MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Think about this the next time you log onto your social media accounts: some people are claiming social networking sites and divorce rates are related.
Browsing the homepage on Facebook is like second nature for most of us. But researchers and local attorneys agree: it also causes huge problems in marriages.
In fact, one study says social networking sites are a significant predictor of divorce rate and spousal troubles. Several explanations were offered in the findings of the Boston University study. One says that men and women in a troubled or rocky marriage sometimes turn to social media as an outlet for emotional support. They receive it from people in similar situations, not their partner. Second, social networking sites reduce the health of a marriage because they get addicted, which can spark feelings of jealousy between partners and even facilitate extramarital affairs.
Local attorneys were asked about whether social media sites come into play when couples file for divorce. The answer: an overwhelming "yes," at least half of divorce cases involve some element of social media.
Attorneys say it's mostly a trend with younger divorcing couples, but it does affect many older couples as well. It can affect perfectly healthy marriages, and be as simple as a spouse changing a password for no reason, but it makes the other spouse suspicious.
It lessens communication from couples that existed even ten years ago, and takes away emotion from relationships. Facebook isn't a critical element of your life.