During stressful events like a divorce, it is not unusual for people to go online to find an outlet and support. Often, people go first to social media sites like Facebook or Instagram.
However, social media use during a divorce can create more problems than it solves. To avoid complicating your split, refrain from making five types of statements:
- Misleading statements – People do not always paint an accurate picture of themselves and their lifestyles on social media. This can seem harmless, but in the context of divorce, it can create problems. You might think it makes you look successful and happy. In reality, these portrayals could contradict statements you made in court, which could lead to accusations that you lied.
- False statements – Statements have consequences, even when you make them on a private account. As such, it can become a big problem if you falsely accuse an ex of infidelity or abuse in an effort to gain sympathy or turn people against your ex. Things you say online can spread, and making false accusations can get you in big trouble.
- Private statements – Revealing private information online about your marriage, your ex or your divorce settlement can be tempting. However, assume nothing is private or anonymous online. If you disclose sensitive information; you could not only damage the divorce process, you could also cause pain and humiliation.
- Inflammatory statements – Divorcing spouses often know what buttons to push to make each other mad. And too often, people make statements on social media designed to do just that: get an aggressive reaction to try and paint the other person in a negative light. But ultimately, such behavior can backfire. People (including judges, your coworkers and your children) could see you as immature, manipulative or spiteful.
- Embarrassing statements – People can do and say regrettable things during a divorce; documenting them on social media can make it hard to move past this difficult time. Therefore, you should not post embarrassing pictures, engage in compromising exchanges or reveal intimate details. These statements and images can linger long after the divorce is final, and they can easily get back to your children.
Whether you carefully monitor your interactions online or stay away from social media altogether during divorce, you would be wise to avoid these five types of statements.