Before I indulge in something that may resemble criticism, I wish to praise you as you should be praised; you are so much more than the world tries to make you think you are. I am not just referring to the empire of Trump that thinks itself entitled to dictate your reproduction rights despite the remarkable deficit of vagina in amidst its leadership. I am referring to girls all over the world with electric minds being stifled by a lack of education, of acceptable pay and of respect. I am referring to the millions of girls whose genitalia is sliced and sewn – sometimes at infancy – so that men can decipher whether or not they were the first to ‘have’ you, and extinguish your sexual pleasure. Humanity can be a force powerful, compassionate and extraordinary beyond any fathomable measure. Humanity means men AND women.
However, females are a source of great confusion to me. This is because, since childhood, I have seen a spitefulness emerge from girls that is aimed primarily at other girls. It usually materialises as a result of sexual competition – after all, if someone else nabs the attention of your boyfriend (even if he is yet to know your name or the fact that he is your boyfriend) then it hurts like a bitch. I know this pain. Everyone knows this pain. Aren’t girls just so bloody sexy? And when heads turn for another, jealousy slices like Trump’s pen nib through funding for abortion. It stings.
This is when the sexiest girl to boys is nicknamed ‘isn’t she a bit overrated?’ by girls (100% guilty of that one and not proud). Or, if it is not so explicit, she will be undermined by other means. You will flirt outrageously with the boys that surround her. You will not follow her back on Instagram.You will befriend her friends so that when she notices your coldness to her, nobody understands her cautiousness of you and thinks her dramatic for her response. Isolate her. Ignore her. Unless, of course, others are watching.
Spite is powerful and seemingly inevitable. Take note; this behaviour became rife once my friends and I were released from the suffocation of a girls-only existence at our school, and introduced to the wilderness of boys. It therefore appears that the innate drive of sexual rivalry is to blame (trust me guys I took psychology A2).
Then comes the next – and in my opinion more sickening – level of nastiness. This goes out to you ‘grown-ups’; our bosses, our teachers, our leaders and our examiners. To you girls who have had women in a position above you decide to use their position to undermine you, I can empathise and I am sorry. How crazy that just as many adults intentionally demoralise young girls as other young girls do. You are supposed to guide us, not humiliate us. You are supposed to be constructive, not demanding. You are supposed to help acknowledge room for improvement and aid development, not sneer at our failures because you are afraid of your own. Although the sexual politics amongst female adolescents is unpleasant, at least teenagers have time to mature.
You should know better. Do you not think we do not notice when you are kinder to our male colleagues? Do you not think we notice your eyes lingering upon us as you search for something about us to condemn? Do you really think that we do not possess sufficient intuition to realise that you are, in fact, scared of us, and are using your professional dominion to make yourself feel more at ease? Do you honestly believe that we should learn by your example?
In order to sufficiently combat universal sexism, we must identify that there is in fact sexism that takes place within our own gender. Driven primarily by jealousy, it may seem trivial. However, how can we unite effectively against the world’s inequality if we cannot tackle our own petty strife?
I remember the first time that jealousy pierced me. I remember why it did so. I remember the incessant thoughts of comparison and justification of the malice that gripped me.
It had never really happened before, and I disliked myself immensely for it. I thought long and hard about a solution. Thank Christ, it came to me.
You are allowed to think that other girls are magnificent, and to wish wish wish that you are more like them. It is natural.
How sad it is to know that you will never truly be the best at anything. No matter your determination, you can never be the cleverest, the most confident, the most beautiful or the most independent. This is because there is such variation within every category, that no one ever will be the best. We will only be different.
However, once you feel jealous, notice what exactly has aroused it. Instead of loathing another for something that you do not have, how about use her as a role model? Aspire to incorporate things that you admire in that bitch for yourself. Then, suddenly, she is not so scary because for a moment you have let yourself learn from her. This is the way that we can grow to love ourselves; by respecting others, and questioning the ingredients to their brilliance.
Because women are brilliant. Men, too. And you are brilliant (probably) but it is quite alright to accept that we change. There is no shame in this change being inspired by another.
So to women everywhere whose pride overrides their modesty, I am politely advising that you grow up.
An adoring fan.