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We never told our kids that Santa or the Easter Bunny is real. It seems a lot easier that way. I was brought up in a Christian home and my parents never had us "believe" in those things, either. I don't feel like I missed out on anything. One thing I heard once is that if we tell our children these things are real, when they come to find out that we lied to them, are they going to thing we're making Jesus up, too? Of course, this idea really only matters to those that believe in God and want their children to as well.
 

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I have wondered about this as well. I don't understand why some teach to believe in Santa/Easter Bunny/Tooth Fairy, when it can cause such disenchantment later on. I would think that just having lots of wrapped up presents is exciting enough!!

When my kids lost their baby teeth, I would tell them to put it under their pillow and maybe there'd be a surprise there in the morning. I never talked about a tooth fairy!!
 

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We're Christian (Roman Catholic) and our kids believe(d) in Santa/Easter Bunny/Tooth Fairy.

a) To believe in Jesus Christ is a leap of faith -- It hinges, IMHO, on listening to the deepest whispers of the heart, which is a tough thing for a kid to get ahold of (it can be a tough thing for an adult to get ahold of, too). If Santa/Fairy/Bunny gets them to put their faith in something they can't see, can't explain, can't justify, can't rationalize, it helps, IMHO, in transferring that ability to believe to something that IS real: the love of God. It's kinda like learning to ride a bike w/training wheels. If they can believe that Santa can deliver gifts to evey kid in every house in one night, the foundation to believe that Jesus Christ, out of love for them, suffered, died, and rose again has already been laid. Our kids never got caught up in the YOU LIED TO ME aspect of learning the truth. Maybe because they were statistically older than most when they finally asked (we didn't say anything 'til they asked).

b) I don't see anything wrong with celebrating both sides of a holiday - the sacred and the secular. I'm just as comfortable w/our kids singing 'Jingle Bells' every December as I am with them singing 'Away in a Manger.' They've got to live in the real world -- a world that believes/professes/acts upon things that they necessarily don't. I don't want to instill in them a sense of religious snobbery that lifts their spiritual markings of the seasons above those who don't believe in God. I want them to stand up for their faith, yes, and hold to it proudly, but not to the point of looking down on others who believe differently.
 

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we have never made a huge deal about santa, easter bunny and tooth fairy. any time my kids have asked I have always asnwered with what do you thing. Santa has only ever brought one gift and their stocking. this year they didn't even want to open their santa gift because they knew what it was. I honestly don't think my kids will have a hard time when they found out the truth. (but I could be wrong) we have friend that teach their kids from the beginning that santa etc is not true. her kids have told my kids that but my kids didn't over react. So I guess time will tell
 

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I was told about Santa, Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy, etc...but my parents never made it a huge deal, and they never went out of their way to prove that they existed. I guess the idea of Santa never consumed me...I only heard about him once a year, while I heard about Jesus all year long. :)
 

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dweck said:
We're Christian (Roman Catholic) and our kids believe(d) in Santa/Easter Bunny/Tooth Fairy.

a) To believe in Jesus Christ is a leap of faith -- It hinges, IMHO, on listening to the deepest whispers of the heart, which is a tough thing for a kid to get ahold of (it can be a tough thing for an adult to get ahold of, too). If Santa/Fairy/Bunny gets them to put their faith in something they can't see, can't explain, can't justify, can't rationalize, it helps, IMHO, in transferring that ability to believe to something that IS real: the love of God. It's kinda like learning to ride a bike w/training wheels. If they can believe that Santa can deliver gifts to evey kid in every house in one night, the foundation to believe that Jesus Christ, out of love for them, suffered, died, and rose again has already been laid. Our kids never got caught up in the YOU LIED TO ME aspect of learning the truth. Maybe because they were statistically older than most when they finally asked (we didn't say anything 'til they asked).

b) I don't see anything wrong with celebrating both sides of a holiday - the sacred and the secular. I'm just as comfortable w/our kids singing 'Jingle Bells' every December as I am with them singing 'Away in a Manger.' They've got to live in the real world -- a world that believes/professes/acts upon things that they necessarily don't. I don't want to instill in them a sense of religious snobbery that lifts their spiritual markings of the seasons above those who don't believe in God. I want them to stand up for their faith, yes, and hold to it proudly, but not to the point of looking down on others who believe differently.
Exactly! Great post!

I posted this in the other Santa/Easter Bunny thread

What was told to me, and the way I will relate it to my girls when the time comes, is that these things live in your heart if you believe in them. If you don't believe, they will cease to exist. My eldest wanted to know why Santa doesn't bring things to adults, I told her Santa is in your heart when you get older, he focsues on children, because adults can buy a gift for each other. What happens when you grow up? santa ha so many children to care for, when you get older, you become one of Santa's helpers, and buy a gift for someone else. It was a gentle way my parents explained it to us. There is so little to believe in in this world, i won't snatch that away from them too.

As for the easter bunny not existing, I don't understand what are you referring to? ;)
 
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Bensons Mom said:
Of course, this idea really only matters to those that believe in God and want their children to as well.
Interesting - a friend of ours who is an atheist had some similar concerns about lying to his children about Santa as well. His concerns kind of revolved around promoting "magical non-existant" beings...when what he really believes in is reality - what he can see, touch, explain.

No flames please - not my belief system - I thought his entries into his blog were pretty trite - but it interests me when people from opposing points of view have congruent moments.
 

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I was raised without the easter bunny/santa clause/tooth fairy. I will not raise my children with them, either. I don't think there is any point in creating fabrications and lies for their entertainment.
 

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Momma to J and A said:
I was raised without the easter bunny/santa clause/tooth fairy. I will not raise my children with them, either. I don't think there is any point in creating fabrications and lies for their entertainment.
Haven't you just tossed out of their lives the very rich and beneficial world of children's literature? I can't imagine a lifetimes of bed-stories all coming from the World Book Encyclopedia.
 

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Some children (one of mine as an example) believe in Santa Claus but then when they realize Santa simply does not exist....they can rationalize it was a good story to make everyone feel good....and they take that same thinking and apply it to God and Christ. They think God and Christ are the grown up's Santa.....doesn't exist but rather a good story to make everyone feel good.


To counter this I've told my son that Santa (Saint Nicholas) never had magical powers....that the Saint was real....but he never claimed to travel the world over 24 hours depositing gifts to all children. That it was a creation of commercialism, customs, culture etc...and not all things in cultures are real....some are fictional and fiction is very much okay to have.

Jesus however has a living account by others of his miracles...raising someone from the dead....curing a blind man's blindness etc....and that Jesus did die...we know that and no one denies that....AND Jesus rose from the dead--His first appearance after the resurrection was to woman (odd that women's testimony wasn't legal during that time) and more than 500 people witnessed Christ after he resurrected. We also know there were plenty of Romans ready, willing and able to deny this happening by writing accounts of lunatics going around saying this dead man came back to life...and we have no such accounts.... The only accounts we have are of the testimony of Jesus being alive after his death.

Santa--Kids can believe is real--just as some believe Spiderman is real.... Over time they realize it's fiction--something that made them feel terrific as a kid.

But I can see the problems it can bring up as I've had to deal with it head on with my son--and my son hasn't had the experience of Christ yet--I keep praying he will accept Christ and he will somehow find Christ someday.
 
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