Wednesday, May 29 2024

Do social networks cause cheating? These tools have drastically changed the
way we live, express ourselves, spend our free time, and even “be” with
others.

Thus, it’s fair to ask whether they have also changed something in how
married couples relate to each other in their own union and whether they
create obstacles for couples, hindering their ability to connect.

No doubt, social media does not always strengthen and foster commitment and
fidelity.

In fact, it gives us the chance of reaching out to people near and far –
silently and from the comfort of our own homes. Social media helps us to
overcome shyness thanks to a screen in front of our faces instead of
another human, and it grants us access to chat rooms and meeting sites of
all kinds, favoring – in the case of pre-existing human weaknesses –
infidelity and betrayal.

Is social media the “real cause” of cheating?

The fact is there: Divorces and separations continue to increase. In Italy,
for example, ISTAT estimates an increase of more than 300% since 1991. Is
the social media to be blamed for that?

Let’s not go into whether or not it’s true that, today, Facebook has become
one of the main causes of divorce. There are so many chat rooms and dating
sites where one can look for opportunities to cheat. According to 80% of
lawyers registered with the American Family Law Attorneys Association,
social media plays a major role in divorces, so much so that the U.S.
courts have granted permission to judges to ask for a spouse’s Facebook
password.

The problem is that social networks make it possible to rebuild
relationships and acquaintances and to meet new friends with a simple “add”
or “follow.” With just one click, you could fall for a thousand various
temptations. There are those who believe that they can handle themselves,
that they do certain things out of sheer curiosity, and that everything
will end after just a few “harmless comments.” Instead, what at first seems
to be just a game becomes a vice, and betrayals are then consummated both
online and offline. Then again, as humorist writer Helen Rowland said,
“’Just one more time’ is the devil’s best argument.”

If we Google search “cheating on Facebook,” what comes up?

The first site that comes to our attention is a page that talks about “How
to do it without getting caught.” The second tells us “How to find out if
our partner is doing it.” We would like to give you tips on how not to fall for it. Social media make cheating easier. However, we
have to bear in mind that it is not the medium but the action itself that
counts.

While it is true that communicating via the Internet makes it easier to
cheat, it’s still the individual’s fault, as they ultimately decide to make
poor decisions. One cannot accuse a social network of causing one’s
relationship to fail.

3 tips for resisting online temptations

1. Dedicate limited time to social media. Instead, cultivate a hobby; if
you have free time, meet up with people; listen to music; devote yourself
to constructive service activities in your civic or religious community.
Don’t let social media absorb you to the point of enslavement.

2. Don’t join dating sites, even with the excuse that you are “just looking
for new friendships.” If you are dissatisfied with your flesh-and-blood
relationships, if your marriage is not doing well, don’t run away from your
life and responsibilities, but ask why and solve your problems offline. The
Internet will not solve your problems. It will only make you feel emptier
and more dissatisfied.

3. Don’t stop to look at images, profiles, or messages that provoke
thoughts of impurity or infidelity. The first way to resist a temptation is
to turn your back on it immediately. Don’t be indulgent with yourself and
don’t think it’s no big deal just because you are on the Internet and not
in the real world. Every action you take online carries the same weight as
an action taken offline.

What are your thoughts on the subject? Do you have any suggestions?

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