“Don’t Put That On Instagram”

13173326_10154176035907171_7926769861639607866_o“Don’t put that on Instagram” she says, as I snap pictures of her digging into the cookie dough we’d just made together. She’s long had final say of what bits and pieces of her life I can share online.

“How do you know about Instagram?” I ask, fully aware that she scrolls through my feed liking photos but never having discussed the practice by name before.

“I just do,” she says. “I know stuff.”

“How about just a picture of your hand?” I ask. (I love her chubby hands.)

“Can I take another pinch of cookie dough?” she counters, always a step ahead.

•••••••••••

It’s a conversation we’ve been having more and more frequently. She’s acutely aware of what’s on the other side of the iPhone screen, and she asks more and more about my intentions for different photos, projects and videos. “Is this for BuzzFeed?” She’ll often ask, before inquiring how many people might see it.” “They don’t know me,” she’ll sometimes decide. “Let’s keep this just for us.”

And so we do. Her likeness is her likeness. Her privacy is her privacy. We’ve come a long way from the days where I shared her every move onthe818.com, in an effort to paint a portrait of my life that didn’t make me hate myself. It’s always a learning curve, parenting in this digital age.

As long as we keep our conversations going, I think we’ll be okay.

How do you handle social media with your young children?

Feed Me Seymour