When do People Stop Believing in Santa Claus?


A monumental time in any child’s life is the day they stop believing in Santa Claus. These memories often involve crying at the time but cause a good laugh later on in life. According to a survey of 4,500 families, conducted by House Method, most children in the United States stop believing in Santa Claus around 8.4-years-old.

As Christmas approaches, students of Elkins High School begin to share their stories of how exactly their views of Christmas magic were altered.

A Junior at Elkins High School, Kenzie Phillips can’t help but laugh at her experience. “I think I stopped believing in Santa in fifth grade. It was Easter, and when I opened my basket, I saw that all of the stuff in it was already stuff I knew we had.” Phillips recalls. “So I asked my mother about it CONSTANTLY and wouldn’t leave her alone,” she laughs. “After a while of irritating her, she told me that the Easter bunny wasn’t real… and neither was Santa.”

One hilarious account comes from Willow Storey.

“I took a time-lapse video on an iPod my dad got me for Christmas, and my family forgot to delete the video off of my iPod after they stopped it. When I woke up I looked at the video and found out that Santa wasn’t real.”

Willow adds that her parents tried to convince her that they were “just helping Santa eat the cookies”, which she didn’t believe one bit.

Other stories are more typical, including wrapping paper discoveries, older siblings, and friends at school. However, the Christmas spirit is not entirely lost. Cole Shreve, Zane George, and Caleb McVicker all claim to still believe in Santa. So, everyone can sleep peacefully at night knowing that Buddy the Elf isn’t alone in powering Santa’s sleigh this year.