Lucinda Connell, North East’s Best Leading Female Specialist Family Lawyer of Major Family Law, specialist divorce and children solicitors based in Ponteland, Newcastle upon Tyne comments virtually family lawyers have noticed a significant increase in the number of people citing social media use as a cause of concern in divorce or other family law disputes. Research commissioned by law firm Slater and Gordon reveals some interesting statistics:
One quarter of couples argue over social media use.
Just under half of all adults in the UK admit they have secretly checked their partner’s Facebook account and one in five went on to argue about what they discovered.
One in seven said they had contemplated divorce because of their partner’s activities on Facebook, Skype, Snapchat, Twitter or What’sApp.
Nearly a quarter or the 2,000 married persons asked said they had at least one argument a week with their partner because of social media use and 17 per cent said they rowed every day because of it.
The most common reasons for checking their partner’s social media accounts were to find out whom their partner was talking to, to keep tabs on them, to check who they were out with and find out if they were telling the truth about their social life. 14 per cent said they looked specifically to identify evidence of infidelity.
Arguments were also caused because of contact with an ex-partner, sending secret messages and posting inappropriate photos. One in twenty even complained that their partner didn’t post any pictures of them together which made them upset.
Fifteen per cent of people asked considered social media to be dangerous to their marriage, with Facebook considered the most dangerous, followed by WhatsApp, Twitter and Instagram.
One in ten admitted they hid images and posts from their partner, while eight per cent admitted to having secret social media accounts. One third said they kept their social media log-in details a secret from their partners, 58 per cent said they knew their partner’s log-in details, even if their spouse wasn’t aware they knew them.
A fifth of those surveyed said they felt uneasy about their relationship after discovering something on their partner’s Facebook. 43 per cent said they confronted their spouse immediately about this, but 40 per cent said it took them some time before they felt comfortable to raise it with their partner.
Whilst Facebook and other social media can be a wonderful way of keeping in touch with friends and family, it would appear wise to be aware too of the potential to cause damage to such relationships.