By: Dionne Witter

The Value of Female Friendships

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Happy Easter everyone –  I hope you had lovely time with family and friends.

Last week I blogged about what I love about men.  I received some rave reviews from men and women, but especially from the men.  On my night table is a card that reads “I am wealthy in my friends”, a famous Shakespeare quote.  It is strategically placed where I see it from many different angles, forcing me to read it numerous times per day.  When it comes to friendship, I have always been gender neutral.  As such, I have been blessed and have been fortunate to have an amazing circle of friends.

Many women sadly were raised to mistrust other women.  This was probably taught to us by our mothers, and as we should, or often do, we trust and believe all that was taught to us by our mothers.  As such, we attract women who prove this to be correct.  As I am well aware, energy flows where attention goes. At times, this belief makes women tear other women to shreds.  Remember, our parents operate at the level at which they are at, and quite often, are not always our best teachers in every situation. This belief has been ingrained in us for so long that we believe it to be true.  This dark side, regrettably, gets more overplayed than it should, as the benefits to having good female friends are so refreshing and rewarding, that they far outweigh the negatives.

I have had my fair share of drama with other women, thankfully, mostly in my much younger days.  As much as we can support each other, I have seen how we can bring each other down.  To be totally honest, we can be catty and judgemental, which can make it a challenge to find a good female friend.  I was 16 years old when I arrived to Canada, and experienced a culture shock, coupled by vicious mean girls attack.  Being strong willed and not one to be easily bullied, these girls soon backed off, and many quickly became friends.  I made a vow to myself that I would befriend every other new Caribbean female immigrant that arrived at my high school, to prevent them from having my unfortunate experience. I am convinced this is how I am now blessed with two of my god-children, as I believe their mothers remembered me walking up to them, and making them feel less like a small fish in a big ocean.

I make friends easily. Over the years, I have learned how to choose my friends wisely.  I learn who I hang out with made a big difference to my psyche, and as I grew more into myself, I sought out friends where we lifted and encouraged each other, rather than tearing each other down.   While the term friend is often mis-used, without a doubt, I have a lot of acquaintances, but an amazing network of female friends, where our unity and bond only gets better with time.  Here are some of the values these amazing sister friends brings to my life.

Women are a great source of support.  When women are supporting other women, or playing a support role to anyone, we are phenomenal creatures!  There is magic in the way we can support and empower each other.  My female friends have supported me and have learned to understand my non-conforming nature with such love and compassion.

Women provide a shoulder to lean / cry on.  My female friends help me to live better.  Having close friends who I can confide in has helped me go through many difficult life experiences with more ease.  I know that at ANY hour of the day, I can call up a girlfriend and spill my soul to her, and if the need arise, cry my heart out.  This has been quite cathartic, as I am not bottling up my emotions, which ultimately creates stressors in the body. With the way only women can talk to each other, we can be such strength to one another, which often creates a healing experience.

Only another woman can fully understand each other.  Some of the life occurrences or events that other women go through will never be understood by anyone other than us.  A man simply will not understand some of the biological things a woman’s body endures.

The strongest human bond. From my experience, female friendships can be one of the strongest human bonds.  If I have good news, I want to share it with a girlfriend.  I have bad news – I want to share it with a girlfriend.  I have something to celebrate – I want to share with a girlfriend. We go so much farther when we hold each other’s hand, and pull each other up.  I simply cannot imagine life without my girlfriends.  I feel truly blessed and fortunate to have my circle of girlfriends, as they all comprise a beautiful network of sisterhood bond.

Remember it is important to maintain and honor these relationships.  Remember that as women, we are phenomenal! Let’s honor all the phenomenal women in our lives, including ourselves!

I’m excited to hear your thoughts on the great female friends in your life, or how you have been a great friend to other women.  Let’s talk!