Selena Gomez, Hailey Baldwin, Sofia Richie

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As Selena Gomez, Justin Bieber and Hailey Baldwin become tangled in a social media spat over the singer's rumored romance with Sofia Richie, it seems the ladies may be verbally dancing around a fellow gal pal. 

After Justin appeared in a handful of photos alongside the 17-year-old model, the flurry sparked an uproar from his loyal clan of Beliebers. When he spoke out against the critical commentary, threatening to make his Instagram account private if the behavior continued, his ex-girlfriend Gomez offered a word to the wise. "If you can't handle the hate then stop posting pictures of your girlfriend lol – it should be special between you two only," she reportedly wrote in the comment section. "Don't be mad at your fans. They love you and supported you before anyone ever did."

Baldwin, who also previously had a fling with Bieber, indirectly entered the conversation, posting to Instagram with a lengthy message about misplaced blame. 

"We've all had our fair share of things we've done, both good and bad. What makes the present so powerful is when we take complete responsibility for our actions, we allow ourselves self-growth,"  she wrote in a now-deleted caption. "Misplacing the blame onto someone else isn't going to get you to the next stage in life. so try not to manipulate a situation to make yourself look better."

"No matter how much better off someone may seem, we are all humanly flawed in our own ways, but also share the same endless potential to be better than we used to be," she concluded. A source told E! News the post may have been a result of private feelings about Justin, whom she "doesn't know how to get over."

"She's sad about him because he's been flaunting around Sofia. She thinks some of the Instagrams he's posted lately with Sofia are pointed and really about Hailey, so it's no surprise she took to Instagram herself to express that," the source explained. However, Hailey later took to Twitter to shut down the connection. "The only thing I 'weigh in on' is everyday life in general. Don't rope me into things I'm not a part of and please respect my privacy. x."

Crew

A photo posted by Sofia Richie (@sofiarichie) on

In the middle of this dramatic web is Richie, who up until this week, was the relatively low-key teenage daughter of Lionel Richie, a rising model and aspiring fashion designer. Thanks to social media, we also know that she has hung out with Bieber's former leading ladies. According to Richie's Instagram account, Baldwin was once considered part of her "crew."

However, an insider told E! that while Baldwin has been "friendly" to Richie, "they're not actual friends."

As for her connection to Gomez, there is this throwback photo of the songstress posing with a young Sofia, her sister Nicole Richie and brother-in-law Joel Madden, although it's not so clear why they all came together. 

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