Should dad be criticized for photo of toddler in diaper, him holding a beer?

A dad with a 3-year-old wrote a story for Babble about the dad dress code after having kids. To promote the story, Babble ran a photo on its Facebook page of the dad sitting on a front porch swing with his 3-year-old daughter. (You can see the photo here.) It was right before bed and the 3-year-old was in a diaper. The dad had a can of beer in his hand.

The father was taken out to the woodshed and beat in the comments. How dare he photograph himself having a beer with his child next to him. How dare he show his daughter on the Internet in a diaper! How dare he expose her to pedophiles!

The dad couldn’t believe the criticism but knew he was caught in a “virtual” mob.

So did the dad do anything wrong in the photo or by showing the photo?

Here’s my take: First off I loved the photo. I think it’s an adorable snapshot of America – a dad and a baby swinging on the porch.  They look so relaxed and happy. It was a moment captured and one I bet he will always remember. (Now for crappy reasons.)

I didn’t even notice what the dad was drinking. I saw a can and didn’t think anything of it. I think the people judging him for drinking a beer in front of his child are full of it. There is nothing wrong with a dad having  A beer in front of his child. (Now if a dad is drunk all the time or doing cocaine then that’s a problem. But there is no indication of that here at all!)

Onto the baby being seen in her diaper. It looks to me like the stuffed animal covers much of the relevant parts – even the diaper. Also it seems like you can’t zoom in on the shot to make anything else more clear.

Michael told me when I first started this blog seven years ago not to ever show the kids undressed or in diapers. It’s hard to resist not showing babies in diapers. They are so cute. But there are weirdos out there.

Now should children be seen in photos on the Internet? That is a different question. And considering that I share shots all the time. I obviously think it’s OK.

So what do you think of this photo? Was the dad treated unfairly? Is there anything wrong with this shot?

36 comments Add your comment

just me

August 27th, 2012
12:30 pm

Those parenting blogs are the meanest place on earth. Everyone gets to PRETEND that they’re so perfect and lie about doing everything correctly. This picture pretty much represents the same thing going on with my husband and our kids on a lazy Saturday evening. How about celebrating the relationship he has with his daughter? The pic is beautiful.

Austin Hicks

August 27th, 2012
12:32 pm

The photo is fine…its the people in this country that are the issue…I think it just shows we live in a world full of self righteous, judemental, hyprcritical morons with too much time on their hands. People need to spend more time minding their own business instead of worrying about other peoples lives. These are the same type of people that will have the police called becuase they saw a 5 year old playing in the yard unsupervised or have the window smashed out of your car because you left your dog inside on a 58 degree day with the windows cracked….SMH


August 27th, 2012
12:42 pm

The main issue is that times have changed- it used to be a parent (usually Mom) would take a cute pic of her child in a bubble bath and have it developed at Wal-Mart. Now you can’t because they’ll call Child Protective Services. So you have to keep that in mind when you’re reading the comments left on his page.

usually lurking

August 27th, 2012
12:56 pm

Don’t let Pride & Joy from over at the get schooled blog see this – s/he’ll report the father for child abuse.


August 27th, 2012
12:57 pm

What the h#ll? There is nothing wrong with the picture and I can barely see the diaper. Folks need to get a life.


August 27th, 2012
1:05 pm

Good pick. Folk are crazy.


August 27th, 2012
1:05 pm

or pic….damn autospell.


August 27th, 2012
1:16 pm

Ironically his shirt says “Don’t Hate”

Nothing wrong with this photo from what I could see.

Good rule of thumb: Naked on a bareskinned rug at 1 or less, cute…at 12 child abuse, at 21 porn.


August 27th, 2012
1:18 pm

At least the dad was involved.


August 27th, 2012
1:22 pm

oh as to the alcohol in front of the kids…do parents not have wine or beer at home anymore?

My parents never locked the liquor cabinet, the wine was on shelf in the basement, and beer in the fridge. It was not a daily thing for them. However, we children understood it was for THEM not for US.

How do you teach your children to be responsible? By being responsible. If you do not drink (nothing wrong with that)…then don’t. But if you do, then show them that you can have a drink and responsible drinkers make good choices.

Augusta wannabe....

August 27th, 2012
1:30 pm

I can’t believe he sacrificed his daughter for alcohol.


August 27th, 2012
1:31 pm

I see nothing wrong with the picture.

