Mommy Bloggers Continue To Overshare

Emily (or Em) of EmphasisAdded (or EmphasisAdded!) took her offspring to the hospital for a hip check and couldn’t resist the opportunity to milk sympathy and drama from her followers with a ridiculous bedside posed photo.

Don’t let my smile fool you…this was not a particularly fun outing

(I was putting on brave face for my girl.)

Since Hazel was breech until about 2 weeks before she was born, our pediatrician wanted us to get her hips checked out.  Not a big deal, really…but going to the hospital and watching your baby be held down for an ultrasound is more or less awful.

Hey, Captain Obvious! No shit it wasn’t a fun outing. Your kid could have had a medical problem and you took the time to take a posed photo in order to document each possible phase of this dramatic event on your oversharey blog. I’m genuinely glad your daughter is healthy and all is well, but the fact that I know so many intimate details of your life and your daughter’s life AT ALL is what left a bad taste in my mouth. Do I, a complete stranger, need to know that your daughter was in the hospital? Does DearBaby need to put a photo of herself breastfeeding on the internet? Do all these mommy bloggers need to live-tweet every step of their labor and delivery? No, no and no.

A commenter posted this recently:

While I love to snark and once again, find Jordan and her coochie cutters pretty insufferable, it seems like there’s very little space for these women to negotiate their identity as mothers without us totally jumping all over them for not being “perfect” or whatever.

In my snobby French opinion, there’s a BIG difference between negotiating your identify as a mother in a public, online space and exploiting your child’s identity to enhance your own in a public, online space.

  1. avatar "Lived with" is the new "we looked at rings"

    BOUNDARIES: Get some.

    Seriously, as the child of two raging narcissists, I am so glad there was no internet when I was a kid. SO, so glad.

  2. avatar KAS

    Posts of this nature don’t bother me. Maybe because it’s a baby? I might feel differently if the kid were older, but a baby is just a blob. It’s not like someone will see her years from now and recognize her from the blog based on baby pictures alone.

    • avatar Lancelle from Paris

      It’s a touchy subject to write about because everyone has different opinions of what a private moment is or should be. It’s not really about the recognition factor for me, but instead about what I perceive as exploitation for popularity/sympathy votes.

    • avatar Babby Forming, Despite Life-Threatening Heels

      For me it’s not the fact that it’s a “blob” – it’s the fact that this woman can’t have an episode that’s not undocumented or private or personal.
      It’s just all OUT THERE for everyone to gawk at.

      These oversharers have no sense of keeping anything for themselves. Not one single moment.
      When you give every piece of your life to the internet, what is left?

      It’s truly mental.

      • avatar Babby Forming, Despite Life-Threatening Heels

        ugh, that should be “documented”

    • avatar resident asshole

      this baby is literally a blob

      • avatar waitwhat

        harsh. don’t you think?

        • avatar resident asshole

          no. i didn’t say she was an ugly blob. but she sure is all chub.

          i happen to like the faces she makes at her mother a whole lot.

      • avatar Shrug Bitch

        I call her potato baby….but it’s said with love! Chunky babies FTW!

        • avatar Cream Puff

          I love chubby babies! The more rolls the better IMO. Chubby kids though, not so much. I probably sound mean but it’s just not healthy.

          • avatar My nostrils are TOTALLY symmetrical! Oo

            Not true! Babies can be all shapes, better to be slightly chunky than underfed when you’re a tiny tiny tot.

          • avatar My nostrils are TOTALLY symmetrical! Oo

            OH WAIT! I misread, AGAIN, you’re right chubby kids? Different story.

  3. avatar D

    All of these questions, the uncertainty, the chaos, the love, the surprises that come with new motherhood-and they are entitled to have them-can be navigated without your kid being prominently featured and looking like an accessory baby.

