"I'm not like other girls!"
"I hang out with the guys because girls are too much drama."
"I hate girls, they're so catty!"
"She's such a slut."
These are words I'm sure you hear all the time and don't give a second thought to. Women are constantly pitted against each other in our society. Whether it's in the media -- "Who wore it better?", in everyday life -- "I just hate girls," or even in your own mind -- "I'm so much better than her!"
Internalized misogyny is everywhere and often goes unnoticed. With a simple Google search, you can find the definition: "Internalized misogyny is defined as the involuntary belief by girls and women that the lies, stereotypes and myths about girls and women that are delivered to everyone in a sexist society ARE TRUE." The lifetime of lies that women are stupid, weak, catty, dramatic, sensitive, manipulative, etc. consequently stick to girls, resulting in their internalized misogyny. It's not necessarily their fault, it's how they are brought up.
From a young age, girls are almost taught to tear other girls down. Seeing a girl in a pair of shorter shorts or with confidence in her sexuality? "What a slut!" Seeing a girl be opinionated or assertive? "What a bitch!" Seeing a girl that doesn't shave? "She's so dirty!" Seeing a girl that gets into an argument with her friend? "She's so catty!"
I will admit that I sometimes find myself accidentally thinking these things. But the first step to overcoming it is to recognize that the behavior is wrong. It's not an easy thing to unlearn -- it's been fed to us our whole life. However, once you're mentally aware of it, you can take control and stop yourself. If we can stop conditioning girls to believe that the most important thing is attention from boys and that "You're not like most girls!" is a compliment, we can end the toxic girl-on-girl hate.
It's time to stop feeling threatened by other girls and therefore ripping each other apart, and to start empowering one another because girls aren't our natural enemies. In such a sexist culture, we need to stick together and improve our relationships that have the potential to be wonderful. You will be so much happier.