Tag Archives: conflict resolution

A Book on Female Friendship

Big Friendship: Call Your Girlfriend hosts Aminatou Sow, Ann Friedman on  their memoir | EW.com

Here is the blurb:

Now two friends, Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman, tell the story of their equally messy and life-affirming Big Friendship in this honest and hilarious book that chronicles their first decade in one another’s lives. As the hosts of the hit podcast Call Your Girlfriend, they’ve become known for frank and intimate conversations. In this book, they bring that energy to their own friendship—its joys and its pitfalls.

An inspiring and entertaining testament to the power of society’s most underappreciated relationship, Big Friendship will invite you to think about how your own bonds are formed, challenged, and preserved. It is a call to value your friendships in all of their complexity. Actively choose them. And, sometimes, fight for them. (less)

I read this book in August and it was amazing so get it. But I don’t want to do a review as much as talk about the one thing it made me think of.

The authors talk about a challenging period in their frendship where they were not getting on and they went for therapy together. Either in the book or in the many podcasts promoting their book I listened to they ask how people resolve conflict in a friendship and the process to get a “friend” therapist a specific type of therapist different from most other relationships.

This made me think of a troubled friendship last year that just fizzled out. We had a misunderstanding – not the first we had in the years of friendship but I suppose we are both moms of little ones now and pressed for time and sleep which probably accelerated it all. And then since then we have just ghosted each other. So this is what the book made me think of:

  1. After all the many fights over the years, why was this the one that finally led to the estragement?
  2. Over the years, were there many “missed” moments where we didn’t see the other and that escalated over time?
  3. Could we ever move past this and if not, what would it look like to formally dissolve the friendship (especially where we have so many friends in common)?

Having thought that, I think the impasse is a resolution because in the past when I have cared, I have formally spoken about it with a friend so this is an answer of sorts.

How do you resolve conflict in you friendships?

Our Fighting Fair Tip

man sitting beside woman

Photo by Joshua McKnight on Pexels.com

Rule One

So when the Mr and I have a misunderstanding and it looks like it might hit the proverbial fan., the party that does not feel as strongly does not escalate it. How?

Recently, we were traveling, I had mapped out the route and knew what station we needed to get off at to board the connecting train when the Mr decides to change the route halfway. So we get off and the map shows we need to walk five streets to catch the train and I lost my gasket. I was so pissed off, 1) we were running late for a flight, 2) where were you when I was staying up the whole night to get the route? To give him credit though, he just kept on the task at hand and did not engage with my anger or my threats to get us a route ASAP.

This works for us and it is not prescriptive but it saves us from saying what we might later regret or descending into a shouting fit with each other.

Rule Two

If someone needs time to cool off, to think or process, we allow it and the other does not pressure them to discuss it at that time. However much time you need to, take it. Often we continue to engage on other matters as normal and either you don’t feel as strongly later or you have had the room to process why you felt so strongly or couldn’t engage.

Rule Three

I know they say not to do this, but it’s OK to sleep angry every so often. Sometimes it’s safer and better that way. Of course this can lead to silent treatment which is not great but eventually gets resolved.

Rule Four

No name-calling. EVER.

What rules do you and your significant live by when it comes to conflict resolution?