Gifts for the Recently Separated or Divorced
To say the holidays are difficult for those recently separated or divorced is, of course, an understatement. Even if you have never exchanged gifts with your friends, you probably realize how much a gift will be appreciated by those experiencing the breakdown of their marriage. The first Christmas away from one's former spouse and children is understandably difficult, but even the spouse lucky enough to have the kids for the first holiday rotation will feel the difference.
I thought back to my own "firsts" after divorce to remember some of the gifts that meant the most to me during that time, and I've solicited advice from my friends in the divorce/separated support group I help organize. The result is this hub with a few suggestions for gifts that will be appreciated and will help your recently separated or divorced friend move forward in their new life.
Stuff for the Home
Whether your friend is the ex who moved out or the ex left behind, the "stuff" has probably been divided and some things need to be replenished. And some of the things left behind are painful reminders and replacement would be welcome.
Dishes and cookware are not only practical selections but might encourage your friend to take better care of themselves. The "divorce diet" often results in too much weight loss. It can be difficult to adjust to cooking for one after divorce. Less expensive items such as pot holders, dish towels or cooking utensils fill the same sort of void.
New bedding is especially welcome for recently separated/divorced adults. Again, the spouse who moves out of the home shared in marriage probably needs such items, and the person still sleeping in the same old bed could probably do with a significant change in the environment.
Stuff for the Soul
I do not recommend "recovering from divorce" reading material - your friend is probably already reading plenty of self-help books along those lines as it is. But inspirational works which encourage them to look forward to building a new and happier life have the potential to help. Similarly, post-divorce is a good time to explore new forms of meditation and exercise.
Most recently separated and divorced also have trouble sleeping for a time, so cds with soothing sounds and guided imagery for relaxation can help.
There is a reason many therapists recommend keeping a journal. Enourage your friend to adopt this cathartic exercise post-separation/divorce.
And don't forget the old cliché, "laughter is the best medicine." Think not just funny but hysterical when selecting books or dvds for your recently separated/divorced friend.
Stuff for Fun
While "feeling the pain" is a necessary part of the process of recovering from separation and divorce, having fun and enjoying life again brings hope and a positive outlook. Encourage your post separation/divorce friend to stay busy with social activities. Gifts for group activities such as games or party supplies will encourage them to invite friends over.
Often after separation and divorce, significant healing results from re-discovering hobbies and interests that were somewhat sacrificed during the marriage. What are their interests? Golf, jewelry making, art? Give supplies to encourage development of their talents.
Of course the most important gift you can offer the recently separated/divorced is your time - invite them to share your family celebrations. Take them shopping with you or to a movie. But it also helps to make sure they have a little something under the tree to open Christmas morning.
Copyright Dineane Whitaker 2008 - Please do not copy and paste this article, but feel free to post a link using this url: http://hubpages.com/_ndwcopyright/hub/Gifts-for-the-Recently-Separated-or-Divorced
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