Free Press Journal

Friendly Divorce – Divorced, but still friends.. !


PRAMITA BOSE says that increasingly divorced couples are choosing to remain friends and not part as bitter enemies.

Are new age couples taking the hitch of separation in the right spirit? Even if they call it quits on the marriage front, they wish to remain pals and well-wishers for the rest of their lives. Recently actor Ranvir Shorey has confirmed to retain his belief in the marital institution even after announcing his separation from actress-wife Konkona Sen Sharma after sticking five years together. Live-in couples too bury the hatchet and move on as singletons only to stay in touch with their exes on friendly terms. Cynics may call this a fair-weather approach but making peace with one’s troubled past and giving life a new turn is the new-age trend, suggest life coaches and psychologists.

Life coach Eliza Pathak from Guwahati agrees that “break-ups do create a mental setback. I mean you can’t ignore its adverse impact, because at the end of the day, you need a partner to retire to your room with. After all, it’s natural as humans to crib for companionship even in old age and value your security with an urge to always live in a healthy space.”

Lending a pause, Pathak adds as an afterthought: “However, with the rise in economic independence, even divorcee women nowadays make a conscious effort to raise their children as a single parent after winning their custody in case of a minor. So, financial security does play a confidence-booster, if the providing mother/caregiver is a working lady.”

While new-age spouses may easily adhere to the adage of ‘let bygones be bygones’ and put their sour past behind them to blur all bitterness in their strained relationships, many may suspect their lack of seriousness to sustain the same. Considering this, one wonders if it is only then a casual fling that modern-day couples increasingly chase and crave for so that it hardly hurts when they disperse!lead 2

“Often the blame behind this loss of grip over a strong and deep-rooted emotional attachment is put upon the visible absence of a traditional joint family set-up in the society. It is almost missing from our sight and occasionally resulting in the ruin of our value-system,” comments Kolkata-based psychologist Dola Das Majumder.

“Nuclear clusters are the new family order where loneliness and claustrophobia creep in and customary conventions disappear in no time. Also descending from a fractured marriage or growing up amidst constant domestic feuds can influence the decisions of future progeny who may develop a cranky, irritable behaviour,” she further observes.

On one hand, there is dearth of spending enough quality time with the near and dear ones due to pressing deadlines and a fast-paced lifestyle. On the other, the advent of social media has usurped the personal space to connect and bond with the close ones. Avid net-addicts are not only suffering health hazards but their apathy towards family life is also causing rifts in their relationships, feel sociologists.

“No wonder these on-line platforms, matrimonial sites and other interactive avenues are sprouting endless options and excuses to tide over the current crisis and compensate with a fresh new lease in life. One gets an encouraging boost to even indulge in extramarital affairs and other illegitimate liaisons,” shares relationship coach Sunanda Sharma.

PR professional Chintan Jaiswal think that the “present-day love-birds are more open and bold about their partnership. Their frankness even provokes them to go the whole hog at times. But one must hear the warning bell before it’s too late for a damage-control. See partners should get physically intimate at their own peril. Read the ‘friends with benefits’ message first and then take the plunge. Bottom-line is, be prepared to take the risk or else repent in silence like a love-struck, sentimental fool.” Although he admits that it’s difficult to maintain long-distance relationships but not an impossible task.

Previously alienated couples would barely see eye to eye or avoid crossing paths after a harsh fighting. Now with amicable settlements if the differences are irreconcilable, several estranged spouses do touch base on a cordial note, especially for the sake of their offspring.

Is the slur of an ‘abandoned woman’ also fading out slowly? If earlier the ‘weaker sex’ would feel completely deserted and neglected by their men, now they don’t hesitate to walk that extra mile and resist those one-sided compromises only to shoulder responsibilities alone. Plus, there is a noticeable breathing space to harmoniously co-exist with a vibe of mutual trust and respect. The unabashedly daring ‘other woman’ no longer spews bad blood between her and her paramour’s legally married/detached wife. Rather she preserves a liberal amount of rapport with her apparent rival.

“With awareness factors like gender-equality, education, empowerment and the trend of multitasking penetrating the general psyche, women aren’t always taking a ‘no’ for an answer or things lying down,” reasons Sharma. But again one can argue about the disparity in situations that comes along with the difference in social hierarchy.

“What is so brightly progressive to an urban woman may not be so for a village maiden. Individual perspectives, subjective agenda, personal upbringing and genealogical history are also instrumental to deal with such sensitive issues,” debates life-career coach Neeraj Tyagi of Mumbai.