I can’t help but consider that Santa has turned into a bit of a groomer and a few other things that I don’t want shaping my children. Is it bad enough to be that “buzz kill” mom? Let’s look at it as it relates to what I value most in parenting my kids, in no particular order.
I believe the foundation of having a lasting influence in your child’s life is founded on trust. For the parent this means building up a body of evidence that convinces your child that you are worthy of their trust. Taking advantage of their natural trust as a young child lays a groundwork for when they become older. I would imagine that the kids, who are so angry and hurt when they find out Santa isn’t real, are not so mad about the end of the magic as they are about having been deceived by the people they trust most. And the age of figuring it out usually closely aligns with the developmental stage of beginning to question parents.
If I go to great lengths to deceive my child in the name of “fun” what does that say about what I value most? What kind of example is it? Is having fun a good excuse for lying? Or even worse, perhaps the best benefit of Santa to parents is the lingering threat of losing out on “gifts”, on having a sad and left out Christmas day, and it’s power to threaten them into good behavior. So the grooming begins, please a strange old man with great power and wealth, if you want gifts.