In Support of Female Friendships

One of the interns at work is having a rough time. She lives with a house of girls who sound as if they love to cause trouble. Sound familiar? I think every twenty-something girl can think of a time when they’ve felt a bit ganged up on before.

This kind of problem usually provokes two responses:
Urgh girls can be so petty some times.
Urgh some people can be so petty some times.

Small change, big difference. For every person who’s ever said that ‘boys will be boys’, there is someone who believes similarly that all young women are naturally catty. I’ve been guilty of this when I was much younger, but it still surprises me that people believe this is a social norm in 2017.

I just prefer boys, I don’t get on with women‘ have you heard that before? I know I have! So if it’s so common, is there any truth to it?

Just girly things, am I right?

Disclaimer: I was by no means a saint when it came to fighting with other girls when I was younger. In highschool I drifted between two loose girl groups which could have formed one super-group of girls if we weren’t at each other’s throats all the time. Despite this I’ve always been a girl’s girl.

Back in the day, you’re a teenager, you don’t really know the ins and outs of social politics. This means you struggle to nurture long-term friendships and tend to hold grudges when things go wrong.

They say the strongest bonds are formed over a mutual dislike and honestly in high school I’d probably have agreed with you. Every now and again, there would be a new person to dislike. Maybe they didn’t invite you out at the weekend, ignored you on MSN or god forbid – took you out of their top 8 on Myspace. All these bullshit reasons caused big problems between friendship groups back in the day and we all took turns to be the bad guy.

Sometimes issues stepped over the line of petty to just plain mean. A friend might expose your secrets or chat up your boyfriend, maybe even mock your mental health issues. At the time, everything starts to build up and create a big portfolio of reasons not to trust girls.

It’s easy to harbor these feelings when you’re young. You’re still developing your social capabilities and you build a barrier up against the things that stunt your growth. Those ‘things’ in this scenario being fellow young women.

But here’s the kicker – it’s not women who are inherently shitty. It’s just your friends.

Ask yourself right now, why do you dislike women? It’s bound to be down to a personal feud you’ve had with a handful of people – but is that really cause to write off over 50% of the population?

I’m not trying to patronise anyone with this mindset. I want you to consider what you could be missing out on – some of the most beautiful and honest connections you will have in life will be with other women. Whether it’s a family member, co-worker or those you choose to surround yourself with. Your position is this world is unique but there is no one else out there who is on a level with you like fellow women are.

‘Not like the other girls’

I’m willing to catch hands with anyone who says this statement. If you say this, you’re part of the problem here. This is a step beyond avoiding friendships with other women. These negative vibes spread so fast and justify so much unnecessary girl on girl hate.

We need to accept accountability for all the times we’ve uttered something along the lines of ‘oh no, I’m not like those other girls.’ Newsflash! By judging ‘the other girls’ you become them. A back handed statement that says ‘they’re bad but I’m good’. You might not even think too far into such a flippant remark, but that’s exactly what you’re saying. You are literally slagging off all girls. Isn’t that crazy?

But who are ‘the other girls’ you’re refering to anyway and what are you really afraid of?

Why can’t we all just get along?

In short, I just need you to understand that yes – you probably have had some seriously shitty experiences in life – but if you persist in shunning all potential female friends you could be missing out on knowing the most incredible people in the world.

From one ex-non-believer to another, you’re stronger now; You can weed out the fake friends before they get a chance, you don’t have to hold up the barrier to all women. I ditched all my hometown friends before heading off to uni and gained the best girl friends I’ve ever had. These girls stuck by me throughout those three years and one of my besties even took me in on Christmas day! It’s easier to talk to female coworkers, ask for advice on female health issues and generally chat shit with women who are on the same page as you.

It’s time to start nurturing relationships with other women, not just for the greater good of womanhood, but for your own self. The intern at work, she’ll be ok, but I worry about the effects that girl on girl arguments will hold on many people in exactly the same position.

If this piece speaks to you, if you’re the type to hang around with boys because ‘girls are drama’, don’t be afraid to give girls a chance!

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  1. April 6, 2017 / 10:27 am

    I love this post, I’m a total girls girl as well and always champion female friendships x

  2. April 6, 2017 / 10:48 am

    I can’t stand it when people say girls being mean is because that’s what all girls do. I’m so glad to see this post as the message I’m trying to educate my daughters with, is that it is not normal to be mean. There’s much more pleasure to be had from being kind & enjoying other people’s company.

    • Jess - Actual Philocalist
      April 6, 2017 / 11:06 am

      Preach! I can’t imagine how hard it must be to raise young girls this day in age, which is why it’s even more important for them to have a strong supportive network of friends. Sounds like you’re teaching her the right stuff though!

