As a divorce lawyer I read with interest the Hollywood actress Kate Winslet comments on parents "losing control" of their children to social media and how such sites are damaging children's self esteem. I agree with Kate's telling comments but also wonder if today's children are just copying their own parents " social media addiction " to their ipads or Facebook pages. I have noticed how there is an increasing trend to share every aspect of the breakdown of a relationship on social media often without thought to children who are caught in the middle.
Updating your profile when you separate to single on Facebook is now commonplace and more worrying is the couples playing out the emotional rollercoaster of their separation through social media. Its surprisingly common for clients to post highly derogatory comments about their ex on Facebook for everyone to see without any consequnces of their actions and often in full knowledge of the fact that their teenage children have full access to their parents social media sites and can see the damaging comments that each parent is saying about each other.
This behaviour can have a serious effect on the children who are already dealing with the emotional fall out of their parents separating. I understand how easy it is to take to Twitter or Facebook to vent frustration or anger as we have all been in the situation when we have sent an email or said something we later regretted. The problem with social media is that it is seen by such a wide audience and the repercussions permanent.
Parents are “losing control” of their children to social media, award-winning British actor Kate Winslet has said, adding the she has banned her own from using such sites over fears their self-esteem is being damaged. In an interview with The Sunday Times, the Revolutionary Road star, 40, said parents should confiscate technology from their offspring – who she said may turn to social media for validation from strangers. Winslet said social media made her blood boil and said it has a huge impact on young women’s self-esteem. “Because all they ever do is design themselves for people to like them. And what comes along with that? Eating disorders,” she said, adding: “We don’t have any social media in our house.”