One of the hardest things to admit is when we are wrong, but knowing that is the right thing to do, we do it. It doesn’t matter how hard it is. I have a 15 and 13 year old and in order to create a good example for them I admit when I am wrong. They are learning that too. In recent confrontations with friends they realized of themselves, “I may not always be right.”
When dealing with things bigger than a tift between friends, though. When both think the other is wrong, where is the right? If neither will budge, what is the next step?
I have found that writing things down in a civil conversation, about what the other thinks, works rather well. Most of the time–I won’t say all of the time, because it doesn’t work all of the time–but most of the time in the lists we find commonality. When we find the commonality of the problem we can work from there. Most of the time an agreement can be reached and things can be resolved.
What about the times when there is no common ground? Then, to be civil about it, we must agree to disagree. I know that is a cliche, but it sometimes becomes what needs to be done. If no one will budge then that is the most civil way to end it. What if it ends a friendship? In my experience, although the friendship may go on hiatus for a while, if they are a true friend then it will resolve itself.
As parents, when we were in high school we had friendships end, some permanently, and some came back together. That will always be the way it is. It is a fact of life. Friendships also change, but again the true ones stick around. Your turn–What do you think? When you have had to step in and become mediator, what ways did you use to resolve conflicts?