What to do when your child starts teasing that Santa isn’t real

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Last year, it wasn’t even Thanksgiving and my 7-year-old had already spilled it. We were walking home from school with our 6-year-old neighbor’s 5-year-old brother, when all of a sudden he said: “Santa isn’t real.”

while there is some good advice What to Do When Your Child Doesn’t Believe AnymoreI Wasn’t Prepared For The Potential Social Effects Of Crushing My Daughter’s Hopes And Dreams other Children. So I asked Shoshana Fagen, a psychologist. Franciscan Childrenand psychotherapist and parenting coach Jess Beachofsky For some advice on what parents can do their The child is the one who tells others that there is no Santa.

Recruit Their Help—Or Leave the Story Altogether

At first both said, separate the talker. “It’s a good idea to sit down with your older child privately to have a conversation with them about your expectations,” says Fagan. Then, appeal to their ego. “Talk to the child about how smart they are,” Bechofsky says. “Sometimes, if you really want to keep the suspense of the story going, you can collude with the naysayer and buy them off to keep the trick. For a child to know the truth and the story colluding with adults to keep them alive can be fun,” she says.

Bichofsky also suggests transparency: “Explain why the story is important to the whole family, why you have continued to tell it, and how important it is to you that it continue for as long as possible (i.e., ‘Hints, Hints, Please don’ don’t tell your little brother!’)”

Be aware that your child may feel betrayed if you tell them that their principles are correct. “Kids can have a surprisingly complex sense that something super magical is a giant make-believe story that almost everyone is following,” says Bichofsky. So she suggests giving them space to express their feelings and let them know that you listen to their complaints.

“If you want to continue the Santa tradition in your family after a child has grown out of the faith, that’s fine. To continue. Just be aware that you both know it’s just about tradition now, says Fagan.

If Kids who are unexpectedly told the truth are upset, you have to make some choices. “The easiest solution is to get everyone on the same page about the story,” Beachofsky says, Which means you might have to give the magic a go before you can guess for your little ones. It may be sad but, as Fagan says, “It is always ok Letting go of any family traditions you’ve previously started. No tradition is a lifetime commitment.”

how to control Children that are not yours

Try to Avoid Talking About Santa Surely with children that are not yours, especially because “There may actually be some differences in their Santa story that has been passed down through the generations,” Fagan says. “whyYou don’t want to accidentally ruin part of their Santa story by mistake.

If it does come up, though, “say things that are as non-committal and vague as possible,” Beachofsky says, “Try to be thoughtful with your word choices. I would recommend against ‘we don’t believe in Santa here,‘ that tips it ain’t real, Versus ‘He doesn’t come to our house,‘ which is true but does not give the idea that it is made up.

For a direct line of questioning, says Beachofsky, if a child asks you point blank about the existence of Mr. Claus, say, “We can’t talk about politics, religion or Santa without a signed disclosure from your parents.” don’t.” The legal jargon may work for them, but if they stare at you very pointedly, you might as well say, “That’s a good question! I’m sure your mom would love to talk to you about this some more.” Will do,” she says.

If the children your child tells the story to are not your own, you must inform the parent of what happened—yYou don’t want similar conversations to cut short on their next playdate or family dinner. “For some, It is a huge loss and it really feels like their little ones are very close to being taken away. Beachofsky says,

if the other parent Get angry at you, don’t beat yourself up too much. “An apology may help with upset parents, but eventually all kids discover the truth behind Santa in different ways that are beyond your control,” Beachofsky says,

Growing up is all about little moments of clarity. Helping your kids move slowly and lovingly through these realizations is part of the gig, even if reaching these milestones is bittersweet.

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