My son turns 3 years old this year. He now fully understands everything we say. When strangers ask him if he'll be a good boy for Santa, he remembers. He's got to be wondering who this Santa person is. And I don't want to lie to him.
What to do? I can't tell him Santa doesn't exist. I'll get notes from school that my little boy trampled other kids' fantasies and other parents will come beat me.
I can't simply leave out gifts from Santa. My son will wonder why Santa hates him and will think he's a bad boy. He'll spend years in therapy overcoming his plummeted self-esteem.
I can't join the Santa hype. When he finds out the truth, he'll question everything we've ever told him. Right will become wrong; up will become down; and my son will become a psychopath who cannot trust anyone.
Ok, maybe I'm overreacting. But this Santa thing will definitely undermine one thing in my house: I've convinced my son that our locked front door keeps monsters from getting into the house. Santa's breaking-and-entering via chimney is sure to screw that up.
Oh well. Maybe I'll embrace our materialistic, delusional society's tradition and make it work for me. The next time my son refuses to eat dinner I'll tell him that Santa will drop lumps of coal on his eyes while he sleeps. And he'd better go to bed or the elves will get him. At least he'll be well-behaved.