“There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help each other.” Madeleine Albright
How many times have you heard another woman say:
“I just don’t get along with other women.”
“I don’t have any female friends.”
Or the kicker, “I just don’t trust b*tches!”
Throughout my life I’ve heard every iteration of my fellow sisters’ mistrust of their own kind, and each and every time, it pains me to hear it.
Because here’s what I know:
If you don’t like/trust/or kick it with women -- I don’t trust you.
Here’s the thing: I used to be one of those girls. When I was growing up, I was a bit of a tomboy and hung out with boys. While I always had a small circle of female friends, I seemed to be more at home with the fellas.
Why? I felt like I could be myself with them. I could talk about sports, music, and kung fu flicks, and I didn’t have to worry about being shunned because my LA Gears didn’t match my uniform or my hair wasn’t styled just so.
I just didn’t trust women. I didn’t trust that they’d have my back and wouldn’t gossip about me fiercely once I left the room.
Despite being raised in the company of strong and supportive women, I still looked at them suspiciously -- after all, every show, film, and hit record taught me that women were ruthless, conniving, and quick to kick you out the circle if you dared to be different.
These fears were unfounded, though.
From the moment I switched schools in the 5th grade until today, women have been some of my closest allies.
Over the years, I’ve gotten jobs, apartments, and hook-ups because of the support of my sister circle. I’ve been introduced to editors, gotten invited to events, and have had THE BEST NIGHTS EVER, all because of women.
So when another woman says they can’t stand other women or they don’t have any (and I mean not a single one) female friends, it gives me pause.
I typically abhor using the term, “self-hate,” but when anyone says they dislike people who are like them, my senses begin to tingle.
Throughout our lives, we women have been taught to view each other as the enemy. Despite needing and relying on our sisters for centuries, we’ve also been taught to compete with them for mates, jobs, and the token position of being the woman in the room.
When I hear other women say they can’t stand women, it makes me sad because what they’re really saying is that they can’t stand parts of themselves.
People come into our lives as mirrors. Those we love reflect back the best, most loving parts of ourselves. And those we hate highlight the flaws within ourselves we want to hide.
So the next time you catch yourself uttering the phrase, “I don’t like_____” ask yourself why. Maybe what you’re really saying is, I don’t like myself.
Reprinted with permission from Clutch.