Many people use the internet and social media to connect with friends and family. For the most part, using these accounts and services is innocent, and can lead to lasting connections between loved ones near and far. However, there are ways that social media can be harmful. The posts, comments, and content that users share are never truly private, and intimate information can be easily accessed by anyone.
When you are going through a divorce, social media can be especially dangerous. Many people do not understand that their posts and activity on social media accounts during divorce proceedings can ruin their entire case and cause them to lose out on assets and settlements. Even if your divorce is fairly straightforward, you can easily find yourself losing money because of your internet behavior.
Here at Stange Law Firm of Metro East, we want our clients to have an easy time with their divorces. Though we cannot help solve many of the emotional problems that lead to divorce, we can help to make sure that your divorce goes smoothly. For this reason, we’ve identified some major social media habits to avoid while you are going through separation and divorce.
- Posting About Your Ex
Divorce is a major event. No matter the circumstances, you will likely have strong feelings about your ex-spouse and the events surrounding your separation. However, it is important that you do not take to social media to express these feelings. It is very easy for anyone to access these posts, and your spouse can use them as proof of your poor character. What’s more, they may argue that these posts signify that you cannot be trusted to keep your opinions about your ex to yourself around your children, and the judge may give your ex full custody as a result.
Instead, vent to a few close, trusted friends or family members about what is going on. Ask them to keep the information to themselves and allow you to lean on them for a bit of emotional relief. This can help you to vent your feelings without posting online. If you are able, seeing a therapist is even more productive and secure.
- Posting About Parties
It may be tempting to post about your new single life online, especially if you and your ex are still connected on social media. However, this is not wise to do. Partying and drinking are not looked upon very kindly by the courts. Such pictures can easily be misinterpreted by your ex’s lawyer and used to build a case against you. This can result in diminished custody, lower spousal support payments, and other consequences.
Of course, it is unreasonable to ask you to not socialize during your divorce. Having a rich social calendar can help you to process your changing lifestyle. However, ask friends to not tag you in photos that they post. Even better, ask them to refrain from taking any photos of you at all. Instead, offer to take the photos for them so you can be sure you’re out of the picture.
- Posting Vacation Pictures
If your lawyer says that it is legal and ethical for you to go on vacation, try to refrain from posting your vacation pictures on social media. Though the trip may be completely above board, your ex’s attorney may accuse you of hiding assets. If this argument is a dead end, they could use your vacation as proof that you do not need spousal support or alimony.
Several financial conclusions will likely be drawn as a result of your photos, and it is best to avoid misunderstandings. Make an old-fashioned photo album and show it to your friends and family over happy hour instead.
- Posting About Elaborate Purchases
For the same reasons as listed above, it is in your best interest to refrain from posting pictures of large purchases such as:
- Tech equipment
- Houses or properties
Remember, you must disclose all assets and finances during a divorce. Lavish purchases make it seem like you have hidden financial information. This is true even if you have a prenup or have been given the item as a gift.
- Posting About New Partners
In some cases, spouses find new partners right away following a divorce. Even if the divorce was a long time coming and your new relationship is above board, it is best to refrain from posting about any new beaus until after the divorce is finalized. If your ex’s attorney is feeling vindictive, or if your spouse is jealous, they can attempt to build a case of infidelity against you. This can harm your settlement, access to your children, and other important factors. Explain the situation to your new partner and ask for their patience while the divorce comes to a close.
How Can I Use Social Media During a Divorce?
The above may seem like significant limitations on your social media use. However, there are still many ways to use social media accounts during your divorce if you would like to do so. Some things you can do include:
- Post pictures of your kids. Just be sure that the activities are appropriate and approved by both you and your ex, and your kids are safe and happy in the photos.
- Share lighthearted content. The internet is full of fun and innocent videos, memes, and art. Feel free to share those types of things on your pages, as long as the topics are not controversial or pointed.
- Post about your hobbies. Whether you like to garden, read, play an instrument, or cook, take this time to post about your personal interests on social media. You’ll be surprised how many people have the same interests, and you may make new connections.
If you don’t feel like you can stick to these parameters, or you will be too tempted to post content directed at your ex, it may be best to deactivate your account while divorce proceedings unfold. This can provide a healthy respite and allow you space to reset and consider how your new life will look.
Contact Stange Law Firm
For representation during your Metro East divorce, contact Stange Law Firm. We have the experience, resources, and work ethic to get you through your divorce under the best possible circumstances. Don’t wait, contact us today.