Explaining her decision on online parenting forum Mumsnet, the mum says she won’t be telling her young children it’s Christmas Eve to prevent them getting too excited and being unable to sleep.

“I have this idea, that for this year we won’t tell DC’s [Dear Children] it’s Christmas Eve,” the mum of two writes.

“We don’t do Christmas Eve boxes and they are usually disinterested in their advent calendars by mid-December so don’t really countdown as such.”

She says her children are aged five and six and she’s thinking of keeping the news it is Christmas Eve from them so they get a good night’s sleep. She then plans to wake them up early the next day and announce it is Christmas Day.

“I’m thinking that waking them up early and telling them it’s Christmas morning will be a far bigger and exciting surprise,” she explains.

“Would I be unreasonable or mean for doing this,” she asks.

“I think it’s the only year we’d get away with it. We don’t have any plans for Christmas Eve except a fairly quiet day with just us at home. Friends I’ve briefly discussed this with seem a bit off with it.”

Most parents on the forum disagreed with her decision

“I wouldn’t,” said one . “The build-up is so exciting for children, don’t take that away from them.”

“Waiting for Santa is half the fun,” says another. “I think it seems a bit mean.”

“Don’t you put out milk and biscuits for Santa and a carrot for the reindeer, or track Santa online, watch a Christmas movie or read the night before Christmas,” says one mum.

“It’s not something I would miss out on but if you don’t do anything at all then why not?”

“You can’t do that,” says another. “When I was a kid I was so excited for Christmas Eve. Trying to stay awake to see Santa, the excitement of the next day, don’t take that away from them just so they get a good night sleep.”

“Kids aren’t kids for long, let them enjoy the build-up and don’t suck the fun out of it.”

How could it even be possible?

Our question is how could you even do it?

One – it really is all part of the build up and excitement of Christmas.

But two – you would literally need to stay home for at least 2 or 3 days before hand to avoid all the excitement. PLUS turn your TV and radio off, as it is constantly splashed around media and in the shops for the lead up to Christmas day.

Could you do this to your children?

Share your comments below


  • Guess it depends on the age of children and also each parent knows their own child best and the decision is up to them.


  • I know a 3 y.o. who has been counting generally (not the days to Christmas) for a few months.
    It didn’t take her long to work it out on her own last year. Had she been given all the things she asked for counting down to Christmas they would have just about filled an exercise book. Initially her Mum started a list out of interest but gave up. She did the same for other special family occasions too. One little girl with big ideas beyond her age


  • Christmas should be on the calendar underlined in red and green. For all of the young children, it’s a day for them to look forward to and be excited about. By simply telling your kids the white lie that Santa won’t come unless they’re asleep will do the job just fine (in my experience) from keeping them awake too late. I say; let the kids bake the cookies, set out the milk and enjoy the excitement of getting presents in the morning!


  • I personally wouldn’t do it the excitement Christmas Eve is so cute it would be mean to take that away from them


  • My daughter is the absolute anti grinch and she was asleep so fast the night before. I wouldn’t do it personally


  • It will be hard to follow this through as every one in the shops or in the community talks about it. Or would you keep them away from that as well ?
    My youngest is 6yrs old and has Down Syndrome. She doesn’t have clue what Santa or Xmas means nor does she understand yesterday or tomorrow; she lives in the now. For her there is no build up and I don’t feel she misses out on anything :)


  • They are all christmas traditions, I dont know why you wouldnt want your children to experience that


  • I wouldn’t want to do this it’s part of christmas


  • I would love to meet anyone who manages to do this, I think it would be really hard unless they are pretty small babies


  • this is a good read


  • I love the excitement leasing up to Christmas so I couldn’t do it to my kids


  • I don’t see the big deal. We don’t do Santa at all. Our kids get presents from us and their relatives. We don’t have a tree and we don’t tell our kids it’s Christmas the next day


  • I think it is a bit cruel.


  • Great idea, we instill too much excitement in children and wonder why they have trouble sleeping.


  • I wouldnt do this myself but each to their own. Good luck to her.


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