At work, most of my co-workers are women and men are relatively rare, so we are free to talk about men, women and stereotypes. The other day, one of our supervisors mentioned that she is teaching her teenaged daughter to be careful about trusting other girls, because girls are so mean to each other. We all nodded our heads with knowing looks on our faces. Ain’t that the truth! Women can be brutal and cruel to other women!
If you are an adult woman, you probably went to some slumber parties as a kid. Did you ever notice that every single one resulted in the girls taking sides, getting into a “war” and switching sides through the party? The fun party always ended up with girls talking about each other, being friends, then going to the other “side” to back-stab the girls on the first side. Someone or everyone always hated each other by the end.
Mean Girls, Meaner Women: Understanding Why Women Backstab, Betray, and Trash-Talk Each Other and How to Heal
And guess what?! IT DOESN’T CHANGE! We’d like to think that we grow up, that other people grow up, that the people who bullied us grow up, but adults are just as mean to each other as kids are. Sure, they have learned some lessons, but a woman can be your best friend one minute, then your worst enemy the next. You trust the wrong one with your secrets, and when they turn on you, the whole world will know them–or more likely, a very distorted version of them. And yet, we are supposed to be the nurturing and gentle sex….
As I’ve dealt with the smear campaign from my sociopath ex spouse, he has charmed dozens of women into attacking me on his behalf. Some eventually realize they are being used and back off, but there is always a new round of women ready to believe his mean ex wife is destroying his life. And there is always a round of women to harass me. Men? Not so much. Sure some men just hate all women, but most of them aren’t so ridiculous. No, I am not a woman hater. (I am a woman after all!) But ladies, how can we expect people to respect us if we treat each other like crap? And how can we find real, trustworthy friends when we have to figure out which person is holding the knife to stab us in the back?
Here is a good article about Girls Who Bully that offers some ideas for why females act like this, and why it is so devastating. There are a lot of good quotes in there!
Grown-Up Girlfriends: Finding and Keeping Real Friends in the Real World (Focus on the Family)
Recently, someone I’d considered a good friend cut me off, befriended my abuser and started trashing me. I was confused. We had been chatting on Facebook, then POOF! I couldn’t respond. We weren’t arguing or anything. She admits to being bi-polar and has done such things in the past, so I just let it go and gave her space. I figured it wouldn’t help to push her. A few weeks ago, she started attacking me publicly out of nowhere and “explained” why she was mad at me. It was over an incident that I didn’t know anything about, and definitely wasn’t responsible for! Well, at least now I know. She then continued to attack me and post distorted versions of secrets I’d told her. Wow. Some friend. I believe that my ex abuser helped rile her up, because narcissists do things like that and triangulate fights between people, but she still proved to be a terrible friend. Frankly, even if I do forgive, I won’t trust that person as a friend again. But, it certainly taught me, (yet again,) that we need to be extremely choosy about who we trust as friends, and who we share our weaknesses with, because women in particular will often use them as weapons. Trust is a gift, and I won’t give it away so cheaply in the future.