I’m Friends With A Couple Going Through A Nasty Breakup — And I’m Stuck In The Middle

My friends dated, fell in love, dated for a long time… and finally imploded with a nasty breakup. I want to stay friends with both of them and I know that’s the right thing to do, but as hard as I try, I can’t help but take sides.

  1. I was friends with them before they started dating. I had separate friendships with them before they got together. In fact, they probably wouldn’t have started dating if they weren’t both such close friends with me in the first place… which kind of makes me blame myself. I wish they never met and I’m angry about how they treated each other. I was friends with them before, but I can’t lie —  it’s difficult knowing how everything went down and still being friends with both of them after.
  2. I warned them that if it ended, my friendships with them wouldn’t. That doesn’t mean I don’t have feelings about their breakup, though. I was angry with him for a long time for the way he betrayed her. I didn’t stop being friends with him but our relationship was strained. I didn’t allow him to talk crap about her and I reminded him that this was his fault and he had no excuses for his actions.
  3. They both did some really screwed up things in the relationship. She was controlling, and in return, he treated her like crap. They both did things that were wrong, but I definitely think one was more messed up than the other, though. My friend cheated on my other friend and that’s just not okay. Even worse, I found out about it before she did. He was a great friend but a crappy boyfriend who put her through hell, and that’s why I took her side.
  4. I was the one who had to pick up the pieces. He broke her heart, and even though they were both my friends, she was the one who needed me. I had to be there for her. He had other people to distract him, but she didn’t. She was the one who ended up broken, and while he was hurt, really there was no comparison. The breakup may have been both of their faults, but in my mind, he bears greater fault than she did.
  5. I’ll call them on their stuff. When you’re friends with me, you’re going to have to deal with my brutal honesty. I believe that if you’re really good friends with someone then you should be able to tell them the truth even when it hurts. If my friend is being a douchebag to my other friend, I’m going to call him out. He treated my friend like crap and I’m not going to pretend he didn’t.
  6. They allowed their relationship to affect my friendships with them. I used to spend time separately with them, but then it turned into me either being the third wheel or them spending all their alone time together. It changed my relationship with each of them and through that, I felt like I lost the magic that our friendships used to have. They didn’t mind putting me in the crossfire, so I don’t think they should mind when I pick a side.
  7. I asked them not to date. I knew that things wouldn’t work out between them. He wasn’t boyfriend material and I always knew that but I hoped he would take things more seriously with her because she was my friend. He didn’t, though. He treated her like he treated all girls —casual and temporary. I warned him not to hurt her. I warned her that he would her hurt, but they both chose to make their own mistakes anyway.
  8. I’m a very protective friend. I’m a person who would rather have a few very close friends than lots of okay friends. That means that my friends are like my family and I’m very protective over them. I love them and I think they deserve the best, so how am I supposed to act when I know my friend deserves to be treated better than how my other friend treated her? I can’t help but be angry with the man who hurt her, regardless of the fact that I still love both of them…
  9. They’re the ones who put me in the middle. They asked me to keep secrets from each other. If they didn’t want me to have a say in their breakup then they shouldn’t have asked me to have a say in their relationship. When they hurt each other or got mad at each other, they always wanted my opinion, like my vote would determine who was right and who was wrong. They put me in the middle and that’s why I still feel in the middle now.
  10. I feel like my friend got played. He strung her along for a long time wanting to “keep things casual.” He finally agreed to commit to a relationship meanwhile he was still sleeping with his ex the entire time. He told her that he loved her, but it’s clear from the way he treated her that he didn’t. I’m not saying she didn’t do anything wrong, but if she acted crazy, it’s because he made her that way.
  11. It hurt that they were both willing to risk their friendship with me. That’s my God’s honest truth. I feel like their choice to date told me how much I really meant to them — not as much as they meant to me. Unless they were going to be actually serious about the relationship and thought they had a future, then they should have never put me in a situation where I’d be in between. I’m hurt and angry with both of them, but I still can’t help but be on her side.
Kelsey Dykstra is a freelance writer based in Huntington Beach, CA. She has a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing from Grand Valley State University and been writing professionally since graduating in 2013. In addition to writing about love and relationships for Bolde and lifestyle topics for Love to Know, she also writes about payment security and small business solutions for PaymentCloud.

Originally from Michigan, this warm weather seeker relocated to the OC just last summer. Kelsey enjoys writing her own fictional pieces, reading a variety of young adult novels, binging on Netflix, and of course soaking up the sun.

You can find more about Kelsey on her LinkedIn profile or on Twitter @dykstrakelsey.