I remember the first frat party I ever went to. I had purple streaks in my hair and was wearing combat boots, so I guess I was looking a little ~alternative~ for the setting. Naturally, I was immediately singled out and given that one line guys seem to think will work every time: “You’re not like most girls.” And I replied, “You literally don’t even know me.”
I guess he expected me to be more appreciative for this “compliment,” but that would require me to not want to be like other girls in the first place, when in fact, I think girls are the best. Girls grow up thinking that it’s better to be “one of the guys” and that “other girls are just too much drama.” However, that kind of thinking just doesn’t hold up beyond high school. You become an adult (or if you’re like me at the moment, a pseudo-adult), and you realize that seeking out loving, supportive female friendships is one the best things you can do for yourself as a young woman.
The sad thing is, women are raised with a sense of competition against one another. We want to be “cool” (whatever that means) and unique. For awhile, we really might want to be “not like most girls.” However, if you look closely, you can see ideas like this are just another form of gas-lighting meant to divide women. I saw a quote online one day that said life would be so much better for girls if we just started treating each other like we do when we’re drunk waiting in line for the bathroom. I thought to myself, “What a great idea!”
Like almost everyone, 2016 has been a rough year for me. However, the main silver lining has been making a ton of meaningful friendships with some awesome girlies. I get more drunk texts from my best friend telling me how thankful she is to have me in her life than I do from my boyfriend. I have timidly Facebook messaged two girls I only sort of know telling them how cool I think they look from their social media and how badly I want to be pals with them, and they both responded saying the feeling is mutual! I reconnected with an old friend from summer camp, and we have an endless supply of supportive memes going back and forth between the two of us. Another girl I’ve known since freshman year and I ended up realizing we suffer from very similar anxiety issues, and are now constantly doing everything we can to validate and encourage one another. I don’t mind having to wake up for work at five in the morning, because I get to spend hours selling pastries and talking in goofy voices with one of my favorite ladies in the whole world.
I could go on and on about all the fantastic females I have in my life, but basically the message here is: I love girls! I love how when you compliment another girl on something she’s wearing, nine times out of ten she will tell you where she got it and how much it cost. I love how girls who you don’t know will come up to you while you’re out, when it seems like a guy is making you uncomfortable, just to provide solidarity. I love girls who love Starbucks and Ugg boots unapologetically. I love girls who proudly show off their natural faces. I love girls who shave their heads. I love girls who wear super twirly dresses. I love girls who are master makeup artists. I love girls who have the patience to grow their hair down to their butts. I love girls who think wearing dresses is the worst. I just love girls who love other girls, and I think we should make sure little girls know it’s okay to love each other too. Build each other up, tiny babies! The world is tough and the wage gap is a bummer; go buy each other a juice box and talk about dismantling the patriarchy.