Friday, 19 July 2013

Is this blog harmful to my child

Tomorrow is Latte Mum's first birthday, and I'm starting to wonder if I've bitten off more than I can chew. This digital age we're living in both excites and terrifies me in equal measure.

On the one hand, I get to blog about my caffeine-induced Latte Mum adventures and connect with other parents around the globe (too amazing for words). On the other, the internet is luring our tech-savvy children into an increasingly wicked web, potentially exposing them to anything from degrading sexual exploits to faceless cyber bullying. This world we're living in is very different to the one I can relate to from my childhood.

I've been thinking about this a lot lately as my increasingly independent toddler embarks on his own adventures without me. He's no longer a helpless baby that thrives simply on breastmilk, love, a clean nappy and a soft toy to cuddle. He needs constant stimulation, interaction with the outside world, loves anything with a switch, loves anything that resembles a phone or remote, and "i-Pad" was one of his first words. I can no more keep him away from technology than I can from growing up. And there will come a time when I will have to rely on the life lessons we have taught him to ensure he makes the right decisions, because he will be a teenager in little over a decade and I won't be there to hold his hand all the time.

I have a responsibility to protect him as much as possible, and cyber bullying is my primary online concern.

At the moment, he is blissfully unaware that he is my muse. When I chronicle his life through Facebook, he has no choice in the matter. When I share my mummy journey with the world through Latte Mum, he can't approve the content beforehand. But, he will be googling his name soon and so too will his classmates.

I keep coming back to one thing. Judgement. Yes, that intangible yet essential element that every good parent should have, and I really hope I have enough of it.

I hope I use enough judgement to refrain from saying anything on this blog that negatively affects my child in any way. I'm sure I will use my judgement when navigating my way through the toddler tantrums, school homework debates, and whether or not we should buy him a car when he turns 18. I certainly hope I use my judgement to assess risk and keep him safe and out of harms way.

Surely between my husband and I, we have enough judgement to ensure we make happy memories for our child rather than plant the seeds for some weird phobia that he just can't shake. Right?! I mean, we didn't name him North West so that's a good start.

So, my fellow Latte Mums, after a whole year together I am starting to panic about the best way to proceed with this blog. Do I keep going as I have been? Do I change my focus, and talk more about me and less about the bambinos? Keen for your thoughts!

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