Wednesday, 4 December 2013

You have got to be shitting me...

So I've been seeing on facebook (a little more than I'd like to) that some parents are deciding to forego the whole Santa thing and tell their kids there's no such thing, wham bam, Santa is a lie. It's actually referred to as "The Santa Lie" in some cases. In fact, some total D bag wrote a whole article about it which I'm not even going to post a link to because he boils my blood so badly that I don't want to give him any "publicity" if you will.

The girl who posted said article did it to get a discussion going, which I totally get. It was interesting, and I weighed in my two cents. But then after I did, I realized that I had like, ten more cents left, so here I am.

When I was younger, I went to a Catholic school. I wore a uniform. I walked to school some mornings when I got a bit older, waltzed right in to the school, and walked home again after. I played house with my friends, we played Barbies, we played spot light till well past dark on weekends, we rode our bikes so far we couldn't hear our parents call us, and we had no cell phones.

Now, in some places, you can't let your children walk to school, because you never know what could happen to them on the way. Schools are locked and there are cameras. You need to be buzzed in because people are actually going in there and taking children, and some other winners are going in there with weapons. There are metal detectors in some schools. You can't ride your bike too far (you probably don't ride a bike anyway because you're too busy playing Playstation), and if you are eight years old and you want to go to a friend's house, it's ok because you can just iMessage your parents from your freaking iPhone. Little girls are "twerking" instead of playing house and Barbies (for the record, I'm still unsure as how to do that but I guess I should learn so I can teach Avery. She's almost two and a half and has yet to shake her ass in the air. Call social services). Holy effing J, don't EVER play spot light because that's how you get molested. And of course, don't mention any sort of religious belief in school, because someone might get offended.

The world has gone to shit, friends. Seriously. And now we're going to take Santa? Because he's a LIE?

Sweet baby Jason in a manger (that's what Avery calls him. We're Catholic - she's not going to learn in school so we're teaching her what Christmas is to us - again, call the social workers). Santa, people. SANTA.

The argument is that he's not real. When kids find out he's not real, they aren't going to trust us as parents anymore. He's also far fetched. He's a great big man who lives in the North Pole and has a bunch of elves and travels all over the world in a flying sleigh pulled by reindeer to deliver gifts to all the children on earth in one night. Sounds pretty far fetched to me.

You know what though? Yesterday my daughter asked her daddy if he wanted to go up in the sky. He didn't tell her that she was being "far fetched" or ask her if she was dropping acid in her toddler bed, he told her he'd love to go. Because she's two. And she's imagining. And she's not going to do that for very long judging by the way things are going. And that's terrible.

Today she put a blanket over a chair and told me it was a house. When she took the blanket off and I saw that it was in fact a chair, I felt a little tricked, to be honest. Just kidding, no I didn't. Because I'm not a total asshole.

I totally believed in Santa when I was a kid. I loved the "magic" of it all. I have memories of lying in bed on Christmas Eve and not letting my mom close the blinds so that I could watch the sky for him while I fell asleep. I also have a big sister who is seven years older. She did a lot of things to me growing up. Most were things like not letting me in her room because I was so immature and telling me I was adopted once or twice. But despite her occasional big sister-ness, and despite her advanced knowledge of the behind the scenes goings on of Christmas, she never, EVER told me that Santa wasn't real. Because even though back then she had a cold, older sister heart (I'm kidding, Angela!), even she wouldn't do that.

I feel like it's more of a disservice to our children to deny them Santa than it is to save them from the potentially emotional devastation and distrust that he might cause later in life. Let's be serious here. Parents around us are getting divorced left right and center. They are having affairs, they are fighting in front of their children. Children are getting abused, molested, bullied. They are watching horrible things on TV, on the news, there are children in elementary school committing suicide. Santa is the least of their worries. Santa isn't a lie, he's a vacation from the real world.

I don't know the guy who wrote the "Santa Lie" article personally (that's not the title, PS), which is probably a good thing because this way I'm unable to send him hate mail or do drive by shitty diaper bombings at his residence, but I bet he'd make a super fun father. I also wonder how he'd react to this kid. Miles Scott, who is five years old and has leukemia and wanted to be Batman for a day. The Children's Wish Foundation and city of San Francisco made that happen for him, because he believes in Batman, and for that day, he got to help Batman catch some bad guys.

Do you think that when Miles grows up, he's going to need therapy because it was all "fake"? Do you think he's going to hate his parents and San Francisco as a whole because they lied to him? Do you think he'll stage a protest about the bunch of liars that run the Children's Wish Foundation? F*CK NO! He's going to remember that as the most kick ass day of his whole life! It's a good thing Dick Face writer over there doesn't work with the foundation. He'd be a shitty wish maker.

It's also a good thing he doesn't work at Disney. I'd love to see the dream ruiner that goes in there and starts heartily announcing that Mickey Mouse is just dressed up and that all the Princesses are fake. Watch how far he gets. I bet the best part of his Disney Experience would be when the ambulance carted his bleeding, broken, non-believing (and probably brand new) ass to safety. And again, any emotionally damaged adults who were taken to Disney as a child, believed in any of those things and has had trust issues since, feel free to comment below.

I'd also like for the people who think that we shouldn't foster the Santa belief to take a little visit to the Janeway on Christmas Eve when Santa visits there, and drop the bomb on those kids that he's just some creep in a red getup. I bet that would be really well received. 

Kids have this amazing ability to believe in things that aren't real to adults. Embrace it. Encourage it. It's real to them. Batman, Cinderella, whatever. If they say they're a doctor, they are. If they say they're a bird, they are. Like I said, in a lot of cases, Santa is a vacation from the real world. Let it happen. Because they're going to wake  up one day and that ability is going to be gone and they'll never get it back. And as they grow, they'll figure Santa out, just like they'll figure out that they're not a bird, and that Mickey Mouse really is dressed up, and they're not going to hate you for that. Billions of children have believed in Santa for a very, very long time, and they have grown up and then told their children about Santa, because he's magic. If it was so horrible, Santa would never have made it this far.

Let the kids have Santa Claus. Seriously. We've taken everything else.


Germaine said...

You are awesome!! Loved the article and I do hope that it gets read by many many people....

Anonymous said...

And wasnt Santa Clause an actual person at one point. I mean it did get a little bit expanded on what the actual story is but to say he is a lie or not real is actually not the truth.

Heather313 said...

This is a super, super bit of writing! Thank you.

Lauren said...

Thanks, guys :) Glad there are still some Santa believers!

Anonymous said...

I agree with you completely! If Santa is a lie, he's a white lie. There's no harm in letting children believe in him.
I was the older child in my family and once I knew that Santa didn't exist, I kept telling my little brother than he existed just so that he would have something to be excited about.