Austin, who is 9, and in Grade 4, still believes in Santa. My husband and I discussed it, and as much as we did not want to demolish the magic of Santa, we were concerned that Austin would get bullied if he started talking about Santa with his classmates. We contacted Austin's Psychologist and she thought it would be best to tell him ourselves than his peers and have a really terrible experience. It is disheartening enough, who needs teasing and laughing added to the mix. I also approached some other parents that have children on the spectrum and got some advice about how they told their children. It was very helpful and very close to what Austin's therapist suggested.
We told Austin we needed to speak to him about something (Kaleigh was asleep at the time), we asked him about Santa and what he thought and if the other kids in his class talked about Santa at all. He replied that they did not. I went on and explained about St. Nicholas and tried that route. Telling Austin that we all carry on his spirit of giving at Christmas and that Santa is well, you know, not real. We explained that he was now part of a secret club and must not say anything to Kaleigh or any other children since they are too young to be part of the secret club of St. Nick yet. I told Austin he could even help me on Christmas Eve, like an elf! He seemed to be very excited about all of this, but I was not sure why he was taking this news so well. After talking to him, I asked if he was upset or disappointed and he said he was a bit upset, I apologized and he said he was fine. I asked him at the end of the conversation, "So what do you know about Santa?" He replied "That the REAL one lives in the North Pole!" Oh my! After all that explaining, he would have none of it. He still believes in Santa. I decided not to take it any further. Let him sit with the information and see what he figures out or starts to question.
This was not an easy decision to make, I did not want to have to tell Austin about Santa but I figured by this time, he would already know since most children his age do. I am not about to push the subject and he said he would not discuss Santa at school with his classmates or other children. I feel, I tried my best and right now, it is better not to push the issue.
All the best! *HUGS*