Jun 13, 2011



It never fails that you will encounter a female who is proud to tout the fact that she doesn't have any female friends. She's proud to exclaim to the world that the only people she can relate to are her guy friends because they are not jealous, backstabbing, and petty like females. She's convinced herself that it's possible to go throughout life without female companionship because she's bought into the notion that all women are catty and out to steal your man. Without even realizing it, she has deprived herself a great gift.

Now don't get me wrong, I can completely understand why most women are not trusting of other women. If you look at most of the depictions of us (especially black females) when it comes to television, then you can completely understand where this woman is coming from. Who in their right mind would want to get to know a neck rolling, nasty attitude having, I'll choke your ass while pulling on your wig type female? I wouldn't invite that type of energy in my space so why should you?

As much as we hate people generalizing and stereotyping us as race, we have to admit as women that we do the same thing to each other. We generalize and typecast a lot of women as not being worthy of our time because of the presumptions that we have about women. I am honest enough to admit that we do have people in our community with nasty dispositions when it comes to their representation of womanhood, but that's not all of us. Some of us turn out to be the best friends you can only hope to have, but you do yourself a disservice because you immediately dismiss us without even getting to know us.

For it's part, television has also displayed some very positive images of friendship between women. You have the ladies of 'Girlfriends', 'Sex and the City', and the women of 'The Game.' But there is no example of friendship between women that I think is more powerful then that of Oprah and Gayle. A lot of people cannot understand the dynamics of the relationship shared between Oprah and her best friend of over thirty years. They insist the women must be gay because they can't fathom seeing two women geniunely loving each other and wanting nothing but the best for each other. For many this is a foreign concept, but for me it is not.

You see, I can completely relate to the dynamics of Oprah and Gayle's friendship. I've been very fortunate to have such friends in my life. I have girlfriends who would go through the fire for me and not even hesitate. I have girlfriends who came to the funeral of my best friend even though they never met him. They came because they knew I would need them. I have a girlfriend who made me a CD called 'I Hate You So Much Right Now' when I broke up with my high school/college sweetheart after I found out he had been cheating on me. It didn't mend my broken heart, but it sure put a smile on my face if only for a moment.

Now I agree that in order to make people want to approach us, we have to be a little more inviting. This is definitely something we all can work on. Instead of sizing up a female when she walks into a room, how about just offering her a smile. You have no idea how powerful one smile can be. One smile can change a horrible day into a bearable day. It can make an outsider feel welcome.

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