Going through a divorce is rough on you and your spouse mentally, emotionally, financially, etc. However, it can also be difficult for those who are close to you and your spouse, such as the friends you have as a couple. When thinking about divorce, we often consider how it affects the immediate family. We don’t always think about how it affects a couple’s friends, though.
Rest assured that it will mean changes. There is no way that it couldn’t. This is not likely the first thing on your mind, and it’s not the most important thing, either. However, it will be another one of those unpleasant elements that await you during and after your divorce. It’s good to know a bit about it now, so you aren’t taken by surprise.
Let’s look at the ways that a divorce could negatively affect your friends and your relationship with them.
Group Outings Will Be Different
Right out of the gate, any group outings that you were accustomed to enjoying are going to be very different… or those invitations might just stop coming.
If you and your couple’s friends would always go on a ski trip in the winter or have cookouts in the summer, now that one of those couples is splitting, it’s likely that neither you nor your ex will get an invitation. It would be weird to invite both of you, and it would be rude to invite just one of you.
Of course, that doesn’t mean that those sorts of things won’t happen. Your friends might still invite both of you in some ill-advised bad sitcom idea of trying to keep you and your spouse together. They might invite both of you because they don’t want to be rude to either of you, or they think that you are both adults who can get along. That might be the case, or it might not be.
A lot of issues will crop up when it comes to group events, and you need to be prepared to deal with that. Mostly, you need to be prepared for those invitations to stop coming your way.
Couple Friendships Could Vanish
As heartbreaking as it might seem, the friendships you have with other couples might stop existing once you get divorced. A lot of time couples, and the couple’s friends, like to do things together. When you are no longer with your spouse, things get awkward. They might say they want you to hang out or go somewhere with them, but if it’s just the three of you, then you’ll feel like a third-wheel charity case.
You probably don’t feel like doing “couple things” when you are alone and going through your divorce either. In many cases, it’s just easier to stop asking you to do things because it could be more awkward when they do.
You Might Lose Friends Entirely
Of course, there are some friends that you might lose because they have decided not to remain neutral. They have taken a side in the divorce, and it is not yours. In some cases, this might be entirely understandable. Maybe they were friends with your spouse before they knew you. As much as it might hurt, it makes sense that they would cut ties with you, at least for the time being.
Other times, it might catch you off guard. You might have thought you had a close friendship with someone only to realize that the feeling was not at all mutual when they vanish from your life now that you are getting divorced.
You Might Not Be Able to Trust Everyone
This is just as troublesome as losing your friends… it just takes a little longer to realize. Sometimes, people might seem as though they are firmly on your side in the divorce. It can feel as though you have a friend and an ally you can talk to about what’s going on in your life.
You have to be careful of this, though. One of both of the people in the couple might be acting as a spy to get information from you to your ex. While this might seem like a lot of paranoia, it can and does happen quite regularly. You need to be careful of what you say and who you say it to when you are going through a divorce.
Additionally, be careful of what you are writing in text messages and online to friends. They could give this information to your ex either purposefully or inadvertently.
It Could Affect Your Kids’ Friendships
Here’s something that a lot of people don’t consider. This is because it shouldn’t be an issue. However, it sometimes can be. If you have children that were yours before getting married and that aren’t your current spouse’s children, what happens to their friendships with your friend’s kids?
If the couple doesn’t want to spend time with you any longer, will they allow their kids to play with your kids and still be friends? It shouldn’t matter, but some parents can be odd about things like this.
It Could Encourage Friends to Get Divorced
Interestingly, when you let your friends in relationships know that you are getting divorced, it could spur some of them to do the same thing. They might have already been thinking about it but seeing that you have moved ahead and taken the next step might encourage them to follow suit.
What You Need to Do
Many of the relationships you have had with people are going to change when you get divorced. The couple’s friends you had together, or the mutual friends you had with your ex, might no longer be friends with you. Whether they feel awkward or they believe the divorce is your fault, you just need to move onward. You can’t focus on the past.
It’s time that you got out there and started to meet new people and make new friends. You will feel better, and you won’t have to worry about what you say about your ex.