The age of “sharenting”—the phenomenon of parents posting pictures and other content relating to their children and their upbringing on social media platforms such as Instagram—is fraught with concern, with many an argument both for and against the practice.
- Choosing an “old fashioned” print announcement
Without doubt a milestone—or in Facebook parlance, a “Life Event”—the birth of a child comes amid much fanfare, celebration, and joy, not to mention sleep deprivation, dirty diapers, and potential postpartum depression. Given the general upheaval of the time, many parents are choosing rather to limit the amount of online sharing of the birth of their children or avoiding it altogether.
You might like to consider slowing down your announcement and resorting to a more traditional medium—how about supporting your local newspaper with a paid-for classified announcement, or saving up a series of photographs over the first few weeks and making a customized, carefully curated, and narrated newspaper print for just your family and friends?
Not only does an announcement via newspaper fit the “romantic” tradition prevalent over centuries but clipping your announcement and framing it, or printing a tabloid or even broadsheet sized paper filled with treasured memories, makes for a life-long family memento.
You might even find a newsprint clipping announcing the birth of your parents and grandparents—beautifully yellowed with age—and frame a triptych or combine it along with their and your baby photos in your newspaper, making a lasting, tangible, treasured heirloom. Here are a few further reasons you may choose to avoid social sharing a childbirth:
- You might inadvertently reveal private details
Posting photographs with geotags, either from the hospital, or soon after arriving home, may disclose personal private information that falls into the hands of strangers. Consider that a photo posed in front of your home may reveal a street sign and house number, or other landmark, giving away your location. What’s more, other family and friends tagging or sharing photographs or textual information of the birth, may also open your private details to unknown, un-trustworthy persons.
- You don’t have your child’s permission to post
While it’s highly unlikely, of course, that your one-week-old will disapprove of your publication of that oh-so-adorable mugshot of them fast asleep, mouth agape, you might like to consider how the future-them will receive the image. When the inevitable insecurities of teenagerhood set in, they may find the photo deeply embarrassing and may come to resent social media disclosures made years earlier by their parents.
- You may upset fellow parents considerably
While you may have given birth to a perfectly formed bundle of joy, it is wise to consider the many parents who have experienced a traumatic birth. Birth defects, heath problems, and genetic issues are a reality for many; why add to the distress of friends, or even strangers, who are having difficulties or whose pregnancies ended in heartbreak?