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Thursday, 29 June 2017

Why are girls so cruel to each other?


I am not what you’d call a ‘girl’s girl.’ You know those phrases; a ‘man’s man,’ a ‘girl’s girl.’ I don’t feel comfortable surrounded by a large group of girls; never have done. I prefer mixed groups, or even a group of guys, to a large group of girls. Around a lot of girls I always feel tense and uneasy, like someone is going to say something mean to me or I’m going to be behaving in a way that will be considered odd by the other girls.



There are clear reasons for this. I spent most of primary school being bullied, teased, ridiculed and left out of things by other girls. In secondary school I was part of leaving girls out of things, and witnessed drama after drama between girls. I got punched in the face in year 9 by a girl, I’ve been laughed at and called awful shit by girls, I’ve had girls tear me to pieces and make me feel utterly worthless.

Girls fall out with each other over the pettiest of things. (And it’s bloody exhausting to watch, let alone be part of). One day they hate each other, the next they’re best friends again. Girls call each other names behind their backs. Girls can be cruel and catty and snappy and sly. Girls can be manipulative and callous and treat each other like dirt. In P.E, in a club, in a classroom, in the toilets. A group of girls can gang up on one girl and psychologically bully her until she’s broken and empty. Girls can stop speaking to each other for years over one small incident that could have been long forgotten.

It would be very wrong of me to say all girls are like this. Today I have female friends that are lovely and kind and treat me as well as I treat them. It has taken me a long time to feel at ease around girls, and as I have grown in myself I have also grown in my comfortableness around others. Most people are not unkind, and needless to say boys can be awful too. However, boys have been far less ‘cruel’ to me than girls have. With boys they’ve been petty and immature, but it’s been stuff I’ve been able to brush off. I did have a boyfriend that treated me badly but that was one situation specific to the type of person he was, and not reflective of all men in general.

I don’t know why girls treat each other like crap. So many times have I been between two girls fighting and arguing about nothing. I have never seen or heard of boys fall out with each other every five minutes over nonsense. Boys don’t take themselves as seriously as girls do. Boys are more jokey and humorous with each other, and give less of a shit. My gender needs to relax a bit and stop acting as if everything is such a mission. Girls care too much. And at times I just don’t know what to say around girls.

I have trouble in social situations, but not for obvious reasons. I’m not shy or socially awkward; on the contrary I’m generally loud, full-on, brimming with opinions and spontaneous. (Unless I’m in a bad/sad/tired mood, then I don’t say anything). This can make my behaviour difficult for other people to handle if they’re not on my intellectual wavelength, if they’re meek and quiet, or if they’re discussing shoes and X Factor. Because girls take themselves more seriously than guys too, I feel that girls are more likely to think I’m behaving oddly if I say something off-colour, whereas guys will just laugh or not care that much.

From an evolutionary perspective women have always been in competition with each other; we want to be better looking, slimmer, have better hair or a better complexion than the next chick. Girls are always telling me that I’m ‘so pretty’ or my hair is ‘so nice’ or I’m ‘so thin’ and at times it feels like it’s gone from a compliment to them projecting their insecurities on to me. I say this because two seconds later it’s ‘god I’m so fat’ or ‘my hair is so shit’ or ‘you look so nice without make-up; I look like shit without it.’ I’m not trying to sound vain and obnoxious (even though that’s probably what it sounds like) and I always go out of my way to compliment other girls – also because I’m a co-dependent people pleaser and secretly worry that girls will be mean to me if I don’t coo over them. (Of course girls do compliment each other for real, I'm just making a point).


I know they’ll be some girls reading this thinking ‘she’s spot on’ and others thinking ‘that’s not true, she’s trying to say all girls treat each other like shit, most girls I know aren’t like that.’ I’m not saying all girls are bitches. What I am saying is its very common for girls to treat each other like shit, and more common than the way guys treat each other or even the way guys treat girls. Unless a guy is just a flat-out arsehole, he’ll generally be a hellava lot nicer to a girl than the girl is to another girl.

