First of all, have you noticed something a little different around here? I changed the blog name to Our Life is Beautiful(www.ourlifeisbeautiful.com). Ever since I watched the movie Life is Beautiful when I was 14 years old, that’s been my motto. I had it under my profile on Facebook when I first signed up for Facebook 7 years ago, on Twitter, it’s the name of my journal, you get the idea. When I say Our life is Beautiful, I mean everyone’s life is beautiful, and I’m not just talking about our family.
Another change I’ve made to the blog is only the blog posts I’ve written the past several months are up, except for the DIY & the recipe posts, which are all up. I will be going through the rest of my old archives and carefully selecting which posts/pictures I’ll be posting of my kids. Anything too personal or detailed photographs of my kids and other kids I have posted will be deleted. This is something I’ve been thinking about for a long time, and for about a year or so, I’ve been more aware and very careful about what I post about my children and deliberately posting distant pictures of my kids and nothing that they’d be embarrassed or uncomfortable about. I think I posted one picture of my first child in a diaper when only my family and very close friends read the blog in the very beginning, but I stopped and never have I posted pictures of them going potty or their excrement or any stories that are too much information. So I thought I was good, but what was my definition of too personal? After reading this and this story, my definition of personal has definitely changed. Now, I’m just down right paranoid with even posting pictures of them fully clothed! But I think being paranoid is good, especially when it comes to the privacy of my kids.
The first story I linked to is about a mother who found her kids’ pictures on a pedophile website. And she says she saw many pictures of other kids, even the very innocent pictures of kids where they were fully clothed. She said there’s something about the innocence of the pictures that draws these people in, as well as the not so innocent pictures. Then I scanned in my head all the pictures I posted of my kids on the blog, ones that are close shots of their face, them in a swimsuit, casual pictures of them playing fully clothed, any information about their favorite toy, food, game, oh my gosh, what have I done? Now, I’m not going to completely hide them from the internet, but it definitely made me think about my kid’s privacy in general.
Then I asked myself the following questions:
1. Will my kids most likely say, “Mom, I wish you posted even more pictures of me on the internet for all your friends/acquaintances/strangers to see.” or “Mom, I wish you didn’t post so many pictures of me for the world to see.”
2. How would I feel if I found out one day that my mom kept a blog to document my life that posted close up, detailed pictures of me on a regular basis with my milestones, dislikes, likes, preferences, quirks, videos of me singing, saying my first word, etc. on a private blog that’s read by her friends and acquaintances? How about if it was on a very public blog that’s read by thousands?
3. How would it make me feel knowing that not only my mom’s friends and acquaintances basically watched me grow up, but by thousands of strangers?
4. How would I feel if my mom started a blog right now and posted bunch of pictures of me and things about me without asking for my permission first? That she didn’t even give me a chance to voice my opinion or edit any of the content myself before approving it?
5. Do I want to use my kids as a brand? A marketing tool for my blog?
6. Because they’re my kids, does that mean I have the right to do whatever I want with them? They have every right to their privacy. They might be too young now but a day will come when they’ll be able to voice their preferences, vulnerability, and opinions. Just because they are too young to comprehend and voice their opinions now, doesn’t mean I can just assume they won’t care when they get older and won’t mind it.
7. How will they feel about the blog when they find out about it when they’re 12 years old?
8. Just like when I meet my parents’ friends and they say to me, “I used to change your diaper!”, “You were always just in your diapers running around the house!” I’d feel awkward and vulnerable, is that how my kids would feel when my friends/acquaintances/or even strangers say to them, “Hey, I know you! I watched you grow up since you were born through the blog, I feel like I already know you!”
So no more close shots of my kids, or anything embarrassing or personal, videos that I think are cute that they might feel bashful and vulnerable by, only pictures from a distance, and vague things about my kids.
That means this blog will probably be more about my life, more pictures of just me(yay for narcissism!), more about my dog, more sewing maybe? I guess we will see! But thank you for sticking around and for reading this blog of mine. It means a lot to me. Really, it does, so THANK YOU.