From sharing your thoughts and posting photos/videos to staying connected with loved ones and even keeping up with current events, social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, and Twitter have become an integral part of our daily lives. Although social media offers several benefits for users, it can also negatively impact our relationships, including the breakup of a marriage.
In a study published in Computers in Human Behavior, researchers discovered a link between social media use and decreased marriage quality in every model analyzed. According to the results of the study, people who do not use social media are 11 percent happier in their marriages compared to individuals who extensively use social media.
Marriage.com said social media limits communication and personal interactions between spouses since people can spend a significant amount of time online. Furthermore, not only does constantly using social media create unrealistic expectations when it comes to relationships and lifestyles, but it can also arouse jealousy.
In a 2009 study by the Loyola University Health System, Facebook is cited in one out of every five divorces in the United States. The American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (AAML) said there has been an 81 percent increase in spouses searching for online evidence when there are suspicions regarding infidelity, unruly behavior, and other detrimental online conduct.
Social media can also negatively affect your rights in divorce proceedings. The truth is that potentially sensitive information on social media can be used as evidence in a divorce.
The following are common ways your social media activities can be used against you in a divorce:
- Information about your current financial situation – For example, if you block your soon-to-be-ex-spouse on all social media platforms but continue to post about costly vacations, new vehicles or assets, and other luxurious aspects of your life, you may be accused of attempting to hide assets, which can impact your rights in a settlement.
- Information about your personal life – If there are images or videos online of a parent engaging in risky behaviors—such as alcohol or drug consumption—around children, such conduct can affect child custody and parenting time. If there are posts regarding a new romance while the divorce is still ongoing and one spouse spends a lot of time and money with the new partner, such conduct may impact alimony and property division.
- Information about your feelings about the divorce – Although many people use social media to vent their feelings and frustrations with what they are currently going through in life, revealing sensitive information to your family and friends online could be detrimental to your divorce in general.
If you are going through a divorce, you must stop using social media until your divorce is finalized to ensure you do not post anything that will negatively affect your case and/or will not trigger your spouse to retaliate. If you do stay on social media, do not discuss your case online or post anything negative about your spouse.
Change your privacy settings to prevent anyone that is not your friend from seeing what you post. Additionally, ask your friends to not tag you in their posts.
If you are interested in filing for a divorce in Pasadena, CA, call the Law Offices of Makupson & Howard at (888) 328-2734 or fill out our online contact form today to schedule an initial consultation. Our legal team has more than 50 years of combined legal experience!