After several years of marriage, my husband and I have decided to divorce. After a lengthy but quiet separation, the divorce paperwork has been submitted. It’s heartbreaking, but I’ve made peace with it as best I can. Now we’re left with the “breaking the news” part of the story.
Most of our closest family and friends know that the separation has been smooth and we’re planning to remain in contact — but we’ve hit the point where we may need to announce this to coworkers, friends, and the dreaded Facebook, to reach the people we don’t keep in contact with as frequently.
He and I both agreed we should post something on social media, but we’re not sure how to go about it or what to say. I just want people to know we still care about each other, and it’s not a nasty split so our friends don’t try to go open season on us in a public forum.
I was hoping to find some advice on how to announce a divorce on social media as gracefully as possible. Any advice you can provide would be amazing. -Amand
Ah yes, the divorce press release — it’s a thing now. I’ve (sadly) seen a lot of them over the years. Some press releases better than others. I recently saw the divorce announcement of a couple, and I thought it was a pitch perfect announcement:
_______ and I have separated. Relationships are complicated. This doesn’t make one of us a bad guy and the other a good guy. Still treat us both with kindness.
It was succinct, graceful, true as hell, and reminded people to play nice. That’s my favorite example, but we have lots of others from our Offbeat Home readers.
Here’s how one reader did it:
I changed my status to single, hid it so that it wasn’t splashed everywhere, changed my picture to one by myself, and sent a short, sweet message, similar to the one above, to those I knew would care the most or would publicly post something asking what was up. From there, I let people ask if they felt it necessary or to draw their own conclusions. On the date our divorce was finalized, I simply posted “Bittersweet, defined.”
Here’s an example of divorce announcement wording, for folks with kids:
Dear friends and family, it’s with a very heavy heart that I am announcing this. [Spouse] and I will be getting a divorce. We aren’t sure what that looks like right now, but we do know that we are going to be the most epic divorced parents ever — book-worthy. [Child] will remain our top priority. We aren’t interested in being ugly about any of the details that go along with this kind of thing. Please: we ask for your kindness, prayers, and love as we walk this out together. Also, if you have something to say, please let it be out of love and words of encouragement. This is a very tough time. We aren’t interested in trying to bash each other and we ask the same from you. You don’t have to pick sides. Thank you.
Here’s an option that doesn’t mention children:
To my dear friends and family,
As some of you are already aware, ___ and I have decided to divorce. We came to this decision after a lot of discussion, and we are both convinced it is the right thing to do for both of us. Unfortunately, there are just some very big incompatibilities between us, we want different things, and in the long run we can not make each other happy.
We love each other very much, and we both love all of you. We do not have any anger at each other, and though we wish things had gone differently, we are not blaming each other. We are trying to support each other through this very difficult time, and we would like to ask that you do the same.
One strategy is to have both you and your former partner post the same thing:
The good was both parties posted an identical “publicity statement” announcing their break-up, expressed well-wishes for the other party, and asked for privacy and respect. It was oddly formal for facebook, but incredibly dignified.
If the divorce means a move, you could rework this example:
In the coming month and a half, I will be moving. This time will be just me and my animals. I will be moving back to X. [Name] has decided to go his own direction and be solo again. I know I will surely need the support of my friends and family in the coming months, as I am sure he will also. I do not want any “I’m sorry’s” posted on my wall, please. Only words of encouragement and strength for the process of moving on with life.
For an amicable divorce, there’s this option:
Everyone close to us already knew, so we put up a message (and tagged the other one in it) saying that most people knew but yes we’re getting divorced. We also asked for no sad comments please (you know, ‘oh it’s such a shame, you were so good together’ etc) because we were both very happy with the outcome and still friends.
How would you guys announce a divorce on social media while keeping it classy, and reminding others to play nice?