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View Full Version : When your kids finally discovered that there were real people under the costumes.....


Roo's Kanga
02-11-2008, 08:25 PM
How did they find out? Did someone tell them or did they realize it on their own?

What was their reaction?

How old were they?

PiperPizzaz
02-11-2008, 08:39 PM
Costumes? What costumes???

MickeyLover20
02-11-2008, 08:47 PM
Mickey is real...I don't know what you mean :)

becca011906
02-11-2008, 08:51 PM
arrgggg i just had to go in a few weeks before chirstmas to have a talk with dd2 teacher about reall and not real.... they were talking about facts and fictions books, and explaining what's real and what's not ect... well one child piped up and says well princesses aren't real... and my dd says " well cinderella is real, i talked to her, and saw her castel home..." she came home upset over it... so i told the teacher that she's not to tell my dd about stuff like that, would she tell her class that santa wasn't real 2 weeks before christmas... no what the heck is the differance then... oh my ticked me off!

Charleston Princess
02-11-2008, 08:53 PM
My kids have always known (older cousin :)), but I will tell you that it has never made a difference -- DS still lights up when he sees Pluto, Mickey, or Stitch.

BabyPiglet
02-11-2008, 08:53 PM
Real people? I'm not following. :confused3 Mickey is as real as they come.

:)

fairestoneofall
02-11-2008, 08:59 PM
I have no idea what you're talking about.

I always tell my kids that if you believe in your heart that something is real, then it is real to you. ;) And that is really all that matters.

mickeysgirl17
02-11-2008, 09:19 PM
I'm completely clueless to what you guys are talking about! :confused3


:rotfl: No, actually, my DD4 is already asking me about the characters. I always tell her that the ones at Disney World are the real characters and that they live there, but if she see's scary characters on TV, I tell her those are fake so I'm pretty sure she's a little confused, but I don't want to ruin the magic. She's still way too young. She was even asking about Santa this past December after my neice mentioned something to her. Kids these days.........:sad2:

mikamah
02-11-2008, 09:25 PM
We went when my son was 5 and the characters were so real to him it was amazing. We were at a pancake breakfast shortly after our wdw trip and they had some characters- spongebob and others, and when we left, he said to me, "spongebob wasn't a real character, I saw his zipper."

I hope they stay real to him for many more years.

momsoftwins
02-11-2008, 09:27 PM
i over heard one of my girls (4) tell her twin that they are customes..i was crushed. dont u just love baby monitors. well i am not goin to bring it up to them .just let it slide like i never heard a word

PrincessTigerLily
02-11-2008, 09:37 PM
We've been back about 2 weeks from our last trip. DD6 asked me about half an hour ago, "Do you think those are people in costumes or are they real?" I asked her what she thought, and she said, "I think they are real." And I told her that they looked real to me too. I remember at a young age like this asking my parents if Santa is real, and really believing he was real, and wanting my parents to tell me he was real, and that wasn't what I got. And I was heartbroken!

My co worker on the other hand, whoo-eee! Her daughter was in about third or fourth grade when she figured out they were costumes. She went on a total bender, accusing her parents of betraying her, the whole nine yards. It was apparently quite a rocky week!

sunsprinkle24
02-11-2008, 09:48 PM
my little girl (6) came home after school a couple of weeks after our October trip and said one of the girls at school told her the characters were in costume. She asked me if it was true, and I said, what do you think? She said she thought they were the real characters so I let her think it....they're only little once. Maybe it was a good idea to do that, maybe not. But I couldn't spoil the magic. :sad1:

Mom2Evie
02-11-2008, 09:54 PM
arrgggg i just had to go in a few weeks before chirstmas to have a talk with dd2 teacher about reall and not real.... they were talking about facts and fictions books, and explaining what's real and what's not ect... well one child piped up and says well princesses aren't real... and my dd says " well cinderella is real, i talked to her, and saw her castel home..." she came home upset over it... so i told the teacher that she's not to tell my dd about stuff like that, would she tell her class that santa wasn't real 2 weeks before christmas... no what the heck is the differance then... oh my ticked me off!

