When I first started blogging, just 9 months ago, I understood that I would be 'exposing' myself (no, not like that!) to the world and although I felt a little nervous, I was ready for it. What started out as a bit of fun, has slowly morphed into a place to vent frustrations, revel in proud moments, discuss parenting issues and invite you, as reader, to share in all of that - I love it!
This is what blogging is all about isn't it?
Well yes, in a way it is - what's the point of having a personal space to write, if the content is bland, so private it actually says....well, nothing! I chose to be honest about my views, in the ups and downs that we experience as a family of 5 and I was proud of that. My readers seemed to like it too, always keen to put in an encouraging word or share their own views on an issue. I didn't however, consider the consequence of sharing the personal lives of my children, and the affect that this may have on them and our relationship, in the future.
This week, various things have made me wonder, forced me to question whether this is fair on my children. It might make me feel better in a therapeutic kind of way, encourage more readers and promote a good, healthy discussion about ways to parent, but is it right....for them? I asked a few bloggers their views on the subject and it would seem that many of them had already visited this little conundrum, reaching their own conclusions. Michelle, who writes the very popular Mummy from the Heart, wrote a post in 2011, on the same subject - you can read it here.
My children are now all between the ages of 8 and 12 (almost 13!) and this is a very vulnerable age. It's also a time when they are beginning to delve into the world of the internet, facebook (not quite yet but soon) and it won't be long before they stumble across the content of this blog. Up until now, I have chosen not to share it with them, not in any detail anyway. They are aware that occasionally we are asked to review products or days out (the fun part) and that I write a blog as a hobby. They don't know any more than that. One of my daughters has lately started to quiz me on the content and this was the 'icing on the cake', so to speak, as I started to squirm and wasn't entirely sure how to answer her. The next logical question would be - "can I read it?" What would I say?
I have always been honest in my approach. My aim is to help other parents realise that they're not alone in parenting struggles and hopefully assist them along the way. I believe that this can still be done, without exposing my children and perhaps risking my relationship with them, later in life. I would hate for them to come across this blog and see the content as embarrassing or worse still, a betrayal of privacy. So from now on, I won't 'name names' and have decided to be slightly more candid in my approach, considering how they might view it before choosing to hit 'publish'.
What do you think? Do you agree and have a strategy for dealing with this yourself? Perhaps you have younger children right now and don't see this as being a problem - will it be something you address as they grow up? I would love to hear your views....
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