The Pics Not Posted

 

Other than a few sports guys, I never was a blog reader before starting my own. To be honest, even then I didn’t realize that what I was reading was a sports blog. I’d heard the term, knew that’s what Cameron Diaz’s character did in the movie “Sex Tape” and remembered Doogie Howzer ending each episode typing into his computer, but that was about the extent of my knowledge.

Now I probably read anywhere between twenty to thirty a day. Lots of dads, some moms, politics, sports, travel and humor.  A few people that just sit down and write whatever comes to mind.  Different experiences, perspectives and opinions. Different voices.

The majority would be considered “parenting blogs”, the niche that encompasses most of what I have to say. ( The topics that I should stick to, according to some. )  One of the things I’ve noticed that all these disparate writers, from all walks of life and corners of the world, have in common is that at some point they begin to question the degree to which they are sharing their lives and the lives of their children with the world. Questions about appropriateness, consent, and even safety.

It’s something that I’ve always tried to be cognizant of without driving myself crazy. Many aspects of the teenager’s life wouldn’t even be considered as shareable, stories that simply aren’t mine to tell.  I will tell you that her final prom was this past weekend, that she had fun, and that she looked beautiful.

 

on line sharing concerns
Beautiful girl

 

It’s harder with the little, consent not so easy to obtain.  I write a lot about her triumphs and idiosyncrasies, but don’t feel that I’ve shared anything that would be considered embarrassing to her in the future. I can only hope that she one day agrees with that assessment.

It was a picture of her that led me down this avenue of thought, one that I was about to post on Instagram…and then didn’t. It’s one that I did post to my private Facebook, one many of you may have seen, a picture taken prior to her latest dance recital. She looks absolutely adorable. She also looks very grown up, her hair done and performance makeup applied.

My Instagram is public, a supplement to this space. It’s accessible to all, including those that may be searching the Internet for pictures of little girls dressed up and looking pretty in fancy dresses and makeup. It was probably a silly thing to think about but I did. I did, and once thought it became an uncomfortable enough idea that the picture remains seen only on the channels that I have control over.

 

When solicited, my advice to other bloggers is simple: use common sense, trust your instincts, and hope for the best. A story about a seven month old peeing in your eye may be funny, one about a seven year old peeing the bed probably better left unwritten. I never share any vacation pictures until I’m back home.

Is that enough? I don’t know.  All of us are living our lives in an increasingly public manner, for better and for worse. Bullying and stalking have never been easier, but neither has keeping contact with those that might otherwise fade from our lives. We all have to decide what level of sharing with the world we feel comfortable with.

 

I’ll leave you with this picture, another one of my daughter looking adorable. It’s not the best one that I’ve taken since she started playing softball, it’s just the best one I’ve taken that doesn’t show the name of our town on the front of her shirt.

 

online sharing
ready position

 

40 thoughts on “The Pics Not Posted”

  1. Hi Jeremy, one thing I have done from the start is to ask my two if they mind me posting a certain photo or post. If I ever shared something they weren’t happy with I’d be lynched and they are bigger than me, so it’s a form of self-preservation, I suppose! If my children were younger I think it would be difficult to choose what to share and what not to share. There is that fine line between our children’s safety/ dignity and what’s funny and appropriate that no parent wants to cross.

    xx

  2. I think every blogger struggles with privacy. It sounds to me like you’re being very deliberate about what and how you share, and your kids will thank you for it.

    Also… Doogie Howser was a blogger!? I had totally forgotten about him.
    #happynowlinkup

    1. I think it was more of a diary that he typed onto a computer. Was the internet even around then? I have no idea

  3. Very nice blog. My two (Daughter 21 and son , almost 20) have asked not to be on my blog. They are afraid that it will kill their coolness factor. So, I basically have honored it.

  4. I battled with this before I began the blog. I probably took a fairly hard-line approach and decided never to post anything that identifies my little girl. Not so much out of fear of the public, but rather that I want her to have control and responsibility later in life. I would find it hard to have conversations with her about sharing stuff on the internet if I had plastered her all over it before she even knew what the internet was.

    1. If I was going to start over I’d probably not use my girl’s names. Thats a great point about potential future conversations

  5. Love your approach to sharing. I get a little weirded out by the public photos of people’s kid in bikinis. I just wonder how many perverts there are looking for that. #ThatFridayLinky

    1. Its terrible that these thoughts even enter our minds, but the fact is there probably are quite a few

  6. Really interesting post this. I’m very careful with my blog, I never name my son or put photos of him on there, however, this I’m not a parent blogger so this is one of the reasons why. Privacy is something I worry about a lot. #thatfridaylinky

    1. Its probably something that I should be worried more about. I write mostly about my kids because of how much they color my perceptions of everything else, but more and more they are becoming more of a catalyst for writing and not the main subject

  7. Great post, I often worry about the potential repercussions of putting your life (and your children’s lives) out there for the world to see. As you say, I think it’s about trusting your gut and being mindful that once you’ve posted, it’s out of your hands.