Heck, about 10 years ago, shortly after moving into our n’hood we became great friends with some neighbors because my husband had a beer while we were out in the neighborhood pushing our youngest in his stroller. The one neighbor told us later that after seeing us and before coming out to say “hi!” he said to his wife “Look, that guy has a beer while out for a walk! They look like our kind of people!” LOL

I have other neighbors that are probably the type to critize the man in this photo but you know what, they also let their toddlers play in the street (unsupervised to boot). This is something I would never allow. And I’m not talking about a dead end cul de sac with no traffic.

In my experience the parents condemning and screeching the loudest often have the most room for improvement.


August 27th, 2012
1:34 pm

I love the picture and bet you, if I dig thru some old pictures that I have, I can find several just like this..Nothing wrong with a child that age sitting in the swing with Dad like that..As for the beer, as FCM said, parent’s aren’t allowed to drink anymore? My two have never seen me or their Poppy drink liquor or beer, but that’s by our choice as neither one of us drink (anymore)..But you have to teach them..I grew up with a Dad that drank every day, therefore I stopped drinking after about 2-3 of social drinking..


August 27th, 2012
1:40 pm

Of all the stupid broohahas, this uproar has got to be at least in the top 3. The picture is adorable and anyone who could be thinking “PEDOPHILES!” or “DRUNK!” are sick. I understand that yes, there are bad people out there. But you can’t live your life in fear of psychos. One of my favorite pics of me and my dad is me at 2 year old as I toddled by and picked up Dad’s can of Budweiser that he had left on the floor beside his chair. Dad is sitting in the chair, looking over at me with a wide grin. There I am, standing there in my diaper and holding the bright shiny can. I don’t know who got the pic, but it’s one of my family’s favorite. Was I allowed to drink it? Of course not. Did I grow up swilling beer at age 6? Oh, hell no — can’t really stand the taste of the stuff.


August 27th, 2012
1:51 pm

People need to get over themselves. I think the picture is adorable.

dave m

August 27th, 2012
2:00 pm

There are too many people on here who need to get a life. The pix was cute.PERIOD! Would have made a cover for The SAT EVENING POST in the 50,s

Voice of Reason

August 27th, 2012
2:15 pm

You really have to have a burr up your ass to dig deep enough to even be able to tell that is a beer he is holding in his hand.

Man has beer in hand = alcoholic!

Man sitting next to half naked baby (relationship irrelevant) = pedophile!

At least the poor guy wasn’t smoking….could you imagine? Outside, on his own front porch, THE HORROR!

And what are they both looking at? = Must be watching porn!

With logic and reasoning like this, it’s a wonder we as a species ever got out of the dark ages.

My faith in humanity = -1!


August 27th, 2012
2:26 pm

This is the first time a blog post has gotten the ajc community to come together in unity.

Voice of Reason

August 27th, 2012
2:28 pm

After reading through the comments on the Facebook page for this picture a pattern is developing over what kind of people have the biggest problem with this picture?

If you guessed the closed minded, overly religious zealots, you get a pat on the back.

Also, people should really lock down their Facebook pages. But then again I don’t credit these kinds of people with an abundance of brains.


August 27th, 2012
2:31 pm

LOL Augusta wannabe, I was thinking the same thing.


August 27th, 2012
2:55 pm

I love the picture and would probably frame it if it was my family. I do have the slightest reservation about putting this online only because it doesn’t look to me like she has a diaper on. She kind of looks like a completely naked child with a stuffed animal strategically placed for the photo. Sorry, that’s just kind of what I thought. Maybe it’s because I have seen child porn pics (work related obviously) so I’m a little warped. I would be a little worried about creapy people seeing this if it was my child.
Anyway, It is a beautiful picture and people should be ashamed for giving this guy a hard time. He’s obviously having a great time with his child. And as far as the beer. ?!?! What.ever.


August 27th, 2012
3:01 pm

There is nothing at all wrong with the picture.


August 27th, 2012
3:46 pm

I think the picture is adorable. It is actually a blessing to see a dad spending time with his child. You can tell that the little girl adores him. The people that are upset about this obviously have some personal issues that need fixing. I will bet this guy is an awesome dad!


August 27th, 2012
4:06 pm

Great picture, and I’ll bet this dad would open a serious can of whup ass, and not the fun, sudsy kind in his hand either, on any pedo that hurt his little girl.
You can see the love on both of their faces.

