Privacy Over Publicity


Some might call me crazy, but last week I chose privacy over publicity when it came to the unusual balancing act that now defines my identity as an online publisher.

On Friday I was scheduled to give my first TV interview on the topic of potty training. When I first picked up the interview request, I have to admit that I was pretty excited about the potential exposure the interview could bring for Boston Mamas. The producer wanted to interview me about our potty journey. No problem. Her crew wanted to conduct the interview in my home. No problem (except for the fact that I’d have to clean the house). Oh, and they also wanted to shoot footage of Laurel on the potty.
Maybe I should have backed out right then, but I couldn’t quite do it. I left the conversation with a time scheduled, a very tentative commitment about Laurel’s involvement, and my insistence that Laurel – if she was involved at all – only be shot over the shoulder from the waist up (i.e., back to the camera, no skin showing). They consented. But as the day wore on, I grew more troubled. What if they made a mistake? What if they just didn’t take me seriously and showed more revealing footage of Laurel against my wishes? And come to think of it, they didn’t seem particularly interested in the Boston Mamas angle; what was up with that?

As much as an integral part of this site involves sharing personal parenting stories (and it is extremely gratifying that readers enjoy and appreciate the candor on these pages), I am protective of plenty else. I contacted the producer to tell her that, as a parent and in my capacity as the publisher of Boston Mamas, I would be happy to conduct the interview but that my daughter would not be involved in the shoot. She called back and cancelled the interview.

Perhaps I should have been more upset that the producer clearly was less interested in me and more interested in roping a potty model. But her decision affirmed that I made the right decision. I’m proud of what I have built here at Boston Mamas, and I’d hate to look back years from now and realize that I lapsed in integrity – as both a parent and a publisher – for a chance to be on TV.