Ok, so here’s the deal. Over the years of my fairly short life, I remember girls always saying “oh, I’m mainly friends with guys, ‘cause girls are bitches”. Or “I can’t trust girls because they stab your back or are two faced” ect.
I’ve contemplated why that is, or at least why I heard this from more than one girl but at the same time knowing from experience that gender doesn’t tell you if the friendship will work. However, why is it that we are so quick to generalize?
I’m not just talking about guys grouping girls into “bitches”, “hoes”, “skanks’ ect.
I am talking about GIRLS talking about other GIRLS.
I will tell you why. We are taught to value others before ourselves in order to be a good “person”. Either, a self-less friend, a dependable wife, a compromising co-worker, or a dedicated mother. When someone defies our expectations of what it means to be a good woman then they are a bitch, slut or skank.
Yet, this is what men use to put down women, to shame them, and to keep them in their place since we have been condition to be offended or hurt.
For some reason, whenever we use them against another woman, we think we are just hurting them. If you really think about it though, you are just upholding those beliefs of what a woman can or can’t do.
In defense, I have seen the opposite.
Women generalize that men are “pigs”, “douchebags” ect.
However…how often have you heard a guy saying:
“Yeah man, I’m only hanging out with Becky and Sandra now because Paul and I had a falling out, guys are just douches.”
Probably not that often. Either we expect guys to behave so rudely that when they actually are acting like tools we don’t call them on it, or guys don’t really feel the need to generalize other guys because they are aware that they aren’t exempt from that same criticism.
When a male character on tv does something truly awful, or says something honest without disregard to other peoples feelings he’s respected or at the very least not criticized that harshly because male characters are given wiggle room without being chastised for going beyond that chalk line. A female lead can do something awful and be brutally honest and be called a bitch and have all these haters regardless if she has actually done a bad thing. I hardly hear any cheering or sympathy from males or females for this version.
Now try a female character does something good (for herself) but bad for others, or lies to try and “cushion” the fall of a friend she is seen as selfish, or two-faced or fake. The male character does the exact same thing and he’s seen as “sweet” or “a boss”.
There is more variety allowed for male characters and even some praise when it shouldn’t be given. Is it weird that life imitates art so well?
I think not. So what if more than one girl is mean to you?
Do you think by saying that “girls are bitches” that it makes you a victim of them?
That’s like shooting a goal for a team that is already winning!
Do you think they need your help?
I used to think that I had to agree with the idea that in being friends with guys and having internalized misogyny that in some way that would make me NOT like them. However who YOU are doesn’t matter. That’s what stereotypes are for. They are horrible shortcuts that give people the delusion that just because I know what to label you as I know what you are and your life story.
I want the freedom to act how I want to act and be who I want to be without wondering “gosh, do I sound like a bitch?” or “maybe I should sugar coat this? I don’t want to lose her friendship.”
Guys can be more honest and loyal because they aren’t second guessing themselves or their behavior isn’t thought to matter because the expectations set for them are already lower.
If you are constantly cutting yourself or other girls who don’t behave the way you expect them too, good luck finding a friend (who is a girl) that will stick around for that.
When it comes to girls who fight over guys or girls who concern themselves about their appearance because they feel that’s all they're good for, don’t hate them, befriend them.
Talk to them for goodness sakes! They might not be as vapid or shallow as you think they are. If they are mean, they might be nicer to you. If they are ignorant, they might learn something from you. If they used to judge YOU, they might have a more accurate conception of who you are.
It is a nicer place when you can just talk to girls and not have to justify every little thing you say or wonder if they might tell the whole school your secrets.
Start trusting yourself to trust others, and they might just trust you back. I know me and my fellow Latina (and non-Latina) allies are as thick as thieves, and that's pretty priceless. I urge you to lessen the judgement and increase understanding. Not everyone will turn out to be a good friend; but if you are lucky enough to find a really good friend you can relate to, that will not judge you or insult you, you are golden, so stick together chicas! We are stronger united than apart.