Sunday, December 21, 2008

How Old Is Too Old?

I'm not one for Christmas songs. As a matter of fact, it's just about this time of year that I want to go all Falling Down on people when I walk into a place and find Christmas music blasting. There are exactly two Christmas songs that never elicit this response... Snoopy Vs The Red Baron by The Royal Guardsmen and Father Christmas by The Kinks... two rather diametrically opposed approaches to the holiday season.

In fact I often find myself singing Father Christmas... in front of the kids... which has prompted strange looks from them.

When I was small I believed in Santa Claus
Though I knew it was my dad
And I would hang up my stocking at Christmas
Open my presents and not be glad...

See... we've never had The Talk with Fletcher. We almost did last year. We almost did this year. I don't think he really believes any more, but he also hasn't given us the "I'm in on the joke" thing when Blythe talks about Santa.


It's strange for me, because I had older brothers, I was disabused of the notion of a fat guy in a red suit coming down the chimney rather early on. That and the fact I'm sort of a pragmatist deep down. Fletcher is a dreamer. But he'll be nine in January and frankly, if he does still believe in Santa, I'm concerned about his gullibility meter.

So now I'm left in a quandry. Do I let it go? Or do I take him to the park where I told him that my dad died and that Arthur died and tell him Santa Claus is dead too?


Jeffrey Byrnes said...

I cant remember who the "Northampton Realist" is, can you give me a link so I can check his work out?

And yes, that was me in Noho on Tuesday evening with my tripod set up. You should have come over and jumped in the shot. People love to do that up there, oh and flash the camera also. Thats another thing people like to do.

Anonymous said...

Let it go. If he asks, just tell him that Santa is whatever you believe he is. If you think it's your parents, then it's your parents. If you think it's real, then it's real.

The perception is the reality.

When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.

Don't worry about gullability either. A good child psychologist could twist that into "trustworhty" for you.

Aunty Belle said...

Huh? Sure thar's a Santa Claus! Of course, he ain't a fat elf in a red suit with a penchant for chimneys!

But Christmas miracles happen, an to me thas' Santa at work!

jojo said...

so what did you do? i'd let it go till next year. :) like i know what i'm talking about ha. no kids. but hey, when he's 15 and you still haven't told him and he still believes, THEN you have a gullibility problem.. :)

Anonymous said...

That can be a hard one ... our approach with our daughter (now age 6) was to tell her the Santa was a story, not an actual person. But then (at age 3) she told us that she wanted to believe in Santa, so we let it go and now both Santa (and the Christmas Spider, another story) visit our house on Christmas eve.

Recently she has asked us if Santa is real or if it is us. We ask her what does she think, and she thinks he's real but kids at her school say otherwise. We reassure her that life's magic is real only to those who want to believe in it, and Santa is a type of magic.

In a nutshell, we've left the whole Santa (tooth fairy, Easter bunny, fairies & trolls) belief issue up to her. - I may have a different approach when she's nine. ;-)