Mothering Forum banner

1 - 20 of 48 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,593 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
<a href="http://www.educationaloptions.com/levels_giftedness.htm" target="_blank">http://www.educationaloptions.com/levels_giftedness.htm</a><br><br>
I have been reading the link above, and I wonder if you could enlighten me about questioning the reality of the tooth fairy and Santa Claus. What exactly does this mean? Both of my kids have tried to pin me down a bit on the subject of the tooth fairy and Santa Claus, but I thought all kids do that. Don't they? Don't all kids question inconsistencies about these figures?<br><br>
They have not had an epiphany, as I did at the age of seven, when my parents admitted under questioning that the Easter rabbit was not real. I realized that if the Easter rabbit was not real, then the tooth fairy, and Santa Claus were phony, too. I still remember that exact moment.<br><br>
I'm also interested in your stories about how your children express concerns about moral issues. My daughter at the age of two or three, realized on her own that the grocery store sold chicken, and that meant that real chickens had been killed and she screamed and sobbed and refused to set foot in the store for many months.<br><br>
The same daughter also refused to celebrate her second, third, and fourth birthday because she didn't want to grow up. She understood that adding a year here or there could lead to growing up.<br><br>
I know my daughters are gifted, I am just trying to figure out which level.<br><br>
I would really enjoy hearing similar stories about your children.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,785 Posts
Fun topic!<br><br>
DS questioned Santa at 4, and I told him it would be in his best interest to stop the conversation, and especially his baby sister's best interest. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="smile"> He got the hint.<br><br>
(I believed in Santa until I was 13, but I also had a much younger sister so maybe I was given a hint early on, too.)<br><br>
He lost his front two teeth about 3 weeks ago and is not motivated at all to put them under his pillow. There's 5 bucks in it for him! I don't know what that is about, but wonder if it is related.<br><br>
Similar to the chickens... we were strolling through Costco around Thanksgiving when they had all the turkeys out--he must have been 3 b/c I don't remember the baby being around--and he said, isn't it funny that THAT says turkey and also the animal is turkey? I told him they were the same, and he started laughing. Crazy sense of humor. (We're not veggies, though.) DD3 recently asked at dinner if the chicken was dead, and how. I didn't lie to her, but she didn't get upset.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
925 Posts
DD will be 4 in August. We don't make much of a fuss about Santa and the Easter bunny. She gets Christmas gifts and an Easter basket, but we don't focus on where it comes from. I don't have a problem with her knowing that they're characters created for the holidays. Not sure what we'll do when it comes time for the tooth fairy. I don't think she'll be losing any teeth for at least 2 years. DD also knows where our meat comes from, but she doesn't seem upset by it. Sometimes if I'm having bacon or ham, she'll talk about how it's pig and that I like to "oink" it. LOL She knows that burgers and steak come from cows and that chicken is, well, chicken. We also watch Planet Earth from time to time, so she's well aware of the food chain and how the lions chase the zebra so they can eat it.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,156 Posts
The existence of Santa is debated here, but in an academic sense. But we are Catholic, so we also talk about Padre Pio bi-locating and transubstantiation.<br><br>
The Easter Bunny is also like a fictional character, like snoopy, you know, or garfield. We've talked about the Easter Bell in France, that flies over from Rome to give the good children chocolates, and sometimes they are into the bell and other times a little bunny is what they believe in... sometimes they're really serious and it isn't about the stuff at all but the theological thing that rests beneath they symbol, the birth of Christ, Resurrection, et cetera.<br><br>
And my 4 year-old gives the plants that die in our yard gifts for the afterlife, so ...<br><br>
We tend to have a joyful blurring of fiction and reality around here, Joseph Campbell style. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/joy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="joy">:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,490 Posts
I once tested as moderately gifted on a school achievement test and while I know I'm not gifted-gifted, non-math things came effortlessly to me in school and I was extremely sensitive to moral issues. I wanted to be a doctor from age 4. My mother likes to tell the story about how upset I was at 4 that she wouldn't submit my cure for the common cold to the pharmacy. I don't know if I'm highly gifted but if math were taken from the equation, I guess it might be possible. At any rate, I believed in Santa until I was almost 12! I was always uber-innocent and trusting. My parents kind of led me along. My sister, who has a higher IQ than I do, also believed in the Tooth Fairy, Santa and the Easter Bunny, until at least age 10.<br><br>
With my own kids, I haven't "done" these characters with them, simply because I had such a bad experience with them myself. I've told them from the get-go that they're just fun games of make-believe that people like to play. My oldest son, who I do believe is highly gifted, is extremely trusting like I was and just very innocent in general.<br><br>
In terms of other moral issues, you asked for examples and stories...<br>
My son didn't have the realization about meat until age 3. He was raised vegetarian in a mixed household but we never talked about it because we were a mixed household and I didn't want to present a one-sided story to him. So, he never knew he was vegetarian or what people ate or that he was different. At 3, he made some comment about lions eating grass. I corrected him and told him that lions ate other animals. He looked sort of horrified and then very solemnly asked me, "Are they sorry?"<br><br>
