How do you resolve conflict between friends?
I have found myself acting as the 'neutral' party in more than one conflict and have had a fair level of success at it... In your own experience, what methods work best for rekindling the connection between estranged friends?
First, it might be helpful to give each other a little breathing room. (not years, or months, but perhaps time and space)
next, be honest with your self about what is the problem. then be honest with your friend.
Saying "i'm sorry" is the best way to begin. You must be sorry for something in the conflict. (even if it is that you are in a conflict) Allowing your friend to 'save face' is important in restoring and maintaining any friendship.
Offer solutions and listen to what your friend says.
figure out a way to make up.
then do it.
Stay out of it. If it continues, one will eventually believe you are on the other's side even when you are neutral participant trying to do good.
It depends on the circumstances. If the three of you had been friends and they had a falling out you can try and help each person see it from the other side. Help them see how much they miss each other really. Life is too short to loose friends.
I don't. It's rare thing for my friends to have conflicts; if they do, I don't like to get in the middle of it. Usually it's a good way to lose one or both friends!
Creating agreement--if two people can agree about how they will engage with each other IN the conflict, it often helps them to work through it. For example:
We will have an open mind
We will take turns listening to the other
We will test assumptions by speaking directly and openly
We will not judge each other's weaknesses based off of our strengths
We will not interrupt the other person
We can agree to disagree
A facilitator can help the two create this agreement together--it is something not given to them to follow but co-created by them both. Once they agree on how to talk, the conflict can usually be worked out. Most conflict has to do with communication issues more than anything else.
It depends on the circumstances. If the three of you had been friends and they had a falling out you can try and help each person see it from the other side. Help them see how much they miss each other really, and that life is too short to loose friends.
You can also appeal to their pride-no-one admires people who are fighting or who stay estranged.Tell them others are gossiping about them and its very awkward for you-risky maybe!
Explain that making up feels much better and uses far less energy that fighting.They are likely to meet from time to time anyway and they will always be anxious about it if they do not sort out their differences.
I too have had some success bringing people together.
But I have also been in a triangle where two mutual friends of mine hated each other.They had never been friends but were work colleagues.That was really difficult.They generally avoided each other.After months of defending one to the other,we had to eventually agree to differ when the other persons name was mentioned.That actually worked and kept my relationship with both neutral and avoided resentment.
I stay out of it. I will listen to both sides of the story to an extent and depending on the situation I may make a suggestion on how they can come to a mutual agreement. But usually, it's best to just leave it alone. I let them know, I'm not in their argument and wish to not be included. If it becomes a problem to where I feel like I'm being dragged into it, I have no problem separating myself from the situation either temporarily or permanently. I have a very small group of close friends because I'm not entertained by drama. When it comes to my other friends, they come and go.
I usually cry. Then they stop. They can't get mad when you are crying.
Or they could. But it's better to spend time apart.
Although a bunch of my friends and most of my family don't play or watch hockey, I truly believe (well almost) that hockey has an amazing conflict resolution-solution among once-friends. Simply (ice) dance; once one party has taken the fall and adequate invaluable time (5 minutes or more) with absolutely no chance of parole has been served by both parties, we have (indeed) resolved the issue by and at hand.
Sometimes if I think there's a need for me to interfere to help them resolve the issues.
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