Are you sending the wrong message on social media during divorce?

Photo of attorney Melinda L. Singer

Going through a divorce can be difficult. People often feel stressed out, angry, afraid, sad, and sometimes lonely. To find support and companionship, many folks get online and connect with others through social media. 

This can seem harmless, but if you are not careful, you could wind up sending the wrong message to others. And in some cases, the message you send could adversely affect your divorce.

How messages can go wrong

Social media activity can easily be taken out of context. Getting tagged in pictures while you’re out at bars can make you appear irresponsible, even if you are only out to be a designated driver.

Frequent exchanges with the same person could make it look like you are in a new relationship. 

Sending messages to your ex or sharing pictures of him or her without permission could be misconstrued as harassment.

Posting pictures of yourself on vacation or enjoying dinner at a fancy restaurant could make you appear more financially stable than you actually are. This appearance of wealth can affect alimony requests and property division settlements. 

Finally, venting your frustration on Facebook or Twitter may feel cathartic, but it could make you look aggressive and threatening. If your ex is accusing you of abuse, angry statements online may only confirm those assertions. Further, if you come off as volatile or hostile, you could jeopardize your rights regarding child-related matters.

Tips for using social media during divorce

Even if your profile is private or you have an account under a different name, it is not difficult to uncover and share your social media activity. 

As such, do not share or say anything online that you wouldn’t want to share or say in front of a judge. And you would be wise to avoid engaging in any questionable online activity until after the divorce is final.

Further, it can be tempting to use social media to make your life appear better than it may be. However, you must understand that everything you say or do online can be evidence against you in family law matters

Use social media responsibly if you are getting divorced. If you are not sure you can do this, it may be best to take a break from posting on social media altogether if you want to ensure it does not send the wrong message. 

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