Facebook and Marriage

 



Facebook and Marriage
by Carl Caton

(Update: Facebook mentioned in 20% of divorce papers in 2009. In 2011, Facebook is now mentioned in 33% of divorce papers. Read More)

One of the things I most admired about my parents was their sense of self-control. Prudent restraint is a wonderful thing. It shows the world that you have some level of discipline over yourself. One of the ways I choose to apply this attribute is in the area of emerging technologies. It's not that we abstain from all new things but rather that we are careful and we are slow to adopt.

Facebook is a wonderful tool that allows people to connect in ways we've never seen before. But I'm not sure that Facebook is not a healthy dynamic for a mature marriage. Most marriages experience a slow and steady decline in marital satisfaction. Social networking sites are seductive when real life isn't going so well. It takes purposeful intervention to keep a marriage growing and strong. In that light, I'm not sure that "reconnecting" with old high school friends (especially old boyfriends and girlfriends) is a dynamic that makes any marriage stronger.

Temptation and marital dissatisfaction aren't the only problems I have with Facebook. Statistics show that the fastest growing demographic of this medium is middle aged women. How many husbands lament that their wife is spending three hours a day looking at pictures and posting little snippets? As if we we're not already busy enough entertaining ourselves to death, now we have another way to idle away time? Has everyone forgotten that we live in a world of hurting people? Two billion people live in abject poverty. The American family is falling apart. Mentoring programs have a four year wait for men and women who will mentor fatherless children. Thousands of foster children await loving families who will care for them.  Do we really need yet another form of amusement and distraction?

In my own life there are a few places that I really want to win. Marriage and family are two of those places. I really want to have a strong, vibrant, life-long, God inspired, covenant marriage. I want to make good on my promise to my bride. And in that light, I want to do everything in my power to strengthen my marriage and create as much satisfaction there as possible. It is in that frame of mind that I've decided to opt-out of the Facebook craze. I want to redeem the time, investing myself in loving and serving my wife. I want to be there for my kids. I want to actually lead, yes lead the family into a brave new world. I want to craft a family mission statement. I want to cast vision for my kids. I want to help them discover their gifts and talents. I want to memorize more scripture and grow in the Word. I want to write my kids a letter. I want to go camping with my son and take him hunting. I want to learn how to bless my kids better. I want to mentor young people in our sphere of influence. I want to invite our neighbors over for dinner. I want to adopt another World Vision child. I want to pray for the ministry people we support. I even want to do a better job of unloading the dishwasher, pickup up my stuff around the house, and taking care of personal business.

And so, it's really not that I have that much against Facebook. It is more of a fact that there is so much more out there that God has for us. Yes, we'll miss the minute-by-minute update on the minutia of everyone's lives. But for those people that I really need to invest my life in, I'll be there for them. And for everyone else, we still love you. Sorry we're not aware that you burned the chicken tonight. We still want to talk to you and our phone still works.

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If you can't resist the temptation to jump into social media, consider Jason and Kelli Krafsky's book, Facebook and Your Marriage. Armed with some solid information, you can enter the brave new world with eyes wide open.


Facebook Tips For Married Couples
by Wanda Collins
Why are Facebook tips for married couples necessary? Because believe it or not, more and more couples are separating and divorcing because of inappropriate relationships that began on Facebook. <more...>

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Facebook and Marriage

 

Facebook and Marriage