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Seemingly firm traction: Divorce parties, formal remembrances

"It's a relief for people to say, 'You know what? We're just going to lighten up a bit.'"

So says one behavioral therapist and author of a book about being truthful in relationships in commenting on new ways that many ex-couples are dealing with divorce and post-dissolution life.

We have passed along some information and related media chronicling in the past to readers concerning what can no longer be considered as purely novel or a fad: divorce parties and other planned events to mark the end of a relationship and the birth of life going forward in a new direction.

Such ritualistic marking of a signal event and moment in a life has firmly taken root across the country and is playing out in myriad ways. For the most part, family psychologists and counselors say that the growing trend is a healthy development and even necessary therapy in many instances. It is a significant milestone that is often best appreciated by open acknowledgement and in the presence of select friends rather than being dealt with alone and in a purely private realm.

That obviously doesn't mean it's always celebratory. Divorce commemorations are turning out to be widely varied types of events. Some are raucous, with cake, balloons and hearty condemnations thrown out as toasts. Others are more muted affairs and simple remembrances of a reality that is now changing, often with new considerations regarding child custody, child support and other matters. Some persons engage in divorce support groups that work through a formal program and culminate in a formal acknowledgement of progress made through a hard transition.

Notwithstanding the variances in how a divorce is acknowledged, one thing seems certain: The trend toward formally recognizing a split in some way with family, friends and acquaintances has gained firm traction across the country.

In fact, "Divorce Party: The Musical" is currently on tour, and a production company has expressed interest in -- yes, you guessed it -- a divorce party reality TV show.

Source: The News Journal, "Divorces spark parties, trips to mark milestone," Margie Fishman, Jan. 30, 2013

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