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My Kids Have a Love-Hate Relationship With Santa

It seems like your child either loves Santa or hates him. My daughter, however, seems to have a mix of both.

Every year it’s a tradition of ours to take the kids to meet Santa. From her first Christmas my daughter LOVED Old St. Nick. She smiled when she met him and posed for pictures. Her love only grew through the years.

Her second Christmas, she met and took photos with Santa twice and wished for more. She couldn’t stop talking about him all year, and looked forward to sitting on his lap and telling him what she wanted.

Last year her brother was along for the experience too, but my son was not so happy about it.

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My daughter was so excited to be in front of Santa again, and she tried to help her brother calm down, but he wasn’t having it. The result however was a classic Santa photo.

This year my daughter once again was excited to greet the big guy in red, but once we approached she whispered to me, “Why is Santa small?” This Santa was on the skinnier side, and he wasn’t wearing his fluffy coat.

I was so shocked at her change of heart this year. She had loved Santa for so long and now she’s afraid of him.

“He has to eat more milk and cookies,” I told her. “He just isn’t wearing his coat.”

When Santa approached she got scared. She didn’t recognize him. And she refused to go near him. My poor child didn’t even want to sit on the couch. My son could care less about sitting for a photo. He would rather continue to run through the mall or get into stuff.

I grabbed a rocking horse from the side and plopped him on top. It was the perfect distraction for the photo. Santa snuck behind him and my little sister, who was excited to be there.

But my daughter clung to my husband like no tomorrow. I thought there was no way this year I’d get a Santa photo with her in it, but she surprised us all when she eventually sat down and smiled.

I was so shocked at her change of heart this year. She had loved Santa for so long and now she’s afraid of him. It’s an interesting love/hate relationship. I was so worried after this experience that the magic of Christmas wouldn’t be the same. I worried she now fears the guy who I thought she'd look forward to for at least the next three to four years.

Santa's the guy I anticipated year after year, and I can’t bear to think her innocence and belief in Christmas magic can be ending before it even had a chance to fully flourish.

The next night we went and saw another Santa at a race. Again, she wanted nothing to do with him, but her brother walked up and sat on his lap by himself.

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The following day I had a video message sent from Santa, and finally, we had a phone and Skype call from Jolly Old St. Nick. So… Maybe I went a little overboard. But it seems now she’s into him again.

Her letters to Santa have picked back up, and she asks to call the North Pole. Good thing, because I need a few more years to enjoy this. I want her memories of the magic of Christmas and Santa to be just as exciting as I remember mine.

Does your child love or hate Santa?

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