Maybe my Facebook friends are more polite than most. But I’ve noticed some who’ve had babies recently sounding apologetic about posting photos.
“Sorry about the baby spam,” they say, only half-joking, before sharing a picture of their gorgeous child.
Babies are never spam.
I get a lot of photos of burgers in my Facebook feed. I get the results of people’s quizzes, which always say their “real age” is younger than they are. I get updates on how my friends are doing in Genies and Gems. I get insipid “inspirational” memes. I get links to websites devoted to exposing the 9/11 conspiracy. I get status updates, in Facebook’s new preschooler-size big printing, telling me that my friends are tired and are going to bed. No “sorry for the burger spam” or “sorry for the conspiracy theory spam”, ever.
How could I not welcome the baby photo that pops up among all this?
Awww... Photo via iStock.
You want to share your ultrasound image? Go ahead. I like feeling your excitement. It takes me back to how I felt.
Your kid said something funny? Tell me. I need a break from reading depressing predictions about Donald Trump.
You went to the beach and had a great day? Show me. (Just don't use the word "blessed". That's where I draw the line.)
Your kid did something fantastic at school? Brag about it. You don't have to agonise over how to write it so you're only humblebragging. It's okay to be proud of your kids. You're my friends. Why wouldn't I be happy that your kids are doing well?
I love seeing my friends' kids growing up on Facebook. Some of them I've never met, but I feel like I know them. I see my friends in their faces, coming out more strongly as they get older. There are some who are so gorgeous that my heart melts a little looking at them. There are a couple who are hilarious - just like their parents - and make me smile every time I read what they're up to. There are a few who have Aspergers, and I feel like I share their parents' pride in their progress.
Plus, every time a friend posts about their child, I feel better about posting about mine.
Cuuuuuuute. Photo via iStock.
I used to be careful how often I talked about my kids on Facebook. I would try to alternate posts about them with posts about politics or TV or something, so I would sound well-rounded and not child-obsessed. Now I don't bother. If I feel like posting about my kids, I do it. I like talking about them, and Facebook is the best place.
I live more than 1000km away from my parents and my siblings. Most of my friends live interstate or in distant suburbs of this big city. Facebook is my village, and that's okay.
The fact that "baby spam" is even a concept makes me angry. It's as if people can post as much other boring stuff as they want, but they have to be careful about not overdoing it with the baby photos. Stuff that.
To all my Facebook friends, please, never apologise about posting updates on your babies. (You can hold back on the inspirational memes, though.)