Is Girl Drama Inevitable??
As the preparations continue for an upcoming community workshop on girl friendships, I'm breezing through the book "Girl Wars" again by Cheryl Dellasega. So here's a few lines from what I'm reading this morning!
5 Random sentences that are interesting:
1. "Today's young women are subtly influenced to interact in ways that reduce rather than enhance their underlying power to connect with one another."
(the thing is, girls are actually designed to be good connectors. but in many atmospheres though they are "taught" to be competitive instead. the opposite.)
2. "Bombarded with messages about their physical appearance at an early age, they are expected to dress provocatively while maintaining straight "A" averages and excelling at sports."
(have heard it said this way too- expected to dress sexy but not act out on it, expected to get good grades, but have shallow interests, etc etc)
3. "They are labeled as mean "Queen Bees" but given no alternatives for more positive behaviors."
(if girls are not learning good behaviors from someone close, they will most likely be mimicking what is portrayed in media, which is not very positive. good behavior is not hard for those who see it lived out in family and close friends, and who learn from early age to respect other people. sometimes bad behavior isn't intentional, but when girls are caused to stop, think about and discuss things, they see the difference and can choose good over bad. they can relearn).
4. "Role models for today's teens are not powerful women who have succeeded because of their persistence and kindness to others, but rather superstar singers acting like sexy schoolgirls".
5. "No wonder young women find themselves in a state of extreme confusion, unsure of how to relate to either themselves or others".
(agree. very confusing to girls. be sexy, don't have sex. be young, be old. be smart, play dumb. be skinny, be happy with yourself. be nice, stand up for yourself.)
(continued excerpt): "The good news is that all across the country, mothers, girls and others are finding ways to help adolescents feel more secure about their own abilities and safe in their relationships with others. Slowly, their efforts are changing the "girl poisoning culture". There are groups around the country meeting with girls, teaching character and life skills. The number is still too small, but growing! It makes a world of difference to just meet and have a place that girls can talk through issues in life that are confusing. That's one of the things we'll be doing at this community workshop. Talking about healthy relationships, and how to deal with what is sometimes "accepted" as normal girl behavior (meanness), but shouldn't be.
Which leads me to the final quote from Girl Wars:
"We believe girls are NOT inherently cruel, and that although behaviors such as jealousy, gossiping, and joining cliques may be normal in terms of what we expect, they are not what we have to accept."
She says that after all her work and research, she believes "not only can girls be kind, they feel better about themselves when they are".