Then, he had the big realization about meat and stuff at 4 (older 4). We were in the grocery store he saw lobster tails and he wanted to know how the tails were removed from the lobsters. It then hit him that people killing animals, against the animal's wishes, so they could eat them; he was gobsmacked. I then gave what I believe was an extremely fair talk about vegetarianism vs meat-eating. I gave examples of animals of both types, I gave examples of family members of both types and I gave him lines of reasoning from both camps. He declared that he wasn't going to eat animals and that was that.<br><br>
After that, things got interesting with his new revelation. There were some moments of upset during dinner when he discovered dh was eating meat ("Did they use a knife on that cow?? But you're hurting the cow!!"). He almost made my husband cry at dinner one night. Then, he converted his younger brother.<br><br>
My youngest is very sweet and caring but it's my oldest who seems very morally sensitive. We can't kill bugs in front of him. At 5, he bawled when he accidentally stepped on a bug and killed it. He had ended this bug's life, etc etc; he was almost inconsolable. At 6, he sobbed at the ending of an audio book ("A Cricket in Times Square") because the good-bye sequence was drawn-out. He's very very sensitive.<br><br>
We think our youngest is just as intelligent as our oldest. In fact, he was doing some things (like reading) much much younger than our oldest. But he doesn't seem to be *as* morally sensitive as the oldest. Again, he's very sweet and concerned but he doesn't seem to dwell on these issues and crusade like my oldest does. My oldest was on a crusade for a while to make everyone vegetarian. I think it's just personality differences. I am extremely morally sensitive and I tend towards brooding and worrying. My husband is brilliant in math (no idea what his IQ is) and he's just not as morally sensitive. I envy my husband, tbh.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,488 Posts
My husband and I just got blind-sided by Santa questions on a recent road trip--it was June! This was not on my mind. My daughter told us that she doesn't think Santa is real because she's never seen him--she goes to bed, presents appear, she wakes up. She's never seen him, so that's it. Umm... we were in the car for a 14-hour drive with my 2-year old also in the backseat; we were lost.<br><br>
I'm going to watch the thread just to get a handle on how other folks deal with this, I wasn't expecting this in June. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/dizzy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Dizzy">:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,679 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>supervee</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11601270"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">He lost his front two teeth about 3 weeks ago and is not motivated at all to put them under his pillow. There's 5 bucks in it for him! I don't know what that is about, but wonder if it is related.</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
DS also lost his first tooth about a month ago -- and you can best be sure that he stuck it under the pillow to get some $. Although he did mention under his breath before he went to be that the tooth fairy wasn't real......<br><br>
DS loves the stories and traditions around Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny, and I think he's content to just enjoy the celebrations around it.<br><br>
Along this line, I pretty much figured that Santa Claus, etc. weren't real early on thanks to some neighborhood kids that were happy to blow it for me. Once they laid out how illogical it was, how could I refute that? I didn't say anything to my parents until I was much older (like 2nd grade) because I could always count on getting the one gift from Santa that I asked for; everything else was up in the air. I also liked looking for Easter eggs, and why on earth would I turn down money from the tooth fairy? Sure, it was hypocritical, but hey, I was a kid, ya know? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/orngbiggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="orange big grin">
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,679 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>LeftField</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11602654"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">My youngest is very sweet and caring but it's my oldest who seems very morally sensitive. We can't kill bugs in front of him. At 5, he bawled when he accidentally stepped on a bug and killed it. He had ended this bug's life, etc etc; he was almost inconsolable.</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
oh yes. We have to do catch and release for any insects that make their way into our home. I once stepped on something outside, and my ds called me a "KILLER!" I now watch where I step.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,419 Posts
I was very upset as a child about being lied to about Santa and the Easter Bunny, so we opted out of the tradition. I can't really think of any equivalent moral discoveries on our child's part because we've always been honest about where chickens come from, where babies come from, etc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,872 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Roar</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11603435"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I was very upset as a child about being lied to about Santa and the Easter Bunny, so we opted out of the tradition. I can't really think of any equivalent moral discoveries on our child's part because we've always been honest about where chickens come from, where babies come from, etc.</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/img/vbsmilies/smilies/yeahthat.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="yeah that">:<br><br>
Same perspective here. But this is an interesting thread!