    While none of these women are the first to ever give birth, when you experience something new for the first time, it’s normal to wonder what the hell you are doing. Or be awed by an experience new to you, though not new to the world. But I firmly believe that you can do it offline to avoid all this (looks around the web). Or if you simply MUST share online, there are tasteful ways to do it. Posed photos in the hospital do not fall into that category. Head to toe baby “what I wore” is bat shit crazy. It becomes a whole lot more of “LOOK AT ME AND MAH BAYBEE” and a whole lot less like honest navigation of a confusing/wonderful/crazy time.

    I personally don’t have a problem with her writing about the experience. But the posed picture, with her perfectly made up from head to toe, with a smile…no thanks. That’s not sharing an experience and thinking that maybe you will find someone else who went through it, or hoping to help others who might go through it. It’s a “look at me” stunt.

    • avatar Aggressively Stupid

      But the posed picture, with her perfectly made up from head to toe, with a smile…no thanks.
      Exactly. She says she wasn’t really happy so why the smiley picture? Why not write about how hard or her concerns for her child’s future? Oh yeah, because it’s easier to smear on the Maybelline and say cheese then to actually write.

      • avatar Fail Whale

        maybelline?!? bitch, please! she makes weekly trips to Sephora (the blob told me so) and it ain’t for maybelline.

  4. avatar paparazzo

    The description of the medical visit is fine. She’s a baby and it’s not like she’s 13 and is having feminine problems or something. It’s the picture. Who the hell takes pictures like that in a hospital? AND POSES?? Who brings their camera to things like this? She did this at the pediatrician’s too (while “Haze” was getting her shots). I would have loved to see the faces of the medical staff.

    • avatar WASP-y Internet Upheaving Shorts

      Jinxies to you and Aggressively Stupid above. The lengths these tools will go to to document moments to later milk for sympathy/attention is just too much. I often wonder what these bloggers would do if they had a baby that wasn’t cute, had a facial deformity, disfigurement or other disorder. Would they be so eager to dress up their cute little blobs, parade them around Barneys and Starbucks, and photograph the shit out of them then? Or would they use them to garner more attention a la Kelle Hampton?

      • avatar Shrug Bitch

        I wonder if EA would have posted that photo if it turned out there was something wrong with her kid after all.

        • avatar It's Always Shitty in Donkadelphia

          She’d have re-enacted a fauxto shoot of her ‘distress’ at hearing bad news.

          #Munchausen by Proxy Syndrome in-the-making

      • avatar DirtyLakeMichigan

        Speaking as the mother of a child w/ a facial deformity, no, you DO NOT post pictures on the internet of your child for a variety of reasons. I learned that lesson the hard way. The only acceptable, for me anyway, reason you post pictures is because you belong to an online group made up of families w/ the same circumstance for support and guidance.

  5. avatar WASP-y Internet Upheaving Shorts

    Writing about a scary moment, yeah, I get that. But being in the doctor’s office and actively HANDING YOUR CAMERA TO SOMEONE to take a picture of said scary moment? NO. JUST NO.

    • avatar DirtyLakeMichigan

      I take lots of pictures when my kitteh has/had surgeries and/or procedures. The difference being, they’re for him. So when he gets older he can look back on his life and experiences and know how truly brave he was. After one surgery, my catband fell asleep next to my son in his hospital bed. It was late at night and he was crying, dazed and in pain and they both fell asleep face to face. I snapped a picture to capture the moment. So he’ll know we were always there and always will be. But at the doctor’s office??? Man, she must have some REALLLLLLLY tolerant nurses. There’s a few I know who would tell her to put that ‘f’ing thing away because we don’t do documentaries’.

  6. PEOPLE: Just live your goddam life! Stop recording every fucking minute of it. Out with your friends? Fucking enjoy your friends. On a romantic date? Just breathe in and out and think about how awesome it is.

    I have a 2 year old. He’s cute as hell. He does and says many cute things. We do fun things together involving books and hoses and kites and tricycles. I think we’ve taken approximately one picture of him over the last week. Who needs more? Do you really ever watch those old videos? Do you really REALLY page through thousands of pictures? If so, damn. Get a life.

