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Spouses beware: secrecy often revealed by technology

Rhode Island residents are probably aware that cheating and finances are common causes of divorce. They might not realize, however, that a common theme in most divorces is secrecy. A spouse who is trying to keep secrets should be aware that almost all secrets will come out eventually, and with technology secret keeping is near impossible.

Secrets coming out in divorces is seen in celebrity divorces. Arnold Schwarzenagger, for example, cheated on his wife and secretly fathered a child with the family house-keeper. He then continued for years to secretly provide financial support for the child.

Schwarzenegger was able to keep his extramarital activities secret until 2011 even though rumors of his unfaithfulness were rampant. Celebrities are not the only ones trying to keep secrets though.

According to divorce lawyers, adultery tops the list of secrets spouses try to hide. Technology is making it easy to get caught these days. Email and text messages leave a trail that make it very difficult for a cheating spouse to deny it.

Such an increasing number of divorces have occurred due to social networking sites such as Facebook, that the term "Facebook divorce" has been coined. According to one survey, many lawyers say Facebook is the primary source of evidence used in divorce cases. It would be wise for divorcing couples to be cautious about what they put on the internet or avoid using these sites all together. Pictures as well as posts can be incriminating and can be used against someone by showing that they were likely unfaithful or to show they should not get custody of the children.

Source: Chicago Tribune, "Secrecy a common thread in most divorces," Bonnie Miller Rubin, October 10, 2012

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