December 19, 2007

What about Santa Claus?

A few weeks ago, I took my daughter to the store to buy a present for an "Angel Tree" program we have in our area. The idea is similar to the "Toys for Tots" programs. You are given the age and gender of a child who's parents cannot afford Christmas presents, and you buy one for them.

I thought this was a really important lesson for my daughter to learn. I care a lot about poverty in our country. Homelessness just eats at my hear, especially children. I wanted my daughter to learn that she needs to be glad for what she has instead of being upset for what she doesn't. Also, I want my daughter to learn the virtue of giving to others.

Well, at the store, I explained that we were buying a present for somebody that we didn't know. My daughter had a really hard time understanding how that worked. So, I promised to explain all of it for her later.

And later that evening, as it happened, my wife, daughter and I were sitting in a restaurant having dinner, and my daughter brought back up the subject.

I started to explain to her that there are some people that don't have as much as we do. And some children don't get to have presents under the tree like she does. My wife got very angry with me and said "Oh yeah, well what about Santa Claus?".

I was completely taken back. I mean, if my daughter had asked me about that, it would have been a very intelligent question. Something I would have had to answer. But, for my wife to say that on her own and destroy an opportunity to instill some values in my daughter just made me angry.

Then, to push things over the edge, my wife told my daughter, "Don't worry, your dad is wrong. All kids get presents on Christmas from Santa."

I sat there in silence after that, but my blood was boiling.

Posted by ehdonhon at December 19, 2007 12:00 AM | TrackBack
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