Santa won't come down our chimney and leave presents under our tree (and here's why), but just because we're not making Santa part of our family Christmas doesn't mean we're going to ignore him. Santa is in every storefront window, every commercial, tons of songs and books, and in the beliefs of many children. So our son, M, will definitely have questions about Santa at some point, and we're prepared to teach him these 4 truths.
1. Santa is based on a cool historical person.
Saint Nicholas was a 4th century Bishop who used his personal wealth to give gifts to the needy. Since that was a generous thing to do, people like to honor him by giving gifts in his name.
2. He's a symbol.
When people see a picture of Santa or hear his name, they think of gift giving. He's a symbol of generosity, jolliness, and hope. Almost everything else we use to decorate for Christmas is a symbol too.
3. Some people believe in magical Santa.
We're not going to pretend to M that Santa is real, but we're going to teach him that just like we believe in God, different people can believe in different things. There are lots of children who do believe Santa will bring them gifts, and it's okay for us to disagree, but we need to respect their beliefs and not spoil "the magic" for them.
4. You don't have to sit on Santa's lap.
We almost took M to get a picture with Santa last week so we would have that classic first Christmas photo, but we just couldn't do it. We knew he would hate to sit on a stranger's lap. I can't even handle leaving him crying in the arms of a loving family member, so I knew it would break my heart to make him do the Santa picture. Plus, we want to teach our kiddo that his body is his own and that he doesn't ever have to be affectionate with anyone unless he wants to. That lesson starts right away, so I'm glad we decided against the Santa visit after all.
Are there any Santa truths you would add to the list? What are you going to tell your kids about Santa?
Related post: Why Santa Won't Visit Our House