    • avatar messicas clip on banngs

      PEOPLE: Just live your goddam life! Stop recording every fucking minute of it. Out with your friends? Fucking enjoy your friends. On a romantic date? Just breathe in and out and think about how awesome it is.

      ALL OF THIS? A+

    • avatar KAS

      You might be in the minority. A lot of the parents I know are taking tons of pictures. I know one (friend of a friend) who has a Flickr album for each week of the kid’s life, with HUNDREDS of pictures in each folder. And why is it always the ugliest kids you get the most pictures of?

      • avatar Onocentaur

        My cousin has thousands and thousands of pics on the internet. Sometimes she will put up albums of their classmates and shit too.

        • avatar Shrug Bitch

          That drives me absolutely insane when people post pictures of kids on the web who aren’t theirs (or even connected to them). I know on RBD people get up in arms whenever JA posts a pic of her looking Mommy Dearest with her publicist’s kid and I can’t help but wonder what the parents are thinking when she does so.

          • avatar I'd Rather Be Sleeping

            It makes me mental when people put photos of my kid on facebook. Am I guilty of posting pictures of him on my blog? Yes, call me an obnoxious mama oversharer. Maybe I am one of *those* people. But he’s MY kid and I decide when and where the photos are posted (and yeah, I know it’s the internet and it’s forever…but I like to pretend I have control, ok?). I HATE when my stupid little sister-in-law posts a picture of him on her facebook just so that her idiot friends can OMGADORABLE-YOU’RE-GOING-TO-BE-SUCH-A-GOOD-MOM-SOMEDAY her to death.

            • avatar Sausage Snappers

              Really? You really hate that your family is posting pictures of your baby? I had no idea that was taboo.

      • avatar D

        Crazy. What do you do with this??? Do you get prints and be buried with them when you die. I’m 29 years old, and don’t get me wrong, it may be the times, but I don’t have very many pictures of myself as a baby in my home now. Sure, I have a few of me and my brother. A few of me and my parents. I think maybe 6 total in my place, a few framed.

        And my parents, yeah they have a few framed. some of me (and brother) as a baby, my high school picture. My school graduation pictures (same for Bro), but all those other shots…gathering dust in photo albums in drawers all over the house.

        What do you do with them??? Seriously. What do you do with 5,000 pictures of a baby?

        And if a grown ass woman or man has more than a couple photos of themselves splashed all over their apartment, I’m giving them the side eye!!!!! I don’t even think I have one of myself framed. It’s always me with family or me with friends. And let’s face it, most of the pictures i have framed are of cats.

        • avatar KAS

          There’s definitely a law of diminishing returns. My sisters and I looking at our baby pictures- there’s 3 of us, and probably 2 or 3 photo albums of the period when we were all very small (mid to early 80s). I certainly wouldn’t know what to do with thousands and thousands of pictures of myself as a child.

        • avatar KAS

          My sisters and I *like* looking at our baby pictures

        • avatar Shrug Bitch

          I just laugh at all of these first time moms who photograph their kid’s every poo and burp and upchuck — wait until they have more. My mom and I always laugh because I’m the oldest and there are tons of embarrassing photos of me floating around: baby’s first potty! baby’s first steps! baby outside not wearing any clothes! But then she had three more kids and by the time my youngest brother came around (#5) there is one picture of him as a newborn in the hospital, and then pretty much nothing until his first day of preschool.

          • avatar It's Always Shitty in Donkadelphia

            Ditto. By the time I came along (youngest of a big litter) no one remembered where a camera was (thank dog!), but the 1st grandkid came along while I was still a kitten & the photo frenzy resumed ~ to this day, I dodge photos & the eldest gk hams for the cam.


          • avatar featherbrained

            THIS! I was the first of three children. My mom had a baby journal for each of us (a private, ink and paper journal…imagine?). Mine is filled start to finish, tons and tons of notes on everything. My middle bro’s is half finished. My youngest bro is 2 pages finished.

