How to Handle Mutual Friendships After a Divorce

Going through a divorce is a complex and often messy process. Though much of the focus is directed towards legal details such as child custody, alimony, and the division of assets, there are quality of life issues that require attention too. Whether a marriage has lasted for five years or fifty, most couples share the same social circle, and a conflict-ridden divorce can put long-time friends into the awkward position of feeling that they have to choose sides.

When couples can maintain a level of civility towards each other it makes it easier for them as well as for their family and their friends, and this is particularly true if they anticipate the issue and head it off. If you have mutual friendships that you both want to maintain, the best approach is to communicate with each other and with them. Doing so avoids unnecessary stress about how to handle issues as minor as bumping into each other at the grocery store and as major as incorporating a new love interest into an already-existing group.

Even couples who decide to split their friends will ease the situation by talking to one another about how to proceed. Doing so may help you to identify which of your existing friends are likely to migrate to one of you or the other, and to anticipate which will be too uncomfortable to remain friends with either of you.  If your divorce is amicable it may make sense to talk to your friends together in order to ease their discomfort and help them to see that neither of you views a continued friendship as disloyalty. You may even want to discuss the best way to approach situations that are likely to arise, including both of you being invited to the same event with a date.

Understand that each of your closest friends has allegiances that may preclude future contact, and be empathetic to the pain that they may be feeling at the end of your relationship. As is always true, the more you communicate your preferences regarding the situation, the easier it will be on everybody.

Our experienced divorce attorneys know the stress and complexity that divorce adds to your life. To speak with one of our compassionate professionals, contact us today to set up a time for a consultation.