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.”

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“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


  • What a stupid concept, I would never do that.


  • Couldn’t do it. They would see on television. Someone would say something for sure. Let them have the joy of Christmas, Eve and all.


  • But then they miss out on the fun of putting out carrots and santa sacks etc :(


  • This mum is the Grinch! I’ve never had any trouble with my kids not sleeping because they are excited about something, maybe she should examine their routine and see if that is the problem.


  • Interesting. Are you going to lock them up in the lead-up so nobody else explains Christmas Eve. I love the Christmas Eve tradition of watching Carols by Candlelight and preparing for Christmas Day. I can’t imagine ever keeping that from my child. Before you know it, they’ll be teenagers and won’t care. An early wake-up, that’s normal and expected for everyone… until they’re older and you have to wake them up. I’m a bit sad for this Mum that she wants to miss out on all of this.


  • I’d never do this to my kids. It was always a magical time of putting out the carrots for the reindeer and the cookies and milk for Santa. Don’t take this away from them but it’s ultimately your choice. Don’t think it will work though. Kids are too smart for us anyway


  • While sleep is important I don’t think Christmas Eve excitement is the first thing that should go.. think all year round good quality sleep and you’ll be on the right track for ingraining habits that are far healthier than making sure they miss out on one night of the year. New Year was always a bigger problem in my mind with so many parties where kids were FORCED to stay up simply because the parents were getting together….


  • Not a possibility in our home because we celebrate Christmas Eve too! Nah, that will take away from the magic of Christmas.


  • That is just plain selfish if you ask me! You cannot take that experience away from children!


  • I would not think about doing this as Christmas Eve is magical and special and many churches (well my hubbies anyway) has a special service dedicated to the children on Christmas Eve.


  • But how can you do that? Everybody will be talking about Christmas! Television, friends… The moment you go out of the house you will see Christmas everywhere. And I agree… kids love waiting for Christmas!

    • They do indeed! They may lose sleeping time on Christmas Eve; but they sleep on Christmas night when they are exhausted from eating food and playing with toys.


  • This seems so sad! Christmas is such a magical time; especially for children. The anticipation and excitement is infectious and joyous! Surely they would know unless they live remotely and are isolated.


  • That’s impossible ! A 5 and 6 year old go to school, they know it’s Xmas holiday, they hear it in the shops, from they friends and family, from tv, everywhere.
    And my kids always have slept like roses, also in Xmas Eve.


  • ITs a fun and an exciting time of the year she should tell them of course


  • I couldn’t do it. Good luck to her, I don’t know if it’s possible with all the attention Christmas gets, but she can try.
    Honestly I grew up loving Christmas. As an adult I still love it, because to me it’s a bit of fun, a lot of joy and family. I have tried to instill that same excitement into my daughter and will do with no2 as she gets older. I think it worked, as soon as decos came out on the shelves, she excitedly jumped up and down yelling “Christmas”.


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