Sunday, December 11, 2011


I looked around the internets to see if there was an official term for the fear of Santa.  Because let me tell you, Scout has it and always has.  There is  pogonophobia, which is the fear of beards: nope, daddy is still huggable when he has given up shaving for a week (but ask me how huggable he is to me when he shaves it all but a mustache and then chases me around trying to kiss me -yes he still does that-), there is hagiophobia- fear of saints and holy things (nope, she isn't a vampire nor is she possessed nor is Santa very holy these days anyway no matter what his roots are.)  I think I'd know by now if she had rhodophobia (the fear of the color red) or cacomorphobia (the fear of fat or obese people).  These are as close as you can get to a fear of Santa.  Perhaps you could combine them all into a crammed term that incorporates them all................or you could just call it Santaphobia.

When Scout was a year old, we were in Macy's and there was a Santa wandering around handing out candy canes.  The moment he got within 20 feet of her, she absolutely flipped out.  I didn't think too much of it, she was right in the middle of the fear of anyone that isn't mom and dad talking to her that little ones get.  Then a year or two later, on Christmas morning when she woke up, I said, "lets go into the living room and see what Santa left in there for you" and a dark look of fear crossed her face when suddenly all the talk about Santa coming down your chimney and creeping around your living room leaving you stuff and eating your cookies hit home to her and she didn't like that idea at all.  We coaxed into the living room though and she shook off the creepy feeling pretty fast.

Last year, at our ward Christmas party, Santa came and then left to sit in another room and the kids were to go visit him.  She flipped and I mean a 5 year old had a fit and cried her eyes out because mamma told her we were going in there to sit on his lap, get her picture taken and get a candy cane.  This was a girl that never has tantrums and never throws fits.  I pushed her a little, thinking that she would get over it when she was there and saw the other kids happily doing it and the promise of a candy cane.  Nope, it just got worse.  I gave up, I mean, I've looked at pictures like these with a lot of sympathy in the past and I don't want to do that to my children.  And lets face it, I am not exactly crying myself to sleep at night that I don't have a fuzzy little picture of little Scout sitting on Santa's lap.  I decided that day I would respect her fear and support her fully.  Now, this is just Santa in the flesh mind you, she is fine with pictures of him and talking about him.  He just can't come within her comfort zone (which is about 50 feet or so).  

I am not sure how long Santa is going to remain an actual figure of truth to her though.  Frankly, I'm surprised she seems to think he is real this year.  She squelched the tooth fairy this year with the loss of her first tooth.  She asked me if it was me that gives her money for her tooth.  I asked what she thought and she said yes and I told her that it was me, but it is fun to pretend that it is a fairy.  I told myself before I had kids that I would play along with Santa, etc. for as long as they seemed happy with it, but if they ever asked me point blank, I wasn't going to lie to them.  I was going to hear their opinion and feel out if they seem like they want it to be real and go from there.  She didn't like the idea of a little fairy coming into her room and getting under her pillow much either, so she seemed relieved with the truth.  I am a little boggled that Santa is still allowed to come into her living room every year.  Maybe the proximity is enough to keep her at least calm, he doesn't leave presents under her pillow at least.

So anyway, this year when we talked about going to the ward party (it was on Friday), she immediately asked if Santa was coming.  I said yes and she started to panic and ask if we could stay home.  I told her we were going, but she does not have to sit on his lap if it makes her uncomfortable.  She seemed satisfied with that, although felt the need to ask me about 6 more times that day if she had to sit on his lap.  He came in the room and she kept her cool for the most part, but started to cry when her friend ran to her and wanted to go in there with her.  We told her that Scout is scared of Santa and she left.  She was the only child left in a room full of adults, so of course she got asked a million times if she was going to go see Santa.  One nice lady told her a story about how scared she was of Santa when she was a little girl and they shared a high five.  

Just cause Scout is scared, I decided I should not have Elle miss out on Santa.  So I took Elle, and Scout actually stood out side the door and peeked into the room a few times and even after a while stood with her back against the wall right at the door way.  But then people would try to coax her in line and she would get upset.  Daddy rescued her and they watched as Elle had her turn.  

Elle was so amazed that she actually got to get so close to this amazing looking man with all that white hair on his face.  She was so cute.  No fear of Santa with this one, (in fact, the only fear she seems to have is that of getting from one the crawling position to a sitting position -or changing positions of any sort-).

Santa seemed rather taken with her too.


Amy said...

What adorable pictures of Elle with Santa! Funny Scout. You just never know what your kids will be afraid of. I think this is a pretty common one. Someday, she'll look back on this and laugh. Poor kid.

Haley said...

Those are such cute pictures. Wow I wonder why she has such a huge fear of Santa. And for it to go on for so long. Poor girl! I was worried how Allison would react once she finally saw him at our party on Friday and she was literally shaking of excitement until it was her turn. I was actually pretty surprised. She was sad when he left and she asked me all night where he went. That's sad about the tooth fairy ending so early! I was way more sad when I found out the tooth fairy wasn't real than when I found out about Santa. Haha.

Sue said...

Poor little Scout! She's scared of Santa and old ladies. I love her. So, it's definitely a fear of someone dressed up as Santa that scares her, and then a little bit of the idea of him coming into your house and leaving presents, but she gets over that when she sees the presents? Poor little complicated thing.

I became pretty scared of the Easter bunny when I was pretty young. It was in Chula Vista and mom had done little bunny paw prints in and around the fireplace with the ashes. It scared me to death! That was proof that a bunny was in our house and I did not like it!

Those pictures of Elle's are so cute, I can't stand it. Her face is the best. She got new braces for her hands! Those look a lot better than the last ones.

Amit said...

Well. Its great.


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