Girls fight. There’s no way to avoid it, really. It comes down to human nature and that you’re not going to get along with everyone. But when you get into a tiff with your friends, how do you handle it?
Some women have been turning to friendship counseling and have ended up spending thousands of dollars. Two women spent three thousand dollars to mend their strained relationship. Three thousand dollars! That’s a bit excessive, right?
The idea of friendship counseling seems pretty solid to me, actually. There’s relationship counseling and family counseling. So, why not for friendships too? But I think there are a lot of steps to take with a friendship before getting to that point of counseling.
Over the years, I’ve lost friends for one reason or another. And to tell you the truth, I can’t name a single one of them that I’d go to a friend counselor with. Sometimes people grow apart, and that’s totally okay. And sometimes if there is a toxic person in your life, you might need to let them go.
I have a lot of girlfriends that are scared of confrontation, even now as adults. It’s actually a really big issue that I’m seeing among girls these days. We’re so afraid of someone being unhappy or mad at us that we don’t take the time to address small issues before they blow up. And then when it does blow up it takes forever to fix. I find myself caught in the middle of issues between friends, so I guess I’m a friendship counselor in a way. Maybe I should start charging.
Before you start looking up friendship counselors with your bestie, let’s talk about some ways that you can handle confrontation so you’re not out three thousand dollars.
1. Communication: This is probably the biggest factor in any relationship. We’re not mind readers! Sure, we may have some freaky telepathic moments with our best friends, but that’s not the norm. You need an open line of communication. If something upset you, speak up. If you’re mad that your friend flaked on you for the umpteenth time, tell her. You might think she should know you well enough to pick up on your cues, but she really might be unaware.
2. Honesty: Another huge relationship cornerstone. Anything you lie about is going to come back and bite you in the butt. Maybe you don’t want to meet your friend for lunch, but just be upfront. If you’re not okay with something your friend is doing, don’t lie about it. If you’re honest in your friendship, you’ll avoid a lot of issues.
3. Watch your tongue: Girls can be sassy. There are times when it’s right to be snarky, and you might feel warranted in snapping at one of your friends because she’s been on your nerves. But that’s not going to get you anywhere. Instead your friend might feel attacked, and she’ll get mad and it’ll be a big thing. Try to avoid snide comments as a general rule anyway.
4. Don’t be passive aggressive: This is the worst! Don’t post Facebook messages or tweet about “someone” who did “something” because that person will more than likely figure it out. Don’t send passive aggressive texts in an attempt to tell your friend that you’re upset. Just tell her.
5. Confront the person involved: If you’re in a situation with your friend whether you’re feeling neglected or taken advantage of or any kind of issue, confront that friend. Don’t go to your other girls and talk about the issue behind her back. You certainly wouldn’t want them to do that to you. Hash it out and figure out how to move forward instead of having to say, “I think we should go to friendship counseling.”
Really all of this comes down to talking to each other. If you’re at a counselor’s office, they’ll make you do that anyway so you might as well do that for free. Try to deal with the issues together. If your friendship has really become toxic, then take a friend-break for a while before googling therapists.