Behind the divorce party trend - New York News

Behind the divorce party trend

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PHOENIX -

It could be the newest way to spend alimony and the latest trend in party planning. Studies show more Americans are celebrating their divorces.

These so called "divorce parties" look a lot like bachelor or bachelorette parties, but instead of celebrating a relationship, people are celebrating the end of one.

A toast to 27-year-old Michelle Corrales. She is wearing a feather boa and a tiara.

This is no birthday party. No bachelorette party either. This celebration is for her divorce.

After being in a relationship for nine years, the newly single woman is letting her hair down at Final Round Bar in Tempe.

"It's time to be like ok, that was my life it's not anymore and I'm done," says Corrales.

The same crowd of friends and family who danced the night away at her wedding is now celebrating the end of her marriage.

"It was different to see. You were at the wedding and now you're not and then you're at the divorce party. We're still happy and having fun and trying to get her happy," says Jesse Feller, friend.

The divorce party is a growing trend amongst Americans and a flourishing business for retailers and party planners.

You can buy divorce party favors online like "pin the tail on the ex." Or divorce voodoo dolls -- even divorce party coasters.

The divorce party industry is reportedly up 30 percent in the last few years. These freedom parties are a fusion of bachelor or bachelorette parties.

Restaurant owner Steve Nash celebrated his divorce by going to a strip club -- the same place he celebrated his bachelor party two decades ago.

"It was so long ago, we're all a little bit grayer, a little bit heavier, but here we are doing the same thing again," says Nash.

After his divorce, the Rocket Burger owner had an opportunity to reconnect with old friends.

"You realize you lost a connection with a lot of people, friends and family. And everybody came together. I had a nice dinner with my parents and sisters and when my buddies and I got together we kicked loose a little bit."

"This new thing I've noticed -- reverse bachelorette, bachelor parties," says divorce attorney Kaine Fisher.

The parties usually happen shortly after a judge signs the divorce decree.

"I will get a call back from the client after telling them they are officially divorced and I'll get an invite to one of those parties at night. They're not wasting much time," says Fisher.

But before the celebration -- people have to get through heartache. Nash and Corrales say the end of their marriage was a miserable time.

"You're with someone for so long and it doesn't work for whatever reason and it's mostly sadness," says Corrales.

Critics say divorce parties demonstrate a growing acceptance of divorce in society: a party is morally questionable. But to others, it is a way of coping with the pain and gaining closure.

"Fill my life with something else. Take bad stuff off my mind. It was really good. It was helpful," says Nash.

"I've had time, I've moved on and I'm ready for the new start in my life," says Corrales.

It's starting right now with round two.

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