Instructables

How to break it to your kids that Santa Claus isn't real

Picture of How to break it to your kids that Santa Claus isn't real
That's it. You're tired of sneaking around the house to hide the presents, telling your child that No, those aren't squirrels in the attic, it's Santa on the roof!, eating the carrots left out for Rudolph (okay, so maybe you still enjoy those cookies for Santa..) and holding your breath every time your kid uses the internet. It's time to let them know the truth. That Santa is fake. A myth. A story. A fraud. Nothing special. Here's how.
 
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Step 1: Method 1: Straight out

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"Listen, Bobby...there's no such thing as Santa Claus. He's not real."
Okay, maybe not the best solution, as it will inevitably end up with crying, shouting, tantrums, a sudden urge for chocolate--er..maybe that's just me. But if it's been long enough, maybe little Bobby will just take it with stride. Reassure Bobby that he is still, in fact, going to receive presents. Once his short attention span takes him back to the television, you are free to sigh with relief.

Step 2: Method 2: The Round-about Way

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This is where older siblings come in handy. You just get them to do it! Most likely they won't even need bribing for a chance to break their little brother/sister's dreams. This way, you won't have to break it to poor little Bobby. But sadly, you most likely will have to deal with Bobby's whining and complaining afterwards.

Step 3: Method 3: Use Santa

Picture of Method 3: Use Santa
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That's right. Use Santa. And by that, I mean, write a letter. From Santa. Muster up your best Santa handwriting (does that exist?) and write a letter explaining to dear Bobby that Santa has just gotten too old and fat to deliver presents anymore, and therefore he will be sending the presents through his parents. Genius, right? Don't forget to mention in a post-script that its a secret, so don't tell anybody! unless you want Bobby to confuse his classmates. And then you can enjoy angry phone calls from irate parents! Whee!

(Okay, so obviously the letters in the pictures don't say what you should write on them. But look! They're signed by Santa!)
But recently my sister opened a drawer and found our elf on the shelf. Whoops. That lead to questions and me screaming "THATS WHERE HES BEEN HIDING!"
All these little kids commenting that Santa is real. Ah, the good old days. I'm only 13 and I'm Santa now! I have to help my mom wrap my sister's presents and fill stockings. It is still super exciting though.
MonkiMan8 months ago
just let them grow up and come to the conclusion on their own.
brenna112343512 months ago
If you don't believe, you won't receive.
brenna112343512 months ago
SANTA IS REAL
I can't believe santa is not real! are you sure? I better go ask my parents about this! =)
Santa Claus (from Sinterklass, AKA Saint Nicholas), was a real person.  He was born in the 3rd century in Patara, which was a part of Greece at the time.  Therefor, not a myth.  He was known throughout that land for his generosity to those in need and his kindness to children.  Unless you have some information that he intended to mislead or defraud others by his words or actions when he lived, then logically he was also not a fraud.  As to his being a fake, I suppose that would depend on how you view saints in general.  If you believe that the belief in saints is false, and as such all saints are fakes, I suppose you are within your rights.

But "nothing special"?  I would disagree.  Even if one doesn't believe in saints as being any different than anyone else, still I would say that a person that is generous and kind is always special.  But again, that may be considered a matter of opinion.

I don't know precise figures, but a large percentage of the planet's population is Christian.  About a third, I think?  And over half of those are either Catholic or Greek Orthodox, and I know those have St. Nicholas as a member of good standing in their lists of saints.  I think that'd be around 2 billion people or so?  But the belief in saints in general is not limited to the Christian faith and may also be found in Hindu, Buddhist and Muslim sects, to name just a few.  While those religions might not specifically recognise Nicholas, they have significant numbers of people who believe in the existence of saints in general. 

I almost didn't post on this matter here, since I have noted that religious or "supernatural" ideas are frequently not well received.  But there are some facts to consider and one of those facts is that a great many people around the world *do* believe in saints.  Part of that belief is that the spirits of those people called saints continue to try and help and/or inspire the living.  It is not simply an honorific title used to designate a person they thought did well when alive. 

In any case, I would say that a better answer might be to tell the child as much of the history as they can understand and explain that a considerable number of people do believe that St. Nicholas is real.  How much more than that you explain would depend on how much research you are willing to do and how comfortable you are discussing religious beliefs (that you perhaps don't subscribe to) with your child.  You could discuss what you and the child are comfortable with at the time, and let them enjoy some of the pleasant (if perhaps overly commercial at times) fictional additions to St Nicholas while they may.  As they grow older and understand more, then tell them more or show them how to research the topic for themselves.

So far as being tired of hiding presents and eating the occasional carrot or cookie, well I certainly hope that someone went to that bother for you (at least when you were small) so you could have the fun of it.  I also hope that you enjoy your children having fun at least enough to make a bit of a similar effort for them.

Even discounting all "supernatural elements", the story of a person who was generous and kind can inspire people to find it in themselves to be more generous to those in need and kind to others. 

I am 48 yrs old.  I have 4 children, ranging from 10 yrs old to 28.  What I have told here has been my answer to all of them on the topic of Santa Claus.  I am not Catholic or Greek Orthodox and for that matter don't consider myself a Christian.  But as you may have deduced from my post, I do believe in Santa Claus.

