Photo by: Katie
Everybody eventually outgrows the phase of childhood in which they believe that Santa comes to their home on Christmas Eve and puts their presents under the tree. Well, at least hopefully everybody does. Most people can’t remember why or at exactly what age they stopped believing in the big, fat, jolly man, but most people say that they just kind of realized that it isn’t possible for Santa to exist. There are many reasons to why children become non-believers, and the age in which the disbelief occurs is about the same for most.
Who is Santa?
Santa has evolved as a figure over time, viewed differently in many countries and cultures. Our culture ties Santa in with Christmas and it would be weird to think of Christmas without Santa. Basically the story is that Santa comes on Christmas Eve and gives presents to children that have been good all year. You can click here to find out more about the history of Santa.
The Christmas tree (as pictured below) has become a symbol of Santa Claus for he puts presents under the Christmas tree. Anyway, Christmas, the stories about Santa, gift giving, decorating the Christmas tree and many more have all become important economic, moral and traditional aspects of the Holiday season.
Photo by: Stanley
My personal story of when and why my disbelief began:
Well, I remember that as a child when I was in about 4th or 5th Grade one of my cousins told me that Santa was not real. So of Coarse I believed them. But even before my cousin told me I was catching on to the idea that Santa was a myth. First, I wondered why the handwriting on the tags of my presents from Santa matched the handwriting on the tags of the presents from my parents. So good job on that one mom and dad.
Second, I recall my parents asking me what I would like to receive for Christmas and then receiving some of those items from Santa, like how could he have known what I told my parents? Third, Santa apparently lands his sleigh on the roofs of houses and then enters them through a chimney or door, well I wondered why there wasn’t ever reindeer tracks or sleigh marks in the snow.
Fourth, I wondered how Santa could eat milk and cookies from every single house in the world in one night and not die. Fifth, my parents often told me that Santa had little “helpers” around disguised as stuffed animals or toys or whatever else. These so called “helpers” were to tell Santa if I was being a good Child or a bad child to determine if I was to get presents or not, it just became obvious to me over time that this wasn’t true. This relates to the whole idea that Santa is always watching to see if you’re being a good child or not. There were many other reasons I’m sure, but these are some that I could remember.
Why most People say they most likely stopped believing in Santa:
A lot of people I have asked say that they don’t remember why they stopped believing in Santa, but the following are reasons why some people say they stopped believing. First, other people they knew stopped believing in Santa, so they just stopped believing and followed what other people around their age did.
Second, like I mentioned earlier, the idea that Santa Clause could travel to every single house in the world, all in one night, just became unbelievable over time. Third, children tend to ask many questions when they are curious about something. So some whom I asked said that they became suspicious when they asked their parents or other people about Santa, and they were given faulty answers that were far from believable, even to a child.
Fourth, some said they realized that it wasn’t possible for magical, enchanted reindeer to fly Santa around the whole world. Also, that it would be totally impossible for Santa’s Sleigh to hold multiple gifts for every single child in the whole world. Some also said that they realized Santa is just an imaginative character who was made up to make children act good throughout the year. Over all, most people whom I asked said they kind of just figured it out, or somebody told them that Santa was non existent.
About what age people say they stopped believing in Santa:
Most people whom I asked said that they most likely stopped believing in Santa Claus some time around the end of elementary school. I don’t exactly know when I stopped believing either, but I know that it was towards the end of elementary school. Nobody really knows when they exactly stopped believing but it’s usually around that time.
What can we conclude about all of this?
Basically most Children are able to put the pieces together and figure out that Santa Claus is fictional along with other people their ages, based on things that they hear and observations they make.
Also remember to never tell someone who still believes in Santa that he is not real, and keep the tradition going. Check out this website to see how to keep children believing in Santa.