Almost the exact same thing happened to my daughter. Her first grade class was talking about real vs. fantasy. Someone in the class said that Cinderella wasn't real. My daughter argued with them & was apparently very animated about it. At one point, she even went over the table after the boy before the teacher got to her. Evie was adamant that Cinderella was real because she's met her, taken pictures with her and even eaten at the castle. The teacher solved the problem by telling everyone that certainly the cartoon character in the movie wasn't real but she was drawn. They all agreed to that & let it go.

That was back in the fall and recently she asked me if I knew that the princesses were just peope dressed up. I told he that I knoew no such thing and as far as I knew princesses were real. I pointed out several occassions where princesses had "known" things about her, been able to answer ANY question she had about princesses, etc. I think maybe it helped extend the magic a bit. Hopefully she'll still believe this time next year when we make our next trip down to the happiest place on earth.

5 for WDW
02-11-2008, 10:04 PM
DD 4 knows they are real. Princesses, Mickey..all of them. princess: I don't see her thinking otherwise for awhile.

DS' are 10 and 8. They know the deal but, still believe in the Magic of it all. When they are there, Mickey is Mickey.

Sysyphus
02-11-2008, 11:52 PM
With just over 2 weeks to go DD5 confided in me that she knew that the princesses were "just girls in costumes, not like the real characters" ... not sure what to think after wearing out my redial button getting a CRT ADR :/

disneyjunkie
02-12-2008, 05:43 AM
How did they find out? Did someone tell them or did they realize it on their own?

What was their reaction?

How old were they?


I don't see how any child that understands Halloween and playing dress up wouldn't realize the characters aren't real.:confused3

My niece had just turned 5 when her family joined my son and I on their first WDW trip. She LOVED the characters (NOT the princesses), but knew that they weren't real.

Iím sure most kids know the truth. However, knowing the truth doesnít diminish the magic and joy they feel when they see/interact with the characters.

fairestoneofall
02-12-2008, 07:36 AM
I just wanted to add that DD 6 believes that the non-face characters are humans dressing up. However, she believes that the face characters are truly real.

DS 3 still believes.

My MIL is the one who spoiled Santa and the Tooth Fairy for DD. Let's just say that I was none too happy about that and let her know. :mad:

disgram
02-12-2008, 07:38 AM
My twin granddaughters are 11 years old now, and whether they belive or not, they do not want to spoil things for their Gram!!!:rotfl: Actually, they are the ones that choose where we will eat, and they always pick the resturants with characters, Crystal Palace, LTT, and the Princess Breakfast in Norway! This year, they are adding the Garden Grill, after reading my Passporter and UG and saw that Chip and Dale are there!!:lmao:

goofydad621
02-12-2008, 07:41 AM
That is just wrong

And dont' I mean Don't even start in on Santa or the Easter bunny

Atchley
02-12-2008, 07:43 AM
My DD and DS have always known that the characters are actually costumes, but I don't think that it made it any less special for them. They still are very excited to see the characters and still get autographs. I don't think characters ever lose their appeal. Even for adults.

Manda
02-12-2008, 08:07 AM
I don't see how any child that understands Halloween and playing dress up wouldn't realize the characters aren't real.:confused3

That's pretty much how it's been at our house. DS seems to have always just understood that the characters are people wearing costumes - just like Halloween. I never told him one way or another. He just used common sense, I guess.

kimluvswdw
02-12-2008, 08:14 AM
My kids never really cared about the characters. They have picures with all of them, but now they don't ask to see them anymore.

Anne's Family
02-12-2008, 08:25 AM
I had to tell my kids before we ever left for our first trip. They were already scared of the characters at Six Flags. They were 5 and 7 at the time. It took us about 3 days into the vacation at WDW before they would approach any of them for pictures. Now, they just pretend they're real!

