How Facebook Almost Ruined My Marriage

My husband is not perfect. Don’t get me wrong, he is wonderful and I love him dearly, but he is far from perfect. He lashes out sometimes when he’s sleep-deprived and stressed. He forgets to take out the trashed or change the oil in the car when I’ve asked at least 1,000 times. And for some strange reason, he doesn’t magically read my mind and bring home flowers when I’ve had a hard day.

Despite the obvious shortcoming of not being telepathic, I love and respect my husband. He’s earned it both through his behavior and by his nature of simply being my husband.

But Facebook marriages often threatens this love and respect I feel.

I log on and see post after post of seemingly perfect husbands and perfect marriages. There are memes telling me what I “deserve” and what I shouldn’t ever put up with. I’m reminded that if a man can’t handle me at my worst, he doesn’t deserve my best. I fall prey to jealousy and start doubting the relationship I have. My eyes and heart are flooded with lies that eat away at my marriage and set up false expectations. On social media, we see the best in others without the counterbalance of seeing their miscommunications and bad moments.

Shortly after we got married, I was disappointed in my husband. I saw friend’s marriages and how thoughtful and wonderful their husbands were. Through Facebook, I witnessed overwhelming amounts of unexpected flowers and waking up to clean kitchens and breakfast in bed. Jealousy and discontentment weaved their way into my pliable heart.

You can imagine my shock when I saw several of these seemingly perfect marriages fall apart and file for divorce only a few short months later. There were various reasons but, in a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Their Facebook marriages didn’t actually reflect what was happening in their lives. The smiling couples in their beautifully edited photos gave me simply that, an edited version of their lives.

That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media, at Facebook marriages, and start looking to the relationship God had given me.

I see and love my husband at his worst. In return, I am seen, forgiven, and loved at my worst. #MarriageGoals #Marriage Click To Tweet

While there are many people who flatter me, my husband is the one who puts in the hard work of loving me, day in and day out, even when I’m grumpy. Anyone could buy me flowers (and my husband does surprise me with an occasional bouquet) but it takes someone special to determine over and over again that we shouldn’t go to bed angry, that we need to work out our difficulties and put in the hard work of sorting out miscommunications and angry words. I see and love my husband at his worst. In return, I am seen, forgiven, and loved at my worst.

I can content myself in seeing the love I’ve been given in Christ and putting my marriage into perspective by remembering that it is ultimately about my sanctification, not fleeting emotions. #marriagegoals #marriage Click To Tweet

When we look at the good in others and see both the good, the bad, and the ugly in our own marriages, we set ourselves up for failure. Continuing on in this pattern isn’t healthy. Just like pouring over romance novels could set us up for discontent, so too we need to guard against social media. I’m not saying you need to delete all of your accounts and become a hermit, but you do need to be aware of the problem and proactive in protecting yourself and your marriage.

Let us take captive our thoughts and put things into perspective.

Surrounding ourselves with good friends who can encourage our marriages is good. Digging into scripture and reminding ourselves of our role in our marriage is better.

In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity
In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity
In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity
In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity
In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity
In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity
In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity
In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity
In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity
In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity
In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity
In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity

In a shocking turn of events, Facebook wasn’t actually a credible measuring stick for their marriages. Life wasn’t what it appeared to be in their beautifully edited photos. It was simply that, an edited version of their lives. That’s when I realized, I needed to stop looking at social media and start looking to the relationship God had given me. #facebook #socialmedia #marriage #marriageadvice #christianmarriage #christianity

My dad reminded me regularly growing up that I didn’t need to worry about my siblings’ behavior, just my own because, “There was plenty there to keep me busy.” I think the same principle applies to my marriage. When I focus on myself instead of my husband, I realize that I am imperfect but loved deeply. Scripture reminds me over and over that we, the Church, are the Bride of Christ but that we’ve fallen short over and over again. Nevertheless, He pursues and loves us.

