Facebook Fidelity – Who’s Face is More Important
500+ Friends. 300 Status Updates. 200 Pictures. 150 “Likes.” 50 “Pokes.” 10 “Check-ins” per day. 1 Spouse. Does this sound familiar? Boy, do we love us some Facebook and social media, but for many married couples, Facebook and other social media websites have become a hot topic. Unfortunately, for some, it’s become the gateway to destruction.
As technology becomes more accessible, we find ourselves spending more time on our tablets, computers and smart phones. I actually own a variety of tools and gadgets and I’m an avid user of Facebook, Twitter, etc, but even I have to check myself sometimes and say “Ok, I need a digital break” – whether television, Facebook, Twitter, etc.
I’ve heard people refer to Facebook as the “cause” for so many divorces, and there are statistics that help support the negative impact that Facebook has had on marriages. However, please understand that you can’t place blame on any website, Facebook or Twitter account without acknowledging that all of these tools are controlled by us – humans.
Temptation can come in a variety of ways – on the job, at school, sometimes at church, through email and yes, even through social media. However, the key is to find ways to resist temptation regardless of how it may appear.
What I’ve observed through some relationships is that social media, if we allow it, can get us caught up in a situation that could potentially ruin our relationships. Whether we have a joint Facebook account with our spouses, separate accounts or another setup, we should consider the following tips to help avoid potential issues:
1. Status updates shouldn’t update everyone about everything, including our marital issues.
Although Facebook uses the term “friends” as far as our connections, remember that everyone isn’t necessarily a true friend. So, why would we share negative details about our marriage to everyone? We can’t give people a reason to spread gossip or add fuel to the fire when it comes to personal situations within our marriages. We never know who may be waiting around the corner to use our words against us so they can move in on our spouse.
2. “Poking” should only go on between you and your spouse.
For some, poking is another form of flirting. So, an old flame from high school or college poked us on Facebook and we just thought it was the cutest thing, but don’t let the cute poking fool you. As they say, it only takes a spark to start a fire. One poke could lead to a message, which could lead to multiple interactions and ultimately lead to an emotional or physical affair if we fail to put out the fire before it starts.
3. No Facebook friend should come between our best friend – our spouses.
What’s more important – the number of Facebook friends we have or the friendship with our spouse? Sometimes it’s just not worth the fight when it comes to exes or certain so-called friends. Yes, we may have been friends with a certain ex or friend for a long time, but if it comes to a point where it makes our partner feel uncomfortable, we have to find a resolution that works for both of us. At the end of the day, we don’t want to make our partner feel as if those “friends” are more important than our marriage.
4. If we spend more time on Facebook than we do with God or our spouse, it’s time re-prioritize.
It’s not always necessary for us to start from scratch and change our Facebook page completely, but we may need to alter your focus and restructure your personal schedule. We can start with replacing some of our social media time – or whatever our addiction may be – with more quality time and meaningful conversations with our spouse. And whenever necessary, consider a “digital vacation.” It’s all about putting the important things first.
My Pastor once said “You’re all up in Facebook when you should be seeking His face – Jesus.” If we find ourselves struggling to manage time spent between our married life and our social life or notice this with your spouse, we should talk to our mates to prevent each other from feeling neglected. Pray that God will help you focus on what matters most. At the end of the day, no tweet, status update, picture or video is that important.
“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Matthew 26:41 (NIV)
“No temptationhas overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be temptedbeyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13 (NIV)