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How a social media post helped bring together a Texas family

It is perhaps something of an understatement to say that social media has changed the way we communicate with our family, friends and the community at large. However, this relatively newfound reliance on social media -- Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. -- has certainly not been without its consequences, as more and more attorneys have indicated that it's now playing a key role in many divorces and divorce-related issues.

It's important to understand, though, that in the context of divorce and family law, social media can and often does serve more of a purpose than just providing a spouse with proof of infidelity or, perhaps more significantly, a judge with proof that a spouse can be making higher child support payments.

Specifically, it can actually be used as a tool to help reunite those families that were torn apart by especially bitter courtroom battles. To illustrate, consider a recent case right here in Texas.

Nearly 38 years ago, three children -- we'll call them Bruce, Charlene and Sharon -- found themselves in the middle of a heated divorce that saw their father leave and their mother eventually move with them to an undisclosed location.

Over the ensuing years, when Bruce, Charlene and Sharon would ask about their father, their mother would reveal no information, leaving them with countless questions and no answers. At the same time, their father was unable to locate them, seeing more and more major life events -- birthdays, graduations, holidays -- slip by uncelebrated.

While the children tried to locate their father on their own as they grew older, they were presented with more and more obstacles, until one day Charlene received a message on her Facebook page from a man named Paul claiming to be her cousin.

Despite her initial skepticism, Charlene eventually came to realize that Paul was indeed her cousin. As it turns out, Paul had simply decided to send Facebook messages to everyone in the Dallas-Fort Worth area with the same last name as the three kids in the slim hopes of locating his relatives.

His "needle in a haystack" method not only proved successful, it also paved the way for Bruce, Charlene and Sharon to finally be reunited with their father. In fact, the family is now moving forward together with the next chapter of their lives and it's all thanks to a simple Facebook message.

"I'm not bitter," said Bruce. "I would love to get to know my daddy from this day forward."

Fathers with concerns about divorce and child custody/visitation rights should strongly consider speaking with an experienced attorney to learn more about protecting their rights and their best interests.

Source: WFAA, "Facebook helps reunite family split by divorce," Shon Gables, October 6, 2013

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