As if shopping for the last Malibu Barbie weren’t hard enough, Christmas is testing parents' psyches in more insidious ways, Carl Honoré writes in the Washington Post. “The Great Santa Debate,” about whether to keep up the St. Nick myth for children, “feeds into a broader culture of parental hysteria,” writes Honoré. Psychologists and celebrities have already weighed in; some say the “pernicious lie” amounts to child abuse.
“Instead of bringing tidings of comfort and joy, Christmas now feels like yet another high-stakes test of our ability to parent,” writes Honoré, who advises anxious parents to chill out. Every little decision won’t scar children, he says. “When it comes to Christmas, and to everything else connected with children, we could all turn down the thermostat a little.”