Yesterday, I read this article about how parents posting pictures of their kids should reconsider. I’ll save you the time of reading it if you don’t want to and sum it up. The article essentially says you should be careful about posting pictures of your children because they could eventually sue you (when they’re old enough to pay for and hire a lawyer, you know) for creating and crafting an identity for them that they had no part in. They warn the fines could be as serious as up to one year in prison. The solution presented is to ask your children what they’re comfortable with and to get their permission before sharing. Somebody, somewhere (cited in the article, pardon me for not caring enough to find it) did a study and asked kids their thoughts, here is an excerpt:
Adults tend to think of these rules around how much time kids spend on screen, but about three times more children than parents thought there should be rules about what parents share and don’t share on social media. Many kids said parents should not post anything about them on online without asking them.
Both children and parents considered positive images, events and news more appropriate to share than negative ones. An image of the child playing on the swings at the park is a lot less likely to resurface than a YouTube video of them having a tantrum because their breakfast is not in their favourite bowl.
The whole idea of the article is based on the premise that in, say, 13+ years from now my children will be so concerned with what I did on social media 13+ years ago that they would be willing to research my activity and then find and hire a lawyer to legally hold me accountable for embarassing photos of themselves. Don’t get me wrong, when my boys are grown up, if they want to sue me for posting a picture of them doing God knows what, then…okay, go ahead. But quite seriously, the belief that somehow my kids are autonomous creatures right now is so far from the truth it’s beyond laughable. I mean, for fuck’s sake, this morning I changed a dry diaper, just to lather on some more diaper cream because my kid was screaming in pain from a diaper rash he has because he can’t shit in the toilet, let alone wipe his own ass. I mean, come. the. fuck. on. I feed them. I buy their food. I shelter them. I pay for their education. I get peed on by them. I change their diapers. I buy their diapers. I stress over their birthday parties, their happiness, their well-being and their fucking body temperatures. Our lives right now are just that, OURS – theirs and mine – inexplicably intertwined. My life is 93% my kids right now and not because I’m an overbearing mother who can’t let her kids out of her sight but because I AM A FUCKING MOTHER. (Note the period.) My kids are one and two and I love them and I’m fucking proud of them and of myself for keeping them alive and for providing for them and for loving them and some days for not setting my fucking hair on fire!**
I mean, F*@%!
Let me just post pictures of my life and my kids without having to worry about what people think about it. Seriously. If you don’t want to share photos of your kids or your life or if it scares you or if you find it irresponsible – COOL! THAT IS TOTALLY COOL. Way to go! You’re awesome! But you and I, we don’t share the same beliefs, and if in the future I spend a year of my life in prison because I raised kids who were so mortified by a fucking adorable baby picture that was shared with friends and family – and possibly brought a smile to someone else’s face because kids are miracles and such bundles of pure energy and happiness – COOL, I’ll take it! I mean, honestly, if I raise a kid who is asshole enough to sue me over a baby picture, I probably deserve it.
As for the safety concern and the reach of the photo, I am one person out of billions of people on this planet and it would be presumptuous, if not borderline idiotic, to live in fear when I know how to control my privacy settings and social media accounts responsibly.
At the end of the day, it’s my choice and I have to be logical, in 15 years my kids will probably have their own social media identities and they will probably curate my role as their mother in a completely different way. I mean, I will probably be painted as the evil woman who doesn’t find their pranks funny and makes them stay home to do their homework and won’t buy them beer just because they think they deserve it. It’s called cosmic retribution. And I’m TOTALLY COOL WITH IT, you guys! I love taking pictures of the boys and I love sharing them with family and friends. I love seeing photos of my family and friends’ kids. I love seeing my friends and family happy. I don’t give a fuck if you post 13 couple selfies a day or 26 photos of your kids or 17 snapshots of your cats and dogs or literally none at all. I honestly. do. not. care. And you shouldn’t either.
But in case you’re against me in this, I did find this article about this girl suing her parents that you can use to further fuel your fire.
Is it as nice as I think it must be to have so much time to worry about what everyone else is doing?
I KID, I KID.
**In this instance, “I” refers to Seth and I as a unit. 🎎