A fellow mommy blogger looks at whether or not sharing your child's intimate details online is a step too far.
According to a recent Parent24 article
, over 90% of US toddlers have some kind of online presence. "And every word and picture you load now could follow your child forever," it warns.
Where does this leave mommy bloggers? Is it fair to share the intimate details of our children’s lives on our blogs?
Blogging about our children has become increasingly common over the years. But behind the sharing of amusing anecdotes about the consistency of our children’s poop, a debate rages.
If we go by Tertia’s blog, the debate has been around at least since 2006. In a post
in October of that year, she addresses a question posed by one of her readers regarding the wisdom of writing so openly about her son, Adam. She concludes that she’s comfortable with sharing openly about her children. Part of her rationale for blogging is to create a record for her children and she argues that she intends being as honest with them as she is about them in her blog.
Flash-forward to 2010. Tertia reflects
on her 2006 post and writes: "I said that I would stop sharing when I felt it was time to stop sharing. That time has come sooner than I thought. I am increasingly reluctant to share things about them that might make them feel uncomfortable one day. Normal day to day stuff, fine. Anything personal or particular to their individual personalities, unfortunately no longer. I am very aware of the danger of labelling my children, even unintentionally."Will we live to regret blogging about our kids?
In an article in Newsweek
, the analogy is drawn between parent-blogs and the writings of A.A. Milne: “Christopher Robin Milne came to loathe the fictional world that his father, A. A. Milne, based on his son and the boy's teddy bear. ‘It seemed almost to me,’ Christopher wrote in his autobiography, ‘that my father had got to where he had filched from me my good name and left me with the empty fame of being his son.’”
According to the article, the issue is one of consent. Does the child own his/her story, or does the parent?
Heather Armstrong, author of the uber-popular Dooce.com, has recently decided
that her daughter Leta should have a say about whether or not her mom blogs about her. “If I have mentioned Leta here I have most likely asked her if I could do so, even if it has been something totally innocuous.”
Before you delete your mommy blog, though, consider this: In a reflection
on the Newsweek article, blogger “ResourcefulMommy” argues that there are ways to write about our children while still respecting their privacy. We can avoid showing their faces in pictures of them on our blogs, we can create pseudonyms for them and we can choose not to publish embarrassing stories about them.
Whatever your take on it, this is an interesting debate, and one that should probably come to mind the next time you sit down to write about the minutiae of your child’s life on your blog.What do you think about blogging about your kids? Do you? Share your thoughts below.