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Social Media and Divorce: What You Need to Know

Getting divorced today has some different potential pitfalls than getting divorced 20 or 25 years ago. Times have changed and technology has changed along with them. For example, many people today are active on social media to a degree that is much greater than it was even a decade ago. Those social media accounts, along with other online platforms, have the potential to cause a host of problems for a divorcing couple if they aren’t careful. Social media and divorce don’t mix well, keeping your private affairs to yourself can go a long way.

When getting divorced, it is generally a good idea to take a break from social media. This way, you don’t end up posting anything that you will regret later. Below are some basic social media “rules” you will want to apply to yourself during your divorce. It will make things quite a bit easier for you.

Stop Sharing Accounts and Passwords

Some couples share their social media accounts, so they can both post to the same “family” page. Others might even share email addresses. Even if you aren’t getting divorced, this tends to be a bad idea because it crosses a lot of privacy boundaries. Generally, people should have their own email and social media pages. If you or your spouse have joint accounts, it could mean there is a lack of trust, which makes the impending divorce make that much more sense.

Even couples that don’t share accounts will sometimes share passwords. This is another problem when it comes to privacy. However, it becomes even worse when you are getting divorced. You don’t want your ex getting into your social media accounts to read things they shouldn’t or to post things pretending to be you.

What can you do about this? Change your passwords as soon as possible. You don’t want anyone else to have access to your accounts. Even if you aren’t sure they have your password, change it just in case.

You might think that there’s no way your spouse would ever even consider reading your private messages, emails, or posting to your account, change those passwords. Divorce can make people do crazy things. You don’t want to take any chances.

Don’t Talk About Your Case

You naturally have a lot on your mind regarding your divorce case, and you want to talk about it. While this is normal, it’s not a good idea to talk about it on your social media accounts where all the world can see what you post. Even if you have a private account, there’s still a chance that the wrong people could see what you are posting and end up somehow using it against you or letting your ex know.

If you are going to be posting to social media, you shouldn’t post anything about your case, no matter how it’s going.

Don’t Talk Bad About Your Ex

Along the same lines, you don’t want to say anything online that smears your ex. Sure, it might feel good in the beginning to do this, but it is only going to cause problems for you. It’s normal to want to vent about all of the problems your ex is putting you through, but it really is a good idea to keep all of that off social media.

Getting into arguments and sniping wars on social media is only going to serve to make the divorce case even more antagonistic. You want to get the divorce over quickly and with as little drama as possible. Don’t keep trying to manufacture drama with social media attacks.

Be Wary of Being Tagged in Problematic Posts or Photos

Have you ever been tagged in an embarrassing photo online? Maybe there are photos of you drunk or with a bunch of drunk people doing something you shouldn’t. Countless types of embarrassing and problematic photos could get you into trouble on social media when you are tagged in them. Be careful about where you are tagged and ask to be removed from any pictures you find problematic.

For example, if you want to have more parenting time with your children, but you have a DUI and there are also a lot of pictures of you on social media out drinking, those photos could be used against you. What will the judge think? They want to do what’s best for the kids, and that may not be providing more parenting time with someone who has already proven to have a problem with alcohol and who continues to be tagged in photos out drinking.

Think Twice Before Posting

Sometimes, you will have something on your mind that you want to get out there. It might be about your divorce, your boss, your friend… anything. However, regardless of what you are going to post, think about how it will be received. How will you, as the poster, come across?

The things you say, do, and post on social media matter. It defines how other people, including the judge, are going to view you.

Take a Break from Social Media

How much do you really need social media? If you are just using it to keep in contact with some friends or family, that’s fine. Even then, other means are at your disposal. The best thing you can do when you are getting a divorce is to take a break from social media for a few months. Stay off it as much as possible. Don’t get caught up in all of the drama, anger, gossip, etc. that it tends to breed.

Social media takes up more time and energy than you might realize. Taking a bit of a sabbatical during your divorce and posting minimally—or not at all—could be good for you. You will find there are far more constructive things you could be doing with your time. If you aren’t posting anything there is no way that it could be used against you.

Keep these simple social media tips in mind during your divorce. Even a little mistake in this part of your divorce could end up costing you more than you realize.

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