Telling the Kids Santa is Broke
I remember being a child, and going back to school after the holidays and having to write a paper about what Santa brought me and what my family did over the holidays.
And I remember, that there always seemed to be other kids in my class who got sooooooooo (yes, those extra o's are for emphasis) much more than I did, and took fancy ski vacations over the holiday vacations while I stayed home and re-organized my closets.
It sort of made my garnet earrings and prized Barbie doll Santa gifts small in comparison. (So much so, that I contemplated using my creative skills to make up some elaborate holiday story.)
Now that I have kids of my own, I still find Santa inequity a difficult thing to explain.
When my kids asked for crazy expensive presents, even when they were really little – believing that Santa gifts were free – I would always try to remind them that somehow we had to ‘pay' Santa for his gifts. (I know, I know!)
But how else was I to explain that they were NOT going to get certain things that were clearly out of budget?
And how was I supposed to explain why some of their friends got such extravagant gifts while they got regular old toys and shoes, shirts and underwear.
After all, Santa is supposed to be fair and just and not play favorites with children, right? He doesn't distinguish between the haves and the have-nots?
To be honest, I still have not quite figured out how to explain to my younger kids, who believe in Santa – why other kids will GET more loot than they did on Christmas morning.
Instead, I try to instill in them that they should be grateful and thankful for the toys they did get. In our house, the kids think that their daddy and I have to pay Santa some sort of ‘fee' for Christmas, and that I set the ‘fee' low. (Again, I know, it's stupid but I have not found another good way to explain!)
I also remind my children that I provide many things for them all year long and that the holidays are not just about getting presents and gifts.
Yet still I know, they are kids; and they are thinking about magic and glitter and Santa riding on a sleigh. And even if they don't say it aloud, they are wondering why the heck Santa gave ‘dumb and mean old Sara' from school so much more than he gave to them.
The one thing I know for sure is that soon enough – one day, it will all make sense. They will grow up and not believe in things like Santa. And this big wide world we live in is full of inequity.
But I want to hear from YOU! What do you say if your kids point out that so and so got so much more for Christmas than they did?