My children are such a huge part of my life (well, durr!) so it’s only natural that family anecdotes and photos find their way on here. I must admit though that it is something that I am really mindful about. More and more so the older my children become.
Some readers have even commented that they forget that I have older children as I don’t talk about them quite as much as I talk about my youngest two. I guess I am guilty of this. Of course, this doesn’t mean that they are a smaller part of my life, in fact in parenting terms, they are probably the hardest work they have ever ever been, taking up more time and certainly emotional energy than ever. But I do censor what makes it on to my blog. Not because I want to create some rose-tinted view of my life, not at all. It’s just that I would loathe for my blog to become a source of embarrassment to them.
I remember how hard it is to be a teenager, it’s not that long ago *cough* but imagine having your every mistake and petty argument being shared by your mother with the whole wide interwebz? M.O.R.T.I.F.Y.I.N.G.
In one way, I see blogs as being the modern day equivalent of the naked baby on a sheepskin rug photo that your mother insisted on having in pride of place on the mantel piece. There is a short time in your life where that photo is The Most Embarrassing Thing In The World. And no doubt that even as mindful as I think I might be, there will be things that I share on here that my children might be embarrassed by at some point. (I really hope not but I only have to talk to my teens in public at the moment to embarrass them!) But I kind of hope that in more time to come, they will be able to look back with fondness of course. That’s not to say that I don’t take their feelings now into account, but it is hard to know if you are getting it right.
I suppose the only sure fire way is not to blog about them at all. But I’m not sure that I could write a personal blog without them creeping in somewhere because quite simply, my children are my life. It’s a hard balance though and one that I hope I am getting half way right.
When I first started writing here, I was completely anonymous. No names, no photos, no nothing. But in time my online life began to overlap with my real life and it became almost impossible to remain anonymous. My blog isn’t a secret in real life anymore but I still don’t shout about it. I also made a very conscious decision not to use our names openly online. My children have quite unusual names and that was a big part of my decision. So whilst these potentially embarrassing anecdotes and photos might be out there for anyone to see, they’re not likely to pop up when my children’s future employer Googles them.
Am I kidding myself that it is possible to a strike a balance though? How much of your children’s lives do you share? And where does your self-censor kick in? I know that I’m not the only parenting blogger to have these concerns and I guess the whole point of writing this post is to see what you think. I would love to hear your thoughts on this one.