Friend-breakups happen. Fighting, distance or any other number of things could be the cause for a split What’s trickier than two friends splitting ways is when a couple individuals within a larger friend group cut ties. It can be awkward if one person remains friends with two or more people who are no longer friends with each other.
There are a few key elements to dealing with a complicated friend-breakup. The number one thing to do is to respect their decision to go separate ways. Respect that the group friendship is over. It might not be a permanent, lasting change, but it happened for a reason. Validating this will help you move on faster. The sooner you can accept it, the sooner you can start making happy memories with the people who separately still want to be your friend. In fact, you should be happy that you still get to keep all of your friends.
It’s going to hurt, of course. Emotionally, it’s rough to deal with feuding friends. However, you have to bounce back and keep going. A good rule in general about friends is the “no gossiping” rule. I think it is especially important when dealing with two people who used to be friends, because it can escalate to something more hurtful than gossip. Try not to complain about the other person in any capacity, especially when the breakup is fresh. The last thing you want to do is bring up conversations that have “I told you so,” and “That’s why I’m not friends with so-and-so anymore,” in them. It can be a slippery slope. Your job is to respect both friendships and become neutral. If Friend A asks for an update on Friend B, be general. They don’t need the nitty-gritty details; they are no longer privy to them.
What about parties though? What about when you really want all your favorite people in one place? Shouldn’t they have to suck it up? Yes and no. I’d say generally, the bigger the occasion the more they have to deal with it. For example, if you’re getting married and want both of your gal-pals to be bridesmaids, they’ll need to make it work. A wedding is a big deal, and you’re big deal – you’re their friend! Plus, it’s (usually) a big event. If there are more than fifteen other people present at an event, your friends have plenty of opportunity to mingle and avoid anyone they want. If it’s your birthday dinner with five friends for drinks and two of your mates can’t handle each other, maybe don’t include them. Or, include one but not the other, and have a separate mini-date with the other friend. You don’t want to diminish the fun by having someone feel like attending is a chore.
Essentially, juggling will become a giant part of your life if your friends split up. Based on different circumstances and what you know about your individual friends, you have to make the best choices. Things to not do include the following: locking them in a closet until they’re BFFs again, pretending it didn’t happen or being bitter/mopey about it.
All of that said, most of the time it will depend on your friends. Maybe they’ll be super chill about their friend-breakup. In that case, they’re not sweating it, so why should you? Go with the flow. Don’t make waves where there aren’t any; all cliché advice applies here.