Okay to manipulate kids into believing in Santa Claus????

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    drpsyce38

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        drpsyce38

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        Ahhhh....we are in the stretch for Christmas!  (Or Winter Holiday, for my non-Christian friends!)

        For those of you who have kids, or just have an opinion, how do you feel about kids believing in Santa Claus?

        Some parents REALLY get into Santa!  Wow, when I used to still practice therapy, I had a few OCD parents who had odd fixations on Santa!  Oh boy....

        Others feel it is a silly comercial figure based on a giant lie....and why drag kids into that?

        Some people have justice issues with this character:  Santa = well off white kids in America get toys.  (rest of the world continues to starve)

        Some Christian fundamentalists reject Santa as a bad distraction from the Nativity.  Perhaps you have heard a Bible Thumper tell you that you can mix up the letters of SANTA CLAUS and it spells "Satan Cal us!"

        For a period of time, when my kids were small, I did the Santa thing with them.  It was cute and there is a lot of presure to norm-in to this custom.  Soon the Santa thing became silly.  Also, I did some research.  The Santa of today has zero to do with St. Nicholas of the early Church Fathers.  To us Santa is part of "Holiday blend" in our culture. 

        So, we do Santa on Christmas morning, but that is it.  We just keep it as family time and keeping religious customs.  We also practice charitable parity.  We make sure we give more to helping-organizations (Salvation Army, etc.)  than we spend on presents.  In short, Santa does not make it happen for us, but, he sure looks cute hanging on the Xmas Tree!

        Thoughts?
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        Hiya Doc,

        Not believe in Santa? I could not imagine what life would be not to. I still believe in Santa. It represents the spirit of the season. He is the spiritual magic that touches us all throughout the season.

        I have a article i put in a frame and hang every Christmas. I think it says it all:

        Eight-year-old Virginia O'Hanlon wrote a letter to the editor of New York's Sun, and the quick response was printed as an unsigned editorial Sept. 21, 1897. The work of veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church has since become history's most reprinted newspaper editorial, appearing in part or whole in dozens of languages in books, movies, and other editorials, and on posters and stamps.

        DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old.
        Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
        Papa says, 'If you see it in THE SUN it's so.
        Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?

        VIRGINIA O'HANLON.
        115 WEST NINETY-FIFTH STREET.

        VIRGINIA, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except [what] they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men's or children's, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge.

        Yes, VIRGINIA, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! how dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no VIRGINIAS. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished.

        Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that's no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

        You may tear apart the baby's rattle and see what makes the noise inside, but there is a veil covering the unseen world which not the strongest man, nor even the united strength of all the strongest men that ever lived, could tear apart. Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, VIRGINIA, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding.

        No Santa Claus! Thank God! he lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

        Lips
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        drpsyce38

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        Yep......"Yes, Virginia, there IS a Santa Claus" is a classic.  Though, I think it is more about sentimentality and nostalgia than anything substantial.

        Case in point.  When I volunteered for the Salvation Army I met a little boy named John.  He would go to every shopping mall Santa with his list.  Each Santa told John he would get something in his stocking and something under the tree!  Ho, ho, ho!  When John awoke on Christmas morning he found no presents, no stockings.  Just his mother hung over in bed with the latest pick up.

        Iscolated case?  No.  Happens all the time.  By the millions in this country alone.

        Though, keep in mind, I am not anti Santa....no Humbug here!  Just my own perspective.  I will be interested to see what folks post on this!
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        Doc,

        I knew that would be coming from you!! Yes there is less fortunate. It is in every walk of life. Shall we not celebrate mothers day because a child never knew his mother? Should we not celebrate Memorial day because someone did not personally lose someone in war or believe in war?

        Yes, there is children throughout the world who do not even have food must less presents. It is people like you and i that our hearts are filled with love for those less fortunate. That's why we have Salvation Army dinging there bells on street corners, Crusade of Mercy who has ornaments hanging from trees to sponsor a child in need etc. This brings the less fortunate a feeling of the magical season.

        Santa is the instrument for which we bring smiles on peoples faces young and old. It is the time of year we think about all the less fortunate. If that is not the closet thing to God......i don't know what is.

        Too bad Santa was not around all year long......our hearts would be filled with the spirit of giving!

        Lips
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        genenco

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        "Today, most of the good people are afraid to be good. They strive to be broadminded and tolerant. It is fashionable to be tolerant but mostly tolerant of evil and this new code has reached the proportions of demanding intolerance of good."
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        drpsyce, I knew about the Santa- Santan connection, but not the "Call us" I think that's funny.

        As to  manipulate kids into believing in Santa Claus, that's something I'd have to stand back and think on. They can learn that "Tis better to give them receieve" but the Parents shouldn't go overboard on giving to the kids (Like drpsyce)

        Instead start them in giving to the poor around 5 and show them "We'll be happy that we gave them who have less, to help them"

        My Sister and I used to go nuts (At times) when those giving trees came out, but after 3 years, we quit as the kids (And even adults) wanted the latest electronic toys (Nintendo $150-$300) and I told one tree person that "I'd be hanged if I give a stranger that, when I wouldn't buy it for my sisters kids!"
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        drpsyce38

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        Genenco:

        At my home I THOUGHT we were frugal in getting my 4 kids "stuff."  We are not multi millionaires, but I am very blessed and have made the choice to live simply.  (Except for my gambling!  Woooo!)  But, even after being careful about getting my kids too much, we STILL have a house full of CRAP!  Thus, the reason we do ONE gift at Christmas.  One!

        Oh, I think Santa representing "the spirit of giving" is a stretch!  lol
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        I'd raise my kids to believe in Santa. One reason would simply be tradition (I did, my mom did, and so forth).
        Two, I think little kids should belive in magical things...while they can and before they get jaded and to help foster creativity, the belief in wondrous things et c
        It's also up to the parents to explain to THEIR kids what they want Santa to represent....toys for being good, what a Santa may alot, how it all runs down (give them perspective, limitations and boundaries)
        Money does not need to be an issue. A stocking could contain an orange, a present from a toy drive.
        Additionally, it's in my belief it's the parental right if they choose to have their kids' not belive in a Santa as well.
        End of day? Talk to your kids
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        Tinmanfan

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        I don't think it's a bad thing at all 4 kids 2 believe in Santa; our world is so crazy, & it seems kids have 2 grow up & face the realities of life so much sooner than back when I was a kid.  I say let them believe as long as possible.  I remember I was in EIGHTH GRADE, laying in bed trying 2 fall asleep, & I overheard my Mom say 2 my Dad " C'mon, we have 2 put the presents under the tree 4 the kids b4 we go 2 bed."  I WAS DEVASTATED!!!!  Ultimately, it didn't matter though.......  I STILL believe in Santa  

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