Over the last five or six years, I’ve fallen in love with several different babies and kids and their mamas on Instagram. There was the adorable relationship between a boy and his dog during nap time known as Theo & Beau, costume napping created by photographer Laura Izumikawa which started out of boredom while her then 4-month-old daughter, Joey Marie Choi, slept, and many, many more.
As I inch closer to having my own child (11 more weeks to go), I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about children and social media, more specifically what my comfort level is on sharing my children on social media.
Is it safe? Is it my right to start building the social graph of another human without their consent? If I do, will my kids be upset later down the line that their entire lives are on the internet or will that be the norm? Is there a difference between posting baby photos vs. toddler life and so forth? How much is too much when it comes to sharing on insta-stories? Will photographing and filming them constantly have ramifications? Am I breaking some sort of trust by sharing their lives with strangers everyday?
I don’t have the answer to these questions. These are just the things that I’m thinking about, and I’d love to hear what you guys think. Do you or did you put your children on social media? How did you decide? What are the parameters? Anything else I should be thinking about? Or perhaps you don’t have children but have thoughts on the matter? And lastly, are there moms you like to follow that you think are doing a good job with balancing their children and social media?
I think Joy Cho of Oh Joy! Does a good balance of it. It’s hard because social media is often much of what your life is at that time and obviously when you have a kid they become your life for a minute. I do post pics of my babe on IG (which is private) mostly so friends and family can see. I wouldn’t be comfortable posting if it wasn’t private just because I don’t really like everyone being able to see everything I post – kids or not.
I too, struggle with this dilemma!
While I’m a stylist/blogger and do have a small online community of followers, I am always very cautious about what I post. I made a conscious decision when I added kids to the mix that since they did not CHOOSE to be a part of my online presence and business model, I obviously would not include them. That being said, they are still a HUGE part of my life and I do occasionally post a rare image of them when I feel it’s appropriate and adds value.
I figure people started following me because of my brand, my aesthetic and my subject matter (fashion and style) — not my kids. There are so many fabulous mommy bloggers out there and all the more power to them, but that’s just not me. I’m still the same person I was before 2 kids and I hope people appreciate that while I’m a mommy, that doesn’t define me or my business/brand. Hopefully, I bring something else of value into the mix — non-kid related 🙂
NO Social Med ia when you were born I let you decide .I wanted you to have a normal childhood and allowing you to be in the media when you were small did not feel right to me.
so happy someone is talking about this! i think it’s super fucked up that these bloggers pimp out their kids. it’s disgusting!
This conversation is great to me! I’ve been reading blogs daily for the last 6 years or so and it has been incredible to see so many of the women including you grow up, start businesses, and now get married. And I am always so curious how they decide what to show of their children’s lives and what to keep private. I will say, I am a sucker for a great birth story (so funny to me as I’m not sure I even want children myself and yet I’m truly fascinated) and enjoy seeing children integrated into “editorial” content when it makes sense. And for me, that’s talking about a family trip, holiday family photo shoots, etc. And even some sponsored collaborations that don’t feel forced. But I also love, and think its very organic, when day to day life, funny family moments, etc. are shared on Instagram stories and more casual places. I think Samantha from Could I Have That does a great job at this. I also love Liz from Sequins and Stripes. Liz shares more than Samantha but neither feel forced and I’ve so enjoyed watching their little families grow up. Sending you so many well wishes!
I think it all comes down to a “do what feels right at the time” philosophy for most bloggers. It’s also perfectly okay to change your mind at some point, too!
John & Sherry from Young House Love are a great example. In the first few years of parenthood, they shared photos of their kids a LOT. Then, as their kids grew, they pulled back to not publicly showing their faces. They have been pretty open about their feelings on the issue, and know that over time, things may change again, and that’s okay.
I’m sure whatever you decide to do, it’ll be the best decision for you and your growing family! Best of luck with the home stretch of your pregnancy!
Great post, so interesting!
These are really hard questions and I think they arise because social media is something that has entered our lives quite recently and they affect it quite a lot. I like to think of it in comparison to some technology my parents might have had but wasn’t mainstream for my grandparents. That thinking gives some perspective I think. Great questions though and great post!
Great topic. I think it’s our responsibility as parents to protect our children’s privacy and most bloggers fail at this to get likes and make money. I’ve unfollowed quite a few women over this. They’re 2017’s version of stage moms and it’s fucked up.
As someone who grew up not being constantly video tapped I cherish my privacy. I don’t even have a large social media presence today. I do think it is best to err on the side of caution and only take pictures/videos for your family members. I think it is best to let the child grow up and decide whether he/she/they want to have a public presence. There are so many ifs: what if he/she/they wants to run for public office one day, what if he/she applies to a certain school who will look at their parent’s posts, what if the constant videotaping instills in them the idea that they are so special/superior that they expect to constantly have their picture taken etc. I think someone who does a good job of keeping their child out of the public realm as best as she can is Bethenny Frankel, who I’ve noticed never shows her daughter’s face on social media. I value privacy over the cute moments that I think should be kept for one’s family. Great thought provoking topic!
I’m young, but I still wonder what I’d do if I were in your situation as I’d like to have a child one day. I appreciate couples like Nikki Reed and Ian Somerhalder who don’t post ANY photos of their daughter, but I also appreciate families like the SacconneJoly’s who share LOTS of photos/vlogs of their kids. They say that they do so to look back at memories and see their life progress. I also like the idea of that. I’d love to be able to truly look back on my life, plus that kind of lifestyle (making money off of vlogs/blogs) is an awesome way to be a stay at home Mom and have a HUGE part in your child’s life. Teresa Palmer and the Hemsworth’s post pictures of their children but without their faces. I think that’s a good option to consider because some moments are so beautiful, you can’t NOT share. I’d consider that if I were you. I’d love an update on what you decide once your baby is born. Good luck xx