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
11,488 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">I was very upset as a child about being lied to about Santa and the Easter Bunny, so we opted out of the tradition. I can't really think of any equivalent moral discoveries on our child's part because we've always been honest about where chickens come from, where babies come from, etc.</td>
</tr></table></div>
That's funny (in the how-we're-all-different-way) because I was just recently talking to my mom about the topic of Santa and kids. She wasn't really comfortable lying to me about Santa (I think I'd picked up the idea from family/society) so when I was about 4, she tried to gently explain the spirit of Christmas and how that's real, but a physical person going to everyone's houses all night before Christmas Day, that wasn't real.<br><br>
Apparently I wasn't ready for that, so I told her no, she was wrong, he _is_ real. She said I didn't seem upset or anything, I was just informing her of the truth, like when she tried to tell me where babies came from, since my dad had spent several days spinning a story about the baby farm--just like the corn farming we could see out the back window, but with babies that were delivered to the hospital after harvest--and I told my mom she was wrong, the baby farm was real.<br><br>
Stories like this give me hope that I won't mess up my kids too much--apparently kids are more resilient than I realized.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,593 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I love these stories! Tell me more.<br><br>
Do you think it is the questioning of Santa Claus or the actual epiphany about SC that determines giftedness?<br><br>
And while we are on the topic of Santa Claus, have y'all heard the hilarious David Sedaris youtube on Saint Nick called 6 to 8 Black Men? <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbJpRLhaSqs&feature=related" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbJpR...eature=related</a> There are three parts, be sure to watch all three.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,785 Posts
From Ruf's POV, I think it's the questioning.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,572 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>Treasuremapper</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11604219"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">I love these stories! Tell me more.<br></div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
Well, since you asked...<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/winky.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"><br><br>
My newly four year old asked, out of the blue this spring, "Isn't it mean that people use animals and parts of animals for food and other stuff?" I commented a very tentative, "I don't know..." to which she instantly replied (in quite an accusatory tone) "Well it isn't very NICE, is it?" That said, she is currently a very happy omnivore whose diet consists of lots of meat!<br><br>
My son, at 2 yrs 4 mos, participated in a Christmas party at his daycare. The owner's husband was Santa. After sitting on Santa's lap to receive a gift, ds toddled back to me and whispered something to the extent of, "That Santa is Craig. He had Criag's breath." Ds happens to be verrrry sensitive )(in every sense of that word) so I think it was more his sensori-ness than his giftedness which made him question Santa. But he has never believed in Santa from that time on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,753 Posts
<div style="margin:20px;margin-top:5px;">
<div class="smallfont" style="margin-bottom:2px;">Quote:</div>
<table border="0" cellpadding="6" cellspacing="0" width="99%"><tr><td class="alt2" style="border:1px inset;">
<div>Originally Posted by <strong>teachma</strong> <a href="/community/forum/post/11605568"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/community/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style="border:0px solid;"></a></div>
<div style="font-style:italic;">"That Santa is Craig. He had Craig's breath."</div>
</td>
</tr></table></div>
<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/biglaugh.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="laugh">: That is hilarious!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,777 Posts
I remember a school yard debate one recess on the subject of Santaclaus when I was about 7 or 8. There were the "ofcourse Santa is real, we see him at the mall and he leaves us presents" believers on one side of the debate, and there were the "it's <i>all</i> just made up" crowd on the other side of the debate. I came in and explained that "Santaclaus" just mean "<b>Saint</b> Nicholas" and that of course Saint Nicholas was real, but he had died several centuries earlier. Niether side was very happy with the explanation.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
766 Posts
I was raised Jewish, so no personally stories there. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.mothering.com/discussions/images/smilies/wink1.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="wink1"><br><br>
