If you saw my Facebook account, you will come to think that I am an extremely secretive person who doesn’t give out unwarranted personal information. Facebook allows for you to “Ask For Details”, but that doesn’t nudge me to post pictures of my kiddos. Does not sharing details on Facebook stigmatize you, especially when it comes to not sharing the pictures of your babies online?
When one of my posts was addressed to my kids, a bewildered friend wrote back asking whence, I had kids! I thought it was hilarious. I had no idea that the world would expect me to post pictures of me screaming in the labor room, then post pics of the umbilical cord being cut, show pics of my newborn with a victory sign or blow kisses right from the delivery table. I am not delivering my child for the world. I am not doing you a favor. I am birthing for my contentment. This would be quite a reason why I don’t feel the need to share pictures of my babies online.
Yes, I could update my status to that of being a woman to a mother now. There is nothing preemptive there. But I would neither want to write the exact date or time or place of birth of my child nor would I want to tell how much she weighed at the time of birth. I wouldn’t let out her name, and if I am pregnant ever again, I don’t think I would make a pregnancy announcement either!
But what makes me not share? This might be the first question in your minds.
1. I am a proud mama, but I don’t need to tell the world that:
On various occasions, I have wanted to post pictures of my children all over. In bulk. I know that as soon as I post the pics, there would be numerous likes, comments, and perhaps shares. But do I need the cuteness of my children certified by a social platform? Most of these likes come mindlessly. They don’t take a moment to look at the picture well-enough. They hit likes to please you (as if you posted in anticipating of receiving likes) and so that they too can garner their bit of likes and comments when they post their pics.
2. The nostalgic factor is no longer there:
While we were growing up, we had our snaps taken and made into reams of albums that are still there to go back to with a feeling of nostalgia. They are much more cherished now than the instant pictures taken these days that could fall into the hands of God knows who? How secure is that? Moreover, with the pictures being online, they keep floating every day, so much so that our children grow up watching them every day. There is no such thing as an excitement when they see pictures from a couple of years ago. With our traditional albums, we also had our family good times – all of us sitting together, sipping tea, relishing home-made snacks, and walking the memory lane of how childhood was fun.
3. As adults we should stop being obsessed with picture-posting and sharing:
When I first joined Facebook, I was a student. It made sense to stay in touch with friends and share some fun moments. But being there for so many years makes me understand how people have got addicted in a way that while being well into their adulthood where most of them have their families and jobs to take care of, they take times to flaunt their lives on the social platform. They take exclusive shots with Facebook on the mind! I mean, if I took pictures, I had rather want them to be taken so I could smile when I look back at them years later.
4. Comparisons are bound to be there:
No matter how dignified you try to be on there, you cannot overlook the fact that there will be comparisons (perhaps subtly), discussions which could take any course of action, a barrage of remarks on something somebody said – and all the while the whole point of posting a picture would be in vain.
5. There is no real security in there:
Despite the settings on Facebook, I wonder how secure the platform is. Day in and day out we hear about violations of privacy policies, third parties gathering your data, most of which do not make your kid’s pictures privy either. There is allegedly facial recognition software online that blur the line of privacy. When I post pictures of myself, it does creep me out a bit to think that online algorithms can play with your privacy, it doesn’t care if you are a child or an adult! Once the images are shared, it can’t be undone.
I can tell you for sure that I am not an anti-social media. Social media is a great place if put to good use. But the fact that I don’t want to share stuff about my children there should neither label me as an over-protective parent nor as someone obsessed with her children’s security. If you are a sensible parent, you might identify with me in the same vein.