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Parents telling their kids the truth about Santa at such a young age!

(190 Posts)
LouiseQ Fri 04-Dec-15 07:21:02

I have two children age nine and five. My nine year old still very much believes in Santa and I don't see what the problem is with this. She is in year 5 so I expect that this year will be her last as we are due to apply for high school next year, but a couple of my friends who have children of a similar age to mine think it's strange that she still believes and have admitted to me that their seven and eight year olds children already know the truth.

Whilst it's of course up to them what they do with their own kids I can't help feel a little sad for them as they are so young, but i also get the impression that they think I'm being a little precious with my dd and a bit stupid for allowing her to believe at this age. Surely though she is still quite young?......and considering she still plays with her dolls (and not i phone 6's like my friends kids) she is still very kid like at heart, if that makes sense. I just don't get why any parent (with kids under high school age) would want to spoil the "magic" and would want their kids to grow up so fast, after all they're only little for a short amount of time.

TheHouseOnTheLane Fri 04-Dec-15 07:25:46

Well I'm with you but many aren't and we need to respect that.

When mine come to me with doubts, I tell them about Saint Nicholas and how he's really Father Christmas. I tell them that he's a spirit...and that he's a good spirit...who brings all of the joy and festive happiness.

I avoid saying "he brings the presents" because really I'm sure mine have been told "he's not real" by other kids.

But I know that this belief in the spirit of St Nicholas has satisfied them that there really is magic.

KakiFruit Fri 04-Dec-15 07:28:49

YABU to feel sorry for children for being told the truth. If that's all it takes to strip the "magic" from life, they have deeper problems with their upbringing.

vestandknickers Fri 04-Dec-15 07:29:38

Year five is quite old to still believe. Do you think your DD has figured it out, but still plays along?
Mine are nine and haven't believed for some time, but they still love their stockings. We've lost none of the magic or excitement.

Sirzy Fri 04-Dec-15 07:30:55

As long as they are told to keep the magic for other children and not tell them he doesn't exist then I don't have a problem.

Realistically I would imagine most 8/9 year olds who 'believe' are already questioning things but not saying anything just in case.

Kampeki Fri 04-Dec-15 07:36:36

It depends on the child, I think.

I told my dd "the truth" when she was 8, with a very heavy heart. I'd have loved for her to believe a bit longer, but eventually I realised that I wanted it more for me than for her! She had been questioning it a little for a couple of years, and I tried my very hardest to keep the magic going, but by the time Christmas came round that year, it became apparent that she was actually finding it quite stressful not to know - she told me that she just wanted me to tell her the truth, and so I did. I think she felt relief rather than disappointment, because the doubt had been troubling her. She is naturally quite a sceptical child.

My DNephew is the same age (now 10) and still believes, as far as we know. So we all play along, including dd. I am a little envious of my sister, as she gets to enjoy the magic a bit longer, but I don't regret telling dd when I did - it was the right thing to do at the time.

I have always given dd strict instructions not to give the game away to her friends in school, but now I think very few of them still believe.

LaurieFairyCake Fri 04-Dec-15 07:37:06

When I fostered a ten year old she believed Santa was for other children as she never got anythingsad

When she got her first Christmas stocking and presents from Santa the look of utter joy was priceless

She never 'stopped' believing as she just realised that magic is something we create ourselves. At 18 her 'magic' comes from unicorn t shirts and incense grin

MythicalKings Fri 04-Dec-15 07:40:48

Most DCs tumble to the truth around the age of 7 or 8, they don't need their parents to tell them, intelligence and logic do that, if they don't find out in the playground.

It's a bit cruel to let older DCs believe because they are likely to get teased by their classmates and it often involves an outright lie from the parents to maintain the pretence.

trinitybleu Fri 04-Dec-15 07:41:29

My DD worked it out at 6 but still likes to visit Santa and is very good at not telling others. For a Year 5 not to have been told by friends at school is pretty unusual I'd say ... DD's teacher told me she has been reassuring the kids one lad has been telling, trying to keep it alive for them. I am v proud of her for that!

ObsidianBlackbirdMcNight Fri 04-Dec-15 07:42:28

This argument rumbles on every year
Don't feel sorry for anyone else's kids for this, it's not necessary
I'll be shocked if my DS still believes next Xmas at 8, let alone 9. That's fine. I'm not going to tell him it's not real but I'm not going to do much to convince him it is either. Different families are different!

CountryRoadTakeMeHome Fri 04-Dec-15 07:43:21

My year 5 DS worked it out when he was in year 4. My year 4 DD started to have doubts last year but is going along with it all same. We did not tell them and have never actually confirmed suspicions. They found out at school and have a fair amount of common sense so put 2 and 2 together.

