Let’s face it – staying off social media is pretty difficult in this day and age. And while we do spend a lot of time on sites like Facebook, Instagram & TikTok, there are some key things you need to be aware of when it comes to your divorce and social media.
We’ve put together a list of social media do’s and don’ts when you get divorced to help you in these often-murky online waters.
Social Media Do’s When You Get Divorced
Update your social account passwords
Update ALL your social media passwords immediately. It’s a good idea to also change your passwords for your email, phone, laptops, iPads – everything. Even if your divorce seems to be amicable, leave nothing to chance. Same applies for you though. If you have access to your ex’s social accounts, leave them alone.
Check your privacy settings
Reset your privacy settings to maximum level and ensure you’re not posting content to the general public but only to your trusted friends. Set your accounts so that only accepted friends or followers have access to your content. Even so, nothing you say online is guaranteed to remain private.
Consider a social friend cull
There has never been a better time to rethink your list of friends online and culling anyone who may not be a “friend” anymore. Reconsider your chat groups too – they can be less private than you may think.
Take a break from socials
Of all the dos and don’ts about social media, the best is to actually try and take a complete break from all platforms until the divorce is over, or at least until emotions have subsided. If you say nothing, nothing can be used against you. If you cannot resist, then avoid saying anything regarding your divorce, your ex or anything else that you may later regret.
Think before you post
Posting content while angry, depressed, or even a little tipsy, is never wise. In fact, before posting or saying anything to anybody, first think of the repercussions that could follow. If you really need to vent, then do it privately and face to face with a friend. Social media has made the world a small place. There may be somebody that knows someone who is related to your ex, or even worse – the Judge. So think carefully before posting anything.
Be honest about what you’ve posted in the past
If you’ve slipped up and posted something about your case or your ex, be honest and tell your lawyer about it. Even if you think it was an innocent comment, it could easily be misinterpreted once in court as something malicious and have damaging consequences for you.
Remember that your kids might see what you share too
The last thing children need – while their parents are busy separating – is to see them badmouthing each other. Post nothing negative about your ex or their family that may hurt your kids. Even if you think it’s true. This applies to your family and friends too.
Be wary of new friend requests
Choosing friends wisely has never been more relevant as it is for you right now. Be very wary of any new friends during this emotional period, as you may not know where their true loyalties lie.
Social Media Don’ts When You Get Divorced
Don’t delete your accounts or posts
Deleting an account or post, can be seen as an admission of guilt. If it was something offensive and useful to your ex’s case, chances are they have already taken a screenshot of it. Trying to hide it will only draw more attention to it. Don’t forget, material deleted online can often be retrieved.
Don’t discuss legal issues online
Statements made online are usually admissable as evidence in Court these days and feature prominently in many divorce cases.
Discussing legal issues, the lawyers, the case or the Judge online will get you into serious trouble. Discuss legal matters only with your lawyer.
This applies equally to arrangements that have been ordered by the Court – such as when and where the children are to spent time with their parents. Never comment online about these arrangements – they are between you, your ex and the Court.
Don’t post negatively about your ex or their family
This can never be stressed enough. Even if what you post may be true, it may affect your children if they see your posts. It could also trigger off retaliatory response from your ex, which may be to your detriment, and if your comments are found to be untrue, it will be used against you in Court.
Don’t log in to your ex’s accounts
Even if you have previously had access to your ex’s social media profiles, do not log in to their accounts. That can only bring more distress in your life.
Focus on improving yours and your children’s lives.
Don’t stalk your ex or their family or new partner online
Stalking or spying on your ex online will cause you more harm than good. Leave them alone. Don’t even ask your friends or family to do it for you.
Don’t post anything you wouldn’t want a Judge to see
Never post anything that may show you up in a bad light. An innocent photo of you could easily be misinterpreted in Court. And the cardinal sin for any Judge is for you to discuss the merits of the case on social media.
Don’t go public with a new partner
It’s not a good idea to post anything showing a relationship with a new partner, before your divorce is finalised legally. Keep your private life just that – private – until the dust has settled on your divorce.
Are you going through a tricky separation or divorce?
Then consider divorce mediation instead of expensive family lawyers.
Here at Move On Mediation in Perth, I’ve helped countless separating couples to divorce quickly and amicably.