No parent wants to be a “Scrooge” about Santa, so why not just keep believing? Therapist, Julie Hanks, has advice on how to handle “Santa doubt” and how to keep Santa’s example of love and generosity, alive.
Should you keep your kids believing in Santa?
1) Let your child take the lead
· Watch for Santa doubt starting to creep in sometime between ages 5-7.
· Children usually make a gradual shift in beliefs instead of one big moment around age 7.
· Cognitive development shifts around this age from fantasy to more rational judgments based concrete evidence that doesn’t add up.
· 2 of 3 children said they felt pride in figuring out the truth about Santa, and half still liking the idea of Santa even though he wasn’t real. (Source )
· In preparing for this segment I asked my 9 year old, “Tell me about Santa…” He replied, “You mean do I believe or not? I think he’s real because there is no way you guys could hide all those presents from us! And I don’t think you could leave and buy all that stuff on Christmas eve. But I don’t believe in the tooth fairy. I think that’s just you or Dad leaving money under my pillow.”
· “We told our kids right from the start that there was no Santa. They chose to believe otherwise. We insisted that he was a story, a fairy tale. They insisted that we were teasing them. Finally, when they were around ten or so they started to realize that we had been telling them the truth all along but they decided when and what to believe.” –Stephanie CannonMore