kakiegirl
02-12-2008, 08:36 AM
My dd is 8 and I think she summed it up perfectly last year. We were at MK with friends and she was talking about how excited she was to go to AK the next day and meet Stitch. She had a Stitch hat (like Mickey ears), a stuffed Stitch and a Stitch Tatoo on her arm, she wanted to show him she was his #1fan. Well my friends little boy told her you know he is not real just someone in a costume. They fuss alot so I thought that would really set her off, but she just looked at him and smiled and said "he is real to me". One of our reasons we love Disney so much is it is the one place we have found were we can go as a family and escape reality for a few days. I don't think DD even stops to consider if they are the characters or people in costume she just loves the magic.

drewswife
02-12-2008, 09:07 AM
In my 10 year old DD's head she knows they are real people - but in heart it is the real Mickey. She still wonders how is is in his tent and at Chef Mickeys. Or When we were in DL (when she was 8) she wondered How could he be there when he lives in Florida (We told wher we were very lucky to catch him on vacation).

I still get a special feeling hugging Pooh even though I know it is just a guy in a costume. At that moment I believe it is Pooh

ekball
02-12-2008, 09:17 AM
We are going through something similar with DD 4...

She has been looking through our pictures and noticing that the princesses don't always look the same - i.e. she had her picture taked with 2 different Cinderellas, 2 different Jasmines, 2 different Snow Whites, etc. She can see that they look different, and that they look different from the characters in the books or movies. :-( I was bummed that she was picking up on this already. I thought we'd get at least one more trip in before she started figuring out that these may not be the REAL princesses. ;)

:guilty:

rotlex
02-12-2008, 09:20 AM
My general response would be exactly what I was told when i asked about Santa a LONG time ago:

He is real for as long as you believe in him, and as long as you want him to be. That's what makes him as special as he is.

Same goes for Disney characters and princesses! :goodvibes

DisneyLandMan
02-12-2008, 09:29 AM
My kids have always known (older cousin :)), but I will tell you that it has never made a difference -- DS still lights up when he sees Pluto, Mickey, or Stitch.

im a 25 year old grown man and i STILL light up when i see mickey, tigger or chip and dale

aimeeg
02-12-2008, 10:14 AM
I have a pretty cool story about this . . . I will try to make it short.

Last June DH and I took our girls 3 and 11 months to WDW for the first time. DH had been when he was younger but it was more of an inconvience for his parents. KWIM I went before I could remember. I honestly think I have never been so excited about anything ever!

So a couple days into our trip we had breakfast at the castle. Our ressies were right at 8:00. I skipped down mainstreet with my DD in her gown. We met Cinderella and heading upstairs. Well all of a sudden music starts playing and all the princesses come out to see us. My DD's face light up and just for a moment I forgot that it was not "real." Honestly for about a minute I felt like I was five years old. It is the best WDW memory I could ever ask for.

DD is going to be 4 in March. She truly believes she is a princess. So help me God if anyone ever tells her the truth!

abeyst
02-12-2008, 10:20 AM
My Mother started the non-believing for DD5, as we were watching the video from our last trip of MVMCP. It was the "Twas the Night Before Christmas" show, and I made a comment about how well they can dance and move considering.... and I didn't finish my sentence. But my mom sure did! "Yeah, with the big Minnie head that girl has to wear!" I whipped her a dirty look, and it took her a second to realize what she did. DD didn't say anything and hasn't said anything ever about them, but I have a feeling she probably already knows but doesn't want to say anything.

2 years ago DS was 7 and we were playing duck, duck goose with Mickey and Pluto in Fantasyland. DS says "Pluto's not real, I can see his zipper!" I told him it wasn't a zipper, and he most certainly IS real. He never brought it up again.

Both my kids probably know the truth, but are probably afraid to say anything to me for fear of hurting my feelings because they think that I think they're real (since that's what I always tell them)!!

karajeboo
02-12-2008, 10:38 AM
We're going through this now with DD7 - last time we went she had just turned 5 and everything was real for her. We were really nervous about her reactions, because she was terrified of Chuck E Cheese (literally would hide under the table), but she promised us she wouldn't be afraid of Mickey "because he's real and Chuck E Cheese is just a man in a costume." Don't know how she separated them but it worked!

