Quote Originally Posted by Prickly Pear View Post
I am going to suggest that this thread is moving into the area of personal attack; maybe we should tone down the assumptions about others before we derail (not that anyone involved needs me to protect them).

Juniper, I get that the whole thing is dishonest. I can't really argue with that. I can answer with my own narrow experience, which I assume applies to at least a few other people, but not universally.

We did not start teaching our children about Santa. We always talked about real vs. made up when dealing with media. However, they quickly picked up on it from outside culture, including family who was invaluable in forming a safe community for them. We were then faced with crushing a sense of joy and magic in very young children whom we adored or letting it play itself out. Very young children live in a fantasy world much of the time; which is why they can play pretend for hours. I'm not sure that the Santa stuff is much different than playing school, or dragons or explorers. It is just that for once lots of adults play along. Both of our children worked it out and accepted the truth at their own pace. One of them is particularly observant of the world, including the bad parts. He is also very empathetic and imaginative. He took a long time to let go of the fantasy stuff. I think it helped him cope with the bad parts of the real world. In his case, we were very careful in transitioning from Santa is real to Santa is a story adults tell children. Ditto, Hogwarts. We did not think of taking care with the Muppets, and frankly that moment kind of crushed all of us. Now he is still empathetic and imaginative and also extremely sceptical. He literally handed over his childhood fantasy things to me for safekeeping and moved into adulthood when he was ready. He has many friends and interests and does well in honours classes at school. I strongly believe that the fantasy stuff let him build up defences to the world and develop his imagination and skills such as writing, as well as helping him build his own moral framework.
You're right. I didn't mean to attack Juniper in a nasty way but I do understand where she's coming from. My apologies.