I have two close friends in the university, Alice and Bob, who I've known since the first year. As the weeks passed, I felt less and less apart of our little group and I think the reason was that they started to date so I felt a bit like the third wheel. Around the end of the first semester, they had a really bad break up. I asked both of them what happened but each told me a different story. Since then, I've spoken to and met each individually more and more regularly and have now formed a good, meaningful friendship with Alice and Bob, independent of each other.

Their break up was almost two years ago. Alice told me that she is over it and she would not mind if the three of us were to get together sometime. Unfortunately, Bob is still very upset and he gets very angry if I mention Alice.

We will have the state exams soon (almost the same time) and I told Alice how nice it would be to celebrate after the exams are done. I haven't even tried to present the idea to Bob yet.

Now I have no idea how to resolve this situation because I am really afraid to lose the friendship with one or both of them if I celebrate with the other person. I have only a few friends, but it makes me anxious even if I just think about making one of them sad or upset.

I would like to find a way to celebrate with them, without harming the friendship with Bob or Alice

  • 5
    Your question is "how do I encourage Alice and Bob to communicate?" But from the rest of the post, it sounds as if what you really want is a way to celebrate with both of your friends, without harming either of those friendships. Getting them talking again isn't the only way to achieve that. If you're willing to consider other solutions, I would suggest editing the question to something like "How do I stay friends with two people who are angry at one another?" since this might attract more helpful answers.
    – G_B
    Commented Jun 30, 2018 at 2:13
  • 1
    Is it possible to celebrate independently on different days? Or there's a (pretty exact) time everything ends and this is the time for the celebration? Commented Jul 2, 2018 at 20:53
  • It ends the same day for both of us, and almost the same time. One solution could be, that I celebrate with one of them near the uni, and visit the other in her/his home
    – Iter Ator
    Commented Jul 2, 2018 at 21:41

1 Answer 1


There are three variables in your situation: You, Alice, and Bob.

You are ok with both.

Alice is okay to meet and celebrate without any past regrets or grudges with Bob.

So, in a given situation you have to figure out how to work out with Bob and get his feedback beforehand for the party that you are willing to organize. Now, you haven't stated that you want to organise party for the group including others, or party including only three of you.

But, this solution will work in either of the cases. You need to remember that you are not only responsible for keeping friendship with them, they are also equally responsible of taking care of your happiness and wish(es) as your friends.

I have faced similar situation in the past and it was resolved by following this solution.

Solution: As Bob is not willing to talk anything about Alice with you. You should involve Alice in this scenario and ask her to talk to Bob for the party. She should certainly highlight to Bob that your sentiments matter too and for you they should get along and celebrate the party.

As a byproduct, this conversation might help them resolve any past misunderstanding.

Party 1: Only three of you

If Bob doesn't accept your or Alice's request to celebrate then you should drop the idea.

Party 2: Including others

If Bob doesn't accept your or Alice's request then you should tell him that you will be very uncomfortable in party without him and you will not be able to enjoy at it fullest.

Wish you luck!

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