            She didn’t love any of us less; in fact she’s closer to the other two. However, it does stop be as EXCITING after the first.

            • avatar It's Always Shitty in Donkadelphia

              My baby book had DOB, weight & height & it was where my birth certificate & Catechism papers were stored …

              Beyond that … N O T H I N G

            • avatar KAS

              I’m the first of 3, too, and my baby book is quite full! I don’t even think my youngest sister got a baby book…..

        • avatar Sausage Snappers

          I know bloggers who’ve lost their babies and are insanely grateful to have as many pictures as they do and wish they had more.

      • I know I’m in the minority. My sister in law has videoed every performance ever of her kids. Every recital, every concert, everything. And her kids are in their 20s now so she’s got stacks and stacks of VIDEOTAPES. It’s ridiculous! WHAT IS THE POINT, SERIOUSLY WHAT IS THE POINT????????????????


    • avatar Shrug Bitch

      I’m sure it has everything to do with the fact that digital cameras have become affordable and ubiquitous, not to mention the rise of camera phones. 10-12 years ago you’d have to get (limited amounts of) film developed, camera phones were poor quality….now you can take 200 pics of your kid and upload them all to Facebook with the click of a button.

    • avatar WASP-y Internet Upheaving Shorts

      I think digital photography has changed the way parents take pictures of their kids. You can have unlimited pictures, store them online and with a DLSR, suddenly every mom’s a professional photographer.

      I keep picture of my kid online but it’s more as a back up measure and a way to share pictures with family members in other states. No one would ever know where they are if I didn’t share the URL. I also keep a blog, but it’s just to share pictures and information, not draw attention to myself, shill or get popular. It’s incredibly boring (Kid started walking! Here’s a 30 second vid) and only gets about 100 visits a week. I’m never in the pictures because IT’S NOT ABOUT ME.

      • avatar KAS

        I’m sure when we have kids, my father in Florida, internet stalker extraordinaire, will DEMAND new photos/videos every 15 seconds. You don’t mess with Pop-Pop.

      • avatar Babby Forming, Despite Life-Threatening Heels

        This is exactly how we share our 3 year old’s life with family and friends who don’t live near us. No one else needs to know about his comings and goings.

        I could never in a bajillion years Dooce my kid.

    • avatar Pancakes with a side of Pancakes with a side of of cray cray

      I want to do dirty things to this comment.

      • avatar Pancakes with a side of Pancakes with a side of of cray cray

        also, I don’t know when this happened, but my avatar looks like a pancake dressed as a woman. Amazing results.

        • avatar Yawn

          WordPress is da bomb. I’d love to be in a conference room where they design all those guys. Well, it’s probably just someone tinkering quietly on them in peace. It’s truly a gift to all, what they do.

  7. avatar Hobby Partner

    Look, I don’t follow these women, but as a new mom of a 5-month-old, who is newly separated from my friends and family due to moving to another country in a different time zone, I often feel overwhelmed and very isolated. I haven’t been able to find a job and am at home all day with my child who cannot speak to me (not complaining, just the truth). I’ve been tempted to create a blog just to have a sense of connectedness to others who may be similarly situated.

    Mommy bloggers used to annoy me, but I kind of get it in a way now. I can appreciate people who blog about the good and the bad and who don’t make parenting look like it’s a garden of roses. It isn’t. I don’t think this post seems like it’s trying to pander for sympathy, or is even fake/contrived, as you suggest. It’s something that happened, it’s real, and that’s that. Would I feel the need to blog about something like this (my daughter is actually sick today)? Probably not, but I don’t know.

    But you have to admit there is some irony to this blog nitpicking other bloggers for posting mundane (as you say) details about their lives.

    • avatar PregnantLegs

      I have blogged about my kid, it’s reassuring in those first few months to have fellow moms give you honest feedback – that you are cray cray, they have been there before, you’re doing a good job. You get so much unsolicited advice from friends and family that it’s confusing… and even more so when you may not be parenting in the style they find appropriate. Blogging about being a new mom helped me stay on track and trust my guts rather than succumbing to peer/familiar pressure to do things I didn’t believe in.

