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Getting divorced? Keep it off of social media

Social media is an outlet. You talk about your joys and your triumphs. You share your struggles and frustrations. You connect with friends and family members. You get advice and you vent. It's a place where you quickly put your thoughts, typically not caring who reads them. You're not worried about what others think of you.

In a very general sense, this is a positive outlook. You don't need to worry about what other people think. You may find that voicing your opinions gives you more support than you'd have otherwise.

That said, if you're getting divorced, this approach can really hurt your case. It is typically far better to stay off of social media -- or, at least, to keep the divorce itself of off social media.

Venting about your ex

One of the hardest things to do is to keep from venting about your ex, but you should know that it often just creates tension. It makes people feel like they have to choose sides. If you feel like you need to get it "off of your chest," find a close friend and do it face-to-face. Do not post all of your frustrations on the internet.

For one thing, doing this can make the divorce more contentious. For another, your ex may use what you say against you in court. Something said in a heated moment could harm your chances of getting custody of your child, for instance. It's better not to risk it.

Posting about finances

It's tempting, when people know you're going through a difficult time, to post as much as you can about what makes your life look great and appealing. Social media is all about image. You don't want people to think about how hard it is, for instance, so you post pictures of you spending money on extravagant vacations and looking like you're living the dream.

But is that going to hurt your position? If you're trying to fight against a court order for child support or alimony that looks way higher than it should be, will those posts about your excessive spending make it look like there's no reason to reduce the payments? You have to think about the picture this paints.

Two sides

By the same token, remember that you can use social media posts from your ex in your favor. Maybe it's your ex who is denying that they can afford those alimony payments, but their posts show new cars, expensive clothes and lots of other purchases. You can learn a lot about someone based on what they post.

No matter where you are in your divorce, make sure you know what rights you have, what legal options you can use in California and what social media mistakes to avoid.

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