Like many families on MDC, we don't do Santa for a variety of reasons. The IL's had the kids over the weekend and took them to see Santa. This in itself I don't mind so much. I'm not thrilled with it, but there are bigger battles to fight. We don't ignore Santa, but treat him the same as Elmo, Dora, etc A fun pretend thing to do. I've also told them the story of St. Nicholas, but I don't know that they really "get" it yet. They have seen Santa at the malls and asked if they could go up and see him, and of course I said yes. "Santa" asked what they would like, one said books, the other said a puzzle and that was that. I've never told them that some kids think Santa brings them a gift or fills their stocking. They have a hard enough time understanding what's real and what's fantasy. There are days I'm convinced my oldest thinks Dora is real. She talks about Dora as if she were a real person, dh comes home and she tells him what Dora did that day.
Then at lunch yesterday, Dd1 says "Santa is going to bring me a doll!" I've already done her Christmas shopping, and no she isn't getting a doll. (and MIL has already bought her gift as well - a TAG map) To make it worse, dd2 is. The IL's KNOW we do not do Santa. We've told them this several times and last year when they came to our house they said "Did Santa get you those?' They just looked at them like they were crazy and said "no, mommy and daddy did". So it's clear to them we don't do Santa. I'm
I realize I could just go out and buy her an inexpensive doll, but then to make the gifts even, I'd have to get something for Dd2 and these are all the reasons I don't do Santa. I don't want my kids to expect a certain gift. A gift is something someone chooses to give you, not something you can make a list of demands for. We also live on a tight budget and I don't want to risk them asking for something insanely expensive we can't afford, or something huge we don't have the space for.
So I asked dd1 if she remembered the story I told her about St. Nicholas. That he lived along time ago and since he's no longer living, some people made up a person called Santa and like to tell their kids that that's who gives them gifts. She handled it pretty well, but I could tell she was probably a little disappointed.
I just hate that I was even put into this position. I feel like I should say something to them, but I don't know what. I don't want to blame them or make it sound incriminating, but at the same time they need to know that this isn't ok. That we will not be doing Santa and that's the end of it.
I'm not sure what I'm looking for, a little bit of everything I guess. Advice, support, commiseration.