When and How to Tell the Truth about Santa to your Childen?
We all remember the time when we found out that Father Christmas didn’t exist. I was 10. My older brother had written my note from Santa, and I recognised his handwriting and his green pen. I kept it a secret for another couple of years, as I was worried that I would get fewer gifts if I owned up! I don’t remember being disappointed, and Christmas certainly wasn’t less magical once I realised the truth.
So, when is the right time to break the news to your children that the big man doesn’t really exist?
It is totally down to personal preference as to when you should tell your child the truth. Some parents like to keep the magic going for as long as possible, while others believe that telling ‘untruths’ to children is never okay.
Like me, many children find out the truth without actually being told; they may hear friends and family talking which brings their beliefs into question. Also, as their reasoning develops, they may start to ask questions: how does he fit down the chimney? How does to he travel the whole world in one night? Why do some children not get presents? You can make up answers to these, but then the lie gets bigger and perhaps it is time to let children realise the truth for themselves.
It’s a good idea to take the lead from your child; when they start questioning Father Christmas, try and give them honest responses without being too harsh and making them feel ‘silly’ for believing. There are ways of telling them and not spoiling the magic of Christmas – one mother wrote a letter to her daughter explaining that she did indeed choose and wrap the presents, but she wasn’t Father Christmas:
We think this letter sums up the spirit of Christmas perfectly; it lets children know the truth while keeping the magic of Christmas alive.
Many children will have found out for themselves before starting secondary school, but if not, you may want to go down the route of the letter above. As hard as it is to feel like you’re spoiling the magic of Christmas for your child, you run the risk of them ridiculed by friends at school for still believing. It doesn’t mean they can’t enjoy Christmas anymore – it’s just a sign that they are growing up!Tags: Christmas, family, santa
This post was written by Claire Gillies