(PRWEB) July 07, 2012
Most of the world is on Facebook and that means that most of the world is flirting with someone using the social networking site. According to Men's Health, 70 percent of people on Facebook use the site to flirt, and 25 percent of people use it to dally with someone other than their partner. Relationship therapist Dr. Bonnie Eaker Weil says tempting options are now much more accessible.
Seventy percent of people have used Facebook to flirt, according to Men's Health (http://www.prdaily.com/Main/Articles/12054.aspx). Couple this with another recent statistic that one in five divorce petitions now cite "Facebook" as the reason for the split and relationship expert Dr. Bonnie Eaker Weil says it's clear people are using the internet to sabotage their relationships whether they mean to or not.
It's not as if social networks are presenting people with options they never knew existed, she says, but rather these options are now much more accessible. "Ten years ago people might have had a hard time tracking down a high school sweetheart – and who would want to go to that trouble? - now, many times, those people are in our extended network of 'friends,'" points out Dr. Bonnie.
To mitigate potentially compromising social network situations, Dr. Bonnie suggests a good rule of thumb is the traditional rule of email – "people shouldn't jot anything down electronically that they wouldn't want coming out in the public space. It's a relatively simple rule, but one that fewer and fewer people seem to heed." And during the summer, as people often have more time on their hands, beware of online "cheating" that could be happening. Couples should note if their partner is home more than normal or staying up later than usual Of course, this only speaks to the actions, not to the root cause of the feelings that may spark a flirtation or affair.
In those cases, Dr. Bonnie emphasizes the importance of being aware of online surroundings, which have made it increasingly easier to engage in illicit dalliances. "Above all," she says, "people need to be honest with their partners. That's something that never changes, no matter what technologies come and go."
To do this, Dr. Bonnie suggests putting on a proverbial “bullet proof vest” which she discusses in her book Make Up Don't Break Up. While a couple has an honest conversation, the idea of the vest can help each person feel like they have permission to speak their mind. She explains: "This doesn't mean that one person should bully the other, or say regrettable things but rather that the couple should create an environment in which honest communication is encouraged, even if it may be emotionally painful."
To see Dr. Bonnie talking more about how to communicate safely and with honesty, click here: http://youtu.be/9oP9R_LvStc or check out her book Make Up Don't Break Up