  3. April 6, 2017 / 5:57 pm

    If you avoid having friendships with other women, you will be missing out on such wonderful relationships. I really believe that women need to be supportive and lift each other up and there are plenty of women who do this and believe the same way.

  4. April 6, 2017 / 6:08 pm

    This is such an important post! I wish more women thought the same way you do. I love supporting other women because we are all in this together!

  5. April 6, 2017 / 8:44 pm

    I have friendships with both males and females. To be honest I don’t think it matters what sex they are, it just depends on the person they are.

    • Jess - Actual Philocalist
      April 8, 2017 / 4:24 pm

      Completely agree! I just think it’s a shame when girls say they actively don’t seek friendships with other women. It’s such a shame isn’t it?

  6. April 6, 2017 / 11:39 pm

    This is such an awesome post! Can we send this to every high school (and middle school for that matter) girl?! πŸ˜‰

  7. April 7, 2017 / 9:17 am

    For me there are always pros and cons to having many friends but I still prefer having friends. Having friends means you can have a helping hand.

  8. April 7, 2017 / 9:17 am

    This post is very true to me….you are right that nurturing relationships with other women is important. I always make sure I do this on my facebook by offering the chance for other ladies in business or with blogs etc to share their linkies etc…obvs men are not excluded too. Great post!! πŸ˜‰ x

  9. April 7, 2017 / 12:27 pm

    I wrote a similar post recently as to why I struggle to find female friends and it’s usually down to the bitchiness they have .. well the ones I come across anyway!

    • Jess - Actual Philocalist
      April 8, 2017 / 4:07 pm

      That’s the point of this post really. It’s not that all girls are bitchy, but people are quick to judge by their experiences. It’s a shame you haven’t found any strong gal mates. I’d volunteer ! Link me to your post?

  10. April 7, 2017 / 2:11 pm

    I always used to have more male friends than girls but now its the other way round. I’ve found that as I’ve got older, I’ve needed more women around me for advice and support xxx

  11. April 7, 2017 / 3:38 pm

    I love this post! Women need other women to support and understand each other πŸ™‚

  12. April 7, 2017 / 8:28 pm

    I was picked on by numerous girls when I was younger but as I got older I learnt to handle these types better and developed great friendships with other women.

    • Jess - Actual Philocalist
      April 8, 2017 / 4:23 pm

      Ahh same Melanie. Like I said, I was no saint in highschool but it’s easy to harbour those feelings. I completely get where you’re coming from. Glad you’ve been able to move on from that though. Sending love.

  13. April 7, 2017 / 9:30 pm

    I honestly love this post, it’s super empowering. I usually get along better with guys, but since I’ve been an adult it doesn’t seem important anymore! πŸ™‚ x

    • Jess - Actual Philocalist
      April 8, 2017 / 4:22 pm

      Yeah I hear you! I don’t think there’s anything wrong with getting along with guys, I just think it’s a real shame when some women say they ‘just don’t get along with other girls’. You get what I mean?

  14. April 7, 2017 / 11:14 pm

    Loved this post. I’m all for the “let’s all be nice to each other!” and I can’t stand bitchiness, backstabbing or general nastiness.

  15. April 8, 2017 / 10:14 am

    Women are naturally competitive beings or should I say girls are.
    I have few female friends because I easily get exhausted with female drama. Evey girl should read this positive post

  16. April 8, 2017 / 2:53 pm

    My mummy doesn’t have many friends she can fall back on, it gets harder to find them the older you get

  17. April 8, 2017 / 7:12 pm

    I have a few good female friends whom I know I can count on and equally the same with my own species.

  18. April 9, 2017 / 12:08 pm

    I agree why can’t we all get along and some of my best friends are girls and we are a sisterhood! xx

  19. April 10, 2017 / 10:40 pm

    I know for a fact girls and guys can be as bad as each other. I think the main problem is often large groups and constantly being around each other, it tends to cause problems no matter how much you care for one another! I will admit though, I do always feel like I get a long better with guys, mainly because I think they see me as one of the lads!

    • Jess - Actual Philocalist
      April 11, 2017 / 4:33 pm

      Totally agree with you about friendship groups. Sometimes you can see each other too much! That’s what happens in high school for a lot of kids.
      You always assume that those closest to you have a responsibility to always be positive and friendly, but close friendships sometimes have to most fiery, passionate arguments over the most mundane things.

  20. April 24, 2017 / 1:22 pm

    Completely agree with everything you said, such a great post