I have a mate called Fanta who has recently split up with his wife, Sarong. They've been married for 15 years, together for 19 years. No infidelity or nothin' (and no kids either)... just an old fashioned split-up with a garnishing of 'midlife crisis'. He instigated it and left her.
Anyway, I've known Fanta since we were about 5 years old (neighbours as kids) so obviously, I get him in the divorce. Right now, because it's fresh, there's tears and frustrations but no anger from either of them, but that's possibly still to come. But already there's some positioning going on. He came down to stay with me on the weekend, and a couple of days before he arrived, Sarong emailed me with words to this effect...
"I'm worried about him, please talk to him and counsel him, please don't tell him I emailed you, I'll be really upset if you tell him I emailed you, and please report back to me how it all goes."
I did two things. Firstly, I emailed her straight back with words to this effect.
"I have been friends with Fanta for 35 years so I'm not going to hide anything from him, ever, and nor will I spy on him for you. I wish you all the best though. "
Then I forwarded Sarong's email to Fanta.
Which of course caused a kerfuffle.
Fanta tells me that I am not the only one she has emailed. Now in my case, my allegiance is simple, but they have many friends that they met as a couple who don't have an allegiance either way. Sarong has been conctacting all of them, and Fanta claims she is attempting a pre-emptive strike of sorts, or a kind of wedge politics. Right now, their mutual friends are in contact with both both of them, but if it gets nasty... there'll be splits. Often, there just has to be.
Because he left her and not the other way around, he is not in the position to play this wedge politics game, but he also doesn't want to lose friends. Right now, everyone is being adult but it'll happen, sure as the day is bright, that friendships will be burned and sides will be taken.
He asked me to blog on this so as to save money on counselling / travel fees to Jerry Springer Show for, "My Ex Wife Stole All Our Mutual Friends".
An experiences / advice?