I Survived “The Talk” With My Son

Well, the time finally came. I had to have the “S-word” talk  with our 8 year old. No, not the sex talk…The Santa talk. It became painfully obvious to me last year that he didn’t believe anymore. But I thought if we could just make it through the holiday without him blurting it out to his younger brother and sister, we’d be able to let it go for one more year. So how did that year pass so fast?

A few weeks ago it was just the two of us cleaning up his room. At our house it seems so rare to get alone time with any of my kids, so I knew the timing was right. I took a deep breath and carefully broached the subject. We both tip-toed around for a bit…and finally with a smile he said, “Mom, I’ve known since I was like, 5.” (Ouch!) But I wasn’t surprised. So we talked about it.

I told him how when I was his age my mom took me to Pizza Hut and it seemed like a great time to tell her that I didn’t believe anymore…and how I cried because I didn’t want her to be mad at me…and how she made me go have my picture taken with the big guy that very afternoon…one last time. I told him about the year my brother and I found all of our presents hidden away before Christmas, already wrapped and taped with (then new) magic tape…and how we ever-so-cleverly opened every single gift to get a sneak peak…and how we ever-so-cleverly taped each one back together when we were done…and how we didn’t anticipate that the tape would eventually lose it’s stickiness…and how when my mom went to get them to put them under the tree they had all “popped” back open…and how we were SO busted.

We also talked about how I still believe in the spirit of Santa. He was confused. So the only way I could think to explain it was to compare it to Disney magic. When you go to Disney World you know that magic isn’t real. But you chose to let yourself believe in it anyway because it makes it all so much more fun. That’s how I feel about Santa. He totally got it! (Score one for mom.)

Ben swore up and down to me that he hadn’t ruined it for his 6 year old brother (although HE’S starting to drop hints that he’s in on the secret too…double ouch!). He said he’d act excited so he wouldn’t ruin it for his 4 year old sister. And I promised him one extra present if he kept the secret. At the very end of our conversation he asked, “So…where do you hide all the presents?”  As if, kid…as if.

And just like that, it’s the end of an era in our house. We will never again have 3 kids who fall asleep listening for Santa’s sleigh on Christmas Eve. We will be lucky if we get another 4 years of wonder and belief out of our youngest. We will never have all 3 kids wake up on Christmas morning and run to see if Santa ate the cookies. Such is the life of a mom of little kids. You spend all your time making sure they have everything they need to grow up right….and then when they grow up, it hits you like a ton of bricks. It really is bittersweet. But I’m so thankful it’s light on the bitter and heavy on the sweet. These really are the days…


  1. in tears of sweetness…so true…all of it..and hilarious he asked where they were hidden πŸ™‚ smart boy!

  2. Oh he sounds like such a clever boy!! Definitely bittersweet!

  3. Oh Shame! That is quite sweet!!!

    Popping in from SITS & SprOutza. Have a wonderful day being featured!

    Take Care!

  4. Ahhhh… those days! Still have one believer in the family – three over the hill, so to speak. πŸ™‚

    Stopping by from SITS. Hope it’s a great day!

  5. Beautifully written, Marie. I love your take on life, although I’m a little anxious about leaving a comment after reading your previous entry about the flu. Y’all are better, right? I’m not gonna catch the flu, am I? Then again, if I do get sick, I wouldn’t have to cook dinner so…WIN! Nice to meet you from SITS! πŸ™‚

  6. Happy SITS Day! Aww..at least your youngest two still believe! I think it is funny that he asked where the presents were!

  7. Really great post. I feel I’m going to have the talk soon with my ten year old πŸ™

    Happy SITS Day to you!

  8. Congrats on your SITS day! Enjoy the limelight. What a cute story about the “S” talk with your son. Have a merry Christmas!

  9. Happy SITs day! This was a great story. Being the second youngest in my family we haven’t had the Santa magic in quite some time. But reading this makes me yearn for the day when “Santa” is back in my life. Following you on GFC!


  10. Happy SITS Day! I loved reading this. I think you handled this very well. I’m so not ready for the day I have to have the “S” talk with my boys.

  11. Happy SITS Day! πŸ™‚ I am glad your talk went well, and hopefully you will have more time than you realize with your youngest. Sometimes older siblings who know the whole story can draw the time out for the younger, making things grander and more special, rather than the other way around. You never know. πŸ™‚

  12. What an awesome article! Hope you have a fantastic SITS day!

  13. My kids are 14-22 so it’s been a long time since we’ve had any believers in our house. On the plus side, we get credit for all the cool presents now.

