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How to Make Up with a Friend after an Argument

By Mary Smith. Updated: December 4, 2017
How to Make Up with a Friend after an Argument

Arguing with a friend can be one of the most hurtful experiences we can go through in life. Sometimes the argument appears out of nowhere and takes you by surprise. Other times, you feel the tension build in the friendship and you know it's hard to avoid the inevitable. If you have argued with a friend, don't get down about it. Arguing from time to time is perfectly normal. What's important is knowing how to rebuild the friendship after the storm has passed. Here OneHowTo explains how to make up with a friend after an argument.

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Calm down and relax

The first thing you should do when you have had a big argument with your friend is to get some space. You may need one or two days to calm down and see the situation from a more objective point of view. However, do not let it go on for more than that. If you wait too long to speak with your friend again the problem could grow.

The period of reflection depends on the individuals involved. If you and your friend can leave feelings of anger to one side easily, move on from the argument and try to resolve the conflict. If the fight filled you with anger you will need some time to get a new perspective and to discuss things calmly and with the right mood.

Put yourself in your friend's shoes

After a few days, contact your friend and ask to talk about what has happened. There is a chance that your friend is not ready to talk and, if that is the case, here are some things you can say:

  • I want to be sure you understand my position.
  • Your friendship is important to me.
  • I want to listen to you.

Even if you're still angry, you need to make the effort and tell your friend you'll hear what they have to say. To do so, you'll have to listen to your friend with an open mind, trying to see the problem from your friend's perspective. This will be difficult, but it's very important if you truly want to resolve the issues with your friends.

Sometimes people get frustrated when they feel they are not being heard, so it is important to pay attention to what they say. Do not interrupt and focus on listening to what your friend is saying.

It is important that you meet your friend in a private place where no one will interrupt you and where you can talk freely.

How to Make Up with a Friend after an Argument - Put yourself in your friend's shoes

Sending an email can cool things down

Sometimes it is easier to send an email to your friend after an argument instead of calling. This is fine as long as you take the time to talk in person in the future. To properly fix things, both of you need to listen to what the other has to say.

It is advisable to leave some time after the argument and sending the email. As we've previously mentioned, it is better to let things cool down a bit before you start doing anything. If you send the email right after the argument you might say things that you might regret after. Leave some time pass and then you can start composing your email.

If you choose to send an email, you need to bear in mind one very important thing: an email can be difficult to interpret. It does not provide as many clues to what the person is feeling, nor does it provide the tone of voice that is so useful in understanding another's state of mind. An email is a good alternative to a phone call because it gives you more time to think about what you're going to say. Because you're actually writing your feelings, it is easier to read it again and see if something needs changing. When you send the message, keep some things in mind:

  • Start the email by expressing your desire to work things out. Don't bring up things that led to the fight. The purpose of the email after an argument is to simply fill the void, not to continue your argument.
  • Use a little humour. Make fun of yourself or the situation, rather than talk about the problem you're trying to solve. But becareful when using humour. If you're using too much humour your friend could think you're not taking things seriously and things could become even worse.
  • End the email with a specific proposal to meet. Say something like: "What if we talk after work on Friday?" instead of "We'll talk things through at some point".

After sending the mail, do not let a long time pass without talking to your friend in person or by phone. If you try to resolve the situation through email only, things are likely to come to nothing and you may lose a friend.

After listening, it's your time to speak

After having the chance to listen completely to what your friend has to say, you can voice your own opinion and feelings. However, this is not always necessary. Sometimes, your friend might show you a different perspective and turns the argument around. Therefore, don't feel obliged to ""tell your side".

If, after listening to your friend, you still don't understand his/her point of view, it's time to ask them to listen to you. At this point, the two of you must be calm enough to listen to one another. When speaking of your worries, do not make accusations; speak about what you are feeling.

If it is clear that your friend does not want to resolve things, it means that your friendship was not as strong as you thought. Your friend may have had underlying negative thoughts about your friendship for quite some time, and the fight was just an excuse to get away from you indefinitely.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Make Up with a Friend after an Argument, we recommend you visit our Friendship category.

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