Divorce and Gift Registries

by Kay Lynn

Divorce Party

One of the topics covered by Daily Worth last week was a website named Divorce Candy.  What caught my eye was that they host divorce registries.  You can schedule a Divorce party and register for gifts.  It’s like a bridal registry in reverse.

Divorce Party

If you don’t know how to get started this website has several articles on how to throw the perfect party, checklists and etiquette.  Call me old-fashioned but it seems that ettiquette went out the window just by just throwing this tpe of party.

One of the pointers is not to go over to the dark side (like this cake) but rather support the person and celebrate a new beginning.  The checklist includes ordering a cake, party favors and registry which is eerily similar to the celebration pre-marriage.

Divorce Registry

Part of the divorce process is splitting up household possessions which usually leaves both people needing items whether it be a major piece of furniture or kitchen utensils.  It would never have occurred to me after my divorce to ask friends and family to give me gifts.  Instead, I was wondering if I should give back the wedding presents even though we were married a decade.

I’m all for helping people out but I want it to be self-motivated, not because I felt obligated due to my friend having a divorce registry.  The checklist includes such non-essentials as a pizza stone and fondue pot.  I don’t even own these things after 15 years of marriage.


I’m sure this website has helpful information on other topics such as dating and solo travel.  I’m just not there with the divorce party and registry.  Is it just me?  I want to hear your thoughts on this topic.

photo credit: Roberto Rizzato ?pix jockey? Facebook resident


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Bret @ Hope to Prosper September 6, 2010 at 10:09 am

This would really be tacky and I would choose not to participate by giving a gift. Most people I have seen divorced need friends for moral support, not for gifts. You can always buy your own crock-pot, but you can never buy friends who care about you.

Kay Lynn September 10, 2010 at 6:04 pm

Good point, Bret. People going through crises, no matter what type, need friendship and support; not stuff!

Donna Freedman September 6, 2010 at 12:57 pm

My divorce dragged on for two years. When the court date finally arrived I had gone back to college. So I went to class on Tuesday, took the bus to the Seattle airport, landed in Chicago late in the evening, visited with my friend/hostess for a little while and went to bed. Next day: Did an interview for a freelance piece, took my hostess out to dinner, went to bed early. Third day: Got up very early, took the train downtown to the courthouse, went through the divorce and headed across the street to the Corner Bakery to buy a sandwich to take with me on the plane.
I couldn’t figure out which sandwich I wanted. Finally I apologized: “I’m sorry, my head’s all in a whirl — I just got divorced.”
“Really? My sister got divorced today, too! You want a cookie?” the counter woman responded.
She insisted on throwing in the treat free of charge. Thus a lemon bar was the only divorce gift I got. But it was nice. And I admit it: I ate it on the subway on the way to the airport, instead of waiting until I was flying home. Life IS uncertain, after all — and given the previous two years I figured I’d earned the right to do something crazy-mad like eat dessert first. 🙂

Kay Lynn September 10, 2010 at 6:07 pm

Donna, that was a very kind woman you ran into. She gave you the cookie out of the goodness of her heart asa caring guesture. Much different than asking for gifts, right?

My grandmother took to eating her dessert first as a retiree. I think she figured she’d earned that right as well:)

SimplyForties September 6, 2010 at 1:52 pm

Tacky, tacky. A celebration of a finalized divorce is going out with your girlfriends and having a drink together. That’s about the extent of it. A formal party with gifts? Are people actually doing that? Tasteless!

Mysti September 6, 2010 at 2:32 pm

I am with SimplyForties….tacky tacky, and maybe a post finalization drink with friends is more in line.

I am not getting divorced, but the idea of doing this just seems so foreign to me.

Mandy September 6, 2010 at 7:29 pm

I’m totally in support of celebrating a new beginning and would even buy a gift for a friend who I knew was in need of certain items but creating a registry? That is not something I could ever see myself doing and I am very uncertain how I would react if a friend created one. Sounds to me like the department stores are just trying to cash in on another life event .. next thing will be unemployment registries ….

Craig Ford September 7, 2010 at 4:13 am

I’ve never heard of a divorce registry. I guess it is time for me to get with it. Thanks for the heads up.

Khaleef @ KNS Financial September 7, 2010 at 9:30 am

I definitely wouldn’t support something like this. I can see the practical need for items – especially if one of the spouses takes everything in the settlement – but I don’t think this is the way to get them.

Kay Lynn September 10, 2010 at 6:09 pm

I agree, Khaleef. If you lose anything family and friends will probably give on their own; you just don’t ask!

Squirrelers September 10, 2010 at 3:52 pm

Not a fan of this type of thing. It implies that a divorce is something to be celebrated, such as a marriage or baby.

I get the point, though, that people can end up in financial problems and a lower standard of living after divorce. This is where emotional support, plus friends and family informally pitching in, and maybe professional counseling, can help someone adjust to a totally life changing event. Bottom line is I think support should to be given and those needs are very real, but a registry seems like a tacky way to go about that.

Interest post, though. Thanks for sharing!

Kay Lynn September 10, 2010 at 6:28 pm

Squirrelers, I agree that it’s tacky. I was glad to have my divorce “over” when it was final but never felt it was something to celebrate. It was sad and meant giving up lots of dreams and plans.

Boricua623 November 14, 2011 at 9:54 am

I was with my ex-husband for 5 years, moved from one state to another having to sell and give away allot of MY stuff in order to keep the costs down. At our divorce, he was awarded everything leaving the children and I with very little (because I was the one who sold off my stuff). My ex and I celebrated that weekend as did I with friends. I think a Divorce Registry is brilliant. Think of all those spouses that walk away with little to nothing….are they not privey to gifts they want or need? Think outside the box people we’re not living in the 50’s anymore. 60+% of marriages end in divorce and some people such as myself have sacraficed allot.

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