10 Gifts for Someone Going through Divorce
People often ask, “How do I support a friend during a divorce?” or “How do I help a friend who is separating from their partner?” While there’s no easy, one-size-fits-all answer, there are many ways to provide divorce support. Even a small gift can help.
It’s hard to watch someone you care about suffer through a divorce. Naturally, you want to reach out, to soothe them, to somehow shield them from their grief and pain. You can’t actually fix the situation or bear their burden for them, but you can certainly show your support and love with a token of cheer or help, large or small.
Here are 10 divorce gift ideas for the special someone in your life who needs divorce support. Some focus on getting them through the divorce process while others help them kick off life after divorce.
1. Indulge them with a spa day with a massage or a mani/pedi
The stages of divorce, from start to finish, might take as little as six months, but it can feel like six years. As a newly “dumped” client once said, “Some days, I have trouble telling the difference between ‘It’s killing me’ and ‘It’s making me stronger.’”
A relaxing massage could be just what your friend needs to feel stronger, whether they’re reeling from the shock of getting served or calming their jitters on the eve of a court date. Consider picking up a gift certificate for a 15-minute foot massage or an hour-long full-body massage at their favorite spa. Or, if they’re not into rubdowns, consider a gift certificate for a manicure, pedicure, or both. Every time your friend looks down at their nails, they’ll feel good about what they see – and they’ll think of you.
2. Let them work out their anger with a Dammit Doll
You can find all sorts of stress-relieving toys on today’s market, from squishy hand toys to fidget spinners. And then, there’s the Dammit Doll. This handmade 12-inch token fits nicely in the hand … and whacks nicely against any counter, wall, or piece of furniture your friend’s heart desires.
We couldn’t resist including this grabbable, slammable stuffed polyester doll, available in a huge range of styles and colors, on our list. Perhaps our favorite suggestion is the “Ex Doll,” available here, but there are lots of other eye-catching Dammit dolls, too – and they all serve their purpose, no matter what they look like.
3. Help their new beginning blossom with a symbolic sapling
If your friend has a green thumb, they might appreciate the symbolism of a plantable tree. Present them with a sapling – or even just a seed – and offer to help them plant it in a significant place. (This might not be the right gift if they haven’t moved out of their marital home yet … but it may be the perfect gift if they’ve just moved into their new place.)
You could pick this gift up around the corner at your local home improvement store, or you could special-order something ultra-symbolic – like an evergreen or fruit-bearing tree – from a place like the Arbor Day Foundation.
Tip: Before you buy a sapling for your friend to plant, determine the hardiness zone of your intended tree, and make sure it matches your friend’s location.
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4. A coloring cure for heartache
Okay, so a coloring book is not an actual cure for heartache … but coloring probably made your friend’s heart smile when they were a kid, and we think one of these adult coloring books might bring a smile to their face now:
- Have a Nice Life Asshole: Breakup Stress Reliever Adult Coloring Book
- I Used to Be Married, But I’m Much Better Now
- Recover from the Narcissist: Color to Cope
P.S. Don’t forget the box of crayons!
Related: Journaling to Cope with Divorce
5. Take them to a rage room
If your divorcing friend has rage, we've got a room for them!
Yes, rage rooms are real. Perhaps the first (documented) rage room was The Venting Place in Tokyo back in 2008. You can buy your friend a gift certificate for 45 minutes or so in a rage room where they use provided tools (axes and such) to destroy stuff: dishes, appliances, electronics, and in some cases, cars. Make sure you book with a place that includes safety gear (hard hat, safety gloves, goggles) … and consider going with them if you’d like to do a little raging yourself.
6. Provide a service they dread, don’t have time for, or can’t afford
Who has time for mowing the lawn, cleaning the toilet, or getting the oil changed when there’s a divorce going on?
Your friend probably doesn’t. This is why a gift certificate for a mundane, soul-sucking chore like lawn care, auto care, or home maintenance can mean so much. What daily duty does your friend hate the most? If it’s vacuuming, give them a gift card for two hours of maid service. If it’s laundry, purchase a gift card for a month of wash-and-fold service. If you’re unsure what your friend needs, a prepaid credit card with a handyman could prove helpful the next time their garbage disposal explodes or the toilet won’t stop running.
7. Feed them
During a divorce, some people are short on cash. Some are short on time. Almost all are short on sleep. Conclusion: Your friend probably doesn’t feel like buying groceries or cooking right now.
But you want your buddy to stay healthy and nourished, right? If you know which restaurant they love, slip a gift card into an envelope and slide it into their mailbox. If you’re unsure what they’re hungry for, a gift card from a delivery service like GrubHub, DoorDash, or Uber Eats is bound to hit the spot.
8. Encourage them to get out for their favorite activity with a membership
Does your friend love to escape to the museum? The movies? The theater? Do they have kids who beg to go to the zoo? Buy them a three-month, six-month, or annual membership to someplace meaningful where they can sneak away for a “mini vacation” every once in a while. A change of scenery, even if it’s just for a few hours, can refresh the soul … and it’ll remind your pal that life after divorce – and in fact, life right now – has lots of thrills to offer.
9. Take them on vacation
This gift would take a little more planning, and it’s not for everyone – but if your friend loves to travel and you love to travel, why not take a little vacay together?
The two of you might escape for a weekend to a cabin in the woods through a vacation rental company like Airbnb or Vrbo. You might find a vacation package that appeals to you both through an online travel agency like Booking.com or low-fare plane tickets through Skyscanner.com, a metasearch engine for cheap flights and other vacation deals.
Maybe you’ll even decide to corral more of the gang – work friends, school chums, family members – and take the trip of a lifetime in honor of your divorcing friend.
10. Do a friendly favor or chore
Some of the best gifts don’t cost any money at all. The gift of your time might mean more to your friend right now than anything money could buy. Maybe your friend has kids and would really like a Saturday alone. Invite the kids to your place for a Saturday movie fest, and tell your friend to do whatever the hell they want while the kids are gone. Maybe your friend needs someone to talk to about everything that’s going on with their life and their divorce … or someone to just sit with them and not talk about everything that’s going on. You could be that friend!
At Hello Divorce, we’ve noticed that many of our clients have friends who desperately want to help but don’t know how. We get that. You want to support your friend during divorce, but you don’t want to intrude. You want to help, but you don’t want to push.
In fact, one of our most popular articles of all time is called The Good Friend’s Guide to Helping a Friend during Divorce. We think that’s pretty special – it says a lot not only about our clients, but also the friends of our clients and the support and love out there in this world.
A note for the one getting divorced
If you’re reading this and you’re the one getting divorced, we’d like to take this opportunity to invite you to treat yourself.
We’re not saying you should necessarily book a cruise for yourself and five best friends right now. What we’re saying is this: Be good to yourself. Now more than ever, you need it. Yes, your friends want to help. But you are your own best friend, and you know what’s best for you. Hello Divorce wants to help. We’ve worked hard to put together some awesome low-cost divorce plans and a la carte legal services for our clients. And, we’ve curated a treasure trove of free resources you can read now, as you move through the stages of divorce and on to your next beautiful chapter.
In the spirit of nurturing yourself, we invite you to stay, look around, and read: