Is it acceptable to lie to our children?

English: Santa Claus as illustrated in , v. 56...

English: Santa Claus as illustrated in , v. 56, no. 1449 (1904 December 7), cover. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Think about this for a few moments… as a matter of fact think about it until you get to the end of today’s blog.

First response would most likely be; No we should not lie to our children that will create distrust and even worse teach them to lie.

But, what about Santa Claus?

Well we say this is ok, no one wants to take the excitement and joy of a visit from Santa Claus bringing toys to our household on a cold winter’s night from a small child’s imagination.

Lying to our children about Santa Claus being acceptable of course opens the door to the Easter Bunny and how about giving awards of excellence to every player just because they showed up?

Where does it end? What about the school that is now teaching creationism as a science?

What about Bill O’Reilly and Sara Palin lying to all about an imagined “war on Christmas”? This effort of course has provided both O’Reilly and Palin with extra money to salt away in the Cayman Islands.

What about Bush/Cheney and company, with complicity from the MSM, lying us into a senseless war? A war that has cost us unimaginable amounts in both lives and money.

Keep in mind that once a person reaches adulthood many ideas and opinions have been completely installed in their minds and are almost impossible to dislodge.

Now take a moment and tell me what you think about lying (to our children).


3 thoughts on “Is it acceptable to lie to our children?

  1. Larry, when I first thought about this question our son was a preteen; and I was just entering a more serious understanding of ethics and morals and what some would call a biblical faith or the Christian faith. I knew these things were all false; but he believed Santa and the tooth fairy and the Easter Bunny were all as real as we were.

    Then I remembered trying to HIDE the fact that I no longer believed in Santa because of my fear that as soon as they knew I knew that my parents were Santa the presents would end.

    So, we told him well ahead of Christmas before he had the chance to be convinced by another child, or worse still another adult. He cried for a bit, then said with tears in his eyes, “I guess that means there’s no Easter Bunny either.” and with further tears and harder, “…or tooth fairy.”

    To this day I don’t know if I did the right thing in telling him they weren’t real; but I am convinced that I was wrong in ever pretending they were more than positive myths that made life better for children and adults.

    When I was a pastor one year I did a Christmas Eve sermon dressed as St. Nicklaus (the real St. Nick, assuming the whole thing wasn’t a myth); but the good Nicklaus who gave presents at Christmastime. I told the whole story; and in the story I spoke of his death and of the continuance of the tradition of gift giving. Now the important part of this part of the story is that there were a bunch of children there from preschool to high school; and I heard not one negative about that sermon from adult nor child. What I heard was how special that was for a Christmas Eve service. (BTW, we had our Christmas Eve Service at 11 PM with great attendance because I convinced them that was one way to be sure the kids would go to sleep that night.)

    So I would never recommend that parents outright lie about Santa. I even believe it is OK to sort of play along; but using terms such as the Santa story, or even talk about the bishop who gave presents long ago possibly being the one who started the story.

    What would you do differently, if anything?


    • Mike, I think you handled it quite well. personally, i followed the plan as learned from my parents. Pretend Santa is real until they find out for themselves. Never told them the truth but did acknowledge it when confronted. Now i have grandchildren and even great grandchildren who still believe. I hold the families desires to maintain this falsehood until they deem it fit to disclose the truth.
      My original intent of today’s blog was to get people to think about lies and how what can be considered an acceptable lie can grow into a case of almost anything being an acceptable lie. As for Santa, everyone must make their own decision based on their values. And i cannot avoid what John said in his reply above. “nothing good ever comes from lying”


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