For those who have children, the temptation to post their children on social media is very overwhelming to resist. The tendency to be known and to let others follow the updates of our children is there, naturally. We are all connected to social media, and yet, not all of us are having the understanding of using social media – when it comes to our children.
I am admitting that I love to post my son on my social media. I used a lot of his photos in this blog and my personal Instagram account (@cecilly_ivy), but mostly not head-shot photos. People started to ask me on why I like to post his photos without having his face to be seen. I was just laughing or avoid to answer softly, but my reason is because I am afraid with the pace of social media and how it invites us all to post our children as the objects.
This post is written because I am a parent who is, somehow, lost in between my motherhood and my professional life. The issue of internet/gadget addiction among children is already overwhelming. And now, the ‘addiction’ from parents to post their children online is also overwhelming.
If you ask why, the basic answer is: we open the private door of our children too widely for the society. People know our children, as if they know them privately. Some people will appreciate the comments and what-so-called attention and online love. Some others appreciate the sense of being famous. And some others just post the photos without having any knowledge whatsoever.
I have seen thousands of photos online showing the school badges of their children, showing the grade and class of their children – as if it is okay for the outsiders to know all about their children. I’ve seen photos of children posted by their parents when they are sleeping, not appropriately dressed nor in a good condition to see (with the open wounds after having accidents, for example).
Maybe we all need to ask some important questions before we post our children’ photos:
- Will they be happy or ashamed if I post their photos? Reflect that question to ourselves and try to answer.
- Will I put them in danger? The risks of being kidnap, rob or hurt when strangers know their schools, homes, routine and the price of their wardrobe?
- How can I handle comments from others regarding my children?
PS: I am thinking to delete some of the obvious photos of my son online. What do you think?