    1. I’m believer that using common sense and thinking twice before doing something usually is enough, hopefully I turn out to be correct

  8. I am already thinking about what to share and not too. Have turned down something with videos of my eldest in. I’m trying to write a bit more generically as she is at school soon and may want more privacy! Totally get you. I’m a bugger for sharing holiday pics though! Oops. xx #thatfridaylinky

    1. I think there must be a way to be smart about it still show off the Gremlin in cute holiday dresses. Thanks for reading Sarah

  9. Oh Jeremy this is exactly where I am right now! I’ve even slowed down blogging because my conflict on over sharing! It’s difficult but think your spot on and this has id almost go to say has cheered me up… common sense all the way!! Thank you! ‪Thank you for linking up to the #familyfunlinky‬

  10. I’ve got one of my boys who loves being on the blog and doing vids and the other one at 11 is very clear now that he doesn’t want to be featured and would rather take photos for me. I started my blog as a way for us all to contribute but it has changed and I drive it and the others pop their heads into it if they wish. All has its pros and cons, somethings that I would like to write about I know dont as I don’t want to embarrass them.
    Mainy

    1. sounds like a great approach mainy. I think its cool that one of your sons helps contribute. Its fascinating watching them develop their own interests and hobbies and wondering how much effect sharing our own has

  11. Really thought-provoking post and I too reflect on the posts that I share of my children. I share less and less these days as I often feel a sense of dread after I post. Sad, I know but I also like the positive as you also highlight about maintaining friendships that could have otherwise faded. Thank you for sharing this post. Wonderful photos too #FamilyFun

  12. I try to never share anything that could embarrass my children and my 8 year old has full control over which pictures he will let me post. My 2yr old is too young to understand yet so I go with my gut. I was recently followed on Instagram by a man who only followed the accounts of pouting young women posing rather provocatively, and had never posted anything himself. I immediately blocked him as the thought of him looking at pictures of my two year old daughter scared the life out of me. I also keep where we live a secret and on days out posts they’re all usually some distance away. And I never post where we are going until after the fact. For now, that’s enough for me, but I will always follow my gut and if I start to feel uncomfortable sharing pictures of my children then I’ll stop. It’s an issue I think a lot of bloggers struggle with.
    #FamilyFunLinky

  13. It is sickening to think that the happy family moments we are so proud to share are looked upon in a horrible and sick manner. I do post pics of my children on Instagram and my blog, but like you days out or holidays are done afterwards and never any nudity, or things I think show anything inappropriate. I also use false names for my children and as I have blogged about before a pseudonym for myself. I never post where we live or school uniforms. It is sad that we have to be so careful, but we just have to be, gut instinct is a good one! The Pics Not Posted http://www.thirstydaddy.com/2017/05/23/the-pics-not-posted/ #TweensTeensBeyond

    1. Thanks MG. There are times when I wish that I hadn’t used our real names, but I think there is only so many steps you can take without making yourself crazy

  14. I always work on the assumption if I wouldn’t want it on a billboard outside my house with my real name and full address on it, I won’t post it on my blog. It’s a hard line to walk though. Brilliant post

  15. My teens have really taken the decision out of my hands. They don’t want me posting pics of them at all. My youngest doesn’t mind a few discreet indistinguishable shots but nothing more. As I blog anonymously too it would be slightly hypocritical of me to be honest. I have shared stories of them and their lives which they are ok with but bizarrely wouldn’t be if someone they knew read them. It is a difficult balancing act and we all have to do as you say and go with what feels appropriate for “us”. Caution however is advisable. Great post. #TweensTeensBeyond

  16. We take a pretty hard line on this for our daughter. We don’t want to be the ones creating her digital footprint so don’t post her online (except for obscured shots or shots from behind). Once she’s old enough we’ll review. It works for us anyway. Though realise it’s not for everybody! 🙂
    #TweensTeensBeyond

    1. everybody has their own views, it’s been interesting reading the responses. It seems there are many who take a harder line than I do

  17. I didn’t start blogging until last year and so mine were already tweens and teens so I have always been censored and I would never post anything without their permission. I think your posts are just right – often very tongue in cheek, which I like, but obviously written from an experienced perspective. Keep ’em coming! Thanks for joining us at #TweensTeensBeyond

  18. This is a difficult one and something that will come up more for me as my daughter is getting older. I am already finding that I am sharing less because it doesn’t feel right – obviously one to keep checking in on. I’ve often used photos of when she was small even though she is older now but it something that will need to keep changing me thinks. Your daughter looks beautiful in her dress. #tweensteensbeyond

    1. My blog has already evolved quite a bit in the last three years. I guess it will continue to do so as they get older. I’ll pass along your kind words to the oldest. Thanks Nicky

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