Ignore Your Partners' Current Facebook Friends; Beware the Ones They Add
In this study, we examined two behaviors that could evoke Facebook jealousy and cause relationship problems among romantic partners: (1) Facebook solicitation behaviors (i.e., making or accepting friend requests with romantic interests) while in the current relationship, and (2) having romantic interests on existing Facebook friends lists. In our sample of 148 undergraduates, those who had lower commitment to their partners were more likely to make and accept Facebook friend requests with romantic interests during their relationship. However, commitment was unrelated to the number of romantic alternatives contained on one’s Facebook friends list or the frequency of Facebook solicitation while single. Additionally, attachment anxiety predicted Facebook solicitation behaviors, but this relationship was mediated by Facebook jealousy. Our findings confirm that Facebook is used to solicit connections with romantic interests both while single and during committed relationships; however, it is only those connections that are made during the relationship that are markers of lower commitment. Moreover, our study adds to a growing body of research that connects face-to-face relationship theories to the virtual environment.