While I was awkwardly navigating my way through my preteen and teenage years, I encountered my fair share of mean girls and then some. I can still remember the day when I realized that girls were a cutthroat bunch. My friend and neighbor, Mary, was having a party and I was invited along with nearly every other person in the neighborhood. A few days before the party, I got a phone call from Mary. She kept asking me what I thought of the new girl, Kelly. I would say that I thought she was nice, Mary would push me to say something else, until I eventually agreed with Mary that Kelly might not be the nicest person ever. All of a sudden, Mary revealed that she was Kelly. She HAD to trick me because she KNEW I didn’t really like her! I cried for a while, skipped the party, and dropped most of my female friends in favor of male friends.
It was a childish thing to do, but my 11 or 12-year-old mind thought it was the worst thing that could have ever happened. As I made my way through middle and high school, I was shown time and again that Kelly’s little trick was miles away from the worst thing I could expect to see or experience. I was lucky enough to find a good group of friends who kept the backstabbing and shady behavior to a minimum, but the things I witnesses females to do each other was nothing short of disgusting. High school was horrible, and college was only slightly better because it was so easy to avoid certain people and cliques. I always felt confident though that leaving school behind would also mean that the cutthroat behavior would be left behind as well.
Call me naive if you will, but I assumed that truly becoming an adult would also mean that females would stop being so terrible to each other over tiny things, and often over nothing at all. Little did I know that it seems to get worse with age. I lost quite a few male friends (and by friends, I don’t mean “we used to date,” I mean strictly friends) because their significant others couldn’t handle them being friends with a somewhat attractive female, even though I wasn’t single, wasn’t flirting, and wasn’t any sort of threat. I’ve been harassed at work by female authority figures who disliked me for reasons I’m still unsure of, but were clearly unrelated to my stellar job performance. And recently, I’ve been dealing with a woman twenty years my senior stand around my desk and take thinly veiled shots at me over some he-said-she-said BS that has nothing to do with her at all.
I’ve been free of Tubberpottimus for nearly a year and had hoped that the nonsense in the office would end with her retirement. Silly me. When one miserable sod leaves, there is always another to take her place. A female that will act hateful towards another, later patting themselves on the back as they brag about how many notches they took their target down. Smile at the wrong guy and you’ll be called a slut. Say the wrong thing and you’ll be called a liar. Forget the slightest detail and you’ll be called incompetent. Hell, you can do everything right and still become a target just because some woman doesn’t approve of you in general. Women will hate each other simply over wardrobe choices and hairstyles.
I am beyond tired of this behavior, especially when it comes from women who are much older than me and should have long outgrown the need to act like petty children. I can’t stand coming to work and having to deal with a sad middle-aged woman who has nothing better to do than spout off with “oh, better be quiet; don’t want any rumors to start” literally every single time she is anywhere near me. We’re all free to like and dislike who we please, but is it really necessary to be hateful and difficult, especially in schools and workplaces where we’re all somewhat held captive together for eight hours?
My dream is to fully escape this mean girl world. Work in a place where some chick isn’t trying to get me fired because I refuse to gossip with her or because I’m getting more attention than she. Go to the store and not be glared at by someone who assumes I’m looking at her man when I’m merely trying to find the cereal. Stop hearing the word slut thrown at any female who dares post a Facebook photo of herself at the beach. I want to be able to have faith in my gender instead of swearing off female friends every couple of years because I simply can’t cope with the nonsense.
I am lucky enough to know some amazing women, but they are unfortunately the minority in a bitch-eat-bitch world where rules are out the window and it’s every broad for herself. Last I heard, the Kelly from my youth was busy being a godawful person to everyone she came across, but even people who start as early as her can change. Stop looking at all other women as competition. Stop the jealousy. Calm the hell down and quit being hateful. These females who constantly target others are miserable people at their core, and it’s sad for them, but also sad for us who have to deal with their drama. Everyone needs to take a deep breath and ask themselves if all this hate, all the plotting, and all the gossip is truly worth it. Breathe in… breathe out… and ask yourself if your day is actually best spent on whether or not your coworker’s skirt is one inch too short for the office.