Tara Averill is doing something truly interesting. As she was getting divorced, she was disappointed there were few resources or places to turn for real, useful, unbiased information. So, she launched Splitsville, a platform to de-stigmatize divorce. We have her honest, and optimistic, story below.
Tell us your story.
I’m Tara Averill. I’m 43. My father worked for the National Park Service. So we lived between Long Island and Fire Island National Seashore and then Acadia National Park in Maine for much of my childhood. I’ve been in New York City for 25 years. I work in commercial advertising representing directors, and a few years ago, I started a Web platform called Splitsville. It curates content and creates a social space for anyone going through a split, a divorce, or a separation. The idea was to essentially rebrand and de-stigmatize divorce.
Q: What inspired Splitsville?
Splitsville is what I wish I found when I was Googling “divorce” and “divorce and kids.” I have two kids. I couldn’t find anything helpful that wasn’t judgmental. Everything I read either said “Work it out! Stay married no matter what!” Or it was bitter. Neither of those options rang true to me. So I collected the content I was interested in, psychologically and emotionally, and posted it. Divorce is not culturally a happy thing that people want to support. People really don’t want to talk about it, and that leads to a sense of shame when there’s nothing to be ashamed of. In fact, statistically it’s actually a really common life transition. My ex-husband is a fantastic, wonderful person, but marriage wasn’t right for me. I felt like, “How could making a choice about my own happiness and relationship status be wrong? Why does that make me a failure?” That was the impetus to start Splitsville.
Q: What are you goals for Splitsville?
I’d love it if Splitsville helped people realize that just because their marriage is over, it doesn’t mean that it’s a failure. It’s crucial to grow the community and add content. It should be a place to learn and share from other people’s experiences. Where you can go to feel less alone and inspired about the next chapter in your life.
Q: What inspires your style?
I’m totally inspired by chic French women that wear pants—I love a chic trouser. And anything semi-rocker.
Q: What advice would you give your younger self?
If there was any way that I could tell my younger self there was absolutely nothing wrong with me, that would have helped.
Q: What are you looking forward to?
I’m really looking forward to going to Mexico with my kids and their dad—my ex. This is the third year in a row we’ve done this trip together, along with a couple of other families. We surf, we hang out. It’s a special family trip.
Q: What are you celebrating?
I mean it sounds really clichéd, but what I’m trying to celebrate is really this moment. Every time I’m in the future or the past, I’m basically wasting my time. Because the only time I can ever do anything that affects any change is in this moment.