Friday, May 16, 2014

To Share or Not to Share

I saw a special on Dateline one night about a "family" that was catfishing an entire online community.  Their children were sick, the mother was pregnant, and sadly passed away in a car accident.  People all over the country were wearing support bracelets, posting on their behalf, praying for them and genuinally cared for this family that did not exist.  Red flags started sprouting up, and a simple google image search led one supporter to the real blog - a mommy blog in South Africa!  This catfisher stole her photos and led thousands of people to believe that it was her family - turns out she was a teenager in the Midwest (Indiana, Ohio maybe?).  How would you feel if you were that blogger in South Africa?  Betrayal, violated, scared, among many, many more.

When I started this blog, my husband and I decided that I shouldn't post any pictures of the girls, or really use their names, because "what if bad people get ahold of their information?" Isn't that every parents worse nightmare?

I blog to share my stories, connect with others and have a history of my own saved somewhere.  A huge part of my life are my children.  What kind of story am I sharing if you don't know their names or have faces to the stories? 

Who wants to see this when reading a story about my family?  No one, thats who.

It's not just my babies.  If I want to post pictures of my friends or family - do I need to tell them first?  What if they say they don't want to be online?

Social media has changed the way we share information.  I post pictures to personal Facebook and  Instagram accounts - both of which are private.  But I know some people that won't have pictures of their children anywhere, and I can see that side of it as well.  I am having this internal struggle between "share it all!" and "why are you even writing about them?" and I cannot figure out which way to go. 

For my readers that are also bloggers, how do you handle this?  Did you have this struggle?  What was the ultimate deciding factor?  I'm guessing that I am thinking too much about this, but I can't help but to feel a little protective of my family and friends.  For my readers that aren't bloggers - I'd love your perspective as well.  Help me out!  (It's ok to also tell me that I am looking too far in to this... nothing new there!)



  1. Even though I don't have kids, I completely understand where you're coming from by not posting pictures. It's such a scary thought that someone can just up and use your life and your family without you even knowing.

  2. I honestly started my blog with no intention of sharing photos of myself. In fact if you see my sidebar photo its still half of my face! Eventually I have shared a few pics of myself and a couple of my niece and nephew and I asked my sister's permission first. She is a photographer too so she said go ahead but she told me if I share in the future she would watermark the pictures. She gave the go ahead for what is there now though. I say all of this to say I too am concerned and dont know how to navigate. I felt really angry on behalf of Helene (Helene in Between) when she shared that her photo was made into a viral meme. I couldnt understand why anyone would do it. The fact is though that for the majority of blogs this isnt the case. I say go with your gut. Truthfully as much as your (and my) FB profile may be private, photos can be stolen from there too. See how you feel about it as you go along. Personally I will read either way. Its the content that matters. If you call your daughter by her name with no photos, people will still get the point. I know some blogs share the backs of their kids but not their faces etc. Go with your gut :)

    Sorry for the essay. Yikes

  3. When I started my blog, I rarely wanted to share pictures. However, as time went on, I became more comfortable with it. I've shared pictures of my bf and I, as well as family. I do not have kids or anything, so I'm not sure how I'll handle a situation like that until the time comes. It's a scary thought though. This world is a crazy place, and social media doesn't help. You just have to do whatever feels right to you.

    I really like your blog, though! I just stumbled across it randomly. Just wanted you to know I'm following you on all your social medias and Bloglovin' now! Can't wait to see more from you! :)

    Hope ♡ |

  4. This is something I gave gone back and forth with so many times. I have had the same fears as you. And still do. Having said that, I do share photos. My blog is a lifestyle blog aimed at my daily life life and I can't document my life as it is here and now without my daughters making surprise appearances. As a concession to this and bc I worry that their photos will be used elsewhere I will be starting to watermark my photos this week.

    I hate that in this world we have to consider this and worry about this. There is no right or wrong answer here. It's a personal gut feeling that you must follow on your own. Just know that you are not alone and that I still do grapple with it.

    Thanks for writing this and starting this dialogue. Much appreciated! <3

  5. You bring up a real, serious concern, and it makes me so sad that it's even a thing. Nothing is safe anymore. I probably put far too many details of my life out there, and I may regret it some day, but at the same time, I want to be real and use those points to connect with you all. It's tough, and I don't know the answer. I even read somewhere that you shouldn't post about if you're going away for the weekend because burglars will figure out where you live and take your stuff, which is a real possibility when a lot of social media apps use location settings!


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