On Monday afternoon my roommate, Amie, sent me a link to a post on The Berry that would consume my thoughts for days. As I read Amie’s text, and then the article, I could see why she shared it with me. Amie, being my reality tv-loving, podcast listening, champagne is for Wednesdays, single-like-me-roommate, was disgusted by what this author was saying about her single friends.
Other than the title being offensive: “As I get older, it gets harder for me to hang out with my single friends” it was the epitome of a backhanded compliment for the writer. Our author, Jessica, who is en-fianced, wants to be a good friend to her single gal pals but they just aren’t having it.
These single ladies go out and drink, meet men in front of her, they are picky and they have breakups. As Jess, herself, puts it she and her fiancé have a sweet life and when she is with her friends she wants to talk about politics, her portfolio and her future. She does not want to talk about Tinder because she luckily didn’t need to use it. This makes Jessica feel bad that these friendships are starting to fall by the wayside but isn’t doing anything about it. The worst part is that Jessica is a contributor for the website Bold(e) which is “a platform for single women to express themselves about dating & relationships.” Yet, Jessica isn’t a single woman.
So, here we go this WTF Wednesday: Female Friendships v. The Internet
I originally wrote this post listing adverse responses to Jessica’s ten reasons why she is having a hard time getting along with her friends. Then I realized I would be just as wrong as Jessica to do my list. I spent a few days thinking about the article and realized that the two websites who published her article are to blame, The Berry and the Bold(e), as by publishing this post they further aided in pitting women against each other. I am not about that life and I am here to say we, as women, deserve more and should DO more.
On Intentional Women’s Day I wrote how I think we should drop the term #girlboss from our vernacular because no man ever high fived his bro’s over brunch and declared himself a #boyboss. Side note: can we also stop saying ‘girls’? If you’re over 25 I think you know you’re a lady, or a woman–your choice!
I feel just as strong about female empowerment/friendship posts as I do about dumping “Girl Boss” because it doesn’t help anyone. You’re not a girl CEO, you are a CEO. I am not your single friend, Erika. I’m your friend Erika, who happens to be single. Being single isn’t my definition, but being your friend should be. Let’s move these words that do not define us: tall, straight, curvy and hot as hell, gay, Harry Styles lover and more, to the end of the sentence.
I realized that the true story I haven’t read on the internet, that Jessica did not write, was about how these women were seeing their friendships start to shift, and the action they took to change them!
I wanted Jessica to tell me that she recognized the shift in her friendships and the tips and tricks she and her friends used to overcome their hurdles. I did NOT want Jessica to shame her friends on the internet for liking to drink, wanting to find happiness with a man, or using Tinder. Everyone deserves happiness as much as they deserves a stiff drink now and then and we would hope that at the end of the day, someone who calls us their friend wouldn’t be the first one to blast us on the internet for it.
As someone who owns an internet domain name I can’t imagine taking my feelings out on my girlfriends on a large-scale website such as The Berry or the Bold(e) before ever talking to them in person, let alone on my own personal site! I’ve had ups and downs with my friends over the course of our friendships, but never once did I publicize my issues before talking with them. Maybe that isn’t salacious enough for the online magazine world, but it’s the truth and what we should be telling the world about.
I read Jessica’s post with such a sinking feeling, this was not an accurate portrayal of my life or the many women I have friendships with. When is someone going to show strong, female, friendships who support each other? Maybe I won’t find it on The Berry or the Bold(e) but you can find it here, with me and my lady gang of amazing women.
This article is the kind of crap we strong, bad ass women do not need and need to fight against. Ladies, it’s hard out there for a pimp and a single, independent woman. But it’s also hard out there for a married mom of two, for a gay man in his 40s, and ….well you get it. It’s hard out there, so instead of pitting people against one another I really urge you to ask more from the websites you read.
Reply in the comments! Tweet the publications or the author! Ask for an explanation! Ask for better! Retweet this post! Do what you have to do, but just know at the end of the day we need to eliminate this competition between women and support friendships instead.
With my thoughts and feelings out there, Jessica, I’m sorry I had to do this over the internet. Like I said, that is not how I work in my friendships. But seeing as you are a Pittsburgh girl, and so am I, I’m happy to talk it out with you over a Pittsburgh Salad and an Iron City Light.