      I don’t get the folks who keep blogging every second of their child’s life after that year or two of craziness. The baby becomes a human being, the mom has gotten the hang of most of it, and it just becomes a blog to get attention.

  8. avatar jpa

    Woman needs some perspective.
    Either write about your experience in a way that could be beneficial to other people or don’t write at all. Ultrasounds are pretty harmless and the baby looks content, so why is she talking about how much of a struggle it is to see her baby strapped down. Think about the parents who have kids with cancer or serious life threatening conditions and then think again about posting your fake smiling picture of your baby in the hospital on the internet.

    • avatar waitwhat

      why does it have to be beneficial to others? why can’t it be for yourself and your family?

      • avatar resident asshole

        because if it’s just for you and your family, stop trying to gather a following and get a paper journal.

      • if it’s for yourself and your family then yeah, keep it private.

        • avatar KAS

          I doubt it’s worth it for most bloggers to make their blogs private- it’s a pain to find a platform, keep it locked down, remind the people you know who want to read it of the passwords, etc. So many blogs are so bad/boring, they’re never going to get any sort of fan following. I think that’s why a lot of people overpost on Facebook- it’s just so easy!

      • avatar jpa

        My point was that is if she’s going to write about it, instead of writing about it as a cheap way for attention, perhaps she should try to share her experience in a way that could be helpful to others going through a similar situation.

        However, it’s clear that its for other people. She’s not dressing up and posing for photos just for herself and her family. Also, there are things like email and phones for that.

  9. I feel the same way. Just live your life and stop documenting every little thing. When do these people actually get to live? I love her to death but my mother documented every single moment of our lives. I can’t tell you how many pictures and videos she took of us and honestly…I resent it. Instead of spending time with us, she was either taking the pictures or posing with us instead of being spontaneous and enjoying the moment.

    But a picture like this…disturbs me. On so many levels. I can understand trying to make the best of a situation but I can never imagine taking a photo shoot IN A HOSPITAL.

  10. avatar KAS

    I’m reading some drama on a “mommy” board right now- apparently someone talked about taking their kid out of the car seat on long road trips to play with them in the back of the car, and another member of the site looked through their profile, did enough internet stalking to find their name, and called child protective services! Another reason you gotta be careful with the overshare- you never know what crazies out there will do.

    • avatar princessxanax

      WHAT. THE. FUCK.

      People be crazy!

    • avatar featherbrained

      YUP! Something like that happened to a friend of mine who was an active participant on, the attachment parenting magazine’s forum.

      • avatar KAS

        I can’t even read, ALL of those people are totally mental.

        • avatar featherbrained

          RIGHT? She was going on and on about it, so I totes gave it a long read one day, and then another day (they were so crazy, it was compelling) but I just could not….

          From the passive aggressive chastising of women who don’t practice child led weaning, to those that potty train at 6 months (seriously, they do it folks, there’s a method), to those that have a FAMILY bed well past toddlerhood etc. I JUST KANT.

    • avatar PregnantLegs

      I used to be a Bumpie and they would get all up in arms over a siggy photo of a kid whose carseat didn’t look perfectly snapped right at the exact spot on the breastbone. They would be calling up CPS and stalking folks. Mommy bloggers are far more supportive of one another than those who frequent parenting forums. There, they are out for blood.

      • avatar I'd Rather Be Sleeping

        TheBump is fucking scary as hell. The women who hang out on those message boards are bat. shit. crazy. I’ll take an oversharing blogger over a brutally judgmental Bumpie any day.

        • avatar Convenient Feminist

          God, I’ve glanced at TheKnot too when Mr. Fluffykins and I were planning our wedding (it’s legal in the South!), and those bitches be CRAZY. Jezebel is a candy cloud filled with rainbows and unicorns compared to those sites.

        • avatar KAS

          The Bump is where said drama was going down! I sure as hell won’t ever darken the door of that place when I have kids.

