Facebook Divorce Part II

March 19, 2012 by  
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Last week’s Aish article on Facebook and Divorce, see here, prompted many reader comments.  Here is my response that I posted to clarify whether Facebook really causes divorce:

Thanks to all who commented on the article. I would like to address a few of the comments that suggested that this article was an attack on technology and that Facebook is not the problem; rather bad marriages are. I believe, as some of you wrote, that technology is not inherently bad. It all depends on how we use it. In fact, I do not believe the internet is evil or that it is the main problem that our generation faces. Unhealthy relationships, be it marriage, family, or within one’s self, do much more damage and allow the unhealthy elements of the internet to influence us negatively. We must place our primary focus on the real problems which are working on creating healthy marriages and families as well as healthy individuals.

With that said,  Facebook is not the cause of jealousy, infidelity, and other social ills. The point of this article is that it does provide easier access for these forces to enter our lives. Each one of us must decide for ourselves what we can withstand. We are human and we have temptations. If we are prone to jealousy, it might not be helpful to spend so much time on Facebook reading about what everyone else is doing. I am not suggesting we live in fear and not trust ourselves, rather we should make informed decisions.

While some comments seem to assume this article is addressed to the Orthodox community, I think it is important to realize that the readers of this site are from all walks of life. While in the Orthodox community, there may be less intermingling of genders, and more awareness of the laws of not speaking ill about others, as well as the problems of jealousy and infidelity, for the world at large the points made in the article are ones that might not be so obvious. In fact, since this article was published I have been contacted by those thanking me for bringing some of these issues to the fore and that they have experienced the same problem with Facebook in their marriage. I think it is time for all of us to focus on bettering ourselves and our relationships and, with that, being aware of those activities which may not always help contribute to these goals.

To contact Rabbi Slatkin directly, please call 443-570-7598 or for a written response, please fill out the confidential form below.

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