Our kids are being raised basically humanist. But I did feel a bit backed into a corner to do a tree. DD heard about Santa from a stranger at the grocery store when she was 4 who told her that her sister needed to stop crying a be good or santa wouldn't bring them any presents. We decided to do a tree to avoid feelings of alienation, but opted out of the rest of the traditions of Christmas. That said, she asked if santa if would bring her presents and we had lots of talks about how presents don't = good.<br><br>
We treated it like we treat most things, from a skeptical perspective. We gave her information on what some people believe re:santa, and well, she just couldn't believe it, but she wanted too and she said as much. The days before christmas she'd ask if santa would bring her presents and we asked her what she thought. She thought he would, though "it doesn't seem possible". On Christmas she got unmarked presents, that year left by the fireplace (we couldn't have a tree because she didn't want to cut one down or take it out of the ground "Don't kill nature!"). She opened up the presents and with each and everyone she said "Thanks mom and dad!". When it was all said and done she said she knew there wasn't a santa but she liked to pretend there was one because it was fun. That's how it has gone since then. Same with the tooth fairy, it's fun to pretend to believe.<br><br>
FWIW - She knows where all kinds of meat comes from and she'll be the first to tell you "I LOVE cow!", though I haven't eaten meat for 20 odd years.<br><br>
Also when she was 4 she asked us where people came from. I went through the whole mom, uterus bit and she kept saying "No, where do they come from?" until she got frustrated and walked away. We were reading Charlottes web one night and Charlotte was explaining to Wilbur that she ate bugs because her mother did, and her mother, and her mother's, mother's etc. and DD said "That's what I want to know! That's what I've been trying to ask you! Where did the first mother come from!"<br><br>
DD2 has the benefit of having an older sister around who right now is very much into debating the existence of god. So DD2 is going to be even a little more asynchronous I believe. It's wild to hear a 4 year old trying to explain the difference between magic and slight of hand.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,067 Posts
My children are a boy (almost 3.5) and a girl 4.5.<br><br>
I have generally not reinforced Santa etc. but quietly gone along, but Daddy and his parents do. I have recently (in the last year) been explaining that it is a game, that it is not real. Gently but repeatedly.<br><br>
DD does not care if it is real and enjoys Santa, etc. As far as I know she's been indifferent to whether it was real or not to begin with. I am pretty sure if you asked her if Santa was real, she'd say no.<br><br>
DS wants it to be real and I am not sure that my very plain statements really affect him much. Magic is in his nature and he does not need to believe one thing or the other but can hold onto his belief in the face of other explaination. I do reinforce that there are no Muggles and that all humans live in a magic world. I can point to things like fireflies and cell phones when needed. Magic and magical creatures abound; we may label them differently but that's not necessary for truth.<br><br>
As far as eating and killing animals, they do not seem to be overly concerned. They, particularly my son, are interested in the fact that animals did not want to be caught or killed for food or pest control. I tell him they just wanted to live their lives like we all do. However he does not seem to need to take action. At times he is protective. I told him I was unwilling to keep a tobacco hornworm as a pet this summer and he could not put it back on my tomatoes. He did want to let it go, where it probably met the same fate as my suggestion (flush it down the toilet).<br><br>
I was upper range HG as a child. I expect my kids are somewhere in the HG range. I did not become concerned about meat until I was much older than they are, and I was very upset when I found out my mother was defrauding me about Santa when I was in the range of 5.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,572 Posts
So I am asking this honestly and not judgmentally. Do most Christmas-celebrating young children in our country truly believe that Santa, bearing gifts, comes down the chimney on Christmas Eve? Like a previous poster, I was raised Jewish and so Santa was did not play a part in our family traditions. But I'm having a hard time understanding how children actually believe it. So do you think they do, or do they just humor their parents?<br><br>
My two children question everything (ex: At 5, my son asked about how could the universe be continually expanding if the universe is also all-encompassing. Where is it expanding <span style="text-decoration:underline;">into</span>, he wanted to know, if everything that exists is <i>already</i> the universe.) But I guess our family culture is to question and think...maybe it's that, rather than the giftedness, that makes some kids skeptical at a young age?
 
1 - 20 of 48 Posts
Top