We have discussed in the past the risks in posting to social media during a divorce. But in this interesting article, the author, herself divorced, discusses the emotional pain that Facebook can inflict, even unintentionally, during divorce.
First, you see your ex, and perhaps your children, having happy times without you, and while you want your children to have positive experiences with your ex, it can still sting to see those pictures during divorce, particularly if those pictures include your replacement.
Second, you might see pictures of friends and relatives at events to which you were not invited, reminding you that during the divorce property and children are not all that is divided – who keeps what friends and family also factor into the mix.
Third, Facebook tends to highlight the positive (whether real or not) of the unbelievable lives everyone else seems to be living. Pictures of trips from exotic locations, happy celebrations – rolling infomercials for online friends. It is inevitable that in a compromised emotional state in the midst of divorce that these pictures will only make you feel worse about yourself and your situation.
Fourth, you might discover you are on the wrong end of Internet gossip. The comment section on Facebook can be short and simple “great” or smiley emoticon; but others will see comments as an opportunity to vent, to go on a tirade – and the target could be you.
Fifth, Facebook is a bit of an odd neighborhood with strange rules. If you do not respond quick enough or in the expected manner, you can be summarily shunned. With the stress of divorce, you certainly do not need that kind of nonsense.
Sixth, your posts can come back to haunt you in court. One post, one vent – and you will see it as an exhibit against you at a hearing. Worse, a picture is worth a thousand words, and a damning picture could be the difference between having custody and not having custody.
Facebook may be a fun and positive place when you are not in litigation in the middle of a divorce. But as long as you are in the middle of a divorce, Facebook could be more emotional turmoil instead of an escape to a supportive environment.
If you have questions about Facebook and divorce, contact us – we can help.