Now we're going through the whole Santa thing. Darn those big mouth kids on the bus!!! I blame their parents for not teaching them to not discuss it once they "know." I remember my mother having that conversation with me. But DD argued back because Santa actually stopped by our house this year on Christmas Eve to deliver a new puppy in person, before he headed out to deliver presents to the rest of the world. So, yes, Santa is still real, and so are the princesses. Not so sure about Mickey and the gang though!

TxMickeyLover
02-12-2008, 10:38 AM
I don't have children yet, but I know for me personally, I still feel like the characters are real. Of course, I know in my head they are really people in costumes. But when I'm in the park, fantasy seems to take over, and they become real to me. Heck, isn't that what Disney is for?:goodvibes

Of course, I still believe in Santa.....:santa:

PoohsFan1
02-12-2008, 10:53 AM
We went when my son was 5 and the characters were so real to him it was amazing. We were at a pancake breakfast shortly after our wdw trip and they had some characters- spongebob and others, and when we left, he said to me, "spongebob wasn't a real character, I saw his zipper."

I hope they stay real to him for many more years.

The same thing happened to us. My kids (and of course I do too) believe that all characters at Disney are real. However, we went to our State Fair over the summer and they had a guy dressed up as Mickey Mouse...very scarry looking one to add...and my dd4 said that he wasn't real because only the real Mickey Mouse lives in Disney World. Good for her!!!:goodvibes

PiperPizzaz
02-12-2008, 11:17 AM
Ok, I give. ;)

Actually I don't remember EVER thinking they were real. I think that is why I didn't care for them as a child. It seemed very odd to me. Now I like them and have conversations with them. I 'know' it is some college kid under there but, I still get excited when I get our photo taken with Chip N Dale. :goodvibes So, I guess they are more real to me now that I am older, ha ha.

I plan on not saying anything to son one way or the other.

tigerdragon
02-12-2008, 12:43 PM
Our last trip was in March 2007 when my DS was 6. He was very excited to meet as many characters as he could. He never said anything about them being people in costumes during the trip. When we got home we were looking through the pictures he said "Mom, I know they are just people in costumes, but I like seeing them anyway". He's still excited about meeting characters again in November and even has a goal to fill up his autograph book. He does still believe in Santa and the Easter Bunny, although he is asking a lot of questions about them. I think this might be our last year for Santa to be "real".

livie1205
02-12-2008, 01:11 PM
my ds knows..he is 10 but my dd27 months would be heartbroken if she knew... as a matter of fact something really sweet happened today...I was at the mall with dd and the salesgirl at the store I was in noticed my babys mickey crocs and asked id she had been to wdw...I said YES she loves the place and aura was her #1 and the girl said she worked at wdw when she was not in school and I asked her what she did...she said in a really low voice so my dd could not hear (even though she is so young) "she is good friends with aura (it was her, she played aura) it was so sweet we got to meet a princess and we were not even at wdw!

sharona
02-12-2008, 03:04 PM
my little girl (6) came home after school a couple of weeks after our October trip and said one of the girls at school told her the characters were in costume. She asked me if it was true, and I said, what do you think? She said she thought they were the real characters so I let her think it....they're only little once. Maybe it was a good idea to do that, maybe not. But I couldn't spoil the magic. :sad1:

I had the identical conversation last night with my just turned 5yo daughter. We had been talking about our upcoming trip (3/5). She was telling me what she was going to ask Goofy. I gave her a heads up that the characters don't talk except the princesses. She asked if the other characters are real and I said what do you think? and she said yes. Then she said "they're just on mute".

disney[xo]sweetie
02-12-2008, 03:13 PM
WHAT?!?! MY GOD THERE ARE PEOPLE UNDER THERE!
:eek: :eek: :eek: :eek: :eek:
WHAT HAS THIS WORLD BECOME!

kidding.
my dd6's know that its not really winnie the pooh under there.
its his alter-ego, pooh bear.

jfap
02-12-2008, 03:14 PM
im a 25 year old grown man and i STILL light up when i see mickey, tigger or chip and dale

I'm a 59 year old woman and I still light up when i see Capt. Jack!!!!!!!!!
arrrrrrr pirate:

