I’ve been kind of surprised by the number of anti-Santa parents I’ve met of late. Or those who will only tell the tale pragmatically, as in, “Santa lived once and was generous and gave gifts to all the children, and now we do the same thing in that spirit.”
More than a few people I’ve spoken with were traumatized by the means that, as children, they were disillusioned of Santa Claus. Being teased out of the fantasy on the playground or school bus made them feel that their parents had lied to them, that they were duped by the world. (My husband is one of those people.)
“I can’t lie to my child, no way,” one mom told me recently.
Personally, I never fully stopped believing in Santa Claus. I can’t swear to him, either, but I met plenty of Santa haters (especially older kids who seemed to take joy in dispelling the story) that gleefully tried to humiliate my faith, and it left no bruises on me.
I think believing in the impossible, or the improbable, is especially good for a science-enamored kid like mine. It’s one thing for him to learn to suspend disbelief at the movie theater, another thing entirely to do that with his own life. I don’t know where the world’s scientific developments would be without the capacity to imagine, desire, fear or believe in things that seem just too crazy to be real.