“Divorce ceremonies” that see couples smashing their wedding rings with a gavel have tripled in Japan since the March tsunami, according to Reuters.
Hiroki Terai, a former salesman, introduced the ceremonies two years ago and thinks they’re gaining popularity now because the 9.0 earthquake, tsunami and subsequent nuclear crisis forced people to reassess their lives.
“The March 11 disaster made many couples rethink their priorities,” Mr. Terai told Reuters.
The ceremony costs 55,000 yen ($653 Canadian) and includes a buffet meal.
“I feel it helped me make a clean break,” said Tomoharu Saito, a husband who crushed his wedding ring alongside Miki, his soon-to-be ex-wife.
Ms. Saito told Reuters that the catastrophe compelled her to move back in with her parents, who live in a neighbourhood badly damaged by the tsunami. She wore a daisy-yellow “divorce dress;” the flower symbolizes amicable or platonic relationships in Japan.
Divorce parties are also picking up steam in North America.
In May, Bonnie and Charles Bronfman, the Seagram scion, invited 100 friends to mark the end of their three-year marriage.
The two explained that their “friendship is stronger without being married” and that they wanted to thank their friends for their support. The invite noted that the couple looked forward “to continuing these relationships with everyone.”
Last month, White Stripes front man Jack White and supermodel-turned-singer Karen Elson celebrated their impending divorce in Nashville.
“Please help us celebrate together this anniversary of the making and breaking of the sacred union of marriage with our best friends and animals,” read the invite.
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