04/21/2004 at 12:00 AM EDT
Whether out of concern for the children or their own images, or even an aversion to outrageous attorneys' fees, a new celeb smart set is finding that the crockery needn't be broken when the marriage vows are, reports PEOPLE in its new cover story. As seemingly suggested by a recent spate of A-list splits -- Bruce Willis and Demi Moore, Meg Ryan and Dennis Quaid, Sarah Ferguson and Prince Andrew, Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall -- these days at least, getting divorced doesn't necessarily mean shooting one's ex down in flames, reports the magazine. Why is this so? "After pretty ugly publicity, some clients have figured out that it's better to be civil to each other than carry on a Hundred Years War," suggests New York City public relations guru Howard Rubenstein, who has handled the bitter breakups of such clients as Donald Trump. In fact, adds sociologist Pepper Schwartz, celebs may have more reason than ordinary folks to keep up at least a veneer of civility. "There are so few people they can trust, so few people they can let inside behind the façade," she says. "Once they've gone through that with someone, that person's worth more."