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Winter Holidays (Christmas, etc...)

My husband and I grew up celebrating Christmas and Santa Clause. My husband was not raised religious and I was raise Southern Baptist. Neither one of us are religious and we do not believe in God. We have three kids (ages 7, 4, & 3). We celebrated Christmas, mostly the Santa Clause tradition and opening gifts on Christmas morning for the past years with our kids. We have been changing the way we celebrate the past couple of years, creating new traditions with our kids. We no longer want to have gifts as part of our winter celebration. We have talked to our kids about this and they seem fine with it, even our oldest son. They get things they need or want all during the year any way. Since we aren't religious it seems weird for us to celebrate Christmas. Our extended family isn't so understanding or respectful of our choices though. They still want to buy the kids gifts for Christmas. What should we do or say to them?

Answer Question

Asked by akmccarty at 10:51 AM on Oct. 8, 2010 in Holidays

Level 9 (330 Credits)
Answers (8)
  • Let them buy and give them presents? It is still a tradition for the rest of the family.

    Answer by Bugbait at 10:59 AM on Oct. 8, 2010

  • You can always accept the gifts and have your kids donate them

    Answer by Mom2Jack04 at 11:00 AM on Oct. 8, 2010

  • I'm not Christian, I still do gifts at Christmas though... I don't see it as weird at all for you to celebrate Christmas - now a days it's just another Secular holiday, it's got nothing to do with religion or god... That said, it's your choice if you don't want to continue to do the gifts. But I wouldn't deny your friends or family from giving them. I grew up without Christmas, we never had a gift exchange or anything, but when friends or family bought them for us we always accepted. Buying and Giving gifts to loved ones is a HUGE part of most people's holiday and something they enjoy doing... Why deny them that? Your family is always going to have a different opinion than others do, and different traditions... As an interfaith family I know we do. But that doesn't mean we don't still appreciate the feelings of others or try and make them go by our traditions... Gifts are still their tradition, let them keep it.

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 11:03 AM on Oct. 8, 2010

  • Let them know that Christmas isn't about the gifts at all. Not even if you are religious. Yes, Jesus recieved gifts on the day he was born, but that wasn't what Christmas was about. It was about the celebration of Jesus. And even if you're not religious it is still about the celebration of family, the celebration of life, the celebration of everything you've accomplished or have overcome that past year. Gifts are apart of most celebrations like Baby Showers, Bridal Showers, Birthdays, etc. But that isn't the point of the celebration at all, that's just a tradition that started who knows when to enhance the celebration. But you can enhance a celebration in soo many different ways without buying gifts. Making cookies and treats together. Volunteering. Making Ornimants, singing Christmas songs, etc. Gifts have overun the celebration of Christmas for those who are and aren't religious..

    Answer by JazzlikeMraz at 11:03 AM on Oct. 8, 2010

  • I don't mind my kids getting gifts all that much. It just seems like some of our family is determined to still push Christmas traditions on us. They act like we are depriving our kids of their youth because we aren't keeping the tradition of Santa Claus.

    Comment by akmccarty (original poster) at 11:04 AM on Oct. 8, 2010

  • A lot of our traditions started from religion, but have become community traditions. I don't think you have to end them entirely just because you're not religious. Valentine's isn't religious or political, it's just about love. Mother's day...Father's day, just about showing appreciation to someone important in our lives, Christmas has become for many people a season about remembering the people we care about, showing good will to others, and just spreading good a time when so many sad things happen, it's just a nice time to share.

    If you choose not to celebrate that time, that's of course your choice, but I'd let others give gifts to your kids if they want to...I don't see who it hurts, and your kids know those people care about them.


    Answer by ohwrite at 11:05 AM on Oct. 8, 2010

  • Let them, As much as it bothers you, its really not going to hurt, since the children know where the gifts are coming from anyway & it will keep the peace....

    Answer by lilmoosesmom at 11:38 AM on Oct. 8, 2010

  • let them still give them gifts

    Answer by mekarevell at 10:50 PM on Oct. 13, 2010

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