Look Up Exes on Facebook at Your Own Peril

He's probably gay, she probably hates you, and it could ruin your relationship
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 6, 2009 10:17 AM CDT
A disappointed Facebook user.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Back in the halcyon pre-Facebook days, Elizabeth Bernstein writes, you didn't just pick up the phone and ring up an old flame. “If you went looking for a former partner, you knew you were looking for trouble.” So why it should be any different on Facebook? A survey of botched reconnections suggests it shouldn’t. "We need new rules now.”

Take the woman who got back in touch with the one that got away. “You guessed it, he’s gay!” she tells Bernstein in the Wall Street Journal. Or the ex who got told off when she admitted to being in a new relationship. Or the man who lost his wife to an old flame she reconnected with on a social networking site. One rule Bernstein suggests: “Look, but don't make contact.” Some users even friend only members of the same sex to nip any problems in the bud. Sure, there are some success stories, but be forewarned: “You are playing with fire.”