A new survey reveals today that whilst a strong-willed half of women cut all online ties after a breakup and would never contact their ex-partner again, well over a sneaky fifth continue to keep an eye on their social network activity under someone else’s or a fake profile.

The independent research, carried out by OnePoll on 2,000 women, was commissioned by female-dominated website Pencourage (; the UK’s only homegrown social network and the world’s first to be completely anonymous (not even staff can identify users).

Dubbed the ‘anti-Facebook’ for its salacious, no-holds-barred postings, the platform allows users to upload 200 words into a private diary each day alongside photos, music or video. It already plays host to over 30,000 anonymous journals, the vast majority written by women – many admitting to ‘spying’ on their exes online and initiating reunions which they later regret.

Survey Highlights

  • Just under a third (30%) of women have stayed ‘friends’ with or continued to ‘follow’ exes openly via social networks despite a breakup
  • Close to a quarter (22%) admit to having kept a ‘sneaky eye’ on their activity but only using someone else’s or a fake profile, or when they know the ex won’t be logged in
  • Just under half (48%) cut all ties and block them from social media
  • When asked if they had ever been in touch with exes via social media during a weak (or intoxicated) moment, a little over half (51%) said they would never do that – yet circa one in five (19%) did admit to making contact, and later regretting it.
  • A similar proportion (18%) said they had wanted to contact their ex but had been ‘strong enough’ to resist the temptation.