The Elf on the Shelf is a popular Christmas tradition, but it can also be a source of stress and anxiety for parents. Some people believe that throwing away the Elf on the Shelf is “ruining Christmas,” while others believe that it is a necessary step to protect their children’s mental health.

An internet user asked, Am I a jerk for throwing away the elf on the shelf and “ruining Christmas” for my kids after my husband’s prank? Here’s the full story for you to conclude. 


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For context, this year was the first time OP would try the “elf on the shelf” with her kids. They have 3 kids, Lucas (9M), Andy (8M), and Claire (5F). Where Lucas and Andy are from their past relationships. However, Miles (OP’s husband M37) has accepted Andy as his, and so did she (F35) with Lucas.

Christmas & Andy

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Every Christmas is special for Andy, his birthday is on Dec/24. His dad started a tradition where Santa would’ve consideration with him for being a “kid of Christmas”. So he feels magical and special. OP always tries to give him that. Last year, OP left “Santa Claus” footsteps, and ate a carrot and “grass” he left for Rudolf. Stuff like that.

OP’s husband doesn’t think it’s a good idea she does all that for him, and she’s showing favoritism. So, they should shut it down, because of OP’s ex’s decision to create a tradition without considering her other kid’s feelings. 

What Was “Elf On The Shelf” All About?

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OP disagrees since she does consider the 3 of them. But he asked if they could do something else, like the Elf on the shelf. OP had no problem with it, but she didn’t know how that works. He explained to her quickly, and since he was the one who offered, OP let him do it.

They Bought The Cute Elf

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They bought the cute Elf. Their kids named it “Bob”. Later OP’s husband explained to them they should behave, and never touch/hold Bob if they don’t want it to be naughty. 

OP says, “At first, it was cute to see them spy on Bob, try to see it “fly” each night. Andy was the most excited of all, I found him one night talking with it, asking if Santa still remembered him.”

Behave Or Bob Would Be Naughty!

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But OP’s husband took the “Behave or Bob would be naughty” part seriously. Lucas was his first victim after he didn’t do his chores. The next day, his face was drawn with Sharpie markers. Then Claire, who touched Bob and her fave onesie was destroyed.

Bob had cut some pieces of it, while she was sleeping. Miles was having fun, but OP could see her kids weren’t. OP talked to him about how they should lower the pranks, he agreed but wanted to catch Andy since he hadn’t broken any rules. OP told him that Bob’s supposed to tell Santa instead of being naughty. They argued but OP’s husband finally agreed.

Christmas Eve Is Here, Finally 

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Fast forward, it’s Christmas Eve and in the afternoon they had some of Andy’s friends to celebrate his birthday. So the kids were playing in the backyard. But OP’s husband looked suspicious. OP decided to look for Bob. It was supposed to be in the kitchen but it wasn’t there, she asked Miles where it was and he told her “no idea”. 

OP started getting paranoid, but Andy asked her if they could cut the cake already. 

The Cake Disaster 

smashed cake
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OP put her best face on and went for it. The cake was in a box, and when Andy opened the box. He starts crying. OP takes a look and it’s ruined. “Bob” was covered in all of it, appearing he had been eating the cake. Half of the cake wasn’t there anymore. Miles starts laughing and so did some of the other parents.

OP’s blood was boiling and she grabbed Bob and threw it in the trash. Then OP grabbed Miles. They had a terrible argument, he called her a jerk for what she did to Bob, that she ruined it, how are we supposed to keep the “magic” with their kids if she wasn’t supposed to touch Bob?

There’s Something Seriously Wrong With Your Husband

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“Not the jerk. But Jesus there’s something wrong with your husband. He wanted Andy to do something wrong so he could punish him (things like destroying their clothes are not a prank, it’s a punishment). Your husband is hazing your children.”

What A Creepy And Horrible Christmas “Tradition”

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“He ruined the birthday party with his juvenile and sadistic prank, as much as he most likely ruined the joyful and child-like spirit of the occasion for the two other kids with the other earlier stupid pranks. What a creepy and horrible Christmas “tradition” to traumatize your kids. A doll that watches over them and exacts vengeance.”

Please Reconsider Your Decisions 

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Please consider that you are married to a person that **enjoys being cruel to children.** It’s not just being the jerk, it’s disturbing.” Said one. 

“My thought too …  Destroying clothes, and ruining a birthday party for a ‘laugh’ is just cruelty…  If I was in OP’s shoes, I would keep my child(ren) far away from somebody like that.” Another added. 

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This article was originally published on Mrs Daaku Studio.

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