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What role does social media have in divorce?

With nearly half of the world’s population now using some type of social media, escaping it is nearly impossible. How many people have your heard of that reconnected with an old high school flame through Facebook? It is everywhere. Innocently, we like to post pictures of our kids when they do great in school or when we have a fun night out with friends but there is another side to social media that you need to be wary of.

If there are issues in your marriage to begin with, social media will not help. There is a growing trend of people reconnecting with prior relationships on Facebook or other social media sites. This happens, most often, without the knowledge of the current relationship. Most likely, it happens innocently enough. Weren’t you friends in high school?

As with all things off social media, keeping secrets does not help a relationship. If you are not sharing passwords with your spouse or “friending” old flames, no good can come from this. Even if your intentions were innocent to start, do not give your spouse reason to think otherwise. Share the information, discuss the friend request.

If your marriage takes a turn and you do go through a divorce, there are additional things to consider as you navigate through a divorce and social media – such is life in the modern era. The basic rule of thumb is to not to post anything you do not want to see as an exhibit in a court room. More specifically, keep your divorce off social media. It is easy to find a meme for any situation. The inclination is to post it – DON’T.  You do not have to go to the extreme of disabling accounts but keep postings to a minimum and do not, I repeat do not post anything negative about your spouse. If you have already begun a new relationship, do not post anything about that relationship either.

When it comes to kids, this is something that needs to be discussed with the other parent. Some parents do not want their kids on social media at all. That needs to be respected. Make sure that is discussed when you are talking about the parameters for parenting. The discussions should include both pictures and texts. Keep in mind that after a divorce, parenting becomes more of a business with both parents needing to agree on how to parent the children. If either of you does not agree, the other parent does not get to override a decision. As children get older, they have more of a voice as well but, ultimately, it is the parents that make the decisions.

Navigating the world of social media is tough since it is changing by the day. There are new sites and new ways to connect. The best rule is to keep it respectful and think about how your posts will affect those around you.

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