Not since our decision to keep Addison an only child have I had to defend such a personal choice so often. It is mind-boggling to me that people feel the need to interject their judgement, criticisms, and derision into a conversation that has absolutely nothing to do with their lives. I'm not bitter...just surprised. So, once again, I am blogging about a decision we have made for our family in hopes that I will not have to defend myself even one more time.
We are not doing the whole Santa thing.
Now, I could list the reasons, but honestly, I don't want to. And none of them would be good enough for someone who does not agree with them anyway. But if you are open-minded and interested in our reasons (and what we will do instead of Santa), this blog (most of this one) (oh, and this one) is almost exactly what I would have written, were I so eloquent.
I will, however, say the following:
My decision to leave Santa out of Christmas has no bearing on anyone else's life. We get that people may think our decision is ridiculous, but to say that you "feel sorry for Addison" is just not okay. I know what Addison is and is not "missing out on" as Erik and I both grew up with Santa. For the record, if she someday decides to do Santa for her own children, we will completely support her, and we will even pay for her therapy should she decide her own Santa-less childhood has scarred her in some way.
I do not go searching for this conversation. It seems like inevitably someone daily asks about what Santa is bringing Addison or asks when she is having pictures with Santa. Because I have trouble being articulate under pressure and because most people are very defensive regarding this particular tradition, "We aren't really doing the whole Santa thing," always leads to a very awkward and abrupt end to the conversation. I am open to suggestions on alternative answers.
It doesn't mean that we think someone is/was a bad parent because their children believe(d) in Santa. No one needs to defend themselves to us. I promise that we don't care. We will not go home and talk about anyone behind their back. Our decision is not an indictment on anyone else's parenting.
We understand that people are very upset about the thought of Addison potentially ruining Santa for their children. I can assure everyone that when she is old enough to ask questions, we will make sure that she is fully briefed on how to respond to statements/inquiries about Santa. We will even role play. She will not run around breaking Santa figurines like some terrifying pint-sized Grinch or scream "Santa's not real!!" in the middle of the school program. We won't need an annual December quarantine.
In the end, we all have to prayerfully make the best decisions for our own families, and stay true to our personal convictions in the face of criticism. We wish all of you a very Merry Christmas, and may we all remember the true reason for the season.