Unfortunately, we are living in a day and age where women are put down when they try to rise up and reach their full potential. Whether it is at work, in sports or in social settings, men tend to look down upon women. At the same time, women compete with other women to reach the top of the ladder. For years, people have raised their daughters to tear down other girls in order to build themselves up. We only make progress when women take a step back and realize what is happening. The feminism movement is progressing, and is stronger than ever before. With that being said, the time has come for women, as a whole to take a call to action.
We should be supporting each other, not putting each other down.
It is no secret that the forever-growing idea of feminism is finally being grasped, accepted and embraced by both women and men today. There is no denying that women are just as strong, powerful and successful as men are, despite how some people may view women. Something that boggles my mind is why would women compete with each other when men as a unit view women negatively?
Women as a whole are looked down upon as inferior, and unfortunately it is common that many women, especially young women, are not comfortable in their own skin. Now you might be thinking, what else could possibly be done about all of this? In my opinion, the only way for women to keep the rights they have, while gaining more rights in the process, is if women support other women. There is no doubt in my mind that feminism will never fully prevail unless women find it within themselves to come together and support each other.
While women supporting women sounds like a great idea, it is much easier said than done.
As I mentioned earlier, women are raised to view other women as competition rather than counterparts. The same jobs, schooling opportunities, boyfriends, friends and more are up for grabs. Instead of helping each other reach their goals, they sabotage each other’s efforts. In the end, men, and the stereotypical belief that women are all petty and catty, has played a large role in fueling this competition.
Over the course of my life, I have found myself trapped in competition with other girls. I don’t know how or why but that is always what it came down to. I struggled to make friends, and when I finally did, other girls turned them against me. Growing up, I found it especially painful to make friends. I was rather shy and I hid myself from the outside world, conforming to societal ideals and keeping quiet. When I finally made friends, I found myself trapped in a toxic cycle. Form a friendship, open up and become vulnerable, get hurt, and start it all over again. Today, I have very few close girlfriends but I cherish them with everything I have.
Another instance of competition with other girls involved romantic relationships.
When I found my first boyfriend, another girl bullied me in efforts to get him to break up with me. This girl was with my former boyfriend before I was and she threw a fit when he found somebody new. Sure, I understand the jealousy, but taking it up me, the girl who was at no fault for her boyfriend’s past, was not the way to go. It’s always wrong to intensely bully somebody but when somebody can’t help the reasons you’re bullying them, what do you expect them to do? All I wanted in high school was to have friends and not be hated for stupid reasons and well, my wishes were not fulfilled. If only she hadn’t taken her negative feelings out on me. I would never wish this upon anybody else.
Finally, a last instance of being forced into competition with other girls was when girls discouraged me from going to the college of my choice for their own benefit. At the end of my high school career when it came time to apply to colleges, everyone swarmed the guidance office like flies awaiting the chance to talk to their guidance counselors about their college applications.
As I sat awaiting my turn, I spoke to a group of girls and we all shared what schools we were applying to. I rattled off a few names and they cringed as I spoke. Each one of them told me that either my schools of choice were not good schools, that I was wasting my time and money applying to them or that I had no chance getting in. Knowing that this was the end of my high school career, I let it slide and ignored them. Fast forward to a few months later, most of those girls ended up going to one of the schools I named after telling me how I shouldn’t have “wasted my time.”
I could never understand why those girls were so harsh to me, but maybe I don’t want to know.
All my life I wished that other women could be my friend and support me like I tried to support them, but that was never the case. In a world where women are still inferior, whether it is in regard to equal pay or women’s rights, it is vital that women support other women, because without extra support, there is no way any future progress will be made.