But this is anecdotal and subjective and based on opinion and my experiences. I also don’t think it’s going to change. If you have a female friend who is kind, loving, and respectful and doesn’t make you feel uneasy, then you best treasure her. She’s a diamond in the rough.

7 comments:

  1. Wow! This was such an interesting and relatable read for me, we have a lot in common here. I have always felt more comfortable around guys in general than girls as well.

    “Around a lot of girls I always feel tense and uneasy, like someone is going to say something mean to me or I’m going to be behaving in a way that will be considered odd by the other girls.”

    - I can totally relate to this, as well as your reasons. I was not bullied by girls in school but I was “bullied” a lot by my step-sisters, step-mother and biological mother. My step-sisters were allowed from their mother to steal my clothes and Birthday/Christmas gifts. Whenever they got in trouble, they blamed me because their mom taught them that. They used to physically abuse me until my mother put her foot down and got my dad to make them stop. My step-mother was from Texas and she was heavy into traditional gender roles. I was mainly raised by my single mother who is completely unfeminine (and quite unclassy as well). I grew up a Tomboy and my step-mother was constantly teasing me and ridiculing me for not being “feminine” enough. She would get mad at me if I put my hands in my pockets while walking around or if I got a second plate of food at dinner. She never let me dress myself and always picked out my clothes because if I had done it on my own, she’d say “You’re wearing THAT?” and then proceed to talk about how unsophisticated I was etc. It made me anxious around those type of women, like I wouldn't fit in. She also did some other, more abusive things like telling me about how my mother was a whore and asking me (around age 6-9) if I was going to grow up and be one too like her, and constantly punishing me for things I didn’t do. To make matters worse, my mother teased and ridiculed me for being “too feminine” and too “Mary-Sue” in her eyes. I soon realized that the women around me were far more abusive and judgmental than the men (who had their own set of mistakes, fairly put).

    All of the awful things you said about what girls do to each other is so true. I also hate how girls will punish you without telling you why for a while until you push them, and then often it was all a misunderstanding anyways. I don’t think all girls are like this but in my personal experience, the vast majority are, unfortunately.

    I agree with your contrast for boys being immaturity. The most “awful” guys have ever been to me were a couple of teasing remarks that I don’t believe were made in hate or resentment. Guys tend to be more straight-forward about disagreements and don’t seem to hold things in as much or as long nor be as petty and antagonistic as many girls can be. Guys tend to be more willing to go with the flow for the sake of the group; many women won’t let the group move on until she’s satisfied. It's draining for me sometimes to deal with other women.

    Also guys are more honest and don’t have as many fantasies. A lot of times, girls want you to indulge them and their fantasies (i.e. make them feel good). It becomes a requirement.


    “I don’t know why girls treat each other like crap.”

    - Honestly, I think it’s because of entitlement/ being spoiled. A lot of the girls that I find to be the most “awful” seem to have had pretty nice lives, never had much hardship and have parents who rarely punish them – and that they sometimes talk back to! They take a lot of things for granted and not enough into consideration.

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    1. Glad you liked it Miss Stepford! Your stepmother sounds awful, some cinderella shit going on there :( sorry about that. At least you're an adult now and I presume live far away from her XD. I don't know if 'entitlement' is a reason as that sounds more like a class thing and I grew up in a working class area. I'm lucky that I grew up in a nice family and my parents (who are no longer together) were very loving and kind and did their best. However, I think although I'm close to my mum and dad, fathers are generally 'softer' on their daughters and mothers are a bit harder. Plus I've always been very close to my younger brother, so my first 'best friend' in my life was a boy.

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    2. Definitely! That's why in your bullying post, I said that, I think people who do awful things to you sometimes make you do better just to get away from them. She broke up with my dad in my older teen years (thankfully) but as an adult, I have gotten away from my abusive sisters and biological mother, which I am proud of (and was especially hard with my mom).

