Your child has really grown during their fencing lessons. You love watching their training sessions and competitions are exciting and fun for you as a parent, too. You’ve tried to document every aspect of his training with photos of new uniforms and gear and looks of sheer determination. But what are you doing with those photos?

Sharing Accomplishments

Sharing your child’s sports accomplishments is completely normal. Everyone needs to brag about their kids from time to time. Just make sure you aren’t using the post to inadvertently say something negative about your child’s opponent. Everyone works hard in practice and in tournament. Go ahead and gush, but remember to be humble, too.

Don’t Bash Coaches or Refs

Never, ever use your social media platforms to criticize or bash your child’s coaches or referees. They’ve been fencing a long time and they know what they’re looking at. They’re also the ones on the floor coaching and strategizing; they don’t have a bird’s eye view from up in the stands. You may not like the calls you see, but you have to deal with it. A big part of any tournament is ring generalship; meaning if your child wanted a ref to see something, they should have positioned themselves so it could be seen by those who are actually participating in running the matches.

Talk to Your Child

A huge part of your social media presence may be sharing photos of your family, but is your child growing embarrassed by some of the things you share? It’s important to talk to your kids if they are starting to push back at you about what you share with others. Your children do have a right to privacy, so you may have to cut back on personal stories and accounts of embarrassing moments if your child asks you to. Yes, you are the parent, but trust and respect is a two-way street. You’ll be surprised at how much your child probably wishes you’d just ask first.

Be Cautious of Posting Photos of Other Children

Your best friend’s kid may be in your child’s class and may not mind if you post a photo. Group photos at tournaments and events are not uncommon. Randomly snapping a picture of another child and sharing it is probably not a great idea and could get you into trouble. If you do take pictures of someone else’s child, consider texting it or sending it to them privately, letting them know you captured a special moment for them. Otherwise, don’t post photos without permission.

Be cautious and aware when you post about your child’s sports practices and achievements on social media. We know you’re proud and encourage you to share the happy moments; but please talk to your child about privacy and make sure they’re OK with the constant social attention.

Oh, and please don’t get too photo-happy during classes. Sometimes, at the end of the day, cameras are just distracting!