Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram hold a special place in our hearts and on our phones, taking up storage space literally and figuratively. The urge to share our joys, griefs, and dinner dinner plates has become an addiction. During the divorce process, however, this compulsion to post at a whim must be controlled.
Increasingly, social media surfaces in court. This can be particularly damaging during a custody battle. Posts, pictures, tweets, even blog entries, are all potential weapons against your character. Relaxing with a girlfriend while your parents watch the kids (because we know how much stress surrounds divorce) and you want to share a photo of the two of you enjoying a glass of wine? This innocent photo on your social media offers up several scenarios: you have more money and means than you say; you have the children, but are not with them; you drink too often. None of these scenarios are actually true, however, any one of them offered in court can alter your outcome. Planting doubt is the point, and once it’s there, the doubt can cheat you out of what you deserve.
Many lawyers will advise you to change your settings on your social media accounts, resist what you disclose, or even deactivate your account. Your former spouse could easily see what you post and use it against you, or a friend or family member could share posts and pictures with them. This is why evaluating relationships and certain settings is important, even if it’s painful.
There’s a wise saying that goes something like this: Check thyself before thou dost wreck thyself. I’m pretty sure the poet Ice Cube knew what he was saying. Heed his advice. As you enter into the shifting territory of divorce, hold back the desire to share everything on social media. Think first of how it could be perceived, for yourself and your family.