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Is Facebook Ruining Your Relationship?: Jealousy Advice

By Susie and Otto Collins

When a couple is trying to rebuild trust and their relationship after infidelity, jealousy can provide serious roadblocks to that goal.

And when it comes to jealousy, one of the big triggers out there appears to be social networking sites on the internet like Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and others.

After all, people can share comments, crack jokes and even flirt in this seemingly innocent and harmless virtual communication.

Online interactions can truly be innocent, but, in some cases, they can lead to emotional affairs or even physical affairs-- both of which will cause further damage to a relationship.

There is a lot of room for confusion and also temptation when it comes to social networking sites. This is why many people feel like
Facebook is the reason why their relationship or marriage is contentious and unhappy.

Jeri gets a sick feeling in her stomach every time she logs onto Facebook.

Her husband, Craig, also has a Facebook account and so Jeri can read all of his posts, as well as comments that others have written on his "wall."

She has gotten into the habit of frequently checking Craig's Facebook wall because a woman named "Celia" (whom she doesn't know) has been commenting a lot on there.

What is troubling to Jeri is not so much that another woman is posting on his wall, it's what she's been writing.

There seem to be hidden messages and inside jokes in Celia's comments on Craig's wall. Something just doesn't feel right about this whole thing to Jeri and it's bringing up a lot of jealousy in her.

She has asked Craig about Celia, but he always claims that Jeri is holding his past against him and is jumping to conclusions.

Jeri and Craig have worked so hard to get their relationship back on track after Craig's affair two years ago. It feels like this whole Facebook thing is ruining it all.

Facebook is not the problem...
If you feel jealous and/or suspicious regarding your partner's social networking activities, don't blame Facebook or whatever social network it is.

Instead, look at the people involved-- your mate and you.

Own up to your habit of being jealous and also take a close look at the real evidence of what is happening on the social networking site.

Get to the roots of your jealousy.

Are you spending a lot of time remembering past events in which your partner betrayed you? Are you
still carrying around hurt from his or her infidelity?

If so, take the time to acknowledge that.

Do the healing that you need to do and pay attention when your partner does prove that he or she is trustable again, even in small ways.

Sometimes, memories of the past can obscure the improvements that another person is making today.

Above all, continue to bring yourself back to this present moment.  When you read a comment that someone else has made on your partner's
"wall" or site, don't assume anything.

Take the comment for what it is.

The bottom line here is to assess what's going on based on reliable information and not on your fears and guesses.

On the other hand, if what you see on your partner's social networking page or wall seems inappropriate or betrays inconsistencies between what he or she ha been telling you and what
another person reports, follow up.

Look for other clues that will help you determine what is really going on.

Create clear usage agreements.
If you and your partner are trying to rebuild trust after an affair, it's really important for there to be clear communication between you two.

While social networking sites are not the "problem" when it comes to jealousy and even emotional or physical affairs developing, they can
be a source of misunderstanding and, yes, temptation.

Come up with specific agreements that you are both comfortable with about how you will each interact with others on social networking sites.

Are there specific people-- possibly from your partner's past-- who it would be wiser to block or "unfriend?"

Will you both abstain from instant messaging or direct messaging others? Will you give one
another full access to your accounts?

This has to be a true agreement, however, and not just one of you saying "yes" to something that you don't intend on doing.

These agreements may feel restrictive or even invasive, but when you are trying to restore your relationship connection and trust after cheating, taking the extra steps can make a positive difference.

Social networking sites can be an enjoyable way to stay connected with friends and family.

They can also be a way to have fun with your
mate. Try flirting with your partner via his or her "wall," for example.

When used within parameters that feel comfortable and appropriate to both of you, social networking does not have to feel like a threat to
your relationship.

In fact, it can actually be a means to increase passion and connection.






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Contact Info
Relationship Coaches Susie and Otto Collins
PO Box 14544, Columbus, OH 43214
Contact Susie or Otto about Relationship Coaching by calling 614-459-8121.
For all other inquiries, contact us by email

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