Facebook, Twitter, and Divorce: Tips for Social Media When Ending Your Marriage

Divorce is a difficult and emotional process, and it’s understandable that many people look to social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram as a source of comfort and support during a difficult time. However, it’s important to keep in mind that these social media platforms can not only create legal complications during a divorce, but they can also become a place for public displays of hurt, anger, and resentment that can enflame already difficult emotional dynamics between spouses.

The truth is, when going through a divorce, social media should be used with care. It's understandable that divorcing spouses may want to vent frustrations, find solace in online communities, and even get revenge through various social media platforms. However, it’s also important to be aware of the possible consequences of social media use during divorce and to understand how they can adversely affect everything from your legal case to how you cope with emotional pain.

This blog post will look at the dos and don'ts of social media usage during divorce, as well as provide steps you can take to help ensure you feel empowered to make considered decisions about your social media use during your divorce.

Why Social Media Can Be Dangerous During Divorce

Social media can be a tricky thing to navigate during divorce. On one hand, it can provide comfort and support in an emotionally trying time. But on the other hand, these platforms can become a dangerous place filled with hurtful words, public displays of anger and resentment, and even potential legal consequences.

It’s not unusual for people to feel overwhelmed by their emotions during a divorce and the temptation to vent online about their ex-partner or their divorce proceedings can be strong. While this may seem like a harmless way to express yourself in the moment, it is important to remember that anything posted online is not private—even if you have your profile settings set to private. This means that any negative comments or posts you make about your ex-partner or the circumstances of your divorce could be used against you in court proceedings, which could potentially have a negative impact on your case.

Social media usage can also affect how we cope with emotional pain during a divorce. It's easy to get caught up scrolling through Instagram looking at all the happy couples living “perfect” lives, which can end up making you feel more alone and isolated.

Social Media and Child Custody Cases

When going through a divorce, it is also important to consider the role of social media in child custody cases. While it may seem harmless to post about your children on various platforms, many courts may view this as an invasion of privacy and it’s hard to predict what could be used against you if your ex-partner decides to bring it up during court proceedings.

Furthermore, any posts or comments that could be viewed as negative towards your ex-partner or their parenting ability could also potentially be used against you in court. It’s also important to exercise caution about what you post online about yourself, as well. Seemingly innocent photos of you at a friend's party could be taken out of context and used in court as evidence to challenge your fitness as a parent.

Tips for Safe Social Media Usage During Divorce

Social media can be a tricky thing to navigate during divorce. On one hand, it can provide comfort and support in an emotionally trying time. But on the other hand, these platforms can become a dangerous place filled with hurtful words, public displays of anger and resentment, and even potential legal consequences.

Here are 5 tips for safely navigating social media during your divorce:

#1. Stay Private

Make sure that your social media accounts have strong privacy settings. This can help limit the information that's available online about you and prevent unwanted access from those during legal cases.

However, it's important that you remember that no matter how you set your privacy settings, anything you post online can become public. Anything you post about your ex-partner or children could potentially be used against you in court proceedings.

Instead of venting frustrations or seeking revenge on social media, find other outlets for your emotions instead. Writing down your thoughts in a journal or talking to friends and family can be a great way to express yourself without the risk of making things worse. Talking to a professional therapist can also provide useful insight into managing emotions during divorce, as well as providing helpful coping strategies for any anger or hurt feelings you may be experiencing.

#2. Try a Digital Detox

Taking a hiatus from social media can help provide much-needed emotional space during an already stressful time, and it can also minimizes unwanted legal exposure. A digital detox during divorce can be a great way to give yourself permission to step away from the noise and distractions of social media while still providing you with an emotional outlet. Taking a break from social media can help reduce the amount of intrusive, negative thoughts that could arise if you're constantly engaging with posts, comments, and stories about other people's lives. It also prevents any potentially hurtful words or statements from being posted online about your ex-partner or children that could be used against you in court.

Taking time away from social media also could allow you more to discover new activities and meaningful connections that can sustain you both now and in your post-divorce life. Using this time to engage in activities that bring joy and meaning into your life such as spending time with family and friends, going for walks in nature, practicing yoga or meditation, reading books, listening to music, crafting projects, or anything else that brings you a sense of calm or enjoyment. Allowing yourself to take a pause from something like social media can offer an opportunity for introspection and reflection, which is often an integral part of working through the complicated and difficult feelings that emerge during a divorce.

Engaging in these activities instead of scrolling through feeds can help strengthen existing relationships as well as form new ones. Going out with friends or spending quality time with family members can provide refuge during emotionally trying times like divorce. While connecting with acquaintances and strangers online can feel satisfying on some level, filling your days with meaningful interactions with people who care about you and are willing to invest in you can help foster feelings of connectedness and belonging.

#3. Keep It Civil

Social media usage during a divorce can be an easy way to make already stressful situations even more contentious, causing further stress to both parties. Avoid making negative posts about your ex and aim to keep communication in a neutral, civil tone. Keeping things civil not only protects you from legal recourse, but it can also help to maintain a respectful relationship between you and your ex. Instead of engaging in hurtful words or public displays of anger and resentment, focus on staying productive and positive during this difficult time.

If you choose to post about your divorce online, it’s important that you keep those posts civil and respectful. If your divorce is particularly acrimonious and it feels impossible to speak civilly about your ex online, it’s best to refrain from posting about it at all.

#4. Keep Your Children Out of It

Avoid referencing or talking about your children in your posts, as custody battles and legal battles could be impacted by what you share online. Posting photos, comments, or statuses that revolve around your children could be used against you in your case.

When going through a divorce, it's important to be mindful of the role that social media can play in child custody cases. It’s important to understand that anything you post online could be used and potentially misinterpreted as evidence against you in the courtroom if your ex-partner decides to bring it up during court proceedings.

#5. Think Before You Post

Before posting on social media, take a break and consider whether it could be used against you in the future. Posts can be misconstrued, misinterpreted, or even used as evidence against you. Consider offline alternatives to sharing, such as texting or messaging with trusted friends and family.

Thinking before you post on social media is an important habit to develop during a divorce. Taking the extra time to consider what you're about to post can help protect your legal standing and ensure that your words and actions don't come back to haunt you in court. It also eliminates the potential for misunderstanding or misinterpretation of your words, especially if they are targeted towards your ex-partner or children.

Thinking before you post also allows space for introspection and reflection. Instead of lashing out in anger or frustration, taking a step back enables people going through a divorce to consider the implications of their online behavior and make wise decisions that will benefit them in the future.

How Burch Shepard Family Law Group Can Help

Keeping these tips in mind during a divorce is essential for maintaining healthy balance and boundaries and avoiding potential issues that could set you back during this trying time. By staying vigilant and remembering to be mindful of your online presence, you can navigate your divorce safely and with serenity.

At Burch Shepard Family Law Group, our team of experienced attorneys are here to provide compassionate and personalized legal guidance tailored to your individual situation. We understand how difficult this time is for you and your family, and we are here to help make the process as smooth and manageable as possible.

Contact us online or call us at (949) 565-4158 for more information about how we can help during divorce proceedings.