It’s a familiar story. A group of three or more friends, having the best of times. Then two of those three friends get into it and the third, innocent party is stuck to choose. We’ve all been there and I know from personal experience it’s hard to tell whether or not you can trust a friend who’s friends with your enemy, but it’s also hard to be friends with two people who hate each other.
I’ll start with being the innocent party who just wants to be friends with everyone. It’s really hard. I personally don’t know if it’s actually possible because I’ve never seen it work out. You’re going to like one friend more than the other, or you’re going to accidentally betray one or the other friend and they’re going to turn on you.
I understand wanting to keep your friends, but unless you can be perfect and schedule the same amount of friend dates for the same amount of time, while also not becoming the middle person for their petty vendettas, it just isn’t going to work and someone is going to end up losing.
Then there’s being the friend whose friend(s) are friends with their enemy. You better watch what you do and say. Because everything you say and do is going to get back to that person. Even if the middle friends don’t mean to let your personal information fly, it’s inevitably going to happen.
Best case scenario: your friends are good people who truly care about both you and your enemy and don’t want to betray you. But you’re going to get jealous, you’re going to feel betrayed. It’s going to suck to feel like you have to hold your cards close to your chest with your own friends, but you’ll keep your same friends.
Worst case scenario: you’re going to trust that your friends are going to remain unbiased and a mutual friend. But what you don’t realize is that at any moment that friend will throw you under the bus for your enemy. When it happens everything you’ve ever said or done is going to be used against you and you’re going to be stuck in a hot mess.
There are obvious signs that hint at what's going to happen. If your friend seems genuinely concerned with keeping both friends then that is a true friend who is just trying not to get involved in the drama. And they aren’t being disloyal for trying to keep both friends and you shouldn’t make it out to be that way.
If the middle person isn’t actually your friend they’ll try and get you to forgive the other person when you’re not ready or even willing to. They’ll hang out with the other person constantly, while rarely hitting you up. Usually, when they need something. But the moment the other person does something to them they’ll coming running to you telling you all of your enemy's business.
You feel like you can’t trust them with your personal information and for good reason. Because the moment you make that middle friend unhappy they’re going to betray you in whatever way they can.
Watch for the signs, and trust your gut during these situations. If they are your real friend, do your best to remain amicable. But if you realize that the middle person isn’t someone you can trust you need to break it off before you get hurt in the process.
It’s ultimately up to you whether you want to risk being friends with someone who trusts your enemy. But make sure you're making the best decision for you and not everyone else.