[Lollie Note: The photo above was taken after our divorce, not during. So, it’s really more of a #brunchwiththeexselfie, but makes the same statement.]
Divorced couples across the globe are using social media, selfies, and the hashtag #divorceselfie for catharsis and communication. Despite the breakup of their marriage, these couples remain friends, some co-parents, and optimistic about their decision. And their divorce selfie allows them to express that.
Everyone has an opinion about the divorce selfie, and the loudest and most critical seem to come from those who have never been divorced. But allow me, a newly divorced middle-aged woman, to enlighten you about the divorce selfie and why it’s a good trend.
- It proves that former spouses can remain friends and family. My parents’ divorce was nasty and included both of them saying horrible things about each other to me, their daughter. I was only a kid, and I should never have heard the toxic things they had to say. Isn’t it better to live in a world where ex-spouses are kind and civil to one another as opposed to hateful? Divorce is hard enough as it is. Let’s keep it peaceful. My ex may no longer be my hubby, but he’s still my family.
- It adds levity to the situation. The dissolution of any relationship is always painful, especially a marriage. We all get married thinking it’s going to last forever. Do you know how stupid we feel when we realize it won’t? But rather than wallow in self-pity and self deprecation, why not lighten up and celebrate the courage it takes to admit that it’s time for a change? Don’t get it twisted and believe the idiocy behind the theory that nowadays divorce is too easy. Believe me, it’s anything but easy. It’s gut-wrenching and depressing. It takes a brave soul to wade through that darkness while being mature enough to know that it’s still the best decision for both parties. A divorce selfie is a whimsical way to document that.
- It takes the stigma out of divorce and makes the process less intimidating. My ex and I didn’t hire a lawyer or even a mediator. We downloaded the appropriate paperwork, filled it out, got it notarized, then filed it. Forget soap operas, prime time TV dramas, and smut magazines. The 21st Century divorce does not need to be filled with melodramatic antics nor leave your savings depleted. Throw out your old fashion ideas. Divorce is painful, but it does not mean you’re damaged goods. Don’t be ashamed, and don’t be frightened.
Scrolling through a stream of divorce selfies will strengthen your faith in humankind. We have evolved. Divorce selfies do not glamorize divorce. There is absolutely nothing glamorous about it. But they do exemplify maturity, harmony, and the strength of a bond that can never be broken, even after divorce. So if you and your ex remain friends after your breakup, go ahead and take a divorce selfie. After all, the best way to get through any difficult time is to put on your lipstick and smile.