Effects of Divorce on Friends
  • | October 5, 2016
When a relationship ends there are many things to consider. How does this affect your living situation, your children, pets, possessions, and even your friends?

It’s true, your friends can and will be affected by your breakup and it’s important to consider their positions as well when navigating through a divorce. Divorce can be messy and your friends will inevitably be drawn into it, if only marginally. Here are a few tips on dealing with the effects of divorce on friends. pets, possessions, and even your friends?

  1. Keep them out of it as much as possible. This is really between you and your wife, not them. Some friends will try to insert themselves into the situation and you should shut that down. Other friends will do their best to stay out of it and you should let them. Inevitably friends will get drawn into plenty so there’s no need to force the issue.

  2. Consider the legal ramifications. Keeping your friends out of it as much as possible is not only courteous it’s also a really good idea if you’re bogged down in a legal struggle with your ex. Friends have no special immunity from testifying or giving statements so if for example there’s a custody battle looming, be careful what you say and to whom. Even if they have no intention of using it against you they may be compelled to do so.

  3. Be prepared to lose some. Friends you met as a couple and built a relationship with as a couple are going to be placed in an awkward position now. It’s possible they’ll take sides against you or it’s possible that your friendship was based more on you as a couple than you as an individual. It’s important to remember that friendships, like relationships, sometimes end for no good reason and not everyone you meet is a lifelong companion.

  4. Don’t fight over friends. There are plenty of things to fight over in a divorce, don’t make friends one of them. Remember, these are people, not a television. Put away the “mine!” mentality and let them make their own decisions. If they are really your friends, you will continue your friendship after the split.

  5. Perfect time to say goodbye. Inevitably there will be friends who side with you or against you and it’s likely the friends who side against you aren’t people you loved in the first place. This is a perfect time to say goodbye to those people you only tolerated because she liked them. Let them side with her, there’s no need in fighting to keep someone in your life that you never wanted there in the first place

  6. Don’t punish them. Unless a friend was instrumental in the reason for a divorce (i.e. infidelity), don’t punish them for maintaining contact with your ex. Don’t assume they’ve taken sides or are conspiring against you. Friendships can often last through times when we didn’t agree with what our friends did so it’s not necessarily an indictment against you.

When friends deal with a divorce they’re default position (at least publically) is likely to be one of sympathy to all but without taking sides. Of course they have their own thoughts and opinions on what’s happened but they aren’t likely to voice them at least initially. In any case it is important to remember that this isn’t really about them and they are in an uncomfortable position. Be respectful and mindful of their role. pets, possessions, and even your friends?

Good luck.