Some research has linked social media use with increased jealousy and relationship dissatisfaction in college students. If you are prone to jealousy because of an insecure attachment style, research says you may be more likely to get stuck in a cycle of endless scrolling to keep an eye on your partner’s activities.
People may get upset seeing their partner liking or commenting on other people’s posts, stoking concerns that their partner is interested in other people (or worse, is already cheating). The use of Facebook, in particular, has been shown to increase feelings of suspicion and jealousy in romantic relationships among college students. “This effect may be the result of a feedback loop, whereby using Facebook exposes people to often ambiguous information about their partner that they may not otherwise have access to,” one study writes.
For example, cookies and Facebook algorithms can cause a partner’s “hidden” interests to pop up on their feed. The desire to find more information about them can perpetuate further social media use and feelings of mistrust.
(Notably, many of these studies have been conducted on college students, so it’s possible that there would be differences among older couples.)