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Monday, December 20, 2010
Husband dumps his wife with online message in 'world's first divorce by Facebook'
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Out in the cold: Emma Brady said she found out through Facebook that her husband was leaving her
Millions of people use it every day to pass on harmless snippets of gossip to friends and family.
But the message Emma Brady's husband posted on Facebook could not have been more devastating.
It read: 'Neil Brady has ended his marriage to Emma Brady.'
Mrs Brady, a 35-year-old conference organiser, claims she had no idea he even wanted a divorce, and only found out when a friend, who read the post on the social networking website, rang to console her.
To make matters worse, she discovered someone else had commented on the site that her husband was 'better off out of it'.
Yesterday Mrs Brady spoke about her hurt and embarrassment that the end of her marriage had been plastered across the Internet, allegedly before her husband had informed her.
'The first I knew about it was when I received a phone call at work from my best friend, who lives in Denmark,' she said.
'She asked me if I was okay because of what Neil had put on Facebook: "Neil Brady has ended his marriage to Emma Brady". I was shell-shocked.
'I have had people who I haven't spoken to for years contacting me asking what is going on.
'I only joined Facebook because the girls at work said it was good fun. What upset me the most was not the fact that Neil had written he had ended his marriage, but the comment from a girl in Canada who said: "You are better off out of it". It hurt me that he had been speaking to someone else about it.'
Mrs Brady said she waited until she got home before confronting him.
'I asked Neil if he had anything to tell me and he simply said no,' she said. 'He acted like everything was fine so we carried on as normal.'
Happier times: Emma and Neil Brady on their wedding day
The 'Facebook divorce' emerged as Brady, a 39-year-old IT consultant, was brought to court for assaulting his wife.
The couple, from Accrington, Lancashire, had struggled on following last July's bombshell, but their six-year marriage disintegrated in a row in the runup to Christmas, Blackburn magistrates heard.
Brady claimed his wife had been seen with another man and in the row that followed he threw her out of the house, injuring her wrist, and locked her in the back garden.
He pleaded guilty and was fined £580 and ordered to pay £100 compensation.
Brady, who is now living with his mother, insists he had talked to his wife about separation. 'I'd had enough of her'.