From “Basketball Wives” and “Real Housewives” to “Jerseylicious” and “Love & Hip Hop,” there is at least one common theme: Women cannot get along.
Catfights are common among women on many reality shows that have a majority-female cast. But why? What is it about women in groups that always leads to shouting matches and someone ending up with vodka all over their clothes? Are we genetically wired to hate our own kind, or is something else at play?
In a glass-ceiling society, we have been conditioned to believe that there is only room for one woman at the top; so if you want to be that woman, then all others are your competition and essentially your enemy.
This dynamic plays out everywhere from the office, to the bar when there’s competition for guys’ attention.
When women subconsciously view each other as competition, they may automatically find a reason to dislike or distrust one another, because it is easier to compete against someone you dislike than a friend or ally. Once dislike and distrust have set in, the cattiness is soon to follow. A woman may gossip and bad-mouth as a way to look or feel better about herself, and ultimately rise to the top. Thus continues the vicious cycle (and arguments and drink tossing).
Fortunately, this can be avoided. It is possible for groups of females to get along. As a woman with mostly female friends, I am living proof. The key is not to assume that you won’t get along with any other woman you meet and immediately count her as an enemy. Instead, view every female you meet as a potential ally.
When the new girl comes into the office, instead of viewing her as someone who is trying to take your job, treat her to lunch and learn about her goals and possibly work together to better the company and have more women at the top.
When your best friend tries to bring a new girl into your circle, don’t see her as someone trying to steal your BFF away from you, but instead as a new friend for you as well.
While you probably won’t get along with every other woman you meet, no matter how positive your mindset, it’s important to give everyone a chance. Not all personalities are compatible, so if you don’t mesh well with a woman you meet, simply keep your distance and be cordial when your paths cross. Everything doesn’t have to end with a primetime-worthy fight.
Chelsea Boone is a graduate of Hampton University and will receive her master’s from the University of Maryland in the fall. She loves writing, working out and finding out the latest celebrity gossip.
Do you think women are too competitive? Does society cause women to see one another as competition? Leave your comments below.
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