Verb: divorce – “separate or dissociate (something) from something else, typically with an undesirable effect.”
A divorce is a difficult, yet frequent event occurrence and can be: unexpected, in response to an act of betrayal, or a last-resort solution to a difficult relationship. Yet regardless of the reason for divorce, it typically is a painful process, provoking as the definition claims, “an undesirable effect”. But does it need to be that way?
Still to this day much controversy looms on the act of legal divorce –unpopular in religions such as Christianity: “A woman is bound to her husband as long as he lives.” – 1 Corinthians 7:39 and deemed illegal in countries such as the Philippines. However, the times have changed.
Acknowledging the challenges and difficulties of divorce, Civil Celebrants offer a helping hand in marriage breakdowns, enforcing a controversial celebration in times of usual hardship.
What is a divorce ceremony?
The unique celebrations are becoming more and more popular, as people contemporarily explore mindful, health-focused, philosophical lifestyles. The event serves as a cathartic process that prevents couples from infinitely punishing themselves for a ‘failed’ marriage influencing individuals to guiltlessly cut their losses and move forward with their lives.
Conducted either formally or informally, the ceremony can be carried out similarly to a wedding where vows are initiated by the person leading the ceremony or more intimately with just those involved. To some, the occasion serves as a cyclical response to their wedding congregation, where ex-lovers end their commitment to one another using a similar approach to how they were once engaged.
Who’s on the guest list?
Invitees may only be the persons who have been effected by the break-up; family members, close friends, children, etc. However, if the pair are following a similar suit to their wedding day, they may want to invite all of the original attendees who first witnessed their exchanging of vows. Additionally, if the relationship was particularly toxic, the couple may want their parting to be kept short, sweet and personal; between the two of them.
What are the benefits of divorce ceremonies?
- Divorce ceremonies help the couple keep a grasp of a symbiotic relationship, whereby a friendship can still be maintained. In a lot of cases, couples have spent the majority of their lives in sync and thus have experienced memorable milestones, attained personal goals and supported each other through the good times and the bad. Often, it is the finalisation of cutting all ties that is one of the most traumatic experiences of going through a divorce. By concluding things amicably, the couple is able to salvage a relationship and keep the situation bearable for their children to be around.
- It can set a good example for the little ones; the couple can invite their children to their formal break-off where they can witness two adults dealing with their differences responsibly and maturely. For some children, a divorce can have a severe effect on their future mental state, inflicting feelings of anxiety and dread. Through a positive, open service, children are able to see Mum and Dad act pleasantly and responsibly during their split, in a service that doesn’t involve conflict or abandonment.
- The service promotes the individual to relieve their emotions, not grieve. Divorcees can release negativity that may have been building for a number of years through a service that is positive, transcending and spiritual. Couples can try to heal their upset with closure, drawing a line under the past, with a symbolic ceremony. The ceremony can serve as an integral turning-point in a couple’s relationship, to mark a positive conclusion.
From confronting and accepting a divorce head-on, with a divorce ceremony, couples can happily move on with their lives and start their next chapter afresh. The act of closure, ceases relations in an uplifting service, ruling a line under further grievance, guilt and self-blame.