DEAR HARRIETTE: About once a week, I receive a LinkedIn notification that my ex has viewed my profile. I don't think he knows that I receive a notification whenever someone views my profile, and I am not sure if I should text him a heads-up about how transparent his snooping is. Would this be the kind thing to do, or would it simply embarrass him? -- Spying Sal, Dallas
DEAR SPYING SAL: Perhaps the good news is that you are aware of your ex’s spying. It lets you know that he has not been able to shake you from his life yet, for whatever reason. Continue to post on LinkedIn and any other social media that you use, being mindful that you are being watched. You do not need to alert him that you know he’s watching. That will only engage him in interaction when your intention must be to move on. Do not give him any reason to believe that there is a chance for you to reconnect if there is not.
Instead, continue to live your life and stay focused on what’s ahead. You may also want to be mindful of your surroundings. Be aware of who is around you, in case your ex’s spying turns into following you. If you start dating someone else, don’t post that right away. Don’t give your ex any reason to get heated about you.
DEAR HARRIETTE: I dislike when parents overshare about their child’s life on social media. As somebody who researches how posts get shared and how many people end up viewing them, I become uneasy to think that a child could be viewed by hundreds or thousands of people in a single day. These posts are usually harmless, but I don't think parents understand that their posts of their toddler in the bath can reach hundreds of eyes. Could I privately message the parents out of concern, or am I sticking my nose where it doesn't belong? -- Too Much Media, Cincinnati
DEAR TOO MUCH MEDIA: This is an important point, and you are right. Many loving parents who are simply doting on their children -- and even bragging a bit -- do not realize how far their photos and videos can go. This is in part because one person can easily share with another or copy and paste images to share with different people. That parent may have a small group of friends, but someone in his or her friend group could have a huge group of friends who then could have access to the images.
Should you say something? It depends on who you are telling. If you know the person and feel genuine concern that the image just posted might fall into dangerous hands, reach out in a private message to express your thoughts. It’s trickier if you don’t know someone, but even then, a private message may have impact. Imagine if you received a note from a stranger warning that the image you just posted of your beloved son or daughter might fall into the wrong hands. That would be chilling.
(Harriette Cole is a lifestylist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an initiative to help people access and activate their dreams. You can send questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or c/o Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.)