The whiners will undoubtedly find something to whine about.


August 27th, 2012
4:07 pm

“Should dad be criticized for photo of toddler in diaper, him holding a beer?”

Only if he is driving at the same time.

Just like teachers should not be fired for having a Facebook picture of them having a beer in Germany with their dinner.

Once Again

August 27th, 2012
4:18 pm

I have seen pictures of me in a diaper sipping on a Hamms. So what? This country of busybodies has got to go. This is why we are in the shape we are in. We want to take everyone’s money, take everyone’s freedoms, and tell everyone ELSE how to live their lives. This starts at the top of government and society and works its way down. There is absolutely NOTHING the government doesn’t feel it has the authority to regulate or control – including healthy raw milk and home gardens. Even our current and past presidents claim the power to kill american citizens without due process and nobody even calls them on it. Why shold the riff raff not think they have the right to demand justice against another individual they think is doing something “wrong?”


August 27th, 2012
4:18 pm

@ Parent, I agree with you about that teacher firing. Now if she had been dancing on table top or something.

True fact. My mother has never allowed herself to be photographed with a drink (water, soda, wine) ever. The one time she had the glass in her hand (in a photo) she turned it upside down to prove it was empty. That was in 1988! We did not even have facebook then. She was in pleanty of pictures at pleanty of events (Christmas parties, BBQ, etc) but when cameras came out she handed her drink to someone (often me) who was outside the shot or set it on table.


August 27th, 2012
4:50 pm

It looks like a moment in the life of a normal (if somewhat redneck-ish) family, nothing sinister or weird.

That said, I probably wouldn’t put a photo like this out on facebook or a blog. It’s a sweet photo, but it seems like one that should be kept in the family photo album, not displayed in public. You just shouldn’t put naked/mostly naked photos of kids online because there ARE creeps out there who will misuse perfectly innocent pictures for their own pervy amusement.

K's Mom

August 27th, 2012
5:57 pm

People have little to fuss about if this caused a stir. I am so thankful that my parents had the occasional glass of wine or beer when I was growing up and GASP let me taste it. It made alcohol a complete non issue to me and I drank responsibly once on my own. I plan to do the same with my boys.

The little girl was adorable and I saw nothing wrong with the photo. However, people are so weird and nosy, I probably would not have posted it. I took bathtub photos of K when he was about 9 months old and cropped them to really only show his face and shampoo mohawk when I got them developed because I had heard of nut jobs reporting parents for bathtub photos. One of them is hanging in their bathroom and I will do the same with L when he can sit up.

Bottom line, like the country song says…God is great, Beer is good and people are crazy.


August 27th, 2012
8:31 pm

Can’t do much about stupid. I have a picture of me at about 2, barechested (I think in panties) holding a beer bottle. My dad would let me have the last couple of drops. It tasted like horse pee (or how I imagine horse pee tasting). No scandal, no horror. Just a picture.

My parents NEVER would have posted any pics of me, or other info, on anything like Facebook, equating it to posting on the bathroom stalls in a rest stop.


August 28th, 2012
12:16 am

How fast Can you say Jerry Springer? :)


August 28th, 2012
7:43 am

I’d rather my husband holds a beer than a cigarette…..I have a friend, and in every single picture he has a cigarette in his hand….every other picture is with a beer. He has two sons….No biggie.

And I guess that once you become a parent, you have to completely change yourself. No more drinking, because 1 beer can be so dangerous……

This is one of the drawbacks to social media. And this is why I don’t tweet or facebook. I don’t want my world disected by a bunch of hypocrites!!!

Voice of Reason

August 28th, 2012
8:09 am


Lock down your Facebook profile so that only close friends can see it and you don’t have to worry about hypocrites.


August 28th, 2012
5:10 pm

I think it’s a great picture that the family will cherish for a long while. Those people who bashed him either are jealous of such a great pic or the fact that he had the balls to post it and be himself and not care what anyone else thinks or they are WAY too uptight. It’s so simple.

Jamee Tenzer

August 28th, 2012
9:14 pm

This is a great picture of a real dad with his real daughter. What I see is a dad who is there and interested in his role as a dad. Plus, the guy is funny and can write! Jamee Tenzer, PCC


August 29th, 2012
12:26 am

this is why stupid people should not have kids.. just put a smoke in the kids hand…