My dad reminded me regularly growing up that I didn’t need to worry about my siblings’ behavior, just my own because, “There was plenty there to keep me busy.” I think the same principle applies to my marriage. #marriagegoals… Click To Tweet

When this never-failing, always-pursuing love is the standard, how can I keep but loving my husband? I have been loved over and over again despite the hurt I’ve caused. I can content myself in seeing the love I’ve been given in Christ and putting my marriage into perspective by remembering that it is ultimately about my sanctification, not fleeting emotions. But God is good and when my marriage is put into the perspective of eternity, I am filled with joy.

So Facebook, I will keep scrolling past the seemingly perfect pictures and look to the Cross. I will see the love Christ displayed and remember the Christ-likeness my husband displays over and over in his love for me. Because that love, that sacrificial love, is the love that lasts a lifetime.

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  1. Such good advice in here! I found I had to stop reading certain books because of the same thing. The Love Come Softly books used to be my favorite, but I started comparing my husband to the seemingly perfect husband in them and being disappointed. Life is much better and happier when we focus on what we have instead of the shortcomings of those we love. Great post!

    • Yes! Books are certainly a huge source of this as well. TV shows too. I have heard women say that they don’t watch This Is Us because they found struggles creeping in as they compared their husbands to Jack.

  2. Great article. I remind myself that I am seeing peoples highlights on Facebook but for the most part we all have the same struggles behind the scenes.

  3. Excellent reminder for many! I appreciate social media, particularly because I live far away from all of my family, but social media never tells the whole story of someone’s life (and it’s not supposed to, honestly!). I think for me, my secret to contentment with my marriage is that, no matter all the flowers and anniversaries and surprises and whatever other wives might receive…the only person I’d actually want to be married to is my own husband. I wouldn’t want the flowers but have to be married to the guy that gave them, you know what I mean? My own husband is the only one I want!

    • Rachel, I wrote this also when living far away from family. Social media can be a wonderful tool but it can also subtly re-program our thinking if we aren’t careful. I am in total agreement – it’s a whole package of a person, not a pick and choose, and I’m so grateful for the man I married.

  4. This post is EVERYTHING. I think we are long lost soul sisters. There have been so many times when I jump on facebook and see posts in my feed about what someone’s husband made them for dinner or hop over to a mommy group on facebook and see sweet posts about husbands vacuuming the house and doing the dishes. I use to think my relationships were flawed because I didn’t have this. In fact, it probably played a large part in me ending my past engagement years ago. I felt like everyone was married to someone who helped them with housework and surprised them with chocolates for no reason or planned romantic date nights… it was often a fight that resulted in him telling me he isn’t a character from a rom-com…. Now though, I have come to realize that no two relationships are alike. Currently, I have an amazing fiance who is the most incredible dad, works hard every day, makes me laugh regularly, and NEVER cooks dinner or buys me flowers. But, what he does, is far more important. He loves me deeply, purely, and faithfully. Through the fights and hardships, he continues to love me. Many of the “perfect relationships” we see are simply a front for a crumbling reality. I love that you wrote a post on how toxic it can be to measure ourselves and our relationships up to social media!

    • Libby, I’m so glad that your story has a happy ending. Real love isn’t edited, it’s raw. It can be so toxic when we don’t understand that properly.

  5. This was a great read and there was so much I could relate to in here. Thanks for the important reminders about focusing on your own marriage – rather than friend’s – in this post.

    • It’s so hard not to let that seep into our thinking as the standard for couples. It’s important to turn off our phones and pay attention to the good in our relationships.

  6. I completely agree with you. I love my husband dearly, but I’m not about to sugar coat our marriage on FB. I always feel that those who do that, are just trying to cover up.

    • Unfortunately, it seems to be the case a lot of the time. I want to share positive marriage moments as well but often, people force it to hide deeper relationship issues.

  7. I find that my experiences are almost the opposite of yours! I see a lot of my friends’ husbands falling short in huge and surprising ways (have I been transported back to the 50s?!) that I find myself gushing in appreciation for my husband! My mister is amazing and I know it! 🙂

    • Wow! That’s really interesting, Laura. I have definitely seen failing relationships on social media as well but, since we tend to post relationship highlights, if I’m not careful about guarding my mind, it’s easy to think that’s everyone else’s lives when I scroll through my newsfeed.

