Divorce is a when expectation meets reality. The optimism in the wedding will be replaced by the grim reality of divorce. The couple who said their vows with dreamy eyes and words of forever are now in fierce negotiation. Awkward situations cannot be avoided as well.
Needless to say, legal matters have to be sorted out first. Custody of the children, division of property, and visitation rights are of utmost concern. However, a couple doesn’t only have a common property and family, they have also built a network of friends together.
Who Should Know
A divorce is not good news, but it is definitely BIG news. If you are a celebrity, the paparazzi will take care of the announcement. For most of us who are not tabloid fodder, we have a chance to select the people in the circle of knowledge.
Family members on both sides need to know. It’s not necessarily everyone who attended the wedding. Just let those whom you have actually interacted with as a couple know. This is so they can also act accordingly.
For the friends of each ex-spouse, it is easy enough. The original friend should be tasked with informing their respective spheres of influence. For mutual friends, there is a chance for discernment, and there are many factors to consider.
Perhaps the best barometer on whether a couple’s conjugal friends should be informed is how deep the relationship is. Casual friends that were met parties and big gatherings could be left off the list. There are exceptions to this rule, though.
If there is a possibility that you will have future interactions or transactions with these friends, then they should be informed. A real estate agent that you met at a birthday party with whom you have exchanged numbers with, or friends you are planning a future trip with, should probably be informed that the future plans have been altered.
How to Break the News
After finalizing the list, the question is how to tell them about the development. There is no need to have a formal announcement, and you do not need to gather as many of your friends on one occasion. It is also not required to have both you and your ex together. That will only lead to an uneasy situation.
Either spouse could do the honors, as long as they continue to exercise mutual respect. It is best to avoid bad-mouthing the other party, and also best to dissuade attempts to reconcile the couple especially if the papers have been filed.