Having said that the magic is very much alive in this household. And my DC will continue it for their baby cousins.


merrymouse Fri 04-Dec-15 07:45:23

Its subjective though. Many children have 'magical' Christmases without believing that Santa Clause is real and there is no stripping away of magic when you tell your children 'the truth' because no magic has been removed.

CalleighDoodle Fri 04-Dec-15 07:47:13

Can you imagine any other time when people are routinely told a lie and when they find out the truth they are told not to tell anyone else?

I read that back and realised that's work grin and government confused. Maybe the politicians behave like this because of the Santa lie. Adults create the behaviour.

merrymouse Fri 04-Dec-15 07:50:00

And you can still play the game of believing in Santa Claus long after you have worked out that the concept of Santa is a physical impossibility (and rather alarming!)

DragonRojo Fri 04-Dec-15 07:52:15

Mine found out extremely early. I think he was about 5 yo and I was very disappointed. However that has never stopped him getting ridiculously excited, and even now, age 12, he looks forward to putting the tree up, decorating the house, etc. Not much changed for him after he found out.

Pobspits Fri 04-Dec-15 07:55:23

Ds is almost 9 and mostly still believes but is very inquisitive about it all!

Dd is 5 and tbh I'm not entirely sure she's ever believed - she's very pragmatic. She doesn't say anything though just in case.

U2HasTheEdge Fri 04-Dec-15 07:55:51

My 6 and nearly 9 year old still believes.

My 9 year old has never mentioned the fact that he might not be real. I imagine she has heard the rumours in the playground and either don't believe them or she is just playing along with the whole thing.

teacherwith2kids Fri 04-Dec-15 07:59:08

"Its subjective though. Many children have 'magical' Christmases without believing that Santa Clause is real and there is no stripping away of magic when you tell your children 'the truth' because no magic has been removed."

In our house, Father Christmas is a wonderful Christmas story that we all play along with, and always has been. We have brilliant Christmases, with stockings and rituals and presents and fun. Our traditions and fun and magic have continued for much longer than they might have done had there been a 'truth' to be told - children are now teens, and we still all have stockings delivered in secret at dead of night.

We never went down the road of building the 'pack of cards' that is belief in Father Christmas, but because we always played up the overall magic of Christmas, my children were never the ones who 'told other children Santa wasn't real', because they understood (at a childish level, obviously) that the stories other families tell about Santa vary.

The magic of Christmas is not causally linked to a belief in Santa, unless you make it so.

SaucyJack Fri 04-Dec-15 07:59:45

I never told mine he was really real in the first place.

We do play along with all the traditions but it's just a bit of fun and make-believe for us.

I find the lengths some people go to to pretend otherwise a weeny bit odd tbh.

Mehitabel6 Fri 04-Dec-15 08:00:24

I would expect them to work out for themselves by that age. Most likely they have but don't wan't to let on- if you have younger siblings then you have to keep it going. It doesn't spoil Christmas - FC still visits.
By year 5 it is very difficult when they have friends who are likely to tell and they can read anything. It doesn't matter either way. I knew at 6yrs- a friend told me. I didn't tell my parents that I knew.

Mehitabel6 Fri 04-Dec-15 08:01:50

There are a lot of children who don't want to spoil it for parents by letting on!

WizardOfToss Fri 04-Dec-15 08:03:43

There's no need to feel sorry for other people's children.

Children are all different and will cotton on at different stages, and that's fine.

DD knew from about 7, but didn't tell me because she knew how much I loved it all and she didn't want me to be upset. From that, I learned you can project too much on your DC. You need to accept that they grow up - it's happening whether you like it or not!

multivac Fri 04-Dec-15 08:04:06

I think it's quite sweet when nine and ten year olds allow their parents to believe still smile

ArriettyMatilda Fri 04-Dec-15 08:04:27

I am 25 years old and I remember at 13 asking my parents of Father Christmas was real. It was definitely the first time I voiced my doubts, and I'm not sure how long I had them before I asked. My mum and dad asked if I was sure I wanted to know and then I changed my mind and asked it the tooth fairy was real blush Other children had told me Father Christmas wasn't real, but my parents told me that when you stopped believing he stopped bringing presents and in some house parents bought all the presents. Since its a lie that almost every parent tells and every child believes at some point it didn't feel cruel at all. Once I was 14 some of the magic was lost and I am grateful for all the years I had of fully believing as it was so magical.

WizardOfToss Fri 04-Dec-15 08:04:40

Cross post with Mehitabel!

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