Everything is going to be okay.
If you have landed on this site, you may be in some sort of crisis or know someone who is. I created this resource after my own divorce. A lot of us have been there. And we’ve made it to the other side.
The Second Ceremony Project is about finding ways to dissolve a marriage without destroying the kids or each other.
How does it work? Press pause.
In the midst of a crisis, it is hard to know what to do. We’re like dialing Divorce-911.
We offer a set of tools, Ceremonies and Rituals you can try immediately with your family, on your own, or with your partner to ease the dissolution.
These activities aim to slow down time and eases the overwhelming pain. It doesn’t take the pain away, but it lessens its overall hold on you, your children, your friends, family, and your ex or soon-to-be ex-partner.
Second Ceremony is an invitation to take a breath and look at things from a new perspective. Divorce is a big unknown, and this is a chance to bring some order and safety into the chaos. We’re here to give you skills to honor the end of a marriage through ritual and ceremony.
What can you do? Share your story.
I know what it’s like to feel isolated and alone in painful situations; I’ve been there. One of the most frequent ways I have successfully been lifted out of pain has been to hear others share experience, strength and hope.
Second Ceremony is a place to find support and hope through sharing our divorce stories. You are encouraged to share your story—how you moved through the process and, if you have kids, how they experienced the end of the marriage.
Sharing your story is a kind of ritual in its own right—a way of documenting one of the most significant events of your life.
It is also an amazing way for you to help other families in crisis. By sharing the struggle, the pain and the rising out of it all, we offer one another the gift of connection and a sense of belonging that drives out the isolation and loneliness.
Need a little extra support? We’ve got you.
You can also reach out to me directly with a private note, and I can guide you to the ceremony that would be best. We can also work to customize one for your situation. Your information is secure and confidential.
About Second Ceremony Creator Jacqui Burge
The short version of my childhood is that my parents fought a lot, and then my dad moved out. It happened fast but never ended, the type of ongoing fight that became the skeleton in my closet and the story of who I am. Needless to say, it wasn’t a friendly separation.
One of my strongest memories of early childhood is the screaming. I remember the sound of big heavy feet walking down the hallway and then stopping, and the silence of my dad standing in the doorway before he stormed out the front door. Another early memory is standing in the hallway of my father’s hotel room holding my mom’s hand. I remember lots of silence and a sailboat painting on the wall. I remember wanting to be really small and understanding but also not understanding what was happening. I was five.
Even though I understood at a five-year-old level, it’s not like I really knew what was happening, and we definitely didn’t have any conversations about it even when I was older. I did know that I felt afraid and unsafe, suffered nightmares and kidney infections, and developed a relentless need for my parents’ love and approval. It was important that I knew it was okay. In my brain that meant that I needed to know that I was okay and that I didn’t do anything wrong.
The practice of seeing Dad for a few hours every other week, the pressure of endless child support and alimony, the emotional and financial expenses caused by fighting and lawyer bills—all of these aspects of divorce tore our family apart in ways that I am still learning about.
One thing I do know for sure is that there are other ways to dissolve a family—or rather, another way to create a new family in a family where the partners/parents/friends/lovers don’t want to be together anymore. I know, because I’ve done it—more than once. At some point we made the decision to be together, and then made the decision to not be together. I saw how it happened with my parents—messy, unending, and never healing. How can you end a marriage or relationship with grace, and what does that even look like? These are the questions we answer at second ceremony.
I am well versed in the ending of a marriage and the effect on the children. Besides this site, I am writing a book on children, divorce, and the rituals that save us. Some of the stories on this site are included with the author’s permission, weaving personal stories into research and ritual. If you’re interested in sharing your story you can reach out to me directly.
My hope is that all of this work will show readers that there is another way. There are many ways to honor endings, just as we honor the beginnings and the middles; ways that make space and allows kindness to come in. A way of letting go, forgiving, and seeing that the world outside of the pain of endings is friendly. Find out how you can help be part of the book and the site and help others through this same journey.