According to British divorce counseling firm Divorce-Online, 20% of divorce applications filed last year cited the Facebook that makes the ratio of one-fifth of the divorce petitions.
Australian Family Relationships Clearing House manager Elly Robinson said online behavior was causing friction in households.
Elly Robinson said: “People will come in (for counselling) where one partner may deny their online behavior has been any sort of problem, but the issue is … if it’s upsetting one of those people in the relationship, it’s a problem.”
She added: “Relationships develop more quickly online because inhibitions are lowered, it’s easy to exchange information, people are online 24/7, there’s an (endless) amount of people you can link up with who are there for the same reason, real life pressures fade away … it’s a bit of a fantasy world”.
Relationships Australia vice-president Anne Hollonds said while the internet had made it easier to reconnect with lost loves, people ultimately had to take responsibility for their actions.
She said: “The internet doesn’t make people have affairs. It’s become the pathway of choice for many people but I don’t think that means the internet is breaking up families. Everyone has some degree of fantasy about a love that might have been from the past and the technology now helps you find these people”.