Facebook is increasingly cited as a reason for divorce. Studies have found a positive correlation between the amount of time someone spends on Facebook and their likelihood for divorce. A U.K. report cites 1/3 of all divorces are because of some sort of Facebook usage. Here’s why:
The more time you spend at your computer, the less time you spend with your spouse. Those who sacrifice quality time with their partner to peruse social media are typically getting those relationship needs met online, which may lead to something inappropriate. Excessive social media usage also sends a message that it’s more important and interesting to read about others than to engage with your spouse. In fact 32% of heavy social media users report having seriously considered leaving their spouse.
Easy to Reconnect
Because Facebook makes it so easy to reconnect with those from your past, people often find themselves “friends” with an ex. This may lead to jealously and conflict within a marriage, in addition to increasing the odds for a reconnection. As couples go through grey patches in their marriage, reconnecting with an ex for some type of comfort is just a click away. Then it becomes a slippery slope to infidelity.
Easy to Make New Connections
Whereas a normal affair may take months or years to build up regularly, the Internet helps it ramp up with a quickness. Even if it’s just online flirting, people seem to feel better about it if it’s behind a computer screen. This is especially more likely for couples married 3 years or less.
Provides Proof of Missteps
If a spouse suspects the other of some sort of foul play, they can turn to Facebook as a credible source of information. Posts and pictures imbedded throughout Facebook can provide a real timeline of your whereabouts, especially pictures with geo-tagging, which can be used in court.
Provides a Means to Publicly Slander
An angry spouse may turn to Facebook to publicly chastise or humiliate the other in the heat of an argument by posting something nasty on their page. That opens the door for others to get involved and further complicate the fight.