  11. avatar The Cabinet of Dr. Bobby

    Yeah, I was the one who originally commented and I think my words are being misconstrued a bit. I think all of these bitches be crazy. I was just pointing out what seemed, to me, to be an inconsistency in the critique of these woemn.

    I think it’s interesting that women feel the need to nitpick other mommy bloggers, but women are also the ones most likely to “overshare” about parenting. As another commenter has pointed out, male targets on this blog only get a few comments compared to the hundreds that the Quirks and Jordorables get. But on the other hand, male bloggers are a lot less likely to “overshare” in the egregious ways that we love to mock.

    And I’m not trying to throw stones, I roll my eyes at them all the time too. It just seems like some people get all bent out of shape over the littlest of mom faux-pas or whatever. I’d definitely not blog about parenting on the Internet just because there’s always someone waiting in the wings to tell you how you’re a complete failure as a parent, etc.

    • avatar KAS

      Hear, hear!

    • avatar LaDeeDa

      I think your thoughts on oversharing are interesting. This is the main problem with the internet in the big picture, and why I’m glad I’ve stepped back from Facebook for the time being. I definitely was oversharing while I was on it, and in retrospect I’m a tad bit embarrassed by a few things I wrote. Like that “10 Things You Don’t Know About Me” thing that went around. I wrote things that I thought were all witty and funny, and got some nice and sweet comments on things I listed, but now that I think about it I’m like, “Get a grip and go do something better with your time.” I was always trying to be as witty and speshul as possible on Facebook, making my page enjoyable to read, if you will. Vom.

      I don’t know, whenever I do get back on Facebook my friend list is either going to be whittled down to a select 50 and I’ll keep sharing, because these will be the people who actually care, or I’ll keep all my connections and just have the most basic FB page possible. Basically just my picture and I’ll email people through the site. I will be a more chill and subtle Facebook self.

      • avatar ScarfAce

        Before nuking all my online accounts, I found that limiting my friends list to within the Dunbar’s number range (100-150 people or fewer, themselves following around 100-150 or fewer people) made for a more manageable and rewarding experience.

  12. avatar Commenter

    Sometimes the GOMI and RBD mouthpieces, as well as a handful of their regular commenters, are as odious as their targets.

    • avatar KAS

      And here you are with us!

    • avatar Floppy

      Yeah, SOMEtimes. How nice of you to not chide us for also being fat and being a bunch of lonely losers in basements!

  13. I actually like Emphasis Added, but these pictures of the kids like, IN THE HOSPITAL room always weird me out. My daughter has had eye issues this year and at first, it sounded super scary because she needed an MRI first to rule out a neurological issue. When we were at the hospital for the MRI, I took a couple pictures of her on my phone in her little hospital gown playing with the mini-MRI machine they had for kids to look at. But I didn’t put them on my blog. Nor did I take any of her pre-surgery, or post-surgery in the recovery area. BECAUSE I WAS TAKING CARE OF HER and couldn’t be bothered. I did write about her eye problems, MRI, and surgery on my blog and tried to be fairly educational about it, only because I figured if any other moms Googled the issues like I had, there’d be somewhere where they could read someone else’s experiences and be able to realize it’s not as bad as it sounds. But I can honestly say it would never have occurred to me to take a picture of her in the recovery bed, or getting an IV, or any of that. Not to say I might not have had my own lapses in judgment when it comes to sharing information about my daughter (though I make an effort to be as un-obnoxious as possible about it) but there should really never be a question in your head when it comes to health stuff like this. I think it’s safe to say if they’re in a hospital bed/ultrasound machine/MRI machine/surgery/fairly serious medical situation… don’t take cutesy pictures of it for your blog.

    • avatar jpa

      see that’s what I think the biggest problem is. Nobody has a problem with her sharing, it’s the fact that she gussied herself up and posed for a fake picture of her smiling over her daughter in a hospital bed. That’s what I find particularly distasteful, not the fact that she’s sharing what was happening with her daughter.

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