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Family 411: Social media sharing can impact new mothers

Parents who share photos of their children on social media often use it to keep family and friends updated on the child's progress. (WSYX/WTTE)

Many new moms showcase their pride and joy on social media. Everything from baby bumps to first steps end up on Facebook. One expert says it's not the posts but what some moms get out of them that could be a red flag.

It's safe to say Steffany Puckett is enamored with her first born.

She shared her big life moment before and after on Facebook.

"I did the big reveal on Facebook and everything because you have to make it Facebook official," said Puckett.

She posted everything else after Greyson was born to show to family and friends.

"Probably every other day you're just look at what he did today look how cute he is," said Puckett.

OSU Human Sciences Professor, Sarah Schoppe-Sullivan studied new moms and their Facebook habits.

Schoppe-Sullivan says moms who feel pressured to be perfect are more inclined to post.

"So they really wanted positive feedback that they were doing a good job as a mom," said Schoppe-Sullivan.

Schoppe-Sullivan says the same moms are more sensitive to the number of comments and likes.

"The mothers who were perfectionistic and sought validation and spent more time on Facebook they experienced an elevation in their depression symptoms over the first time months of parenthood," said Schoppe-Sullivan.

Puckett remembers when likes first poured in for Greyson.

"I'm posting these pictures and I think he's adorable when I get all of these likes it's like oh wow people think he's cute too I'm glad," said Puckett.

Schoppe-Sullivan says those not constantly looking for responses shouldn't have anything to worry about. A red flag should go up though, if moms start to feel worse.

"If I'm finding myself feeling like I'm coming up short in comparison to other mothers then maybe it would be better to take a break from Facebook," said Schoppe-Sullivan.

Greyson is now walking and reactions online have tapered.

"It's nice but I don't care if I'm not getting the amount of likes that I used to," said Puckett.

Greyson may not understand now.

"I'm going to show him everything like look how cute you were," said Puckett.

But as he grows, so will mom's eagerness to share.

"Oh yeah 100% everywhere all the time," said Puckett.

Schoppe-Sullivan recommends new moms start an email group with family to share pictures or meet in person or through Skype.

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