I’ve been single, I’ve been married, and I’ve been divorced. And getting divorced was the hardest of the bunch — at least in terms of finding a way to be happily divorced with children (but yes, there is such a thing!).
So I’m delighted to introduce our new special section, “Divorce and Co-Parenting,” led by editor-at-large Storey Jones. Storey is the founder of the divorce management platform dtour.life and one of the most insightful, compassionate commentators on divorce (you can read her great Thrive piece on Marriage Story here). This section is all about helping couples and families navigate divorce with less stress and find their way, in time, to a happy, healthy and fulfilling new chapter of life.
I’ve always thought that as a country, we do a lousy job of addressing how we can do divorce differently when there are children. That’s why in 2010 I launched HuffPost Divorce. Nora Ephron, who served as editor-at-large, provided the tagline: “Marriage comes and goes but divorce is forever.”
In the 10 years since then, the conversation about divorce has definitely opened up. But there is much more to be done. With “Divorce and Co-Parenting,” we’ll be accelerating the culture shift, starting by acknowledging the tremendous toll and ripple effects that divorce causes for almost 50% of married couples who end up divorced — about one million U.S. couples each year. Divorce touches on so many aspects of life: finances, health, career, parenting, self-worth, social identity, emotional well-being, family rituals and traditions, estate planning, even our social media feeds. But above all, our children.
This section is dedicated to spotlighting each of these areas and more, with expert voices and members of Thrive’s community sharing ideas, support and actionable Microsteps. You’ll find tips from divorce and financial experts on how to feel empowered throughout divorce and protect your personal finances. You’ll also find advice from divorce and relationship consultants on the questions you should be asking at work and the priorities you should be thinking about as parents. And you’ll hear from a psychotherapist on what to consider when co-parenting for a special needs child, and much more.
By now, my ex-husband and I have been divorced much longer than we were married. But even though we no longer have a marriage to keep us together, we have something even more powerful — our daughters. And spurred by our mutual devotion to them, we have made a huge effort to work through all the difficulties and be friends. This has included spending the Christmas holidays and both of our girls’ birthdays together as a family every year and even summer vacationing together, as I wrote here. And little by little, with a lot of hard work, we’ve grown closer and closer. Indeed, several years ago, on what would have been our 20th wedding anniversary, a magnificent bouquet of flowers that included 20 yellow roses arrived at my home. The card said, “Happy 20th Anniversary. We’ll always be the parents of two remarkable young women. Love, Michael.”
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