Often I find out that my facebook friends have had their babies because one of their family members posts a congratulatory post on their wall or posts a photo of themselves holding the new baby. This comes before the new mother or father has a chance to announce name, birth date, weight, etc in their own time. I have also heard of family members finding out from the mother’s facebook friends instead of their own family that a baby was born because the parents were busy learning how to change diapers, breastfeed, and handle their baby that they hadn’t had a chance to make it down the list to call everyone before someone jumped the gun to publicly congratulate the new family. If it is important to you to make the announcement of your baby’s birth, make sure to talk to your family BEFORE you have your baby in hand.
Here are some tips that I’ve discussed with my clients when they have concerns about their child’s birth announcement being posted before they have taken a breath to realize that they are a family of 3.
- Make it about your excitement, not about them. Use words like “We want to post the first photo” or “It’s very important to me that we make our own announcement when we are ready” instead of “We don’t want you to post any pictures” Make sure that they know this is important to you.
- Make it about someone else. “Aunt Judy would be really upset if she didn’t hear it directly from me, so please don’t post anything publicly until we have a chance to tell our family personally.” If your family will react negatively to number 1, it’s hard to get mad at someone for thinking of other’s feelings.
- If you know that someone will post on your social media account even though you’ve laid down the ground rules, make sure they are one of the last to know. That may sound mean, but you’ve just had a baby, so your needs are more important than theirs.
- Inform people if they can share the news via text or phone. Do you want to be the one to tell every single person, or do you want to set up a phone tree? Can your mother call your aunts and uncles, or do you need to?
Your social media preferences will differ from family to family, and even from mother to father, so make sure you are both on the same page as each other before talking to family members and friends about when and what you’d prefer they do or don’t post.