Wednesday, July 4, 2012

A New Debate

The photo in question. . .
Yesterday on Facebook I had several friends request an update, was I giving birth?  What was the news? So, I decided to answer their questions by posting a picture of my baby bump saying "I'm Still Here."  This morning my niece, who is 13, decided to share my photo on her wall.  Which brings up a whole new debate for me, privacy issues online, especially when it concerns my soon to be here little girl.

So, back before I was married I was pretty private online.  My pictures were marked so that only friends could see them.  I only had adult friends who I knew in person and who didn't feel the need to post my photos on their walls.  Then I got married, to a person who has a facebook account who doesn't really use it.  And then I started to get friend requests from his friends and family members whom I didn't necessarily know.  But I accepted them because they were now my friends and family, even if I had never met them.  Strange how marriage changes your definition of friends and family.  And when it came time to post pictures of our wedding online, I knew that there were friends and family of Shawn who would want to see them, so I marked "friends of friends" on the privacy of those albums so that Shawn's friends I didn't know would be able to see them.  And it's actually been nice to read those comments too.  And I was fine with it, until this morning.

Now, I know my cute niece didn't mean anything by taking my photo and sharing it on her facebook wall.  She just thought it was cute.  Our dog is in it too, and she LOVES our dog.  But I feel strangely protective of it.  You can't see my face, but it is a shot of my belly afterall!  And what happens once the baby comes?  I want to be protective of images of our child, but at the same time, I want to share it with those who are important to Shawn and I.  But I don't want THEM to have the ability to continue to share that image.  And so far looking into it, the only way to protect that image is to mark it as "friends only" can see it.  Which eliminates some of Shawn's friends and family who aren't my friends.

And when you start thinking of privacy online I naturally have to think about this blog too.  How much am I going to share on this blog about my child?  Will I show pictures of her?  And while I don't like the idea of making this blog private, I also don't like the idea of strangers having access to pictures of my child.  I like this as a place to share things, thoughts about how my life is changing as I become a mother and wife, stories about motherhood and marriage and just life.  But now I feel like I need to think of clear parameters, what is for public consumption and what is too private to share?

How about you?  Those of you who are parents, how have you handled this debate?  And even if you aren't parents, how do you decide what to share online?


  1. So I guess I'm just confused at what you think will happen if "strangers" see your belly bump or baby pictures? I've never really been too concerned about it personally. You can look and see how many people are reading your posts on blogger and even from what states/countries if you want to. If I noticed that I was getting a bunch of people from places I'm not familiar with on a regular basis, I might think about putting my blog private. But really, I have a big extended family and so does Paul who I know a lot of them read my blog. I would hate to make it private and exclude all those people who I know will never ask for an invite. My facebook page is just friends only though. My thoughts on that is if someone wants to read my facebook updates and see photos, then they need to become my friend! Just my two cents :) Good luck this week - hope it goes by quickly for you!

  2. A lot of the folks I know who are married with kids have moved their blogs to being private. I'm quite single and have had my blog as being private for a good 5 years. Maybe go private with your blog, post baby pictures here, and give access to the friends and family the two of you feel appropriate. Facebook isn't really accomodating, you're right, but the blog might be.