My son is afraid of Santa Claus
December 8, 2015  |  Written by M. Rodrigo Brao

Going to visit Santa this Christmas will be mission impossible. Just the notion of having to sit on the lap of the man with the white beard and red suit and hand him a letter, makes your son cry and plead for you to take him in your arms. While you thought it was a good idea, let´s face it, your son is afraid of Santa Claus! So, what can we do to help him overcome this situation? Keep reading. Here, at The Toy Blog, you´ll find out.

Why is my son afraid of Santa Claus?

The first thing we must understand is that being afraid of a stranger is something totally normal in a child. Fear is an emotion that is linked to our instinct for survival.  And your son´s logical reaction to this is crying and looking for protection because it´s easier for him to do this than express what he´s feeling with words.

We should try to put ourselves in his shoes. What your son sees is a heavyweight man, dressed in a red suit with a long white beard that practically covers his entire face. Wouldn’t you feel afraid too?

What to do if your son cries in front of Santa Claus?

Just stay calm and try transmitting love and security to your child. Speak to him and make sure he understands that you know how he feels.


As parents we must know that fear is an emotion that protects us and we shouldn’t deny it or label it as being something bad. Instead of saying something like: “It´s alright. It´s just Santa Claus!” try this: “I understand you are afraid because you haven’t met Santa Claus yet but he´s a good man and won´t hurt you. Besides, mom and dad are with you so nothing bad will happen. “

It´s also important to reduce the anxiety our child is feeling. Don´t force him to do anything he doesn’t want to do. You can try a few times by stepping up first and if he is still crying you can say: “If you don’t want to sit on Santa Claus´ lap, that´s fine. Next year you´ll be older and you wont feel scared.” Your child will feel at ease because you understand him and aren´t mad.

How to help kids overcome fear

Fear in children is actually positive if we understand it as a natural way of defending themselves from real or potential danger. It´s part of their development. When they experience fear, they learn to be careful and stay next to their parents or caregivers.

In any case, just like we´ve suggested in other articles such as Afraid of Monsters, how to deal with them this Halloween or Overcoming their fear of the doctor, the best remedy for fear is patience and love. Try cultivating a little empathy and please do not minimize his emotions. What your son is looking for is understanding. Little by little, he´ll overcome his fears, don´t worry. It´s just a matter of time.

Is your son afraid of Santa Claus? How do you keep hi calm?

Photo Credits: Shutterstock

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