In modern times, divorce has become more common. And since there has been an uptick in divorce, the stigma of divorce is being removed. In other words, divorce, which has been previously been seen as a mark of shame, is now being celebrated.
As more and more couples untie the knot, they're taking to social media to document the event. So much of our lives - even down to what we eat - are posted on social media. So why would divorce be any different? It is a major milestone, after all.
On social media, we present our best selves. Unhappy moments are almost never shown. So it's almost surprising that people are celebrating their "broken" relationships by making such a bold declaration of the split.
However, divorce selfies are, in their own way, yet another way we present the facade of a "perfect" life through social media. We see the ex-couple grinning broadly outside the courthouse, however we never see the moments leading up to that photograph. The late-night fights and squabbles over fundamental disagreements are never shown in Instagram, even through the Valencia filter.
That said, not every divorce is an unhappy one. And sometimes couples are just better as friend. Because if you loved someone enough to marry that person, why does that love have to end when the marriage does? Just because you can't share the same bed as someone doesn't mean you have to automatically hate that person.
The trend is linked back to Shannon and Chris Neuman. The Calgary former couple honored their "conscious uncoupling" with a snapshot outside of the courthouse. Within a a few hours, it had been shared over 11,000 times.
As more and more people follow in the footsteps of the (former) Neumans, the stigma of divorce is starting to disappear. After all, a divorce is a break up. Why would it be different from a break up that didn't involve any paper work?
Marriage is hard work. Even the happiest couple would admit that. At least these couples celebrating their divorces can admit that they're better off being happy with other people than staying together and making each other miserable. In other words, that the hard work of marriage might be more fruitful if it were put in with a different partner.
Doesn't it take a big man (or woman) to admit when they are wrong? And why would that be any different when it comes to marriage? We all make mistakes. Sometimes our mistakes involve the phrase, "Till death do us part."
But while celebrating your divorce on social media is on the rise, divorce is actually declining. In 2016, divorce rates actually dropped. This marks the third year in a row that divorce actually went down.
Divorce is actually now at its lowest point in 40 years. But it's not because marriage is on the decline. Marriage rates have actually increased, and there was a 31.9 percent jump in marriage between 2014 and 2015.
The divorce rate in the United States peaked in the 1980s, when it reached 40 percent. It has been declining ever since. And the statistic "50 percent of marriages end in divorce" is not only an over-simplification of the issue, it is also inaccurate. Nor does it take into account all the various complicated and personal reasons why a couple would choose to say "I don't anymore" after saying, "I do."
It has been believed that the decrease in divorce is linked to healthier coupling habits. As the trend of divorce selfies shows, people are capable of being amicable and mature when breaking up, despite the fact that some might perceive the trend as tacky. Conversely, people are demonstrating a newfound maturity when picking their partners in the first place.
The decline in divorce has been linked to the fact that millennials are waiting longer to get married. This means that when they finally do tie the knot, they are more settled into who they are as a person. Additionally, they've been able to "play the field" and see what's out there, ensuring that when they do settle down, they're settling down with the person that's right for them, rather than the person that society dictates is right for them.