Ah, social media. Sometimes it feels like it rules my life, especially now that I’m a SAHM. There are days where it’s my only connection to the outside world.
We share so much of our lives online these days; for many of us, it’s a way to stay connected to our loved ones. Posting pictures and funny stories, telling everyone about our children’s accomplishments, even silly memes that highlight our feelings on parenthood. In many ways, parenting has been changed by social media.
But here’s the thing; you won’t see my daughter on mine. Sure, I might post a funny story about her, or share a major accomplishment (for example, she took her first steps this week and you can bet that went on Facebook), but no pictures will be shared.
In the digital age, this may seem strange. But this was a decision we made as a family before she was even born. Between the increasingly invasive way that social media handles our personal information and my husband’s career as a computer engineer for the government, we agreed that posting her face online was out. It felt like an invasion of her privacy; she’s too young to have a choice, so why should we make it for her?
I can’t imagine any of us would be happy to discover old baby pics of ourselves in bathtubs or that awkward year with braces plastered online FOREVER. We didn’t grow up with that option; our photos were safely tucked away in books and frames that could be hidden from future boyfriends/girlfriends and were never cannon fodder for a potential boss.
So for my daughter, her online presence is scarce and limited to small quips until she comes to an age to decide on her own social media. My hope is that this choice will give her the freedom to create her own digital profile that she controls as well as empower her to be aware of the permanence of the internet.
Whether your profile is 90% kid pics or completely devoid of your children’s presence, social media affects all of us as parents. My goal is to make the right decision for my family that will provide a safe digital atmosphere for my daughter’s future.