When my six-year-old recently came home from her first week of Year One and announced (standing beside her four-year-old sister) that the Tooth Fairy wasn’t real, my heart sank.
“The Tooth Fairy is really just you and Dad,” she stated, as if it was a matter of fact (BTW yes, I know it is).
I asked her why she thought this. “A kid at school,” she replied. I won’t write what I muttered under my breath about that kid who tried to ruin the Tooth Fairy for a six-year-old, but needless to say I was not impressed.
Now don’t get me wrong, I understand that the truth about the Tooth Fairy, Santa and the Easter Bunny will be discovered at some point. I am aware this will most likely be found out in the same way the Tooth Fairy’s identity was exposed to my daughter. But this soon?
When I was a kid (and yes maybe I was foolish) I still believed nearly all the way through primary school. Truth be told, I think I also still secretly hoped they were partly real for a few years after. For me, it was about the feeling, the magic, the way you couldn’t explain these ‘helpers’ by logic. The simple fact was it made me happy and excited.
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One of the greatest things about having children is experiencing this sense of joy again, even if it is through the eyes of someone else. It makes Christmas have that extra shine and Easter that extra hop. It even makes the event of losing a tooth become one with sparkle. I love it. My children love it. I wanted it to stay that way. At least for a few more years.
Many child psychologists say that discovering the truth about our favourite magical helpers is normal and healthy. It shows your child is moving through the process from magical to logical thinking.
Aside from this, it brings up questions around children being able to trust their parents and whether or not honestly is always the best policy. While I agree this for 99 per cent of things to do with parenting, on this issue, I fall within the one percent.
I am choosing to ignore these professionals and I am going to say six and four are too young not to believe. Although logic is beneficial in many respects, logic about the Tooth Fairy at these ages isn’t a priority, at least for my children.
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