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By design, divorce is altogether a negative thing. When a couple comes together in marriage and then splits at a later date, it’s usually a painful and difficult process. Have experienced it first-hand I can say that reneging on promises that enable you to be bound by law (and god, if that floats your boat) is not a great feeling.
Was I distraught when I got divorced? No, not really. By then I’d been separated for two years, my ex-husband had been living with his girlfriend for a long while and it just felt like a formality, a final box to tick. The only reason I remember the date of my divorce – 13th February 2015 – is because of the irony that it was the day before Valentine’s day.
I acknowledged my divorce with lunch at Pizza Pilgrims on Carnaby Street, and a small glass of midday prosecco. I happily chatted to a work colleague about our lives and relationships over olives and pizza: it felt fitting.
I can’t imagine having had any kind of other ‘celebration’ around the event of my divorce, which is why I’ve been interested to read about the current trend for Divorce Parties. One woman, it was reported in The Times, held a ceilidh as an echo of the one she had at her wedding, along with a cake, speeches and singing.
Another celebrated with a hot tub party at home, inviting her friends to a restaurant afterwards for a special divorce-themed menu.
My wedding shoes were great, though ;)
As ever, in America the Divorce party phenomenon is bigger.
In fact, It’s so well-established there’s even a guide, The Divorce Party Handbook, for participants to follow when they celebrate the end of their marriage with a big bash. The book advises not inviting your ex (natch), only asking guests who would feel comfortable attending and trying not to echo the wedding too closely.
Sounds pretty common sensical to me, but still… cringe.
The idea of a Divorce party is not one I’m particularly fond of. To me it seems a bit crass – a bit awkward. Making a bit of a mockery of the process of divorce, because, you know, it’s not tiresome enough as it is, right?
My divorce felt like something I would rather not have gone through, so why would I want to celebrate it?
I wonder if my feelings on this are exacerbated because there are two children that were a product of my marriage. As negatively as the relationship may have ended (and it doesn’t get much more negative than divorce), if I hadn’t had that 8 year relationship then my children wouldn’t exist.
And I’d never want to celebrate the end of the union that led to the most marvellous people I’ve ever met.