Most parents are on some form of social media, and whether they have given it much thought or not, are engaged in sharenting to some degree.
Sharenting seems to be the new form of parenting, a way of using social media channels to connect to others and share the highs and lows of being parent. Many of us will be familiar with posting a status related to our child, whether it be a moment where your heart swells with pride, or when you need moral support during the difficult times. Stories of sleepless nights, teenage tantrums and teething issues abound throughout the various forms of social media, and unbenownst to many kids, their life and actions are out there in the public domain.
Whilst this is generally something we just do, it does beg some questions in relation to the rights of kids. By the time they reach a certain age, they have a profile and a history built up online, one which they have not asked for, or were too young to understand. Facebook, previously the centre for young people to communicate and share, has seen a lot of young people leaving in recent years. There are just too many parents up there who could see what they share with their friends (if they accept being a friend with a parent, which is a whole other issue). Facebook has in essence, become uncool, and it’s easy to see why if a whole string of embarassing pictures and comments are up there. What teen wants a picture of themselves with baby food all over their mouth going to their friends?
The other side of this arguement is that social media can act as a journal of childhood and one that youngsters will appreciate in the future. For most parents however, this will come quite a while after the terrible teens stage when just about everything is embarrasing. The fact is that most parents will still use social media to connect to others, but just how much information we put up on our kids does provide some food for thought…