Social media use has gone from a fringe online activity utilized mainly by teenagers and college students to one of the most common ways in which people interact with one another. You may use multiple different social media platforms and check in with your friends and followers several times every day.
Therefore, you might instinctively want to reach out to those same people for support now that you realize there will be a divorce in your immediate future. Filing for divorce is stressful and traumatic, and social media has a way of making it worse than it already is.
What are some of the ways that social media can affect your divorce?
It can be a source of evidence against you
What you say online could help your spouse make claims of marital infidelity or wasteful spending after you file. They could even use your crass sense of humor as a way to prove that you have threatened them. The more that you share online during your divorce, the more likely it is that your spouse can find something to use against you.
It could help strengthen your case
Maybe you aren’t the one who has posted photographs with a new significant other or shared posts bragging about wasteful spending using marital resources or credit cards. Especially when misconduct plays a role in your case, the way that your spouse uses social media could help you prove to the courts that they are too unstable for solo parenting time or that they engaged in certain kinds of misconduct.
It can increase how long, expensive and stressful the divorce becomes
If either spouse wants to pore through social media records for the divorce, it can take many hours to go over all of somebody’s comments and posts. The discovery process entitles you not just to what is currently visible on someone’s public profile but also deleted content and possibly even private messages sent directly to other users.
Although social media can be a treasure trove of evidence, it can take substantial resources to thoroughly review someone’s social media records and determine what is actually useful. Beyond that, your ex will likely retaliate if you request their social media records and will go over all of your messages in previous posts with a fine-tooth comb looking for content that they can leverage against you.
For many people, being conscious of social media risks during the divorce and trying to use it sparingly, if at all, for evidence can reduce how much stress social media adds to their divorce process. Learning more about what to expect during divorce proceedings can help you make choices that will benefit you in the long term during this difficult time.