Let’s admit up-front that there is a certain amount of irony about an article advising separating spouses to eschew social media that appears on social media. For many of us, social media is so integrated into our daily lives, we can’t imagine living without it.
However, if you are separating (or even just thinking about it), in the midst of a divorce, or waiting for your divorce judgment to be finalized you should stay away from posting on social media. This positively draconian ban encompasses even mundane activity such as posting comments to articles that can impact your divorce or appeal.
Getting divorced? Your divorce attorney will ‘Dislike’ almost anything you post on Facebook.
In what can only be considered a horrifying example of inappropriate behavior both in court and online, see the following article and first comment from the wife in the divorce: http://www.abajournal.com/news/article/ex-wife_gets_less_in_divorce_of_biglaw_partner_because_her_badmouthing_hurt/?utm_source=maestro&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=weekly_email
Assuming you don’t have the patience to read through the entire article above, the situation involves a wife bad-mouthing her husband, resulting in a reduced settlement. To add fuel to the fire, the wife then comments on the online article, exposing herself and her case to derision and scorn. Overall, this is a perfect example of what NOT to do.
Information posted on social media is publicly available, even though you may think your privacy settings are very strong. (If you feel this way, you may want to crawl out from under that rock and reread some current news articles about the lack of privacy online!) Friends of your friends can have access to your Facebook page or someone following you on twitter may retweet one of your tweets. Before you know it, something you thought was private knowledge (like that brand new Porsche you bought when you declared minimal assets in your divorce or if you are a budding politician possibly a photo of a highly inappropriate body part) is now circulating out in the world. And it’s all fair game for opposing counsel. Congratulations, you just added to the length and complexity of your divorce and likely increased your attorney’s fees.
If you want to know more about this, check out these articles:
The immediacy of social media makes it a very attractive outlet for your anger, angst and animated emotions – especially for women, who are big users of social media. (Don’t believe me? Check out this article: http://socialmediatoday.com/valerie-mellema/2231276/do-men-use-facebook-differently-women) Facebook, twitter, Instagram, Tumblr and all their cousins are beckoning you to share your feelings about how great your new boyfriend or girlfriend is, how lousy your ex is in comparison and how you have started a wonderful new chapter in your life (because living well is the best revenge). You can tell the whole world and you can tell them NOW.
Don’t do it. Count to ten. Call your friend. Or your mother. Or your therapist. Even your attorney. But don’t post it on social media. Please.