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Smartly using social media during your divorce

Whether you use it every day to communicate with friends or occasionally to get updates on family far away, social media probably plays a role in your life in some way. These sites have grown exponentially in recent years, and you are likely one of many Americans who use social media in some form.

According to the Pew Research Center, just 5% of Americans used social media in 2005, but today, approximately 72% of people in the U.S. use one of these platforms. As you prepare for your divorce, proceed cautiously as you use these sites because the information on them can affect court proceedings.

Change your passwords right away

You and your spouse may have shared passwords to many of your accounts during your marriage. Even if you do not think your spouse will access your accounts now, change your passwords as soon as you can.

Think before posting about your divorce

You may feel frustrated, angry and emotional during the divorce process. Although it may be tempting to vent online to others in your network, talk through these feelings with a close friend, family member or therapist instead.

Review your privacy settings

Other people you are friends with may tag you in photos, location check-ins and status updates during your divorce. Take a look at your privacy settings to ensure no one can add you to any post that would portray you in a negative light.

If you feel like using social media is too much to handle during your divorce, consider signing off for a while. This may provide you with needed emotional and mental space to handle the stresses of your divorce and move forward.