As my children grow older I am finding it increasingly harder not to want to share everything they do with everyone. They’re becoming little humans, they’re not just sacks of vomit and meltdowns. My daughter is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen, and I want everyone to know that. But I still don’t excessively express this, online.
I am by no means, labeling any parent that does share their child online “disrespectful” or “irresponsible.”
Part of raising a family is acknowledging and accepting that other parents make different choices. This is simply my family’s decision. While enforcing this decision a majority of the time I am incredibly envious of others.
When I was growing up the internet was exploding, though the social aspect not so much until later on. I consider myself lucky because looking back, I don’t want a public historical coverage of myself growing up; cringe. While I don’t doubt there were some cool moments that would be great to resurface, most I like remaining candid and stuffed in the nostalgia bank.
If I were to share my children often, the chances of them not wanting one of those moments shared publicly also increases. I don’t know what I would say to my children if they were to come to me and say they never want to be on the internet. At that point, I have already violated their wish in a very deep way.
We want to give our children the full decision of their public presence. It’s hard, sometimes we cheat, but giving them that choice is important to us.
As a culture we’ve taken the private family photo album that’s shared with entrusted friends & family, and shared it with anyone with an internet connection. We put our trust in major corporations in the hopes that their terms and conditions align with our best interest.
Going hand-in-hand with #1, limiting our sharing guards our children’s privacy and security. There is no 100% secure way to share your photos, even merely texting a photo. Companies like Facebook ( Instagram), Snapchat and Google all have terms and conditions that can change at any point. Some of these terms, may, relinquish your rights to your own photos after you have uploaded them to their server.
In theory, if a company wanted to use one of your photos for a new ad or product they are launching then legally they could.
We’re not wearing tin foil hats though. We try and walk the line between being practical and upholding our overall decision. Most of our friends and family know of our choice and respect it. If the occasional photo of my child crops up at a birthday party it’s no big deal. We just don’t excessively share them.
A large percentage of our family lives in another state. Luckily a majority of them have Apple devices so we’ve shared Photo libraries with them. When it came to picking a company to trust with our data, Apple seems the least “big brother-y.”
We cheat sometimes
My kids exist, there’s no denying. They are my entire life and I don’t mean that in a sappy hallmark way. Their happiness, well being and future are what we work for everyday, right now they take up just about all of our time.
It’s hard not to share a little bit of them. A couple times a year we may share our kids, without showing faces. So LOOK AT MY KIDS!