The Internet, Divorce, and Children/ Dr. Mark Banschick

Posted on July 5, 2010


The Internet opens worlds for us all, but for unhappily married folks, it opens up dangers as well. People get divorced for many reasons, and this is an ancient truth. Anger, alcohol, hurt, coldness, money problems and infidelity are some of the most common. The Internet does not cause these problems but can accelerate some of them.

For instance, in the old days, meeting a person and having an affair was not that easy. The world was very small. Now the Internet opens you up to thousands of potential relationships while you are supposedly safe on your computer. Gambling (like online poker) can be very serious. You no longer need Atlantic City or Las Vegas in order to lose a lot of money – just the privacy of your laptop.

The Internet amplifies our tendencies. Look at the proliferation of Torah based learning web sites available to one and all. But if a person wants to pursue other interests, it can amplify these drives as well.

Just note that this technology only looks private.Your twelve year old daughter can poke into your email and discover downloaded pornography, to her detriment. And your legal exposure may increase with your online presence. Many matrimonial attorneys will request access to your Facebook or computer in order to show that you are less than wholesome. This may affect custody decisions or how the judge assesses your character.

Advice: When you got the keys to the car at the age of sixteen, seventeen or eighteen, you had taken classes teaching you how to drive and how to avoid problems. Now that you are driving this new technology called the Internet , learn “the rules of the road”.

Just know that privacy is an illusion. Do something wrong online and know that someone may find out about it.  Remember, the best mistakes are the one’s that you don’t make.

As a  child, adolescent and adult psychiatrist, Dr. Mark Banschick has been working with children and their parents for over twenty years.  He is the author of The Intelligent Divorce: Taking Care of Your Children (2010) and an online course for divorcing parents. His goal is to make divorce a better experience for children.
Contact Information:
Mark R Banschick, MD
215 Katonah Avenue
Katonah, New York 10536