  8. There is not anyone that would read this and not be able to relate to some degree. It is so easy to compare ourselves to everyone else on social media. I have found myself lately spending less and less time on Facebook but I found it has a negative impact on my mood. Thanks for sharing your story.

    • Thank you. I hope that many people read this, relate to it, and are more careful about guarding their minds than I was.

  9. Wow I was just thinking about this the other day, letting myself get discouraged by how other husbands “appear” to do everything for their new baby and wife. I needed this. Thanks for reminding me what’s on FB isn’t necessarily true and to look at the wonderful things my husband does do. (he often forgets the trash too though. haha!)

    • It is so hard to judge other relationships by their best and our own by their worst. I’m glad this was a reminder to look at the good in your own relationship!

  10. What a great post and so true. Facebook (social media in general) has become the modern version of those airbrushed models on magazine covers. They may look perfect on the surface but you’re seeing what they WANT you to see…not reality. Your post is a great reminder to everyone not to base your ideals on what someone else portrays!

  11. Everything about this article is amazing! I struggled with the same thing, and it’s hard to feel unfulfilled or disappointed when we’re constantly comparing our lives to others’ on social media. Your post is real and honest, and offers great advice. Thanks for sharing!

  12. I agree…our reflections should be from a faith perspective rather what our culture pushes toward us. Thanks for sharing so openly!

    • Dianna, I hope that honest posts like this help tear down the facade and help us see that all relationships are a mixture of highs and lows… even though the lows aren’t often shared about.

  13. Comparing is such a lie of the enemy and yet we all fall for it time and time again. I have had to learn the hard way to remind myself that we don’t know what is happening in someone’s life. You might be looking at their life and wishing yours was more like theirs while they might be secretly looking at your life wishing theirs was more like yours. Great post as always! 🙂

    • Comparison is definitely a lie of the enemy! We need to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, not one another.

  14. Great read! Social media can be dangerous in many aspects of our lives, but the effect it can have on a relationship is definitely one of the worst. My bf is Spanish and because of that I thought he would be super romantic (don’t know why, something with southern Europeans), but he’s not. He is the opposite of romantic, haha. I have learned to love and accept that and I try not to compare our relationship with the ones I see on Facebook or Instagram.

    • Yes, it is crucial that we don’t focus on “shoulds” that are made up of simply the high points of other relationships. We need to evaluate our relationships on their own merit, not on the perceived merit of other relationships.

  15. I can definitely relate and add Perfect house renovations and Vacations to the list of ideas not to get discontent with!
    Beautiful picture of you guys dressed up, and of the lasting inner relationship you guys have!

  16. Very good. I dumped Facebook, simply because of all the nonsense people post–it’s a time waster for me. I know my husband is nowhere near perfect–but neither am I, so it works out!

    • It can be such a time waster! Like you said, it’s important to also look at ourselves. He is not perfect, but I am also definitely not a perfect wife! Perspective is important.

  17. It’s not just facebook that can ruin marriages it’s also cell phones as well if your spouse isn’t showing you text messages or pictures. I am going through a rough patch in my marriage and my hubby doesn’t tell me who is messaging him on facebook or who is texting him. It’s also a trust issue. I know facebook messages and text messages can be a privacy issue but when you are in a relationship there should be no secrets. Boundaries shouldn’t be broken and lines shouldn’t be crossed and when that happens trust is a big issue and I think that when your in a relationship you should know who’s messaging your spouse on facebook and texting. That’s my big issue right now is my hubby never tells me who he is messaging him on facebook or who he is texting.

    • I’m so sorry, Darlene. You’re right that we should be open and honest with our spouses about who we are talking to.

  18. Awesome post, I definitely agree with everything! Social media portrays perfection even when it is the opposite. I related to a lot of this so well done for being so honest and real.

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