Days 64-68: Fostering The Toxic Environment of Woman-on-Woman Cattiness

I am 33 years old and in the past 12 months is the very first time I can say, with absolutism, I have had an authentic, well-established, respected friendship with another woman. I can say with absolutism that female relationship didn’t feel like a competition nor did it feel like there was any softly masked cattiness.

It was the first time where I trusted another woman.

It was the first time where I wanted another woman to succeed…to feel love… to feel comfort … to go on with her life with at least one supporter backing her without malicious motive. And with that, I felt – for the FIRST time – I had another person of my same gender rooting me on in life…wanting me to continue in this upward trajectory…..

And it felt euphoric. 

Let me back up so you understand where I am coming from with all of this. I have four lovely sisters of different backgrounds, beauty, and talents and while  – I believe – there is a mutual respect and love today, how we were raised didn’t reflect that same respect.

I was a blonde-haired, blue-eyed motor mouth, that also was lacking in the physical department. I was always physically heavier than my sisters albeit with more height. I looked differently than them in the face – I still have this dreaded cherub face to this day, stacked in the bosom area, and a rear end that unfortunately will not quit. Like most, my family placed value on standard beauty.

I didn’t fit that misplaced societal standard. I just didn’t. My sisters, on the other hand, were gifted physically being very slender or just enough weight as to not be ridiculed by the entire neighborhood. That’s not a fallacy, that is a truth.

I wasn’t accepted by 85 percent of the ladies I grew up with. I didn’t speak well enough as I didn’t lose my stutter until I was out of high school by many years; I lacked any sort of self-awareness or confidence; I didn’t know who I was except for the fact that I wasn’t acceptable by the standards of my fellow woman.

I never had an honest-to-god strong female relationship until this past year and honestly, it has crippled me mentally, emotionally, and psychologically. 

Woaaaahhhhhhh. There goes Tammy being too honest again. 

Sorry. My bad.

Don’t throw any of your pathetic pity my way, though, for today I am a mental giant; I am an emotional warrior, but the fact is, up until 12 months ago…heck maybe even 8 months ago…the lack of female role models in my life hindered me.

I never had that. I only observed – and felt – the cruel contempt women have for other women and often times in their same “circle”. Up front, they plaster on a fake facade and seem to congratulate them on their successes, but when their back is turned, let the slander begin. I observed women tearing down women on a physical scale — I felt the brunt of being bullied by girls because I was a four-eyed, fat nerd with a horrible stutter.

Thinking back, it hurts. But the reason it hurts is because I allowed irrelevant people dictate how much worth I placed on myself as a woman.

Now, that hurts.

I allowed it. I perpetuated that. I allowed to be that catty whore to other beautiful, intelligent, talented women because I was projecting my own insecurities unto those who were magnificently secure.

In the process, I only managed to “feel safe” with boys…and then pimply, stinky teenage boys…and then men, and in the mix of all that, I became objectified.

I became an object of their affection. I became fixated on how much value they placed on me… Was I pretty enough? Did I need to show more boobs? Did I need lose 5 more pounds?

Female relationships and how we view our own sexuality, self-worth, and impending male relationships are interwoven into something that I can’t even understand.

Yes, I would say most of women have fostered the toxic environment of woman-on-woman cattiness with intent or without it doesn’t matter — what does matter is that we become aware of it and promote woman-on-woman support.  We do not need any more help in the woman-bashing department. After all, there’s a whole other gender that does enough of that for us.

This world is a cruel f**king place. Those are facts.

There’s enough people in this world that condemn woman’s looks – by any physical standard – when her opinion differs from theirs or when she strikes a nerve or simply because she is succeeding in life and they are still dealing with a pit of misery.

There are enough men – and women – who constantly and inefficiently belittle, condemn, and perpetuate this myth that women can’t possibly support and empower other strong women.

Bullshit.

This past year has taught me quite the opposite and I say why foster such a degrading environment when we can turn the tables and foster an environment that gives other women the tools to feel secure within themselves.

Constructing a place where everyone…EVERYONE…every woman of any talent can have her shine.

And it’s perfectly fine because you’ll get your shine, too.

 

 

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