5 Ways to Clean Up Your Facebook Profile After Divorce
Your Breakup Doesn’t Have to be All Over Social Media & Facebook Doesn’t Need to Notify You about Your Ex-Wife
Now the really hard part of the divorce starts; Cleaning Up Your Facebook Profile.
Cleaning up your Facebook profile after a divorce can be an important public step in moving on with your life. Here is a quick 5-step checklist to give your social media profile a post-divorce cleaning.
Facebook Cleanup Step 1:
Change Your Relationship Status
This is the big one.
To the online world, you still look like you are married. Once you flip the switch, all your digital friends will get a surprising update. Facebook offers several options for your status, you could choose “Divorced”, “Single”, or, the ever popular and vague, “It’s Complicated”.
If you are looking for privacy, you can simply remove relationship status from your online information by selecting “Only Me” in the security settings.
Whichever option you choose, you will want to prepare for the inevitable flood of comments. You may want to prepare a short post just to let everyone know you are now divorced. While your online connections likely want to show support, their responses may not always be well thought out. You shouldn’t feel like you have to reply to every statement.
Facebook Cleanup Step 2:
Remove Any Unwanted Facebook Milestones
Going through your timeline, you will likely find several Facebook “milestones” tied to your marriage.
Facebook encourages you to create milestones and will often automatically add them. The biggest milestone that is still around is likely your wedding. Once you added your marriage date, Facebook created a milestone for it. Thankfully, it is easy to delete.
Simply find the event on your timeline, click in the upper right corner, and choose delete from the menu.
It is now removed from your timeline. If you were an avid user of milestones, you may have several involving your ex-spouse. This may include anniversary parties, family vacations, and activities with your in-laws. You may decide to keep some milestones, especially if your children or close friends were involved.
Facebook Cleanup Step 3:
Delete Old Pictures of Your Ex-Wife
This cleanup will probably take you the most amount of time.
Depending on how long you have been using Facebook, you may have posted dozens or even hundreds, of pictures with your ex-spouse. Be prepared, this is likely going to get emotional.
You will be going through the history of your marriage and looking at images from happier times. If you have a lot of pictures, don’t try to go through them all in one sitting. You may want to keep some pictures, especially ones with your children.
You can download any of your photos and save them offline before deleting them from Facebook.
Related Article: 3 Ways that Facebook is Transforming Divorce
Facebook Cleanup Step 4:
Remove Tagged Photos
You have deleted all your marriage photos, but pictures of you and your ex still show up on your profile.
Where are these pictures coming from? Your friends have tagged you in their pictures.
While it’s nice to have friends posting pictures of you, this means there are several photos you would like removed that you don’t own. You could reach out to your friends and ask them to delete the pictures. This is a good, long-term solution, but it will take some time for you to contact everyone on your Facebook Messenger list.
A faster, and simpler, solution is to remove the tag. Click on the menu in the upper right corner of the picture and choose “Edit” and then “Remove Tag”. You will receive a warning message that this image will now no longer appear when people search for you. Confirm and the picture will be unlinked from your profile.
Facebook Cleanup Step 5:
Unfriend Your Ex-Wife
You and your former spouse may still be on good terms, but that doesn’t mean you have to be online friends on Facebook.
You will both be living new lives, and, likely, spending time with new people. Including new significant others. Seeing pictures of your ex-wife with someone else in your Faecbook news feed is not a great way to start the day. You can avoid this by unfriending your ex.
In order to unfriend your former-spouse, you will need to visit their profile for one last time.
Click on the “Friends” drop-down menu and select “Unfriend”. Now pictures of your ex’s new life will not appear when you log into Facebook. If you want even more privacy, you can block your ex-spouse. This can be done in your privacy settings. Once blocked, you and your ex will no longer be able to see each other on Facebook.
Making changes and taking down pictures of your marriage on Facebook may seem like a difficult and emotional task. Like a good spring cleaning though, it will clear space for new memories and events.
You will be ready to start sharing a brand new life online.
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