Photos of the anonymous mum’s Christmas tree have been circulating on social media, showing it wrapped up with cellophane with an ‘Elf On The Shelf’ sat on top.
Elsie the elf has written a note to her kids, that reads: “Christmas is cancelled for now.
“If you want me to keep visiting, a Santa visit, your tree back and your presents back, your behaviour needs to improve.”
The letter continued: “Santa is very angry and I’m disappointed. Be good and say sorry to mum.
“You all have one week to improve. I’m watching.”
The mother is from Queensland, Australia according to a local Australian Facebook page that shared the photo and wrote: “What do you think?”
Some commenters were not impressed.
“This makes the joy of unconditional receiving and giving of gifts conditional,” wrote one. “These are children.”
Another added: “This takes the joy out of Christmas. All kids misbehave, you shouldn’t ruin it for them.”
However other people thought the mum’s idea was a great way to ensure children behave throughout December.
“I say well done. Its great to see a parent in control,” one wrote. “You do what you have to do, what the kiddies will respond to.”
Another commented: “It’s their choice and I bet you’d have to be at your wits end to do something like that. Personally I would own it, not give credit to the elf or Santa.”
A third person added: “These lucky modern kids got given an opportunity to redeem themselves before the cut-off date. I think us parents are getting soft just like our kids.”
It’s their choice and I bet you’d have to be at your wits end to do something like that."
Previously speaking to HuffPost UK, Dr Rachel Andrew, a consultant clinical psychologist specialising in children and family, and director of Time Psychology, said we shouldn’t instil the idea in kids that they need to behave in order to get presents.
Speaking in relation to children behaving in front of ‘Santa Cams’, she said: “Unfortunately, this concept usually 1) is set up in such a vague way that children do not know what we are asking of them, 2) goes on for far too long in order for it to be attainable, and 3) is unenforceable - I have never met a family who have kept all their children’s presents from them.
“If parents use it, they may undermine their own attempts at other times of the year to manage their children’s behaviour.
“Ultimately, parents relying on Santa to manage behaviour may be disappointed that it doesn’t yield any long-term results and that any short-term results seen are based on fear.”
What do you think? It’s it fair to threaten to cancel Christmas? Let us know in the comments below.