MouseyMin
02-12-2008, 06:07 PM
When my nephew was 4 years old, I took him to see "Mickey's Twas the Night Before Christmas" Show at the Magic Kingdom. I'll never forget his reaction during one famous scene - "Wow, Goofy's wearing a Santa Claus costume"!!!! P.S. Goofy was real, of course.

dopeyfanatic
02-12-2008, 07:22 PM
My kids know they're people under there, but they still like them. I think my kids were too smart to pass by them the fact that the character were WAY too big for real life, and if they can talk in the cartoons, why can they not talk in the park? It's never bothered us, and I LOVE seeing the characters and getting pictures taken. It's still fun! IMO I'm not going to freak out over when they find out the truth because they will at some point, and how do you decide if it's better to do it sooner or later? You can't, you never know how they'll react.

Charleston Princess
02-12-2008, 07:51 PM
im a 25 year old grown man and i STILL light up when i see mickey, tigger or chip and dale

That's true -- when my SIL and I met Aladdin a couple of years ago, we acted like a couple of teenage girl groupies! ;)

bookgirl2632
02-12-2008, 08:21 PM
Wait! Where are the people?! Costumes?!

disneytraceyl
02-12-2008, 08:25 PM
My daughter started asking questions last year. She is in first grade. They were learning about fiction and nonfiction. She came home and asked about the characters. She was so sad and yes this made me upset. She so believed in them. She was always excited to see them. I just let her know that it is what you believe in your heart. It will be interesting on this next trip. I do not know how she is going to react. I will be excited to see the mickey and minnie. That was a sad day.

La2kw
02-12-2008, 08:34 PM
Mine never really believed they were real characters. They also never believed in the face characters either. They said they did not look the same.

mickey chickie
02-13-2008, 01:24 PM
My older daughter was 9 when she "told" ME about Mickey not being real. She was very solemn because she hated breaking the news to me (she thought I still believed...and I do!). She said, "Mom, I don't think Mickey Mouse is real." I asked why she didn't think so and she replied, "I just don't think God would make a mouse that big!"

Next Trip 7/08 !!!!

MarksMom2006
02-13-2008, 01:26 PM
I don't get the joke. :confused3 ...what do you mean that there are people under the "costumes"

strmtroopr96
02-13-2008, 01:33 PM
My 8 year old DD hasn't said anything about the characters not being real yet but has asked about Santa, etc. I asked her if she believed in Santa (kids at school we saying things) and said that I did which made her feel better and said that she did too! :goodvibes

To me, Mickey is Mickey, Donald is Donald, etc. even though when I worked at WDW I would see characters and princesses backstage in various stages of dress (or smoking or whatever on breaks :scared1: ). I still believe in the magic and I hope that my girls do for a long time too! :wizard:

I was disturbed at seeing the back and neck of whoever was Chip or Dale at the Garden Grill in September. Their costume and head weren't attached and you could clearly see the back of their head. For that time, it bothered me and I was glad that my oldest DD wasn't with me. I wasn't sure if I should have said anything to a CM so that they could fix it or not but didn't. :confused3

dreams4disney
02-13-2008, 01:49 PM
Just last night we where all watching TV and a Disney Commercial came on and the first thing my 5 year old did was whispered in my ear " The are only in costumes right?":sad2: I think I scared him when I gasped and said they are not costumes who told you that. I felt really bad because he was upset. I think it was because I gasped so loud. I didn't mean to upset him.:guilty: I was shocked that he said that. My other children didn't say anything to him. They all like to enjoy the magic.

Ana~n~Joseph
02-13-2008, 02:04 PM
I'm 24 without children but to me, when I step into Disney World, Mickey is Mickey and Cinderella is Cinderella. I love that about Disney !

PrincessJasmine1972
02-13-2008, 11:05 PM
:scared1: You mean they aren't real?!

Seriously.. I don't have children, and even though I KNOW in the back of my mind they are in costume, I was blind to all of that when I went to WDW for the first time last September. And I shall continue to be blind to it.. I got my first hug from Mickey, posed with Pooh and friends, met Minnie, Goofy, Chip n Dale and Pluto.. even Figment! They were all real to me.. Disney magic lives on!

