Dwyane Wade is many things: retired NBA legend, Gabrielle Union’s husband, vocal supporter of his kids, and, we just found out, not a fan of Santa Claus, and it’s not because he’s a Grinch.
In a conversation with Tamron Hall for O, Union talked about how she and her husband handled the Santa question, something every parent who celebrates Christmas with their family has to tackle. Do you lie to your kids in the hopes of making their childhood more magical? Or when they ask, “Is Santa Real?” do you tell them the truth early on at the risk of raising a cynic?
In the Union-Wade household, Gabrielle proposed telling their kids that their gifts were from Santa but Dwyane quickly shot down that idea.
“There’s no way in hell I’m letting these kids think that old white man is sneaking into our house and doing anything for them,” he told her.
Union added that “We have these conversations when it comes to raising our children about where to draw the line between fantasy and ‘Hey, that’s not how life works.'”
Her anecdote sheds light on how the conversations parents of color have are just different than those of their white counterparts. Hall pointed out that in addition to “Are we gonna say Santa exists?” the question of “Is Santa Black?” has to be asked.
And anyways, there’s a growing body of evidence that telling your kid the truth about Santa is better for them in the long run, and that if you’re hoping that believing in Santa will make them behave you’re barking up the wrong (Christmas) tree.
So while it might break your heart a little bit, it’s worth considering following Wade’s lead.