Honestly, I get so excited whenever I see a woman share an ultrasound picture on Facebook. It's usually part of her big pregnancy reveal, so I'm learning about this new life change for the first time. Plus, I love babies. However, and even though I have nothing but love for other women who keep people up-to-date with their pregnancies in this particular way, I would never make the same choice. In fact, there are more than a few reasons why I refuse to share an ultrasound picture on Facebook.
Throughout my entire pregnancy, from beginning to end, my ultrasound pictures live on my fridge, and my fridge only. I took a snap of them and texted a picture to my mom and best friend, who both live overseas, but everyone else missed out. I did, however, share one picture of one ultrasound on my closed, private mom group. We were all sharing the pictures after our appointments and, because the group was small and only contained other moms-to-be, I felt comfortable and confident that my own ultrasound picture wouldn't leave the group. I knew who was going to see it, and how they felt about it, and that was more than enough for me.
I understand the desire to share these pictures with the social media masses. I have an ultrasound picture of my son sucking his thumb in utero, and it was so adorable that I considered posting it everywhere for all to see. However, eventually I decided against it, regardless of how cute that picture was, for the following reasons:
Because It's The Ultimate Overshare
So much of our lives are lived on the internet. From people's lunch choices, to their dates, to their vacations, to their bodily functions. I mean, I'm all about open lines of communication, but it's just a little much, right? So, when it comes to posting a picture of the inside of your body, I honestly can't help but think of it as a TMI moment.
Because Some Things Should Be Considered Sacred
There are some things that, in my humble opinion, should stay between you and your partner (or other close, supportive figures in your life). Like the positive pregnancy test that's covered in pee, and your ultrasound picture. To me, pregnancy is a special time full of intimate moments. If you are happy to broadcast those milestones, hey, you do you. However, for me, personally, I consider them unavailable for public consumption.
Because It Can Make People Uncomfortable
Although I love seeing people's ultrasound pictures, I know not everyone feels the same way. People of an older generation, in particular, seem to feel a little uncomfortable. I can understand how it can be jarring to scroll through general Facebook updates and then suddenly be confronted with a full frontal shot of someone's uterus.
Because It Can Make People Sad
Pregnancy announcements are joyful, but not for everyone. Couples who are struggling with infertility or who have experienced a loss can find these updates to be devastating.
Of course, any type of pregnancy announcement could potentially upset someone if they are experiencing their own struggle. However, ultrasounds have become such an icon of pregnancy that they can be particularly upsetting.
Because I Believe It Should Be Private
The inside of your body is not something anyone else really needs (or probably wants) to see. I have some contacts on Facebook who are acquaintances, old friends, and business contacts. I definitely do not want to be able to claim that they have seen inside my womb.
Because It Can't Be Undone
It is (or should be) common knowledge that once something is on the internet, it's there forever. You can't ever take that back (even if you hit "delete") and it's forever out there for anyone to access. It doesn't matter how many controls you may think you have in place, you have effectively given a copy of the inside of your body, and your developing baby, to everyone you know, everyone they know, and even people you don't know at all.
Because It Invites Creepy Comments
Any pregnancy announcement, unfortunately, has the potential to invite inappropriate comments. Hell, anything you ever post on the internet can give someone the idea it's OK to say some really creepy sh*t. For example, I actually had someone make comments about my sex life when I posted a message about my pregnancy. Um, no.
I have really mixed feelings about posting photos of my child on the internet. On one hand, I feel that it's the perfect way to connect with friends and family in other countries, or who I might not see my son as often as they would like. I can show them how my little one is doing, growing, developing, and how much he is learning. On the other hand, I am also very concerned with the whole idea of sharing so many pictures of my kid without his consent. It's something I struggle with all the time and, as a result, I have decided to make decisions on what to share on a case-by-case basis.
So, yeah, the idea of sharing his very first photograph before he was even born without his permission (which, of course, is impossible to obtain) feels like a violation to me.