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Borderline Believers
To hear some of your friends say there is no Santa Claus can be one of the first defining moments in any child’s life. Out of the blue the child is forced to question the existence of Santa and choose whether or not he or she wants to continue to believe. Such a choice is difficult because, while no one wants to be looked at as naive by their friends, saying good-bye to someone you love is difficult for anyone to do, especially a child.

In the past Santa has told such potential non-believers that it’s OK if children don’t believe in him, he believes in them and he’ll always be there for them – whether they believe in him or not.

Santa as a Constant
In our rapidly changing world, fewer and fewer traditions are being passed
down from generation to generation. However, the story of Santa Claus
continues to be told and retold, and Santa not only spans generations, he
transcends cultures.

For a child trying to cope with change, knowing there is someone out there
who wants to be your friend and wants you to be happy can be a very
comforting thing.

Children Dealing with Loss
Divorce and death touch children in ways psychologists are only now
beginning to understand. And while they are remarkable in their ability to
adapt, children need to know some things will be there when they need
them most – things like Santa Claus.

Should this be a year in which your child suffered the trauma of divorce or
the devastating loss of a family member, a call from Santa can help
reassure them that things will get better soon and that as lonely, afraid and
sad as they may feel, Santa Claus is right there with them.

Teach a Child to Give
Very often children are overwhelmed with presents from loving parents and zealous grandparents. And while such giving is always done out of love, receiving so many gifts can often make a child believe that Christmas more about gifts than giving.

When Santa 1-on-1 calls, Santa will offer your child a gentle reminder of the importance of both giving and receiving. And when an asked-for toy can’t be found, Santa will soften the blow by confiding that since your child is so grown up – and Santa knew they would understand – Santa decided to give his last toy of that kind to a much poorer child who asked for the same thing.



Illustration: Jennifer Kalis        
Copyright 2003 M.C. Antil