Time and place
There is a time and a place for everything. I think it is important to remember that, especially because the world our kids are growing up in is very very different than the world we knew as kids. While we spent our days at school, and then connected with our friends with the phone with the SUPER long cord (or, later, that cordless thing), we didn’t have the same sort of connectivity. Now, our kids are almost constantly on their devices. The amount of information out there – personal and otherwise – is mind-boggling. Just try it: google yourself and see what everyone else in the world sees about you. There is no such thing as being incognito nowadays; our kids grow up with the world watching … and what we post and share about them may come back to haunt them later in life.
We live in a time that celebrates over-sharers. I was just reading some Facebook posts from friends and there it was: a post about a friend’s child and their elimination habits. As a parent, I have to laugh and sympathize because, trust me, I’ve been there, done that, and can give this new-to-potty-training dad a few very reliable tips (why ARE boys so hard to potty-train? What is that all about?! And trust me when I tell you, that extra wipe you lay on top of all of the ‘action area’ after you remove the diaper and get the next one ready will save you from a surprise shower. Especially useful with the middle-of-the-night diaper changes.). On the other hand, though, let’s think about what that kid is going to think, though, in 13 years. Does he really want his future potential girlfriend to be able to google that horrid little factoid about her Friday night date? I mean, this is the girl he’s been really acting crazy about, right? He’s really into this one, she is just THE ONE (right now). I’m not so sure what she’s going to think about his potty training issues. Fast forward 10 more years, and now we’re looking at future bosses. How do you think Mr CEO is going to feel about his potential new employee and the excruciating detail that can be found about his exploits in and around the potty. Perhaps my friend’s kid didn’t add those details to his CV, right?
You’re shaking your head, thinking I’m being ridiculous. And maybe I am. But isn’t this something we should consider before we post the next look-how-cute-that-naked-tushie-is pic on Facebook or send it to every family member online? I am not saying I’m innocent. I do try to respect my family’s privacy and withhold names; if you know me, know my family, you’ll know to whom I am referring. I try not to post truly embarrassing pics, but … I’m a mom, and sometimes we just can’t help it. But I do try to think about how I would feel if someone found a similar pic or post or description or what-have-you, and if I honestly think I’ll mind, I don’t post.
Just my two cents worth. And you are more than welcome to toss these words back in my face when I do just the very thing I was wingeing about.