travel

Mid-holiday friendship breakups: 3 women share the fight that ended everything.

There are few things that can test a relationship like travelling with a friend.

The organising, planning, co-habitation and conflicting interests and priorities can cause hairline fractures which evolve into explosive fights.

And unlike regular life, it’s a lot more difficult to ‘cool down’ if you’re stuck in the confines of a tiny Air bnb apartment, or literally on top of each other thanks to your squeaky hostel bunk bed.

Team Mamamia confess: The silliest thing we’ve had a fight over… 

Video by MMC

Things can be said in the heat of the moment, and sometimes this can have irreversible effects on even the strongest of friendships.

We asked three women to share their experiences of what happens when friendships go sour, mid-holiday, and whether their friendships recovered from it.

This is what they had to say.

Sasha, 28

I was travelling with three friends through the US when my friendship with one of them started to disintegrate (let’s call her Hannah). All of a sudden Hannah became really argumentative, and challenged everything I said. If I suggested a hotel, she’d criticise it and make a snarky comment about how we were spending too much money and should be staying at hostels. Hannah wouldn’t organise anything herself but then wanted to have an opinion on everything I organised.

Then, we had a four-day road trip planned, and she asked if another friend (let’s call her Joanna) could come along. I tried to say no, because we’d planned it long in advance and had all worked out expenses, etc, but she then went really passive aggressive about how she’d just tell Laura that I didn’t want her there. Eventually I said Joanna could come, so long as we didn’t have to go out of our way to pick her up or drop her off at the end, as we had limited time.

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We spent almost a full day getting to where Joanna said she would be.

Then, it became really cliquey, with Hannah and Joanna giggling without letting the rest of us know what the joke was. It was really uncomfortable, and several activities we had planned as a group, ended up just being two or three of us, while Hannah and Joanna went and did something else.

When we were getting ready to go out, Hannah would get really impatient and refuse to wait for people, so she and Joanna would just leave without us. It made things really complicated because not all of us had working phones, so it would be hard to find each other later in the night.

It ended up exploding in a fight one night between Hannah and I. We stayed very separate for the rest of the trip.

We still talk now, but things haven’t ever been the same.

Ally, 31

During uni, I travelled to Thailand with a good friend. It was our first time travelling together and I had taken the reins during the planning process to book our flights, accommodation and activities. I made sure I looped her in of course and she said she was fine with everything. But one night I was having a nap in our hostel when I woke up to her on the phone to her boyfriend complaining about our entire trip – that the hostel we were staying at sucked and that this wasn’t the trip she wanted to go on.

I was already frustrated at her because she was glued to her phone the entire time of our trip. She had to speak to her boyfriend for at least an hour everyday and was texting him constantly throughout the day. I listened for as long as I could take it before eventually stirring and she changed the subject.

best friend breakup
"I listened for as long as I could take it before eventually stirring and she changed the subject." Image: Getty.
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Later that night, with lots of alcohol in us, I confronted her about her complaints and she admitted that it was unfair of her to complain considering none of it should have been a surprise to her.

We patched things up that night but I knew I never wanted to travel with her again, and really since that trip, we've drifted apart.

Mel, 25

After spending one week on an interstate city break and another week at a musical festival with a close friend (we can call her Lisa), it was evident that tensions were beginning to form between us. She'd shut down my itinerary suggestions and make subtle digs at me, and I was also probably returning each swipe with my own passive aggression.

Things didn't get better once we met up with some other friends at the festival. We had chosen to camp, which meant we were again spending a lot of time together in our small eight-person tent. We'd constantly disagree on which act we wanted to see as a group, and became very petty in regards to borrowing each other's phone charger or battery bank. As the week went on, things never resulted in an actual argument, but our relationship had become very strained. Lisa was supposed to drive a few of us home after the festival, but on the last day she said that she'd rather drop us off at a station around an hour where we lived. At this point, I was fuming, but held my tongue.

On the night, maybe six or seven hours before we had to pack everything up and leave, I returned to the tent by myself and was shortly joined by a few of my other friends. I started venting about my issues with Lisa, and how I thought she was being 'selfish'. As it turns out Lisa was also in the tent, tucked away in her sleeping bag. She had heard everything. I felt awful and tried to apologise, but she wasn't having a bar of it. Needless to say the car ride home was very quiet.

Lisa and I didn't talk for three or four months after that incident but eventually we admitted we both contributed to the situation, and agreed our friendship was more important. We're still really good friends and have made travel plans for later this year. The fight wasn't fun to go through, but resolving the situation and taking ownership for our behaviour, made us stronger as friends and people.

Have you been in a similar situation? Tell us in a comment below.

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