How to Stop Someone From Viewing Your Photos on Facebook Without Unfriending Them

Facebook's privacy options allow you to keep friends without showing them everything you do.
... Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images

Facebook brings all your friends, family and acquaintances together in one place, but each of those groups may not need to see everything you post. Privacy has become very customizable on the social media site, so you can choose who sees what photos or information on a case-by-case basis.

1 Choosing Your Audience

Facebook allows you to select who can see your posts and photos at any given time. If your setting is “Public,” anyone can see your posts, whether they are your friend or not. Even if you select “Friends Only,” your photos can be viewed by the friends of your friends. The “Custom” setting gives you manual control over which friends can see your updates, because you must enter each person’s name individually. When you post something, the last audience setting you used will automatically be selected, but you can change this in the grey box beside the “Post” button.

2 Going Back in Time

Audience settings can be retroactive. If you want to change who can see a photo or an album, you can select a different audience even after it has been posted. To keep a friend from seeing certain photos, use the “Custom” setting, and specify exactly which friends are allowed to view the photos. If you want to keep everyone else from seeing the photos but do not want to delete them, select the “Only Me” option.

3 Watching Tags

Once you have set your audience, refrain from tagging people in your photos. If you tag a friend, then all the friends of that person can see the photo, even if you have the audience setting on “Custom.” Since many friends share social circles, there is a chance that the person you want to keep from viewing the photo will see it.

4 Restricting Friends

If you want to limit what a friend sees on your entire account without unfriending them, you can put them on a restricted list. To do this, go to your Friends list, find the friend and click on the checkmarked Friends box. That will bring up a list of options, beginning with “View in News Feed.” Go down the list, click “Add to another list...” and a new menu will open. Unclick them from any other lists, and click on “Restricted.” After that, the friend will only be able to see your photos and posts that are listed as “Public.”

Beth Bartlett has been freelance writing for nine years, and her work has appeared in such publications as "Meetings South," "Angels on Earth," "American Profile," and "Mental Floss." She also writes a weekly humor horoscope column for print and the Web.