An industry of products and services has been growing in recent years targeting the about-to-be or newly divorced. From divorce parties to jewelry, wedding ring caskets to tee shirts, savvy entrepreneurs are coming up with new ways to say, "It's Over, Look At Me, I'm free!"
I have mixed feelings about these offerings but believe for some they can be useful tools for boosting self-esteem or telling the world you're ready to move on. It depends on how you handle these resources and the intentions behind their use.
If you're trying to slam your ex, publicly disparage them or worse still, attempt to humiliate them in front of the children, you're walking a dangerous road. This behavior will only serve to hurt your children while reducing your credibility as a mature adult who is ready to transition on in life. We can't raise our self-esteem by stepping on others -- even when we feel we have been unjustly wronged.
If, on the other hand, you're making a personal statement about your readiness to move forward and start over with confidence, a special ceremony, new hairstyle or select piece of jewelry can sometimes be a good starting point. While it doesn't substitute for therapy, it can feel therapeutic in some ways.
BreakupGems.com is a new jewelry line offering rings, necklaces, bracelets and earrings designed to give "closure to the past after a breakup or divorce." They use relatable descriptions and empowering names -- such as The Freedom Band, Happily Me Ring, Joyful Heart Necklace and Suddenly Single Studs -- so that each design has "a unique purpose and message that resonates with newly singles."
If wearing a piece of jewelry following your divorce speaks to you in a positive way, if it empowers you to feel better about yourself, or makes an emotional connection to stepping forward in your future, go for it! Wear your new jewelry with pride. However, be sure to do it for you! Not to flaunt at, hurt or demean your former partner.
Same thing goes with divorce parties. DivorcePartyPlanner.com provides "divorce party packages" with themes including Survivor, Lemon or Love Parties. They provide everything from invitations and menu plans to entertainment, music, party favors and, of course, the cake. For some, this is a welcome way to announce your next chapter in life. But proceed with caution. Make sure you're not picking yourself up at your former partner's expense, tempting as it may be. What you say and do, how you say and do it and how you present yourself after divorce says a lot about you.
My advice: think first. And be even more conscious about the impression you're making when children are involved in your life. As parents, we're always role models for our children. Don't let divorce ever diminish the lessons you're teaching your kids -- or the person you are becoming!