It probably goes without saying but Amy and I are pretty comfortable being open about ourselves online. Amy’s way more open than I am but we’re both way above average.
For me, it’s really helpful to hear from other parents and young(ish) families. By being open we connect more than we otherwise would.
And, of course, there’s a bit of ego feeding. We tend to think our kid is pretty special and we love the reinforcement that comes from other people on that front.
But as the monkey gets a bit older, I start to worry more. She hasn’t opted in to an openly-shared life; are we being unfair to her? And are we putting her at risk by sharing her life online?
It feels natural to us to share and we’ve both benefitted immensely from the strength and support of our online communities. But is that fair to her?
This isn’t something I’ve been thinking about as much as Joe apparently has. I talk to enough online moms that have answered this question in their own ways. When I started talking about the kid online I called her the Baby Girl, and I know many parents who always use pseudonyms for their kids to protect them, their identities. Now she’s not a baby and I’ve started calling her The Kid, or sometimes still the Baby Girl, and often by her real name. I can’t seem to help myself because she is so very much Maggie and not really anything else.
I went through the same process when I started developing my own online presence. I went with a nickname at first, and then decided to just go for it and be myself. I put myself out there and I don’t hide from it.
I also think it’s fair to say that the stories on my blog are rarely things that my daughter would want me not to say. But I also know from talking to other online moms that my kid might come to me one day and ask me specifically to not share something, and that’s okay too. What I’m trying to share is my experience as a mother, being totally in love with this being, and creating memories that she will take pleasure in reading as she grows up.