I Told My Kid That Santa Isn't Real But She Refuses to Believe It

Last year my kid turned 10 and I sat her down and ruined the mythology of Santa. She responded by basically covering her ears and humming loudly La La La I can't hear youuuuu. She is now 11, and as my "baby" I feel like she is old enough to know exactly who is stuffing her stocking and wrapping all those presents, but she wants to keep the dream of the man in the red suit alive.

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I may be ready for her to stop believing in reindeer, elves and Santa, but she is in no way ready to give up the magic of Christmas.

Playing Santa year after year is hard. Hiding all the gifts, making sure you leave out milk and cookies, not being able to dump the presents you painstakingly wrapped under the tree before the 24th. It's a lot of work. I discovered the truth of Santa when I was about 10 and it didn't ruin anything for me, all it did was make me appreciate all the hard work my parents did over the years making the holidays as magical as possible for me and my siblings. I accepted the truth and went on my merry way. But I guess part of parenting is realizing that our kids are different than how we were, and if my kid wants to keep believing who am I to take that away from her?

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I asked her why she still wants to believe and she said it's because it "makes it more special." I can agree that there is something to your kids still believing in Santa. Considering in a few years she will want makeup and cell phones and be too busy swooning over boys to believe that a jolly man in a red suit brings her presents because she has been nice will probably make me nostalgic for this time. And what does Santa really mean anyway? It means love, it means the spirit of giving, it means magic and family and behaving extra nicely to those around you in hopes you will find what you really want under the tree. I can believe in all that too. 

We all know our kids grow up way too fast, and the mythologies of childhood are cast away with stuffed animals and dolls and believing your parents are the most perfect people on earth. I'm going to let my kid believe in all these things, and Santa, for as long as she wants to. 

 

Image via © Tammy Hanratty/Corbis 

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