"You won't post that, will you Mummy?"

And so came the request from my son that I was convinced would never befall this blog, yet one that I could not refuse.

I've been posting about our life for more than six years now, and photography is a major part of the content, specifically photographs of him. For many of those years, I ran the Project 365 photography linky, and his smiling face or sleeping form regularly appeared. I've even been a finalist for several photography blog awards!

However, I have been easing up over the past eighteen months or so because there was a little niggling feeling, a sixth sense if you will, that it wasn't quite right to keep sharing so many images without his permission.

Regardless of the fact that I rarely write anything embarrasing or personal, and photographs are always appropriate, there comes a time when bloggers (and parents in general for that matter) need to realise that we don't own our children; they are their own people with their own rights, and if my son doesn't want me to share an adorable photograph of him in a custard-stained vest with a chilled eye-mask over a headbump, then he has the right to request that of me. And it's my duty to respect his wishes; we cannot expect respect from our children if we don't give it in return.

So from now on, photos of him will appear on my blog or social media channels with his permission. It's a slightly upsetting turn of events for me as I've always just wanted to share my love for him, but my little man is growing up and deserves to have a say in how his digital footprint is created.

Have you ever considered this with your own children?

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Comments

  1. says

    Times have certainly changed for us haven't they. I have asked Leo for a while about certain things when it comes to posting online (and writing for our local magazine, as we are sometimes stopped in the supermarket and people talk to him about things they have read in it or on my blog) but mainly he loves it. I checked with him about his birthday interview this year and he was adamant that it went on so I was happy to do so.

    I sometimes have the opposite problem in that he wants me to take photos of random stuff (to me – obviously important to him) for me to put on, like him holding an orange with some sticks in it that he created in the park!

    Louka generally tells me not to take pictures of him at all, I'm not sure he gets it though I think he just likes to be difficult and the opposite of his brother!

    • TheBoyAndMe says

      Children! I am hoping that this is a phase that will pass, but it's certainly made me analyse how I portray him and build his digital footprint.

  2. says

    The main thing is, you won’t stop taking photos – heck, you take as many as I do. H is the same- although she approves quite a few for the blog. But it’s about trust too, and if she lets me post things, then we’ve found our happy medium – plus it isn’t too difficult to do a photo and not show their face, but still get the idea (thank goodness!) xx

    • TheBoyAndMe says

      I agree, but I think it just dumbfounded me that he has obviously been thinking about it. As you say, it's all about trust.

  3. says

    I feel sad, I'm sure you've hit this stage so much sooner than I did. Now I take snaps from behind, without faces, the stories continue but the photos are obscure. And the stories change too, my teens don't want their teenage antics shared and that's fair enough, it is more helping on the farm posts from me now than true parenting dilemmas that I share. A parenting blog has to mature with your children and that includes their permission on photos and content.

    • TheBoyAndMe says

      I am hoping that it's a passing phase and that once he realises that I'm not set to embarrass him then he'll be ok with it. I hope!

  4. says

    This is something I think about a lot! I chose not to feature my children's faces on my blog from the beginning, and I try to take my photos while they are just enjoying themselves, rather than asking them to pose. But some days they don't even want me to do that… and I have to respect that! Other days they love their semi-famous status and want to know what photos of them I am putting online! It's so important for us as parent bloggers, and parents on social media in general, to think long term about their social media footprint. They are the first real generation to grow up like this. Very thought-provoking.

    • TheBoyAndMe says

      Thanks so much for commenting, and yes you're right that they're the first generation to experience this and it is our respoonsibility to not scupper things for them in the future.

  5. says

    I have spoken to my kids at length about this as they are aware of my blog, instagram, etc. They haven't read it, but do come across pictures. I haven't posted any they didn't approve of and I never say anything they wouldn't want me to say. It's hard, but I think you are right it's only fair x

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