It is impossible to underestimate how huge a role social media plays in modern life. Considering it has only been part of day to day life for most of us in the past decade or so, it is an all-consuming pastime for many, writes Jonathan Corbishley.
Recent YouGov Omnibus data shows that around 20 per cent of people in relationships think that their partner doesn’t give them enough attention, with social media blamed as the number one distraction. The poll showed 28% of those people feel neglected, saying that the fixation on checking phones is wrecking the relationship.
As things stand, an increasing number of divorces are based upon “unreasonable behaviour,” and social media is often cited as a key factor.
We at Derbyshire Family Law Group often see clients using social media as a forum for arguments during separation. We believe that sensitive matters, such as relationship issues are something to avoid putting out there. The prevalence for some people to post negative messages regarding their ex-partner through socia media can come back to bite in the divorce process and often only serves to aggravate troubled relationships.
For instance, someone seeing they have been disparaged by their ex-partner on social media reduces the chances of them reaching an amicable separation, which leads to more lawyer time being spent on the case to resolve issues.
Social media can also be used by ex-partners to find out matters about you that you wish not to be included in the case. Some indiscreet relationships are no longer secret when social media broadcasts news to so many, and can be shown as evidence of who a person shares their time with and a strong indicator of their intentions.
Even if your ex-partner is not active on social media, his or her friends may be, and they could be spying on you and reporting back on things that you would rather be kept personal. Posts can also reflect your parenting responsibilities and could even have an impact on your children.
After all, how many family and friends have fallen out due to something that has been posted on social media? The figure must now be huge.
Whilst the use of social media can be a useful pastime for many connecting them with their friends and family, it is littered with pitfalls during a separation or divorce and we cannot reiterate enough the importance of carefully thinking through worst case scenario consequences with every comment, like or photo shared.
* Jonathan Corbishley is a legal expert at Derbyshire Family Law.