Lately, I have been thinking about the myths/lies that authorities peddle to us and that parents sometimes peddle to their children. Some of these myths are thought to be good for us - white lies told for our benefit or to protect us. In keeping with the holiday theme (in spite of the fact that they are still over four months away), I would like to explore the story of Santa Claus, and how people feel about the legend today. Are parents still passing this story down to their children, or has St. Nick become passe? If so, why do parents still propagate this myth, when it will only result in confusion, disappointment, and betrayal later on when they must tell their children that they lied?
When I was a kid, what first tipped me off was the fact that we did not have a chimney in our house; then everything else began to fall into place. I reasoned it out in my head, trying to convince myself that he was real, but in the end, logic won out. What was most difficult was that I did not know how to break it to my parents that I knew Santa was not real, so I pretended for a couple more years!
What were your beliefs regarding Santa Claus when you were young? How did you find out the truth and how did you feel? When you have children (or if you already have children), what will you tell them?