, 03:46 PM   #17 (permalink)
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i remember as a kid, dreaming of santa and the easter bunny...etc. I think it is innocent fun, and it helps there imaginations as kids develop there own thoughts on who this mystic characters are. Kids need to be kids, my daughter is 7 months old, and i can't wait until she can understand the holidays. I did not have the best christmas memories and i relish the opportunity to give her all things that i never had and wanted. not interms of presents, those are secondary, just the feeling of family and love.
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Old 11-20-2004, 04:35 PM   #18 (permalink)
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My parents weren't good enough at lying to me that I ever believed in Santa Clause, or anything like it for that matter. I had a very unhappy childhood too, probably would've been less damaging were it riddled with happy fantasies that one simply grows out of. Moral of the story, things such as Santa Clause are part of being a kid, believing in things such as that are fun and improve imagination, as has previously been said.
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Old 11-20-2004, 04:47 PM   #19 (permalink)
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don't scar your kids with fictional santa; the minute that they become intelligent enough to ask a question like "how does santa get to all of the houses so quickly" or something like that, tell them the truth. i dont necessarily distrust my parents because of santa, but I know that I am a highly distrustful person in general because of it.
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Old 11-20-2004, 04:51 PM   #20 (permalink)
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theyll either hate you now for telling them the truth or hate you later for lying to them.

toss up really
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Old 11-20-2004, 04:51 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorade Frost
I think that people aren't thinking clearly when they believe it will devastate their children to find out the truth. Honestly, I was never crushed by the realisation. I was probably 8 by that time when I found out, and I was just like "Huh, I guess it makes sense..." It was never something horribly bad to not have Santa. It just became a joke with my parents. Those who say that it'll kill their children's hopes and dreams are being irrational if you actually think about the fact of the matter.

I have three neices and no kids of my own unfortunately but there's still time for that..maybe...if I find the right woman who's bio clock hasn't expired or doesn't already have 2.8 kids of her own...but damn I'm really getting off topic. Anyway --- SANTA is in and the idea that this is somehow dangerous or michevous or egregious for a parent to spin this tale is a load. I'm perfectly screwed up and so is my relationship with my parents but that's got nothing to do with the fact that there is no Santa It still saddens me because I really want Santa to bring me a PalmOne Treo 650 for Christmas *fingers crossed*...maybe if I wish hard enough.
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Old 11-20-2004, 05:00 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shirtninja
I can remember not being able to sleep on the night of the 24th because I wanted to wait for santa. If I had really known that all the gifts were just carefully hidden in my parents closet, the next morning would not have been as exciting or fun in my opinion. As for a lie, I think its just a fun custom and until your kids ask, enjoy the fun.
I've never been one to lie, or carry lies further, but I think this is one of the biggest reasons for keeping the 'lie' going for as long as possible. Christmas as a kid seems to carry a bit more magic with the fact a jolly old man comes down your chimney in the middle of the night, carrying presents for you and your family, and rides off to the next family's house.

You go to bed one night, just like any other night, but the next morning, you know something special is coming from some partially unknown being, and it makes you all the more excited to see if Santa really gave you what you were hoping to get.

I think it sparks something in the child's mind, and I know my parents always had a big smile to see how excited we all were as kids to come down stairs every Christmas morning, wandering what that man in the red suit gave us.

So all-in-all, I don't think it should ever be considered wrong to perpetrate this 'lie.' With all the happiness that results from it in one's early years is too much to let go by revealing the truth before ever learning the fantasy.
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Old 11-20-2004, 05:29 PM   #23 (permalink)
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I still believe in Santa as a spiritual force. Of course, he needs us mortals to help him deliver the material goods.
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Old 11-20-2004, 05:49 PM   #24 (permalink)
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*nods* it makes christmas and easter more fun and agreed adam...

see my parents were really smart...

they would hide alot of my gifts where they knew i would look...and of course i would...but they also had friends hold and hide my others..lol..i always got suprised..and it made believing in santa easier...lol...then again..my family is mostly jewish..so i dont know why we have had xmas at all :/
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Old 11-20-2004, 08:18 PM   #25 (permalink)
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I was raised believing in Santa and all of the other childhood charactors. I was told the truth about Santa from someone at school and found out the real truth when I snuck into my parents closet while they were gone (I think I was seven at the time). I never resented my parents for following along with the Santa story nor did I ever consider it a lie. I don't think there is anything wrong with introducing Santa to their kids. I plan on doing it myself.
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