The Little White Lies That Parents Tell Their Kids (Infographic)

Posted on Dec 12 2013 - 10:57am by Alexandra Ashton

Have you ever heard about the Sandman? If you grew up in Northern Europe, this character was probably a part of your life, much like the witch Befana is known in Italy and the “seven o’clock man”in Quebec. The Sandman is just another one of the popular characters that parents across the world use to make their children behave, with the idea of being rewarded by a supernatural creature.

In this case, this habitual character of the European folklore is traditionally characterized as a magical being that appears at night and makes children go to sleep. From this point forward there are variations of the original story, but according to the tales of Hans Christian Andersen, the Sandman could throw sand in the children’s eyes, giving them good or bad dreams according to their behavior. Sometimes he has a pair of umbrellas: one has lovely pictures kept for the good children and one has a black underside, reserved for bad children.

This could mean that the Sandman is always good for the children who behave, right? Well, not really and we hope the parents’ white lies are brief and don’t reveal anything else about this character. Why, you ask? Because this guy is far more sinister in other versions of the story. According to a version of the story written by a German author during the nineteenth century, the character’s sand makes children’s eyes pop out.

And if that wasn’t bad enough, he fills his sack with the bloody eyeballs, ready to take them back to his own owl-like children who live on the moon. Creepy… Clearly, this infographic sets the limit on what you can tell and what you never should tell your children. Now go to sleep, but be careful because the Sandman might be waiting for you to close your eyes.

The Little White Lies That Parents Tell Their Kids Infographic

About the Author

Alexandra Ashton, Communications at Neomam Studios , the UK based Infographic Agency. Alexandra is a content and design enthusiast with a keen eye for detail.