There should be ground rules that all parents follow.
Last week a fellow mother posted a picture of my children on her Facebook page. I didn’t even know until I was scrolling through my newsfeed and saw that she added a new photo. Then I saw the faces and a notification telling me I had been tagged. I hadn’t been; my children were.
I started reading some of the comments from people I didn’t know and I felt a little sick.
A man I had never even met left a comment saying “What a cutie” and another woman said “He is gorgeous”. My friend responded by saying, “They are not mine, they belong to my friend (and tagged me)”.
I felt weird.
I found this to be a breech of my children’s privacy, and my own. My kids don’t have Facebook accounts and there should be no photos of them posted online without my permission.
For a long time I resisted the online world.
I do now have Facebook and I use it often but my privacy settings are as tight as can be and the photos that I share of my children are only available to close friends. I'm not one of these people who has every person they've ever met on their list of friends. I keep mine quite small. I restrict the audience of some posts and I limit who can see what.
In my previous life, I was exposed to a lot of risk. I had a job which very much impacted my personal life and made me a target for people that wished to do me harm. It's a part of my life that's over now but for this reason I remain vigilant in keeping my children safe.
Perhaps it's overkill and a lot of people would think I overreact but I will not put my kids at risk by posting their faces all over the internet and I don't expect other people to do it for me.
As their mother, it is my job to protect my kids against the world. To shelter them from anyone who may have sick motives. Seeing another person post pictures of my sons without even telling me was over stepping the mark.