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& McCurrie, L.L.C.

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Coping rituals for the newly divorced

Many people in New Jersey have different ways of coping with unexpected change. Divorce is a major change that can cause an incredible amount of emotional and financial distress and, the longer the marriage was, the more painful the divorce can be. That is why one female writer, blogger and divorce party planner began using small events and occasions to ritualize her divorce, allowing her to heal emotionally and move on to a new life.

The woman said that her life during her divorce was confusing and difficult, and one of the hardest times for her. When the split was finalized, she did not know what to do next. She had been working through the process, focusing solely on the end, but once it was over, she did not know how to move forward. She knew that she wanted to let go of the pain that had been stored up through the divorce and she wanted to laugh and enjoy life again so she invited her friends to a divorce party.

The party was celebrating the finalization of her divorce, the start of a new life, and it honored her and her friends and relatives that helped her make it through to the other side.

Her party left her with a desire to experience more, similar coping mechanisms. A friend told her about a restaurant where she could pay a dollar to smash a plate. She broke 25 plates -- one for each year of her marriage -- and again, felt like she had managed to eliminate some of the stress that had welled up inside.

Other similar "divorce rituals," as she dubbed them, include growing a plant while you grow as a person and going on a date with a former intimate partner that is also single to see how it feels. If you have children, the woman suggests giving your children a day each month to allow them to do whatever they want -- you just go along for the ride to make sure that they're safe.

Source: Huffington Post, "Ritualize Your Divorce," Lois Tarter, June 28, 2012

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