Sharing is caring…maybe.
August 12, 2013 § Leave a comment
So far, you don’t know the name of my son.
Not all of you anyway.
Yes, he does have a name and no, I haven’t forgotten it.
It’s just that, since he was born, I’ve been unsure of what to share here. How much to say. What parts of his life to upload to the internets.
In fact, while I was writing my first post after he joined our family, Kenny and I were torn. What do we share? We want to be smart, protective, and sensitive. But we’re not sure what that looks like.
I remember once discussing with someone how the generation we are bringing into this world doesn’t really have a say as to how and when they end up on the internet. You and me? We jumped on the social media bandwagon on our own terms and in our own time, creating our Facebook profile with care (or, if you’re like me, having your roommate insist on creating it for you, after college, to get you with the program…*ahem, ShanHan. Thanks again!) and tweeting away, blogging about our lives because we were the boss. The content was up to us-how we put ourselves out there, the image of ourselves we wanted to portray.
Our kids? Well, they don’t quite have a voice yet. They can’t speak for themselves. They can’t even say “Facebook” and most of us are probably guarding them, with all of our might, from any screen whatsoever for as long as we can, all while giving them an online presence.
We’re posting their pictures, writing captions for their lives, and displaying their all-around cuteness in embedded videos.
Without asking them.
Don’t get me wrong–there’s no judgment here. I’m not the boss of you. And I totally get it and I’m completely unsure how I feel about it (obviously). They are a huge part of our lives, completely adorable, and how can we not talk about them? It’s taken everything in my power, practically sitting on my hands, to resist posting everything about my boy and inundating your newsfeed with his chubby cheeks. After all, he’s completely amazing and a person who has changed my world and is starting to laugh and WHO WOULDN’T WANT TO SEE A VIDEO OF MY ADORABLE CHILD LAUGHING?
Avoiding it has been almost impossible.
But what about 18 years from now? 20? If/when he wants to become president, are his diaper-only or bathtub baby pictures going to be available to any person in the public who wants to dig them up? Laughing or not, will he wish his mom and dad had used a bit more discretion before posting endlessly about his poop habits, tantrums, or First Birthday Cake Face?
We just didn’t have to think about these things. No one has seen anything I don’t want them to see, from my childhood or otherwise. Personal, private photos and info stay locked away in my mom’s photo trunk until I say so. There is a reason no one but my family has seen the proof of my epic bubble bath tower (it reached the ceiling, ya’ll), at which I was proudly pointing…in the buff. Yes, I had a cute tiny tushy, but I don’t want Joe Shmoe knowing anything about my tush, cute or otherwise.
It’s just something I’ve been thinking about. In a perfect world, I would be a famous author, with bios everywhere and inevitably pictures of my proud family coming up with a search of my name. My son will perhaps end up searchable because he is a part of my clan.
But for now, where is the line? It merits discussion.
After all, the disguise routine will only take us so far. At some point, people will catch on.