Falling out with a friend can be hard to deal with. Here's some advice on how to prevent a fall-out and how to make peace after an argument.

Try to see the situation objectively: how does your friendship look to others?

Always arguing?

Look at the reasons why you and your friend are always squabbling. Are you defensive, do you feel they're always getting at you? Or does your friend treat you badly or take you for granted? Try to see the situation objectively: how does your friendship look to others?

Talk to your friend. Tell them you hate arguing, that you value their friendship and you'd like to try to sort it. Talk slowly and calmly and try not to get into another argument. It's better to address it and try and get it sorted, rather than pretending nothing's wrong.

Had a one-off argument and it's no one's fault?

Swallow your pride and apologise first. They'll almost certainly apologise back. You can even do it without taking the blame; try something like "I'm really sorry we're arguing like this. Can't we start again?"

It's their fault...

If you still want to be friends with them, you need to talk about it. If they're feeling guilty, they'll agree to your suggestion that you meet up. Starting the conversation, "You really hurt me, you know," should start the ball rolling. Explain your reasons logically, and try to keep your voice low and calm throughout.

It's your fault...

We're guessing you've tried saying sorry. All you can do is keep trying. Be sincere, tell them they're totally justified in being angry with you, say you massively value their friendship and can't believe you messed up. If they really won't forgive you, you'll have to accept it. You can't keep apologising forever; there's only so much you can do.

If you no longer want to be friends...

Sometimes a friendship just comes to a natural end. If this is the case, be polite but distant. Hopefully they'll get the hint. If they ask you straight out, "Don't you want to be friends anymore?" say something like, "I think you're a really nice person, but I just can't carry on the way we were. I'm sorry." But don't involve any of your other friends, as that could seem like bullying. This is between the two of you.

BBC Advice factfiles are here to help young people with a broad range of issues. They're based on advice from medical professionals, government bodies, charities and other relevant groups. Follow the links for more advice from these organisations.


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