Q: Is it okay to connect with former lovers on Facebook? While browsing online I ran across an old boyfriend from my college days. We haven’t communicated for years and I’m curious to know what he’s been up to. I love my husband and our relationship is strong, so I don’t see this as a threat to my marriage. Any advice?
A: Ironically, this is easier to address in the case of a troubled marriage. The more difficulty a couple is experiencing, the more obvious it should be that outside temptations or intrusions are not okay. In situations like that, the answer is a definite no.
Even when the marriage is strong, as you’ve indicated, the risks still far outweigh any potential benefits. For that reason, we’d advise you to talk this over with your husband at length before you decide anything. Your marriage is worth protecting. So be careful about exposing your relationship to threats of any kind, no matter how remote they may seem. Honestly evaluate your motives and discuss them with your husband before deciding together.
If you choose to go ahead and friend your old flame, make sure your own Facebook account intentionally reflects your healthy marriage. This will prevent your friend request being interpreted in the wrong way. It’s also important to consider what impact your actions may have on your old boyfriend’s relationship with his wife. While your marriage may be strong enough to accommodate a re-establishment of this friendship, your innocent overture could introduce a source of marital difficulty for them.
Connecting with old friends via social media can bring opportunities to share how you have respectively grown and flourished since you went your separate ways. But it can also get very tricky if it introduces tension, suspicion, or jealousy – and that’s just not worth it. If you could use some help sorting this out, call our Family Support Services at 03-7954 7920 or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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