This is a touchy subject. It is a new subject. How do we conduct ourselves in an increasingly social media oriented world? More specifically, how do we conduct our children’s lives in this place of 24/7 updates with a false sense of cyber security (please remember, nothing is beyond the reach of hackers on the world-wide web)?
The way I see it, all psychology textbooks have been rendered out of date. We are in new territory now with children coming of age in a time where their childhoods have been chronicled in varying detail from the cute photo updates to the less savory like specifying their latest growing pains snafu.
This is personal. So personal that none of us has a right to tell the other how to do this. We are doing it and the lessons from it are due to come in soon. Some adults will be largely unaffected by growing up with their lives an open digital scrapbook for others to see since most of their contemporaries have the same story.
Speaking of stories, some children will grow up to find out as they read back in old “feeds” that their childhood was quite idyllic with perhaps a splash of sarcastic satire. Undoubtedly there will be some disillusioned as what they see is not what they feel when they render their upbringing. There are countless combinations of emotions and overall psychological profiles that will emerge because of this new evolution of human behavior of “sharing” and “liking” in a digital cloud.
As a parent myself, I have carved out my own code of conduct in agreement with my husband regarding how we share our family online. If I would dare to share unsolicited advice to other parents it would be to try to diversify your child’s historical record by not limiting it to your online social media service. Try a handwritten journal to them throughout their growing years, ask them as they become more independent in their adolescence if they want their life chronicled online, et cetera.
While the anthropologists of the world may be very anxious about the recent discovery of bones in a South African cave and what it means for humans today, I would argue that the biggest discovery is yet to be unveiled in upcoming years in the psychological profiles of the post-millenial generation (either known as gen-edge or gen-z).