      I know "entitlement" is often associated with class but I mean it more in the literal dictionary definition of "believing oneself to be inherently deserving of privileges or special treatment".

      I grew up in a working class area too (both of my parents, separately) and I saw first-hand how that doesn't hinder a girl from being spoiled and entitled: My dad had A LOT of kids with his gf so money was pretty tight. However, he cherished my sisters and often gave them what they wanted when they asked - especially if they pouted etc. Me and the boys got no special treatment. When we went out to McDonald's, we had to share drinks and when we were out in public, we couldn't ask for toys etc. It was supposed to be the same for us all, but my sisters would break the rules anyways and get rewarded for it. We'd have cleaning days where we were all given chores to do and then given more as they were completed. The boys were made to do the tougher back-breaking and "unpleasant" work; the girls were made to clean their own bedrooms and I was made to clean all of the crevices and help step-mom with living room and kitchen. Towards the end of the day, the girls were the only ones who hadn't actually done any chores all day and usually I (and sometimes step-mom or the boys) would have to "help" them clean their room for them. My dad's paycheck was so stretched, he was very cheap and even sometimes let repairs in the house go for months or years before getting fixed. (it was unpleasant to say the least and resulted in some of those unpleasant chores for the boys) The point to giving you this context is that even though he didn't have a lot of money, most of it (outside of bills) went to those girls. They rarely got in trouble, often blaming it on me and the boys, and they were the apple of my father's eye. My dad never even let me or the boys ever insult them or talk back to them or correct their mistakes; Yet when they insulted us, "we were older so we should know better and not react the same way". They were over-coddled, so even though they didn't grow up rich they still grew up completely entitled and spoiled, expecting everyone to accommodate them in all areas. So I assure you, someone does not need to actually be rich to grow up with a sense of entitlement. Haha :)

      I just found in common that many “mean girls” are also girls who get away with a lot of things from their parents, never really getting punished and usually never/rarely having been hit by their parents. Their parents often let them get their way (as much as possible, anyway) – or in the “class” example will just throw money at them. Anyways, I haven’t seen studies on this, this was just an educated guess from my research and experiences.

      I'm sorry to hear about your parents not being together anymore, I know that can be tough on children. (My sisters took it hard when their parents split.) I am happy to hear that you grew up in a nice family though; I honestly wouldn't wish a broken home on even an enemy - in my eyes, that would create the "enemy". (It's why I advocate so much on children's rights and better parenting etc.)

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    3. I agree that in general, fathers are softer on daughters; just as mothers are softer on sons. That's really cool about you and your younger bro. :) I can see how that created a more positive impression initially for males on you. I think for me, being lobbed in with the boys so much is what helped me empathize with boys more; As well as my mother is more masculine than feminine in personality/outlook etc. Plus, as I’m sure you know, working-class environments/neighborhoods in general tend to be more male-dominated and therefore more sympathetic to males whereas suburban environments/neighborhoods tend to be more female-dominated and more sympathetic to females instead. (Which is also why the most prominent Feminists tend to be suburban ladies who are entitled and make superficial complaints but that’s another topic for another day. :D)

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    4. Damn it sounds like growing up was tough for you. A lot of gender segregation with your sisters compared to you and your brothers. But at least it's not like that today!

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    5. It's alright but the point I was trying to make was that girls don't have to grow up rich to be entitled and I find that a lot of "mean girls" are entitled, and they get mean when people don't bend over backwards for them.

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  2. “What I am saying is its very common for girls to treat each other like shit, and more common than the way guys treat each other or even the way guys treat girls. Unless a guy is just a flat-out arsehole, he’ll generally be a hellava lot nicer to a girl than the girl is to another girl… If you have a female friend who is kind, loving, and respectful and doesn’t make you feel uneasy, then you best treasure her. She’s a diamond in the rough.”

    - 100% Agreed! :D

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