Most people think that true love is romantic, and life altering. They think of fireworks and heartache, laughter and a unison “I Do.”
For worse or for better, in sickness and in health, and a promise to tell you when you have lipstick on your teeth.
Girl love is just like any other.
I like to think that I can tell my boyfriend everything, and unfortunately for him, I do. There are times when he wishes I would talk to a girl about some issues, but I keep opening my mouth anyway because I just enjoy acting inappropriately. My point is, you’ll always need your girl friends.
In some cases, I see the reflections of myself in my friends. If I haven’t told them something, it’s because I know they would say the same thing I would say to them. They are the mirrors I can’t avoid, and the blemishes I can’t cover.
Acceptance, tolerance, understanding.
I think of these three words when I think about friendship, and I think about conversations made entirely out of TV show quotes and old photographs in frames.
Female friendships are difficult to find, because there’s always one bad seed out to ruin it for the rest of us.
Even in our twenties, there are mean girls and prom queens, little liars and fierce competitions. Some people have never been on our side.
I’m lucky enough to have a few women in my life who aren’t any of these things.
Girl love means not being controlled by the fear of losing each other, it means withstanding years and moments of heartache and accepting the mistakes of youth.
Having powerful and influential women in your life means you have someone who understands what it means to be female today, how it feels to be slut shamed and cat called, and what it’s like to fail and fall down. It means that on those gloomy days where you’ve lost belief, and lost faith, that they will hold it for you, and share it.
I have two girl friends that are the Serena to my Blair, the Cristina Yang to my Meredith Grey. With these two women, I know that miles hold no meaning and silence means no war. We each understand the limitations of each others lives, and we each understand every single thought that runs through the others heads.
They have both brought me warmth when I was torn into pieces, and brought me a dose of reality when I’ve been lost in daydreams and paralyzed by wishful thinking. They have seen immaturity, naivety and the force of my self doubt, and I have seen their guilty mornings and nights of neglect.
Chances are, they will both see more broken days and more salt water. But they will both see triumphs and prizes, and tears formed from joy and not grief. They will be my cheerleaders, counsellors, and champions.
We choose to keep our friendship simple, and we choose to love each other no matter what keeps us apart, and no matter how long we go without speaking.
We choose to believe in sisterhood, and not the toxicity of bad blood.
We also don’t give a damn if we hurt each other’s feelings, because we have an unwritten rule where sometimes we have to say something that the other really does not want to hear, and ultimately, it’s for the best.
We’ve seen the worst and the best of each other, we’ve seen the glory of growth and the ugliness of youth, and we’ve seen smeared mascara and broken bones. These are the people that you keep in your life, because you will never be their best anecdote–you both remember the time you threw up on a bar table, but you don’t talk about it.
There is a truth that nobody talks about.
We all talk about how our friends outlive our boyfriends, girlfriends, and young loves. We talk about how we meet our bridesmaids before our husbands, and how they become our family.
They say that it’s just the rules of feminism, or something.
They say that betrayal never comes from your enemies.
Some women do want to tear other women down, and some don’t trust in our power and some don’t want to. Simply put, they don’t want to play on our team.
The loss of a girl friend can be as intense, harrowing and disappointing as the loss of any love. We can still go through the seven stages of grief when we lose one of our best friends, regardless of who is to blame. Some girl loves are fragile, and fleeting. Some are unconditional, without the demands of daily text messages and Instagram likes.
Girl love, like romantic love, comes at us in all forms.
Girl love is not superior, stronger or unbreakable. It is not made of gold, and it isn’t perfect. Some friendships, like all relationships, end with bitter goodbyes and alterations of truth.
Some friends will say terrible things, and do worse. It’s not realistic to think that anyone is going to be more loyal to you simply because of their gender, and because of the girl code. We are all flawed human beings, and some have an axe to grind.
My worst betrayals have not come from ex boyfriends or partners, but from people I considered my sisters. Yet, I believe that women are the most influential force on each other, and that some of my best growth has come from them.
They could be the worst people you ever meet, they could strike as much chill in your bones as any heartbreaker or quiet opportunist, they could sting you as much as that thorn in your side. There will always be an exception to the rule, but the ones who don’t leave are the ones that know you well enough to save you, in the silent moments where you’re too concealed in denial to ask for help.