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April 15, 2010. Is Social Media Causing Divorce?  

By Josh D. Simon

As reported by FOXNews.com, some marriage counselors claim that social media sites are promoting separations and divorces among 40 and 50-year old surfers. The reason? Bored middle age folks are using it to search for that elusive lost love or childhood sweetheart...and they're finding them, ready, willing and able.

How serious is the problem? According to a UK-based divorce firm, 20% of the divorce petitions it processed last year pointed to Facebook as playing a role. And it's not just trysts that have observers worried. According to Elly Robinson, manager of the Australian Family Relationship Clearing House, social media sites are harming marriages when spouses don't see eye-to-eye on their partner's online behavior. "People will come in (for counseling) where one partner may deny their online behavior has been any sort of problem," Robinson noted, "but the issue is ... if it's upsetting one of those people in the relationship, it's a problem." She also added that there was a general lack of research on the effect of social media and online behavior on relationships. 

However, experts like Relationship Australia vice president Anne Hollonds caution against accusing social media as the root of this new, web 2.0 relationship evil. "The Internet doesn't make people have affairs," she said. "It's become the pathway of choice for many people, but I don't think that means the Internet is breaking up families...there's no evidence to suggest that had the technology not been available, [people] wouldn't have had an affair with someone else anyway."

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