Why I Want My Child to Stop Believing in Santa Claus

by Dina Roth Port

Why I Want My Child to Stop Believing in Santa Claus

No, I'm not a "bah humbug" type trying to take the joy out of Christmas. It's actually my favorite holiday! I just have a bunch of reasons why pulling off this whole "Santa Claus is real" farce every year is getting a little old.

I think this is probably the last year I'll have to do the whole Santa charade. My daughter figured out the truth a few years ago, but even though my son has been questioning the existence of Ol' Saint Nick for some time now, he still says he believes. So, why am I ready for him to learn the truth? Because, when my child stops believing:

  1. I won't have to wait up until the kids go to sleep on Christmas Eve before I sneak into the living room to quietly bring out the toys. That can be really nerve wracking…especially the times we purchased noisy (and annoying!) toys like Tickle Me Elmo and a Furby!
  2. I will finally get some credit for all those days (weeks! months!) I spend searching for the perfect gifts. Santa gets all of the glory but does none of the work.
  3. I can stop getting angry at the parents of my children's friends who tell their kids there's no such thing as Santa just because they don't celebrate Christmas—like their kids would keep that a secret. I also won't have to worry that my son will be teased by the non-believers for the fact that he does still believe.
  4. My son can just tell me what he wants for Christmas. Now, he tells Santa to bring him "surprises." That's no help! (Although, I am secretly flattered that my son has told me Santa always seems to get it right!)
  5. Every time we watch a movie where the characters say, "Santa's not real!" I won't have to launch into a whole explanation about how the character is confused or just trying to be funny. A lot of holiday movies do this! I'm kind of over having to lie all the time.
  6. I will finally be able to stop trying to come up with answers to my son's clever questions, such as, "How does Santa get into our house, since we don't have a chimney?," and "Why do we donate toys every year for poor children? Doesn't Santa bring them presents?" I know other parents get questions, like "Why doesn't Santa get incinerated whenhe comes down the chimney?" and "How is it possible that Santa can deliver all those presents around the world in one night?" And the questions get more difficult eachyear!
  7. I won't have to keep trying to find new hiding spots for the gifts, making sure I lock the door when I wrap them, and double-checking that every shred of said wrapping paper is carefully thrown out.
  8. I won't have to devour the freakin' Christmas cookies we leave for the fat man so it seems like he ate it. I mean, I know I could just throw them out, but that would be wasteful!

But um, well, truthfully? When my son stops believing, I'll be devastated! Sure, it will be easier when my son stops believing in Santa for all the reasons I just listed, but I really don't want him to. He's the youngest in my family, and honestly, once he stops believing, some of the magic of Christmas will be gone. I know that I'm going to blink and my son will be shaving, dating, and driving…and then off to college he goes! I want to hold onto this bit of childhood for as long as I can. I kind of wish I still believed in a world where Santa could exist, too!

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