An Open Letter to Women Everywhere
If you’re like me, you’ve exhausted yourself trying to figure out what went wrong in many of your interactions with fellow women.
The friendships that ended with no specific fallouts, but still feel hostile. The countless instances of meeting women and sensing they don’t like you on sight. The comparing, competing and shaming among women of every age.
Maybe you reached a point where you decided you're better off as “one of the guys." You want to avoid the comparison and competition traps that pit women against each other.
Just remember there are like-minded women out there — and we must stick together.
There's nothing like having genuine, supportive female friendships. The force we can create is unstoppable.
Women have fought hard to be where we are today, for equality in the voting polls and the workplace. Unlike past generations of women, we have the power to hold political office and become business executives.
We can provide for ourselves and live independently, without a partner, if we choose.
When we respond to this progress with jealousy or aggression against women, it undermines all previous and current efforts to make positive changes.
These efforts ensure women's voices are heard, everywhere.
When we constantly feel like we are competing, we feel inadequate. What does she have that I don’t?
But we should be fighting together. Everyone is on a different personal journey, and there’s enough room for us all to win.
How can you lift up and encourage women?
Give authentic compliments. Acknowledge the strength and efforts of the women around you because chances are, they aren’t hearing it enough.
Stop gossiping about other women, and speak up if you hear someone else doing it! Speak up against sexism, harassment, abuse, slut-shaming and everything in between.
Focus on fighting for women—not against them. Choose to be happy for other women when they succeed. The journey for women is made even easier when we view it as a collective effort. A win for any woman is a win for every woman.
Kylie Kaiser is a Ball State University senior who studies journalism, sociology, interpersonal relations, and women's studies. She is an editorial intern at Hope for Women magazine. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, traveling, and attending concerts and festivals.