Who Gets to Keep You When Two of Your Friends Stop Dating Each Other?

It sucks when two friends break up. It sucks on many, many levels. Your relationship with both of them has to change, fundamentally. I mean, you’re used to seeing them happy (or pretending to be happy…or being miserable together) and now you get to watch them struggle with a break up in their own ways. The biggest deal is that you’re now either going to get caught somewhere in the middle of them or else you’re going to pick a side. Or THEY are going to decide who should get to keep you as a contact on their iPhone. Now, how do you decide that? Which friend gets you in their break up? Sometimes it depends on the break up. There’s no question that the road to splitsville takes two drivers to get to, but you’re going to be more in the corner of one person over the other. Doesn’t mean you don’t care about both of them, still, but you’re going to find yourself feeling more inclined to be there for the one you blame less for their break up. That should make the choice easier. If one person is clearly getting screwed over then that’s probably who you’ll want to keep close to in the immediate aftermath. BUT! One thing you might want to keep in mind is to remember who you were friends with first. Even when you’re mad at your best friend, they’re still your best friend, right? When looking at the broken former couple, remember who’s been there for you before. And I mean before they were together. If you have a lot of history with one of them, you might be more inclined to stay loyal. Of course, if the history isn’t as rosy as you’d remembered, then maybe it’s time to create a bit of distance. Of course, this is all assuming that they don’t get a draft pick in this situation, which they might. They might decide to split the friends down the middle. Those who were their friends before are off limits to the other now that the break’s permanent. Of course, they might argue that new friendships have blossomed that are important to them, so they have to negotiate the rules of trying to both be friends with you. My question is: how much does their opinion in the situation matter? I don’t think very much. The bottom line is that you get to be friends with whomever you choose. It doesn’t matter who they think has the privilege, at the end of the day the power lies with you. The answer to our question, “which friends gets you in their break up?” is WHICHEVER ONE YOU DECIDE. Lay out the factors. Spread out the history. Look at the who, what, why, and how of their total implosion (or explosion!), and go from there. The key is perspective: take in as much of the big picture as you can. Then be there for the person you feel you want YOUR relationship with to continue and to grow. Could it be both? Sure. That’s another article though… Remember me fondly, The Dude [Lead image via Marcos Mesa Sam Wordley/Shutterstock]