Why is it so easy to tear one another down? Why do we constantly feel the need to talk about each other behind our backs? Why do we always have to find fault when something good happens or rejoice when something bad happens? Why do we have to compare ourselves against someone else? Why do we have to make someone else look bad to make ourselves look good? Why do we feel the need to bully someone?
As women this type of competition has been going on for centuries. I’ve even gotten caught up in it myself finding fault with other women simply based on their appearance or a perceived idea of who they are. In elementary school I was involved in an incident of bullying another class mate. The entire class was standing in the hallway waiting on our teacher and a few of the kids (girls and boys) started taunting one of the girls to kiss someone just because we thought it would be funny to tease her and I believe she thought it would help her to belong. After she did it I saw the look of “are you pleased, can I join in?” on her face knowing that we only did to make her look bad and I felt immediately ashamed. It is not something that I am proud of and to this day I still think about where she is and how much damage that seemingly small incident played in her life. I say seemingly because no incident of bullying is small and it affects the people that are doing the bullying as well as the person that is being bullied and if I could apologize to her I would.
Now I’m sure someone would justify this behavior and say that we were only kids but that is no excuse. My mother never raised me to look down on anyone else or intentionally mistreat someone and had she known about this when I was a child I would have been in trouble so why did I do it? For me it was also the idea that I wanted to be accepted as well by pleasing people and so I went along with the crowd.
As a society we do it because we are flawed human beings. We are filled with insecurities and past hurts that we hold onto instead of dealing with them and letting go. We find it easier to take the “easy” road and put someone else down. As women we can tear one another down with just a look and sometimes feel as if it’s our right to just correct what we perceive as a wrong. That just creates separation and division. I’ve been in conversations with many women who have said that it’s easier for them to be friends with men because all the women they have ever tried to get close to became vindictive or catty. All of their private business ended up being known by everyone and they never felt that they could trust any female.
I find that saddening. What kind of example are we setting for young girls that are in our lives if we can’t be better role models for them? Why do they cling so much to the gossip and unrealistic life of the entertainment world for their inspiration? Because that’s what we cling to as adult women. Don’t get me wrong there are some awesome women in entertainment that exemplify what it means to lift our sisters up but that’s not what we see. We see women fighting other women. We see women stealing other women’s husbands or boyfriends. We see women laughing at each when a venture they are trying to get off the ground fails. It’s time we start seeing women fighting for one another. It’s time we see women working together to save relationships. It’s time we see women supporting ventures and if it fails helping to pick up the pieces.
We need to be better so that our girls can be better. I for one don’t want my nieces growing up thinking that it’s ok to step on someone’s back to get where they are going. I’ve heard it said many times that the people you meet going up are the people you meet coming back down. I don’t know about you but I don’t want my road to success littered with the carcasses of women I’ve mistreated. Do you?
The older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things that they admonish the young women to love their own husbands that the word of God may not be blasphemed. (Titus 2:3-5 NKJV)