The mummy blogger life is one of perfection, where bad days are handled with hashtags.
The mummy blogger life is one of perfection, where bad days are handled with hashtags.

OPINION: Since when did babies become billboards?

THERE must be some great benefits for influencer families, so I'm not here to slam the lifestyle completely. 

I imagine these families have quite cleverly figured out a way to make money and spend more time together, which is something we all strive for in life. 

For those not in the know, influencers are people on the internet who gain a big social media following and use that fame to market and sell products for various brands and companies. It can be highly profitable. 

The so-called mummy blogger influencer has taken off massively in recent years and she typically comes packaged with the seemingly perfect home life, a beaming husband and a handful of children most often dressed in matching outfits. 

Then there are the posts where she will promote a product in a highly obvious way - who knows if she really likes it, or has ever actually used it, but it doesn't matter, the post will be eyeballed by anything from hundreds to hundreds of thousands of other mums around the globe. 

There's something about that blatant promotion that's just fake and tiring. A decent review page where someone gives honest opinions, sure, but we all know these people are getting paid to set up photos pretending they're using a product. It's kind of tacky. In fact, it's very tacky. 

I think the moment the trend of mums turning to the influencer lifestyle really hit me hard was when a mum I know online starting promoting a brand of nappies before her baby was even born. Within months, her newborn was photographed in so much corporate merchandise and branding that I just felt uneasy. 

When did babies become billboards?

If we can't even escape branding and corporate promotion in the womb, what hope does humanity have?

And that's the other thing, these profiles show life as so plastic and so perfect that it surely has to be affecting the self-esteem of onlookers.

Not only that, but psychologists have spoken out in recent years about the potential detrimental effects on children growing up with their lives documented on social media.

They can be forced to mature quickly, or develop an ego or sense of entitlement that can cause social problems and subsequent loneliness later in life.

But just as it can inflate egos, it can also deflate them - being exposed to (in some cases) millions of opinions can leave kids open to criticism, scrutiny and rejection.

But what happens when you throw an adopted child into the mix?

Mummy blogger Myka Stauffer has been slammed after she and husband James decided to part ways with their four-year-old son, Huxley, who they had adopted from China.

The young boy, who has autism and is non-verbal, went through a range of therapies but the family decided keeping him was just too much.

Now, I actually don't condemn this family for letting go of this little boy, because it's far better to give a child up than to lock it in to a life of misery and resentment.

In some ways, they're even brave for doing so and it would actually be better for many children if other parents did the same if they truly didn't want their kids.

But there's something about the way it all played out like scenes in a reality TV show, with mum's perfectly sculpted brows and freshly styled hair as she frowned into the camera.

And even as she made a farewell post about this adopted child online, there were still the hashtags such as "mummystruggles".

It just felt like the entire thing became trivial.

This little boy's struggles in life were boiled down to not much more than a cute little Starbucks outfit and a couple of hashtags.

Before long, the happy snaps started flooding back in and the persona of the perfect home life continued on without little Huxley.

I'm sure no two mummy bloggers are the same, and there is probably a lot of good done to provide discussion and comfort to their fellow mums around the globe, but sometimes I wonder at what cost. 



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