Lights, Camera, Divorce!

Flipping through the channels on TV the other day, I saw an ad for a new sitcom called Splitting Up Together on ABC.

Co-produced by Ellen DeGeneres, this show is set to premiere March 27th, the premise inspired by a Danish sitcom (Bedre skilt end aldrig). Splitting Up Together presents Lena (Jenna Fischer) and Martin (Oliver Hudson), who are ending their marriage but continue to live in the same house in order to co-parent, while simultaneously re-entering the dating world. What could possibly go wrong?

There seem to be a lot of new TV shows focusing on divorce lately—the Netflix comedy Grace and Frankie starring Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin, and HBO’s Divorce with Sarah Jessica Parker.

Why the sudden interest in divorce as entertainment?

Obviously, divorcing can provide much fodder for content and emotional swings to inspire writers and actors. And, now that divorce is a common and accepted family situation in the American landscape, perhaps people want TV shows that reflect what they’re going through.

Lots of drama and miscommunication comes along with splitting up. The New York Times called the first season of Divorce “painfully dark — some would say unflinchingly realistic,” while the second season included more humor and lightness. Grace & Frankie is a comedy, dealing with gray divorce, as two women who were married for decades suddenly start over.

In my more than two decades as a divorce attorney, I’ve learned that no two cases are alike. What can be a drawn-out, complicated separation for one couple can be a smoother split for another.

One common thread? Bravery. Tenacity. The willingness to walk away from what isn’t working and start fresh.

Healing from a divorce takes time to cope, to adjust, to write a new story. If watching someone else’s divorce story on T.V. helps you, or provides you a little humor or an escape, then by all means enjoy. Just remember – everyone has their own way to work through the adjustment period and create a new normal.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *