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Facebook not just a danger in divorce; it can cause it

One of the growing trends in divorce is the use of Facebook to substantiate claims. For example, a spouse may file for divorce and claim that his or her spouse cheated on him or her. They may reference photos on the social media site, or a chain of messages linking the cheating spouse with his or her extramarital flame.

There are other examples of Facebook being a key cog in divorce. Some spouses use the site to vent after the divorce, posting angry statuses that are offensive and inflammatory. Such statuses could get a spouse in trouble before a family court. Facebook also contains a wealth of information about the spouse, all conveniently available to most people. Again, the information could be used against a spouse during divorce.

A new study, though, has found that Facebook is not only an integral part of divorce once it is filed; but the social media site may actually contribute to divorce in the first place.

Researchers looked at over 200 Facebook users between the ages of 18 and 82. Nearly four out of five of these participants were involved in a romantic relationship. Researchers picked people who used the social media site "excessively," defined as checking it more than once per hour.

People who are in a romantic relationship are more likely to check up on their spouse on the social media site -- and the study found that, because of this, "excessive" Facebook users are more likely to have run-ins and conflicts with their boyfriend or girlfriend because of content on the site. "Facebook-induced jealousy," researchers reasoned, can legitimately lead to divorce.

Source: Huffington Post, "Facebook, Divorce Linked In New Study," June 6, 2013

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