    Happy SITS day. I hope it’s a great day for you.

  14. I love this post…and your blog! πŸ™‚ Hope you have a very happy SITS day!

  15. Happy SITS day! I love your blog design

  16. I remember not believing in Santa since I was very little because I had older siblings too. But the joy of Christmas was still there every year even when we knew Santa was our parents. I think you did great with “the talk”. Happy SITS day πŸ™‚

  17. Gotta remember that “Disney magic” line. You’re so right about these being the days, so print out these posts, commit them to memory- puberty ::shudder:: will be there sooner than you think.

    Here from the SITS girls- BB2U

  18. You’re a great mom! You handled that perfectly and your son will have a nice story to share with his kids, like you did. My daughter is 6 and I am hoping we have a few more years, but some kids in school have already started to spill the beans πŸ™

  19. I can only imagine. My little guy is 2 and I am already having a hard time that he is no longer a baby! Happy SITS Day!

    • Well the good part about him being 2 is that he’s finally old enough to “get it”…so enjoy the heck out of the next few years! They pass quickly.

  20. My husband and I have talked about this a lot. Whether we’d even let Santa into the house and then how we’d handle it. But it came into the house all on its own. I can’t remember ever believing but I pretended because the grownups found it so charming πŸ˜‰

    Happy SITS Day!

  21. My three year old just found “Pop the Pig” in my office, unwrapped. I told him santa sent me an email that it was coming early and saving it til Xmas. sheesh. Happy SITS Day!

  22. Love this post and your blog. Happy SITS day to you.

  23. I love this! I am also, REALLY scared to have this talk with my kiddo. Who is four. Happy SITS day, I look forward to more posts from you! πŸ˜€

  24. Awww…I do like your approach about the spirit of Santa πŸ™‚

  25. Oh, I love this. As a not-yet-mommy, this is just a beautiful glimpse into motherhood. I think you approached this perfectly with your son and I love that explained the spirit of Christmas and Santa. Score one to you for sure πŸ™‚

    Stopping by from SITS. Wishing you a very happy and healthy holiday season!

  26. Awww, that was both sad and sweet, I’m so glad your son was honest with you and is going to help keep the holiday spirit alive for the younger siblings! What a great big brother! He must have an awesome mom! πŸ˜€ Happy SITS day!

  27. Dropping by late from SITS…love your blog. And don’t worry about the Santa thing, now you have a helper.

  28. LOL ..my kids never quite forgave me for dropping the “S” bomb..apparently because I also de-flowered the tooth fairy at the same time.

    TracyAnn of http://www.crochethappy.com and http://asktracyann.crochethappy.com

  29. Happy SITS day! I’m absolutely loving this post b/c I don’t hear much from moms having THAT talk w/ their kids. And he wanted to know the secret hiding place …hhmmm. So, there’s still mystery left. πŸ™‚

  30. Happy SITS day! Great post. Glad it went over well! My kids are 11 and 8 and I am guessing my oldest isn’t a believer anymore. I know my 8 year old definitely still believes. However, I haven’t had any talks with my oldest and don’t know if I’m going to. My parents never sat me down. We all willfully just played along into adulthood because me and my siblings were so far apart in age (the same is true for my own kids…have one more along the way!). I have to admit, even though I knew the truth, it was still exciting to see what was in my stocking as a teenager!

  31. Happy belated SITS day! My kids are 17, 22 and 26 and I make the oldest ones stay at the house so Santa can come. They have no choice until I get grandkids. LOL

    I’m having a PINTEREST Social hop. I’d love for you to hop on over, grab a button and link up your Pinterest. If you don’t have Pinterest it’s ok, come link up your blog.


    Denyse @ Crazy Beautiful Life

    I’m also looking for Pinterest Pinners to feature every week beginning in January. If you are on Pinterest and are interested in being featured come link up! Who knows you might meet some other great pinners and gain a few great ideas.


  32. Aw,crap! I was fine until I got to the last paragraph, now I’m crying a little bit. We are dangerously close to the end of an era in our house too. It won’t be the same, but here’s to creating new traditions! Love your blog!


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