Are you the sort of person who documents their lives on social media? If not, you have probably encountered this on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok and other platforms. Many people in Columbia and the rest of Maryland love sharing personal news (both good and bad) online with friends, family and strangers alike.
Even if you don’t tend to broadcast every piece of news, you might be tempted to discuss your divorce on social media, especially when you are feeling upset, sad, angry or frustrated about how it is going. But be careful. Using social media improperly while your divorce is still ongoing can backfire. It could cost you substantial money and other assets in property division and could harm you in a child custody dispute. For example, a photo of you posing next to a new car could lead to your ex accusing you of hiding assets. Remember, your ex (and their attorney) could end up seeing anything you put online.
Using social media safely if you are getting divorced
The safest bet is not to post messages, videos, photos or anything else related to your divorce until it is finished. In fact, taking a break from social media during your divorce could help you focus on your mental health and your children’s well-being during a difficult time. But if you must keep using your accounts, here are four tips for using social media safely during divorce.
- Privacy. Turn your accounts’ settings to their highest levels so only those who follow you can see them. Have your friends and family refrain from tagging you on their posts. Go through your follower lists and unfriend or block anyone you wouldn’t trust with personal divorce details.
- Stay positive. Even with these precautions, post as if your ex will see it. Resist the temptation to criticize them, even when they are being unreasonable or hurtful. And don’t post things that your ex might use as ammunition against you, such as vacation photos. Instead, focus on positivity as much as possible.
- Don’t snoop. Resist the temptation to spy on your ex’s social media or ask your friends to do so.
- Google yourself. Searching your name online could turn up some potentially troubling photos or videos that you might have to deal with.
Social media could be an unexpected factor in your divorce case. Fortunately, an experienced divorce attorney can advise you in greater detail of the potential pitfalls and how to shield yourself.