I don't have any hooligans. I'm not far from having them and one issue that concerns me is creating a world outside of rationality. In raising children we make up so many stories that they have a hard time sorting out fact and fiction. It starts from the earliest days. We pretend that Santa exists. We pretend that the Easter Bunny exists. We pretend that Fluffy is now in heaven instead of telling them that everything dies and that's it. We pretend that there are ghosts. But we don't tell our kids that it's pretend. Sure, they enjoy the moment, but do we do longer term damage to their ability to reason what reality is later?
What would be the damage or downfalls of telling children from day one that Santa doesn't really exist, he's for pretend and fun? Could they not have the same type of fun that you or I would in letting go of reality and enjoying a movie or a play? Couldn't we explain it that way too? I remember tossing Santa aside too early for my Mom. I was six or so when I called shenanigans. She was literally hurt and threatened no gifts if I didn't act like I believed. I knew that my mom was full of it, but I went along anyways.
As a young teen I would watch scary movies and sometimes get frightened by the thoughts of Jason or Freddy (bedroom in the basement area so the walk down scurred me). If we remove that magical component of how the world works, would I save my child fear and confusion? Would it confuse them more because they are different? Would they lose out on being a child or could we still create the fun of simply extending the pretend world like when they play in forts made of sheets? What are some of the pitfalls of setting up a world where the magic is in the chemistry of life as opposed to the literal belief in a flying reindeer?