SPOILER alert: Santa isn’t real. But did you learn the truth in the most traumatising way possible? Find out:
Playgrounds are teeming with rumours. Some, like the one where if you step on a crack in the pavement you’ll break your dad’s back, are clearly bullshit. Others, like the one about year six teacher Mr Bishop hooking up with the secretary, are based in grim fact. Santa not existing belongs in the latter category, as you found out when the tough kids laughingly told you.
A vindictive sibling
The ultimate betrayal. A member of your own family – your own flesh and blood – gleefully shattered your youthful innocence, all because you went into their bedroom without asking permission. You bided your time and finally got your revenge years later when you ‘accidentally’ let slip to your parents that they smoked weed.
Your parents sat you down and told you
In their defence you were 12. You’d long stopped believing in the tooth fairy and the Easter bunny, and it was time to put a bullet in the idea of Santa too. Plus maintaining the pretence was no longer financially viable. Incidentally, this was also the first time they floated the idea of you getting a paper round and starting to buy your own shit.
A bungling grandparent
You were the perfect age for this accidental revelation to leave permanent emotional damage. But how was your loving granddad supposed to know that the Tomy train set he proudly told you he paid for was meant to be from Santa? He barely knows what day it is half the time, let alone that he’s covering for a fictional character. It’s time you got over this one.
A bastard teacher
This one hurts because there was intent behind it. Your maths teacher Mr Hobbs never liked you, and he exacted petty revenge by gleefully revealing the truth about Santa during a lesson about long division. You’re having the last laugh though because you’re an adult now and you’re not doomed to the life of a maths teacher. Unless you are, in which case sorry.
Your own detective work
This is the most traumatically horrifying way of learning Santa isn’t real because you only have yourself to blame. Yes, your doubts about his existence were warranted, but upon finding all the presents under your parents’ bed you had to process your discovery by yourself. Plus you came across lots of weird magazines and underwear while rummaging around. If anything they f**ked you up even more.