Tips for Talking to Your Kids About Santa
It’s a conversation many parents fear: how to talk to your kids about Santa Claus.
While Christmas is a joyous time filled with love, kindness, and magic, the topic of who Santa is and how he works can be difficult. Of course, as parents we don’t want to say the wrong thing.
Santa’Ville has solutions. We are the Christmas pros, after all!
Keep the magic of the season alive with the follow tips and tricks for talking about Santa.
The Most Common Question and How to Answer
Is Santa Claus real?
Inevitably, your child will come home from school one day and share that somebody told them Santa isn’t real. This can be very upsetting. Kids who grew up sitting on Santa’s lap at the mall, writing him letters each winter, and watching Christmas movies featuring jolly old Kris Kringle are suddenly faced with an existential dilemma.
“Is Santa fake?” they wonder.
“Was I believing a lie?”
As parents, we need to remember that all families will have a different approach on how best to answer these questions, based on their own unique situation. However, there’s really no 100% incorrect answer, so long as you are treating your child with gentle compassion and giving age-appropriate information.
When it’s finally time to have “the Santa talk,” here are some helpful ideas from Santa’Ville:
Acknowledge their feelings
Your child probably feels confused, sad, or perhaps even a bit angry. That’s okay. Remember that their emotions are valid. Say something like, “I know you have lots of questions, and I am happy you told me how you feel. Do you want to talk about it?”
This opens the door for a more in-depth conversation. Your child might say yes or no, depending on how seriously they are grappling with the issue. The key is to acknowledge their feelings first.
Explain that everyone has different beliefs
Next, share with your child that it’s important to respect others’ beliefs. This can also be a great time to talk about different holidays and ways of celebrating. Even saying something simple like, “Some children believe in Santa Claus and others don’t” can be enough for very young children to understand.
Santa is the spirit of Christmas
Now, for older kids and those who are beginning to really question the existence of Santa, we need to elaborate. One idea is to differentiate between two types of Santa.
You can explain how one concept of Santa Claus is a man who lives in the North Pole and flies in a sleigh pulled by reindeer. That’s the imaginary version we all know and love! But as we get older, we begin to realize that this type of Santa is more of a story used to encourage kindness, generosity, and holiday cheer. This is the spirit of Christmas. Tell your kids that both ways of thinking about Santa are okay.
Shhh…it’s a secret
Finally, let your children in on the secret. Just because their relationship with Santa has changed, doesn’t mean that he doesn’t still exist for other people. Younger siblings want to believe. So will some of your child’s friends. Explain that because they know the truth, they can now be special helpers who keep the Christmas magic alive. Older kids can participate by stuffing stocking, shopping for presents, and doing other things that “Santa” normally does.
Follow these tips from Santa’Ville for a smooth conversation.
And if your little one still believes, be sure to check out our blog titled How to Write a Letter to Santa Claus.
We wish your family a Merry Christmas!