Self-care Tips For Healing (And Partying) Post-Divorce

You threw a party when you got married, right? Probably more than one, actually.

Flash forward to the Big D. And no, I don’t mean Debbie Does Dallas, or even Dallas. The Big D as in Divorce. It happens. And, in my case, it happened with a flurry of infidelities on my ex’s part and enough drama to fill a Lifetime movie. So what’s a gal to do when she finds herself smack-dab on the other side of what was supposed to be marital bliss?  Spend some time thinking about #1 (ME ME ME!) and of course, throw myself a divorce party, that’s what.

If you’ve never heard of a divorce party, trust me, they’re a thing, gaining in popularity with divorcées since about 2008. Celebrating this new phase in your life goes hand-in-hand with the wellness revolution, putting the focus on you, your health, and your happiness.

Since I clearly can’t be the only person standing in these recently-divorced heels, I figured I should share my experience, along with some helpful tips.

Tip 1: Take care of you on divorce day.

I cannot stress this enough. Uncontested divorce or not, court is weird and it makes you feel weird and feeling weird can make you very emotional. So be prepared that this will NOT be an easy day, and go easy on yourself. Surround yourself with your best gal pals (or guy pals for that matter) and relax: you’ve earned it. Schedule yourself a treatment (my dermatologist even gave me a discount on what she lovingly referred to as Divorce Botox), get a mani-pedi, go to yoga. Just take care of you. It’s about time someone did.

Tip 2: After some wellness—it’s party planning time!

If you followed the first tip, you should be well-relaxed by now, or at least looking like you are. So now what? It’s time to celebrate! First up, the guest list. You thought long and hard on the guest list for your wedding, right? Well, your divorce party should get the same level of attention. Remember you may or may not be at your best, so choose wisely who you want by your side to both mourn (and do a little ex-roasting, naturally, as this is a part of divorce) and embrace the next phase of your future. There are a lot of divorce party themes and ideas out there, so be sure to do your research and keep that in mind when choosing where to throw your party (I went theme-less, thinking the event itself was enough cause to celebrate). Make sure you choose a location that holds no nostalgic value, where you feel comfortable. And since by now most everyone has heard the details of your divorce (or in my case most of Facebook, lol), so try to keep the discussion topics from being too morbid, while still poking fun at the situation: laughter is the best medicine, along with a massage, of course. BONUS TIP! Since this is all supposed to be about putting yourself first, don’t be afraid to take this party on the road with a trip, solo or with your girlfriends.

Tip 3: Getting rid of all that negative energy—it causes wrinkles.

If you research divorce parties online, you’ll read a lot about burning your ex’s things. While I am all for therapeutic ways to channel emotions, try to enroll in some serious physical activities instead like Kick Boxing, Krav Maga or even visit your local gun range (although I’m definitely not above destroying my Ex’s PlayStation with a tomahawk), as burning things can get out of hand, especially if there is alcohol involved. So if any drinking is involved at your party, it’s just not a good idea. Also: keep in mind, you don’t have to schedule all your divorce rituals on the same night.

Tip 4: Try to be a responsible partier.

I get it—you’re probably ready to toss back a cocktail and then some. I am right with you on this one. Riiiiight with you. I may or may not be having a drink with you as I write this. That said, be careful not to overindulge. As we all know, too much booze can make you emotional, and can lead to bad decision-making—and this party is correcting one bad decision already, isn’t it? For my party I instituted a three-drink max for myself. (Note: three drinks might not sound like much, but I drink whisky, straight up, so at 96 lbs that’s plenty.) Keep in mind what you are drinking is just as important as how much and don’t let anybody force-feed you booze. Even if you’re ending a marriage you’d rather forget, this is hopefully a night you want to remember.

So there you have it. You can take these tips or leave ‘em—but hopefully if you followed them, not only have you kick-started your healing process but your divorce party rocked!

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