The Price of (Parent) Blogging

A couple of weeks back, the Wife asked me while we were driving home, “When should we stop writing about our son?”

It seemed a weird question to ask a parent blogger, but I have considered its stark reality at one point, from the view of a protective father ? just that I forgot one thing.

My children are going to grow up sooner or later. That means they will want to live on their own terms, make their own decisions, and most pertinent to the conversation with the Wife, take ownership of their own privacy. My own stand as a father has always been to never be the obstacle in my own children becoming their own person.

When the Wife asked this question, and spent the rest of the drive explaining why she asked this question, I got that deep, dark sinking feeling some of us parents might get once in a while when we realise we’ve been doing it wrong with our kids the whole time.

My kids have their own online presence ? I thought it would be useful for them to have their own domain names, email addresses, and maybe a social media account or two, to futureproof their lives. I write letters to my son, detailing the hard as well as soft aspects of our lives together as father and son, not so much for the world to see, but so he has something of his dad’s to refer to when I’m no longer around. My life is as open a book here in The Blogfather as It is on my Facebook profile as people know I am in person, because I pledged to live an honest life so that I would never need to hide nor live in shame for anything.

Just that I forgot one thing ? do I have my children’s permission to do all this? Will I have their permission, when they turn 9, or 16, or 21,or 36?

Blogging has provided us with a whole new lifestyle we would otherwise not have been able to imagine for ourselves ? we get great toys, go to great places, learn great things, and at one point, make some cake, too ? but there is a price to pay for all this. And you wonder why some bloggers would charge a hefty premium for putting their lives out there for PR and advertising. The Blogfather will very confidently tell you, none of us bloggers, parent or otherwise, thought to do this as a business when we first started journaling our lives, and most of us still don’t.

And given the latest revelation I’ve had about what I’ve been doing to our children the last 3-4 years, I can also very confidently tell you, I don’t know what the hell I’m doing.

Some advice would be nice.

3 thoughts on “The Price of (Parent) Blogging”

  1. When I was a panel speaker at the Social Media Week 2013, someone in the audience did pose a question to me, asking me if I had thought about the future implications for my children and what will their future employers think should they stumble onto my blog?

    Obviously, it can work both ways. But I replied that throughout my blogging years, I make it a point not to humiliate my kids online. So what is online are usually activities that our family enjoy together. And in a warped way, it may actually work towards their favour should future employers read my blog before actually meeting them in person. There will already be a prior sense of knowing them and maybe, just maybe, the meeting might be warmer compared to the others.

    Also, now that my boys are older, I make it a point to share with them what I am going to post online. If there are photos with them in funny faces or poses, I will seek their consent before I upload them. And I take the opportunity to educate them in what is deemed to be appropriate to share, and what isn’t.

    Hope it helps! 🙂

  2. I worry too, Winston, but also agree with Kelvin: I don’t put up stuff that make humiliate them, nor anything too personal; I don’t even use their real names. They may be kids but we should also respect their privacy and maintain a level of security for them.

    When to stop? I suppose that will vary between family to family. And I suppose we’ll know, thanks to this wonderful inbuilt spidey sense that we get courtesy of parenthood.

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