The Tale of the Fake Santa Claus

Adam & Santa at my DH's Family Christmas Party.

Adam & Santa at my DH’s Family Christmas Party.

I have a moral dilemma that has been pestering me for days now and I don’t know what to do.

You see, we don’t celebrate Christmas. We have our own holidays and they’re fun and exciting and as cheerful but there is nothing like Christmas with Santa, the lights, the gifts and excitement to get any kid in a frenzy.

So in recent years when Adam had asked us if we celebrate Christmas we told him no, but we have Eid, Ramadan and so on. And since he was in society that didn’t make that big of a deal over Christmas – he was okay. Until we moved here. And the question came up again.

“Mommy do we celebrate Christmas? Is Santa real?”

Oh what to do, what to do? Technically we’re not opposed to Christmas as a holiday. Come on it’s fun, it’s crazy, what’s not to like. We just like to foster identity and independence in our kid. We want him to be proud of who he is and what he has while accepting other people, customs and religions and helping them celebrate their beliefs. So while we don’t celebrate Christmas we still tell people Merry Christmas and hand out Christmas gifts to the relevant people in our lives. But Santa?

We have a strict no lying to the kids rule. I refuse to mislead them. But I also don’t want him going to his friends in class, telling them that Santa isn’t real and breaking their hearts. In the end we told him that we believe that he’s not real but other people believe that he is, and everyone is entitled to believe what they want.

Fast forward a few weeks to yesterday, last day of school, Adam came home so excited saying;

“Mommy, you know, I’m sure Santa is real. My teacher told me so” and not teacher would lie. H went up to his baby brother and told him,

“Jo, Christmas Eve is coming and Santa is going to visit and bring us gifts. We’re gonna have so much fun”. He then turned to me and said “Santa is real, right mommy?”

“Ugh, Umm, We’ll talk about this later.” I back-tracked quickly. The coward’s way out, I know, but I really didn’t know what to say. And more

I don’t know why I have this dilemma.

My husband alter that night told me he will not lie to Adam. I told him I didn’t lie, I just avoided the truth (which is something I’m very good at) to buy us some time.

Although when Christmas Eve comes along and there is no Santa and no presents I don’t know what he’ll think.