Photo Courtesy of S. Shen Friends Carley Austin on the left and Olivia Steward on the right.

How to Maintain a Healthy Relationship With Friends

One day you’re sharing your deepest darkest secrets and spending countless hours with them, and the next your “Best Friend” drops your relationship like a hot potato. What gives? The Matador Messenger brings you the fifth article in the “How to Maintain a Healthy Relationship” series with your friends.

“The need for love and belonging has long been established as one of our basic needs as human beings. And it has been well documented that having strong, healthy relationships improves our self-esteem and overall well-being,” explained

When given the opportunity to ask one question to an expert regarding friendship, several BYMS student participants asked “What is the most common reason that friends fight?” according to a recent Matador Messenger sponsored Survey Monkey.

According to a Survey Monkey, consisting of 100 BYMS participants, the most common reasons for conflict among friends are (35%) difference in opinions, (32%) misunderstandings, (14%) jealousy, (14%) backbiting, and (5%) social media problems.

“Even the best of friends are going to have fights, but not every argument means the end of a friendship… work on fighting fair and knowing when to take a break from an argument to cool off. Particularly when it comes to social media, where misunderstandings are common and conflict can quickly get out of control,” reported

Out of the 100 total student participants, 49% identified talking about the issue as a way to resolve conflicts with friends, 29% forget about the issue, 3% get revenge, 3% get someone else involved, 6% don’t have a method of resolving conflicts and 9% indicated they maintain space or use other reasons to resolve conflicts.

“Sometimes a difference runs so deep that talking about it just won’t help. In this case, having a third person present may neutralize the tension and balance the bully’s power. It can be a friend of both parties,” explained Michael Wessells, PhD, professor of clinical population and family health at Columbia University and the Christian Children’s Fund’s senior adviser on child protection in an interview with

“Most importantly, be a good friend. This means that you need to set the example in the way you behave, the things you say, and terms of your work ethic, in doing the right thing at the right time for the right reasons, and in treating others the way we would like to be treated. If you are this person of integrity  all your relationships will be better,” explained Phil Seitz, BYMS social studies teacher.

“No, no one can be a perfect individual, but we should all strive to be better than we are. This requires that we are able to put our feelings behind us and think honestly about ourselves. We need to recognize our own flaws,” added Seitz.