Caution: SPOILER ALERT
I love Pesnsitivity’s blog and she was hosting Fibbing Friday last week. I’ve missed every Friday since I first heard about this silly blogging challenge, but maybe this week!
There is a fib, though, and it has to do with Santa Claus. My dearest teaching widower (DTW) was talking to me about the impact of that
fib lie on many children. As a curious child psychologist, he has often asked folks how they felt when they learned the truth that Santa wasn’t real. Many adults can tell you the exact time and how deceived they felt.
I remember feeling a great sense of betrayal as I read about that sham in the newspaper. (I was four years old and it was part of my father’s “I-hate- that-you-can-read-but-prove-to-me-that-you-can-read” endeavors.) I tried to protect my younger sister from finding out, so I played along for years. I think she already knew but I hated to see her suffer. Of course, we had so many other dreadful things happening at home that Santa Claus was a mere blip on the radar of betrayal.
As parents, my DTW and I resolved never to tell our kids that Santa lie. We explained that it was a belief for some families. We said it wasn’t okay to tell other kids what to believe since that was the responsibility of their parents. As a teacher, I always took the same stance, especially not allowing kids to torment others about this societal fibbing.
My DTW, who is always thinking about deep stuff, worries that if kids can’t trust their parents about Santa Claus, can they trust them about God? To me, the bigger issue is that my parents were supposed to represent God to me. So I grew up believing that my heavenly Father is deaf, cruel, powerless, and untrustworthy. Now I know the truth about him, how he chased me down with his love. And I still believe we should ditch the Santa lie.