Do you remember the death of sisterhood? When do sleepovers and late night ghost stories turned into lonely, tearful and sleepless nights over confused loyalties? The sweet, innocent relationships of childhood evolve to something more complicated and dangerous as we age. We are no longer available to help usher each other into adulthood. It’s when we need each other the most we walk away.
Young girls have a hard time during puberty. Women are particularly at risk to lose relationships as we age. We go from confidantes to competitors overnight. Teaching one another one day, and then using those teachings to thwart one another the next. We are hyper-analytical and judgemental of other females, but why is that? Surely, some of it is natural. Many species of animals have competition between same sex members. As humans, is this patriarchy or is it hormones and instinct? What is it that turns us from friends to enemies so quickly?
Noam Shpancer from Psychology Today proposes an interesting theory stating, “As women come to consider being prized by men their ultimate source of strength, worth, achievement and identity, they are compelled to battle other women for the prize.” So, who told women that they were a part of this game?
Now, more than ever, we need a united front. Not only do we live longer when we have a strong network of support, but it can help reduce stress. Having a strong sisterhood can contribute to pushing your goals and objectives into reality. As women, our struggles can be very different depending on access, geography, ethnicity, etc. But we have much more in common than we don’t. As history and policies are challenged, the climate of our country can seem increasingly tense and divided. It should be our top priority to grow into close, supportive clusters in order to get through these difficult times.
We need to fight, together, for what is right for our communities moving forward. We need to take control of the conversations surrounding women’s bodies and rape culture. We need to collaborate and share ideas instead of trying to trample each other. When you help to lift one of us up you’re lifting all of us up. After all, as women if we don’t have each other then who the fuck do we have?