Excessive use of Facebook can damage relationships

Woman with phoneExcessive use of Facebook and other social networks can damage newer romantic relationships, new  research claims.

In the study, to be published in a future issue of the Journal of Cyberpsychology, Behavior and Social Networking, researchers found a significant correlation between high levels of Facebook use and the likelihood of rows in relationships which have lasted three years or less . Unsurprisingly, the researchers also found that such arguments significantly increased the  likelihood or infidelity, breakup and divorce.

Researcher Russell Clayton said:

“Previous research has shown that the more a person in a romantic relationship uses Facebook, the more likely they are to monitor their partner’s Facebook activity more stringently, which can lead to feelings of jealousy. Facebook-induced jealousy may lead to arguments concerning past partners. Also, our study found that excessive Facebook users are more likely to connect or reconnect with other Facebook users, including previous partners, which may lead to emotional and physical cheating.”

The fact that the correlation was only found in relationships of three years or less was significant, he added.

“This suggests that Facebook may be a threat to relationships that are not fully matured. On the other hand, participants who have been in relationships for longer than three years may not use Facebook as often, or may have more matured relationships, and therefore Facebook use may not be a threat or concern.”

Photo by OiMax via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence

Marilyn Stowe

The senior partner at Stowe Family Law, Marilyn Stowe is one of Britain’s best known divorce lawyers with clients throughout the country, in Europe, the Far East and the USA.

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