Daniel
 
teslafan1004 years ago
SANTA IS REAL IT ALL A LIE!!!DON'T LISTEN TO THIS INSTRUCTABLES!! LIES! ITS A LIE SANTA IS REAL!!!!
mason01904 years ago
umm... im 11 and now im sad :*(
T to the R to the O to the double L
monsoon0203 (author)  mason01904 years ago
Don't be! I made this ible as a joke (SANTA IS REAL!)
kooplah4 years ago
When I was about 5, I thought I heard bells on the roof (it was probably someone walking home from the pub and dropping all their change). I went downstairs to find my mum and dad with some rolls of wrapping paper, tags, tape etc. It wasn't until I was 7 or 8 I actually realised what that little scene meant ¬_¬
mrmath4 years ago
When I was too young to be told, I asked my Mom why Santa's handwriting was exactly like hers.  Every year after that, all our Santa gifts were wrapped in the one style of paper, and we'd know what was ours by our stockings.  When I was about 17, my Mom bought gift tags.  I found them, and cut them all in half.  She was not happy.

Now that I'm a Dad, I do the paper thing with my kids.  I'm not sure if the 11 year old knows yet or not.  I don't want to ask, but I think she's ready to know....
monsoon0203 (author)  mrmath4 years ago
Haha, thanks for sharing your story! I guess your mom forgot to disguise her handwriting as Santa!
Maybe you could ask your daughter what she wants from Santa this year and fancy it up, adding stories on how Santa will be expecting his cookies and how Rudolph wants celery rather than carrots this year. If she goes along with it, she believes. If she says "Cut the crap, dad. I want this and this and this from this page on this catalogue..." then you know.
trust me she probably knows by now,i knew from discovery by 6
All right Mr know-it-all,
If Santa does not exist, then why does SAC NORAD track him going around the world each December 24th?  Not to mention that most military installations with any kind of air field track him as well.  

Now how can you tell me he isn't real?

http://www.noradsanta.org/
monsoon0203 (author)  atombomb19454 years ago
You could read this: http://attrition.org/misc/humor/xmas-proof.html

(but I still think he's real!)
Pazzerz4 years ago
My step daughter was told by her dad that Santa doesn't exist.  It really tore her up.  Best advise:  Let them grow out of it and figure it out for themselves.  Its part of the magic of growing up, so don't take it away from them before they're ready to move on.  Sometimes I still want to believe.
monsoon0203 (author)  Pazzerz4 years ago
I agree. I think deep down all of us want to still believe in the things we did when we were little. This instructable is for those who need a little help breaking it to their kids, for example if they are being bullied at school for still believing in Santa. Thanks for the advice!
l8nite4 years ago
What do you mean Santa isn't real ? I partied with the man 2 years ago !
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monsoon0203 (author)  l8nite4 years ago
Wow! I guess since you have proof of Santa, that this ible is totally useless now!
Ward_Nox l8nite4 years ago
dude you could be his younger brother Hippie Claus LOL
caitlinsdad4 years ago
Dear monsoon0203,

The Santa we visit every year at the mall is quite real.  And seems to follow us around to the different shopping malls we go to.  I think he chain smokes on his break, reeks of alcohol if you get close enough, seems in need of a better dental plan and the prices he charges for pictures seems to go up every year.  Please do not pass on bad information.

Thanks,
   The Management.
Dear caitlinsdad,

       Why do you write your comments in the form of letters?

  Sincerely,
      mason0190
Don't tell me I just wasted 2 thirty-four cent First Class stamps( I didn't have a new stamp and forgot what the postage is now) and there is no miracle on 34th Street so my letter will never reach the North Pole?

*sob*
monsoon0203 (author)  caitlinsdad4 years ago
Actually, volunteers in North Pole, Alaska return all letters to Santa. So there's hope!
Ward_Nox4 years ago
But most importanly if your not ready do do this MAKE DAMN SURE your kids don't see this Ible
Feanaro4 years ago

Goodness.  Why not let your kids stay kids and enjoy the magic of Santa until they figure it out or outgrow the idea?  I'm 23 and I still want to believe.

rc jedi4 years ago
You mean.......he's not? aw crud!
I've been good all this time for nothing!
Kiteman4 years ago
Our boys worked it out for themselves, but we don't know when.

We suddenly realised that they knew when their "letters to Santa" started including catalogue page numbers and the names of local stockists.

Actually, I don't think the youngest has ever believed in Santa, but, you know what? I still wait up until stupid-o-clock on Christmas Eve so that I can sneak a bulging stocking to the foot of each bed.
I learned early when I heard my Dad knock over the tree and ran out (I'm a very light sleeper).  Before that, we used to stay up "all night" by the tree just for fun - I think Santa's only saving grace was our inability to stay awake past midnight.  Ahh, Christmas traditions!
Jayefuu Kiteman4 years ago
He he. I'm 21 and when I go home to my parent's each Christmas my dad still hangs a stocking on each of our doors really really late. Will let you know if I get a 21st one :D
I found out through the Easter bunny,actually.My dad hid the basket in the top shelf of the house,and my mom yelled at him for hiding it in a hard spot "He's only five,John!!! oops ummm,I didnt say that...... I figured santa was the same thing
Sunbanks4 years ago
I cried when my mom told me that Santa wasn't real... And I guess since I didn't  take it very well she told my dad that he was going to have to explain the birds  and the bees to me. I'm not sure how I can remember that, but now that I think of it that whole situation was kind of funny...