Is it fair to take a child's birthday present off them as punishment?

This mum has taken to Mumsnet for advice after coming face to face with a tricky dilemma.

Her son's birthday is fast approaching but his behaviour has been pretty bad recently, so she's asking if taking away his planned presents is a fair punishment or not?

"I’ve got some little bits, clothes and stuff but spent fair bit on new phone he wants (been saving and it just arrived)."

"However over last few months he’s not covered himself in glory and now I don’t know whether to send it back - obviously he’d never know it was ever an option - and just give the small stuff."

The mum then went on to explain that her son has been in trouble both in school and with his after school employer.

"Do I still go all out and hope he appreciates it would it be counter productive to reward total lack of effort all round!?"

Users were quick to give their views, fair to say it was pretty split!

"He’s old enough to have learnt about actions and consequences, and he’s old enough to realise that if he can’t get his act together and behave like a decent person, he doesn’t deserve a phone as a gift; and that if he cannot hold down a job, he will not be able to afford one." one person wrote.

But others were more supportive of the son...

"I would give all the gifts. Looks like he needs your unconditional love and support more than ever."

Someone even came up with a nice alternative that sits somewhere in the middle. "I'd tell him I'd got it, but I wouldn't give it to him until the end of the term on the condition that he passes the year, doesn't get in any more trouble and sorts his behaviour and attitude out. So he can still have the phone - when he starts deserving it."

How would you handle this situation?

Source: The Sun