Support and Advice from TNPC's Parenting Experts

To tell or not tell about Santa, that is a question for many parents at this time of year. According to development experts, many of your child’s beliefs will be generally determined by what their age allows them to believe.

• Up to the age of two and a half, Santa is a formidable character who is often feared by a child.

• Three year olds, however, begin to understand Santa and find him real and interesting. Surely if grandma can live in Arizona, then Santa can live at the North Pole.

• By four years of age, you will have a true believer.

• But by the time a child is six, it’s a mixed bag of doubts and conflicts with an emotional desire to believe. It’s hard to get passed year six or seven at the most and have the myth still in tact.

Sometimes, it’s the parents who don’t want to let go of Santa when children start to question his existence. But don’t try to trick your child into believing. When your child starts asking if Santa is real, the best answer is “well, what do you think?”

And when the time comes for child to let go, be grateful if you still have a younger child who believes, so the older one can join in the conspiracy of the magic of Santa Claus.

Vicki Lansky’s practical, common sense approach to parenting is familiar to millions throughout the world. Vicki’s first book, Feed Me, I’m Yours, published in 1974, and still one of the most popular baby/toddler food cookbooks in the country, was followed by The Taming of the C.A.N.D.Y. Monster, a #1 New York Times bestseller. Her other titles include: Toilet Training, Birthday Parties Best Party Tips & Ideas For Ages 1-8, Dear Babysitter Handbook, Welcoming Your Second Baby, Getting Your Child to Sleep … and Back to Sleep, Trouble-free Travel with Children, Baby Proofing Basics and Games Babies Play From Birth to Twelve Months, Koko Bear’s New Potty, A New Baby at Koko Bear’s House, Koko Bear and the New Babysitter, and Koko Bear’s Big Earache. Vicki Lansky’s Divorce Book for Parents: Helping Children Cope with Divorce and Its Aftermath


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