Lovin' Lorne
02-13-2008, 11:32 PM
I still get a special feeling hugging Pooh even though I know it is just a guy in a costume. At that moment I believe it is Pooh

LOL! Me too.

We just got back from a trip where we saw Stitch over at EPCOT. Now I love me some Stitch, and there wasn't a line, so I tell hubby to get the camera ready and off I go. Now keep in mind that I'm 43! I get to Stitch and even though part of my brain is saying "kid in a costume" I still get all tingly when he gives me a great big hug. (which hubby didn't get, btw. :mad: ) I give him a great big hug back and tell him "You're my favorite!" 43 people! :rotfl:

Funny thing is, as a kid I honestly don't remember ever going up to any of them for pictures. Maybe once or twice, but I have no idea if I ever thought they were real or not. I know I certainly don't think they are now though.

Except for Stitch of course. ;)

minmate
02-13-2008, 11:44 PM
I am not exactly sure *how* my kids figured it out but the first inkling I got was when they noticed the size of feet on Perla and Suzy mice at 1900 Park Fare... my older two dd's were 5 and 6 at the time and were talking about that. Then a few days later that same trip my dd5 (at the time) said to dd6 (at the time), "He's not really Mickey Mouse, but we should still be nice to him because he thinks he's Mickey Mouse."
I pretended not to hear. It did kind of make me feel bad but my kids are super observant and I'm pretty sure that they figured out the princesses don't necessarily look the same from one trip's pictures to the next. They definitely play along with it though and even though they "know" they are "characters" they enjoy them for the magic that they are.

My oldest dd, now 9, struggled all Christmas season to ask me if Santa was real. She'd try to bring up the question and stop herself mid-sentence... as if she wasn't sure she really wanted to know. Thankfully I picked up on it so I could prepare myself. I believe in the magic that characters and tradition and storytelling can create but I don't want to flat-out lie to her and eventually have her discover the truth only to feel foolish for trusting me. Christmas Eve she took me aside and asked me so I explained the true story/legend of St. Nick and how Santa is based on that. I was sooo mad when my parents told me the truth I was so full of anguish to endure the same hurt in my dd's eyes, but she was surpisingly fine with it. I also told her that as long as she keeps it to herself (if her sibs start asking questions she should say I don't know why don't you go ask mom, etc. -- I still have a 5, 6 and 8 yo and think 5 is pretty young to lose Santa) -- I would let her play Santa with me. She LOVED, LOVED, LOVED that! And even still, there were some family gifts from Santa that she didn't set out and she didn't know what we got her so she still had plenty of magic on Christmas Day... but for her, this year, the chance to play Santa was the most magical, mischeivous memory for her... and despite the typical scuffles with her sibs since then, she's protected the tradition of Santa.

I do think each child handles this kind of thing differently depending on their personality but this has been what's worked best for my kids. I won't lie to them but I don't really broach the topic... for the most part I think they believe in Disney, they are "characters" and that means there are people bringing those characters to life -- but the quality of the costumes and the interaction and the overall theming at the parks lends itself to being open to the characters as "real".

Philadisney
02-14-2008, 09:37 AM
I don't have kids, but I still clearly remember when I figured it out! I was in WDW with my parents for my 6th birthday, and I saw my very first character - I think it was Goofy. I ran up to say hello, and the moment I realized he couldn't talk - he was just gesturing towards me and bouncing around - I thought "Oh, that's not the real Goofy, it's a person in a costume." It made perfect sense to me and I wasn't bothered by it :upsidedow

momof2dizkids
03-27-2008, 07:40 PM
What!! There are ''costumes''? To me, when I enter any one of the four parks, the only person in a costume is,(hmm. let me think), NOBODY! Mickey is Mickey::MickeyMo and Tigger is Tigger. :tigger:

melancholywings
04-11-2008, 06:22 PM
We are in a difficult moment with DD now 7. She believes they are real, so much so that she tells me when she grows up she's going to be a new Disney Princess and DH and I are going to go with her and take the same potion the princesses do....she believes they take a magic potion to stay young and pretty. She feels so strongly about all this that I don't have the heart to tell her otherwise :confused3