Have you come across YouTube moms (“YM” or “YMs” for short)?
You know the ones: They give you full run-downs of their days, they tell you what they bought, where they went, what they cooked, what they’re wearing, what their kids are wearing, what their kids did, etc.
I started following a few YMs a few months ago while prepping for the upcoming arrival of our baby. Funny how different life stages make you start preparing in their own ways. I’ve never cared for their random “Day in The Life” videos, however. My favorites are the ones where they go over baby products they shouldn’t have bought and things they’ve been teaching their children. I think these useful lists have a point, a purpose, and aren’t just them babbling on about anything and everything under the sun as though it was relevant to me.
They bring value to my life (esp. if the moms have several kids) so I tune in.
Perhaps by now you can see why I couldn’t tolerate being a YM: I’m just not that showy; neither of us are, actually. We’re very private and don’t care to have everyone see what we’re up to.
I may have this blog and two podcasts, but you notice I’ve always employ “filters” because I don’t want to give anyone ammunition to baselessly critique any part of my life or misconstrue anything I’ve said. There are many things about my life that you still don’t know, and it’ll stay that way.
(I unabashedly own everything I write, don’t get me wrong, but it’s nevertheless best to keep some things to yourself so as to not allow those with too much time on their hands to make something out of nothing and choose to get offended from a neutral statement/general opinion.)
Why I couldn’t be a YouTube Mom
Like I alluded to earlier, I’ve found the typical YM to be excruciatingly open, far beyond what’d be considered normal by most. One of them often says that she’s an “open book” and answers every question her followers ask–from sex to her expenses, and everything in between.
(Her husband looks like a regular guy but he must not wear the pants in that relationship. That’s neither here nor there, though.)
But creating the pressure to film often, to share SO much, AND then having to keep up with that pressure has to be sooo tiring and overwhelming! Not to mention invasive?
Now a lot of them would say that it’s because they have a “community” and “online friends” to keep up with, and I don’t think that’s wrong, per se, but one must not underestimate the (more cynical) importance of this so-called community: Among all those viewers and followers exist MANY potential customers, people who’ll either buy that YM’s merch or use her affiliate links and coupon codes, which will then translate into valuable commission income. All from her “friends”!
So the reason why I don’t see myself as a YM simply comes down to me not having the personality, the ego, the vanity, or even the desire to sell my soul to the devil for it.
What do I mean by that?
Well, I’ve already explained these YMs can be super open, willing to go on rants and reveal the most minute details that no one even asked about or cared to know. I’m not like that.
I’ve also never craved attention. I may enjoy public speaking and having been an only child, I’ve always been my parents’ #1 priority, but I was never raised to believe that the world revolves around me. Hence why I don’t seek the spotlight.
Additionally, I could never trade my family’s privacy for Likes, money, or others’ opinions.
For the past several months, since at least the late Summer 2019, I’ve been tossing around the idea of starting a YouTube channel but I wanted to keep it focused more on out-of-state travel and local landmarks. I’d share my tips, lodging and food suggestions, etc.
The reasons I wanted (and still will) create a “travel vlog” were simple:
- The content was already there, waiting to be filmed: If I went to an ice cream place, a hotel, a restaurant, etc., all I’d have to do was shoot my experience, script some voice-overs, film some B-roll, voilà, done. The subjects were there; I wouldn’t have to make up situations for the sake of a storyline.
- My family could remain behind the camera: Thus allowing me to focus on the actual content at hand and not on their presence, which would in turn respect their privacy.
But in my humble opinion, YMs trade not only their sanity, but also their family’s privacy and wellbeing, for mere Likes and money–and potential unsolicited advice that they willingly opened the doors to!
Consider these two simple hypothetical situations that may better illustrate my point:
Let’s say I do become a typical YM and I post my husband’s entire basement transformation and other projects that he’s worked on with my dad around our house. (I may talk more about this later but together they’re close to finishing our basement–which will include an office, a second master suite to be used as a another office/entertainment area, complete with a full bathroom and walk-in closet–and repiped our house with PEX, among other things).
Now because this video gets traction, one of the dads at our children’s school takes notice and asks my husband for his help for a basement or repiping, whatever.
My husband would say No, obviously, for several reasons. But who’s to say the annoying dad who can’t have No for an answer won’t get testy or start pestering us for our help?
Another hypothetical revolves around me having filmed years’ worth of our children’s life, so that by the time they’re in school, all the moms and their kids know our entire routines, what we ate, what we wore, where we go to Church, etc. This assumes that my videos will have racked up 1000s of views locally by then, which I’m not saying is probable, but who’s to say it won’t happen?
Who’s to say my kids won’t be exposed to so many strangers that didn’t have any business seeing them in the first place?
You see, unlike all (most?) YMs out there, I ask myself questions and seriously consider different scenarios where our family’s wellbeing could come into play. And I don’t like them one bit. From other adults bugging us for help around their homes to our children’s friends and their parents knowing their every move, I just don’t see the appeal of (over-)exposing ourselves like that.
And I don’t get why other moms, who are supposed to do whatever’s in their family’s best interests, choose to sell their souls to the devil and expose their own kids to strangers.
I’m sorry-not-sorry, but I don’t get it.
As Dr. Laura Schlessinger says often, human moms are the only ones who act in their own selfish interests; no other mom in the Animal Kingdom places themselves above their offspring like humans do: Animal moms either get in physical danger to protect their young or die for their sake.Human moms are the only ones who act in their own selfish interests; no other mom in the Animal Kingdom places themselves above their offspring like humans do. Click To Tweet
But us humans? Many moms are just weird, to put it mildly: They put their kids in daycare, they remarry and have new dates or lovers when the kids are minors instead of waiting until they’re adults, they choose sucky “role models” for them, they shoot 1000s of pictures of them to post online for both good people AND perverts alike to enjoy, they plop them down in front of screens so they don’t have to parent or teach them anything,…
… AND they share years’ worth of those kids’ lives with even more strangers ALL so that they can… GET WHAT IN RETURN, EXACTLY?
- A “community” of “fake “friends” who don’t care about them?
- The attention and opinions of ill-intentioned people?
- Tons of views, Likes, and Comments so they can show companies that they deserve their products FOR FREE–only to then have to post more about their kids with that product like a vicious cycle?
- Or WHAT?
By now a reason why a YM would want to share so much of only herself that I’d see as more rational and valid is if she somehow considered her vlogs sort of like therapy sessions, kind of like their way to process what’s happening around them and how they’re dealing with it.
Which is one of the reasons why I blog! Never to share about my family, but instead to share my take on current events and trends.
Another reason I consider some YMs valuable is because of how much they may know about a certain subject and are willing to teach viewers about it. I may ignore anything they produce that doesn’t relate to their area of expertise (e.g., those pointless and never-ending “Day in The Life” videos), but I nevertheless tune in regularly to learn about the subject they’ve turned into their niche.
This goes back to why I want to create a YouTube channel that brings value to people–not just a place where I ramble mindlessly about my day, because who’d even care?YouTube moms share years' worth of their kids' lives with strangers so that they can... GET WHAT IN RETURN, EXACTLY? Click To Tweet
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Now that you know my opinion of some YouTube moms, tell me: What do you think of them and who are your favorite? What things have you learned from the ones whose videos you watch? Do you also cringe and/or yawn or boredom when they start going off and rambling about nothing?