I Don’t Like Having My Picture Taken.

This came up in my newsfeed a while back.  I read all 312 comments.  There were some common themes.

To grandmother – “See mom, this is why I want to take pictures of you”

To spouse – “Honey, please take more photos of me and the kids”

and most poignantly:

“I need to work on this.”

I do need to work on this. And I think I’ve made the first steps. This blog post is, by far, the most personal I’ve ever written. I’ve never shared these photos. Nobody has ever seen the selfie, not even my husband. Up until 2 weeks ago, we didn’t have a single photo of my husband and I with our baby. He will be 8 months old on the 13th of this month.

When my husband proposed, I immediately started planning our wedding. I had worked in the industry and knew the vendors I wanted to use. We had a budget and when we were going over everything, the idea of a photographer was mentioned. I hadn’t planned on having one. This hurt my husband’s feelings so badly. So much so in fact, that he said “why have a wedding?” Seeing how strongly he felt, I actually saw a therapist to help get over the extreme anxiety of having my photo taken.

It did help. We hired a photographer. A friend and colleague of my mothers. Oh yeah, did I mention my mother is a photographer? When I got the photos, I cried. Not because of how beautiful they were – but how terrible I thought I looked. I didn’t post them to social media and didn’t share them with anyone.

I have purposefully and conveniently led a life a living in the moment. Truly only because of how self-conscious I am. I would never suggest taking a photo of a friend or an event, an occasion. Anything. Because that would have inevitably led to someone saying “You get it in it too, Darci” . And then where would I be? Uncomfortable, half-heartedly smiling and looking awkward. And dreading the inevitable moment when, after the picture was taken everyone would go and check to see how it came out. I never needed to look. I always knew the answer.

And now, on top of struggling with my own self-conscious; I’m having a hard time remembering to take photos. Even with a camera at my literal fingertips, I forget to take photos. Don’t get me wrong, I have hundreds of my son. But those special moments, whether be a first milestone, or a photo with a family member. Something out of the ordinary that would be truly special – I drop the ball. Can consciously, consistently not doing something become a habit? Has a lifetime of purposefully not taking photos become a habit? I worry that may be the case.

I promise you, this is not me having a pity party, or looking for compliments. I don’t know what to call it or define it as. I really, truly don’t. But the intensity of the feeling demands to be acknowledged. As I said at the beginning: Moving past these feelings is something that I am going to make a conscious effort at. I can’t put into words how hard this blog post has been to write. It has been in my drafts since August. And today, I will finish it. This is the first step. And as I look at the photo below, I can feel my blood pressure rising. The anxiety creeping in. I hate this last photo of me, but love it of my husband and baby. This is the only photo of the 3 of us. We had our baby baptized a couple of weeks ago.

I need to know: Is this common? Do others feel this way? I can only assume by the number of comments on the Facebook post above it is. Give me your feedback. Tell me your experience. Fill me in on the secret of how to overcome it. Please, I’m all ears, err eyes.

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Darci Petrov

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7 thoughts on “I Don’t Like Having My Picture Taken.”

  1. ALL the pictures in this post are wonderful. I hate to break it to you, Darci, but you’re adorable! You shouldn’t be camera-shy. But I understand and sympathize, being camera-shy myself. I wasn’t always, but when you hit middle age, it’s easy to think, “Why would anyone want a picture of me at this age?” The truth is, all ages have beauty, just as all people do. If we don’t see it in ourselves, the people who care about us will. Great post!!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for reading the post and commenting! I truly wish this was just a case of being camera shy, but unfortunately it runs a bit deeper than that. But, none the less, I am going to remember what you typed here and channel it when I’m feeling iffy when a photo opportunity comes up!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I hope you will! It’s nice to see you blogging again. You were one of the first people to follow my blog, back in the summer of 2017. I was really impressed by your blog and read every post. I was like, “This is how it’s done!” All the best to you and your family from Brad in Vermont

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I REMEMBER!!!!! Oh my gosh. I just went to your page and was looking at all your posts and the NUMBER OF COMMENTS!!! I don’t know how many followers you have now but I suspect its many. And for good reason! I have never seen a blog like yours. I loved it from the second I saw it. And it would appear others share the sentiment. Congratulations!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Thank you!!! Bear in mind that half the comments on my blog are by me. 😉 I have a core of 20-25 followers who look at almost every post. All of them are talented and inspiring people. But your blog was honestly the first one that I read “from cover to cover,” like a book, because every post was compelling in a personal way. So, know that you have the ability to touch others through your writing, even if you have other priorities at the moment. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I am 79 and the only pictures I am in are when I am holding one of our dogs. All other pictures I am not in because I AM ALWAYS THE GUY THAT HAS TO TAKE THEM and I am not from the selfie generation. I, like one of your other commenters am of an age where I think the only reason anyone would want to take my picture is to drag it out in the future and say “do you remember this guy”? But today, while volunteering at the nursing home, one of the residents said “I love your beautiful gray hair. Made my day. I hope she doesn’t have dementia or something:)

    Liked by 2 people

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