Because of social media, many more of us are public or semi-public people than it was even possible to be just a decade ago. It's not uncommon for us to share everything online, from where we went for vacation, who we spent that vacation with and everything we wore on said trip, and a lot more. While we all need to be careful when sharing our lives, famous people need to do so as well. Home Town's Erin Napier has been known to hide her daughter's face on the show and social media, but the HGTV star has now had to clap back after fans debated that decision.
Earlier this week, Erin Napier posted a photo to Instagram of she and her husband, and Home Town co-host, Ben, reading to their 3-year-old daughter, Helen. The picture clearly shows Erin and Ben's faces, but Helen's is covered by the book, which is being held overhead as the family lays down. In the comments, some fans began to discuss the choice not to show Helen's face, and while everyone seemed to basically agree that it's a good idea, one user pointed out that Helen has been shown more fully on the couple's home renovation show. This led Napier to clap back, noting:
A fleeting glance on the show in 2 eps a season is very different and less useful to a predator than a library of static images of her face sitting in my IG account.
While the user quickly replied to apologize and say that they understood Napier's choice not to have her daughter's face all over her social media, it seemed that the comment touched on a delicate issue for Napier. If you've watched a few episodes of Home Town, you'll know that it's not unusual to see Helen every now and then, typically toward the end, but she is frequently turned away from the camera. So, Napier is correct that the shots of Helen's face are rare and, generally, pretty quick.
As Erin Napier said in her reply, she feels that those fleeting glances of her daughter aren't really a problem, compared with photos that could easily be screenshot and kept by someone with nefarious intentions. But, because the issue was now on her mind, Napier soon took to her Instagram Story (via House Beautiful) to explain their decision to help Helen keep her privacy even more, saying, in part:
It's an awful feeling to have millions of people pick apart an image of your baby's face. It's an awful feeling to see a photo of your child used to promote some sort of overseas kids clothing company. It's unsettling when strangers visiting Laurel to see our Home Town see her with a grandmother and reach out to embrace her when she doesn't know them...her likeness is ours to protect and decide when it's okay to share, no one else's. That's our personal choice, and it's not the same for everyone. We love and appreciate everyone who supports the show, but Helen doesn't owe anyone anything.
I honestly don't think Erin Napier could make the motives behind shielding Helen from the public eye any clearer. It makes complete sense that the home renovation expert / designer would take the time to fully explain why she and Ben have settled on this choice. It was just a few weeks ago that she had to speak out on another issue, after a photo that included the back of Helen's head led people to make "cruel" comments about the little girl's hair.
It would seem that the busy mom no longer has any time for those who can't get behind their choice and wants everyone to understand why it's been made, whether they agree or not.