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A screen grab from Facebook. (Dan Kitwood/2009 Getty Images)
A screen grab from Facebook. (Dan Kitwood/2009 Getty Images)

Facebook broadens relationship status Add to ...

This time last year Facebook measured the overall happiness of its users. Based on your relationship status and positive posts, the social networking site determined that people who shared that they were dating, married, or engaged were the most content. Those users who didn't disclose their relationship status appeared to be the most unhappy.

While this speaks volumes for hooking up, due to the narrow nature of options within Facebook's relationship status menu they were likely ignoring a large number of members who didn't fall neatly into one of these groups. This week, the company has added 'civil unions' and 'domestic partnerships' to its list of options.

As GLADD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) President Jarrett Barrios said on the organization's blog, "By acknowledging the relationships of countless loving and committed same-sex couples in the U.S. and abroad, Facebook has set a new standard of inclusion for social media." This move also makes it easier for the increasingly number of couples who have lived together for years, but are not engaged or married.

However, all this love doesn't help those people out there who are perpetually Facebook single. For them, the relationship status of their online crush can be like a dagger in the heart. Well, unless a break-up is in the works. That's where the brand new Breakup Notifier can help. This app makes it easy to follow friends in relationships and find out when they broadcast that it's over, so you can "strike when the iron's hot."

If you love Facebook but find all this relationship status stuff a little high school-ish, do what many do and opt out of digital PDA altogether. Simply go into your Account's Privacy Settings and don't share your relationship status with anyone but yourself.

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