One in seven people said they have considered divorce because of their spouses’ questionable activity on Facebook, Skype, Snapchat, Twitter or What’sApp, a recent survey of 2,000 married couples found. While experts try to predict what leads to divorce as means to lessen the amount of them, in the past few years there’s been a new factor: social media is a reason why people get divorced. Over the last twenty years, communication between people has gone from being relatively private – by letter or phone call to being very public with social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
Depending on the settings of a person’s Twitter or Facebook account, their online comments could be viewed by all their online friends, or very possibly, viewed by anyone on the internet. So, whilst people update their statuses, thoughts and feelings online every day, they are potentially living out their lives in a very public manner. And whilst it may be fine to announce a new job or a happy holiday on a Facebook page, publishing details of relationship troubles ‘for all to see’ can certainly risk exaggerating any strains on that relationship.
To support this argument, a new study by researchers from Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile and Boston University found a correlation between social media use and divorce rates in the United States. The study compared state-by-state divorce rates to per-capita Facebook accounts. In a separate analysis, they found the same result by using the data from a 2011-2012 survey that asked individuals about marriage quality and social media use.
What Can You Do To Protect Yourself?
Social media is largely harmless, but if not approached with discretion it leads many down a path of emotional and even physical infidelity. The first thing to do is discuss the dangers of social media in a relationship setting with your partner. Try to agree to appropriate limits on use, avoid snooping on one another, and make sure that you spend more time interacting in person than monitoring what the rest of the world is doing on social media.
Speak to our Family Law Attorney
Of course, the best course of action when facing a divorce or child custody dispute is to contact an attorney. In the modern world of social media, our divorce and family law attorneys have become experts at dealing with the fallout of social media in relationships. Call us today for a free case consultation at 713-360-6722.