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Toxic Female Friendships

an article about toxic teen friendships.

The world of teenage girls is a very confusing and fragile one. The film "Mean Girls" was not a far stretch. Girls get hurt in friendships almost as much by friends than boyfriend break-ups maybe more. The status of some people's friendships can change daily minute by minute.

Teenage girls can spew verbal abuse as quickly as flipping a light switch on and on. Screaming matches occur in the middle of the street. The same girls that go to church on Sunday morning can be dropping F bombs on Sunday night. It is this unconscious battle for queen, and who ever seems to appear more popular in that moment, gets thrown down to the bottom of the teenage food chain. Lies and rumors seem to be used as weapons whether there is any actual truth to the vulger statements.

  Some people are only best friends until one person is getting more attention from the opposite sex, and then all bets are off the table. Girls lose their virginities like a used tissue, but then have the nerve to call other girls who engage in the same sexual behavior horrible names that are highly exaggerated, and not to mention hypocritical.

Bad female relationships can ruin a girl's self-image for years beyond middle school and high school. One single girl can spread a story about a girl just once, and it spreads like wild fire, leaving her as the school outcast, sad and alone. This can cause young girls to want to engage in self harm like cutting, drugs, and eating disorders.

Many girls ask their parents if they can change schools because of the toxic hate they feel from their once so-called friends. They can develop feelings of mistrust as a result of the pain and psychological damage they have suffered.

Psychological and emotional pain can start to manifest itself in physical sickness. The body can only take so much stress before it breaks down from all the overload and trauma. Cyber bullying takes girl hate to a whole new level. Words matter, and words are stronger than most other weapons of choice.

Parents need to be especially careful, because the pressures facing teens today can cause an emotional wipe-out by the time the last school bell rings at the end of the day. School can be like a virtual battlefield of the mind, it can steal a person's joy and shine.

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Comments (7)
Kathryn C

As an advocate standing behind the end to bullying within schools, but a member of a incredibly wonderful high school where no bullying occurs unless outside of school campus, I have very mixed feelings on this article. While yes, the MAJORITY of younger schools (pre-high) do suffer from childish drama, not so many of the high schools in my area do, and I've read quite a bit of literature on the psychological background of bullying - usually manifested from traumatic neglect the bully kids experience young, or a lack of self esteem.

Teen girls aren't that immature, at least my friends and I aren't, and we have a good grasp on reality (what's right vs. what's wrong). This may be more accurate in the pre-teen crowd, as I mentioned before, and the elementary crowd, who are just discovering how to use their voice (and never in the most mature of ways). I highly advise the parents of young children to enroll their kids in homeschooling or online programs for the 3 years of middle school, due to the literature and my personal experience (6 years of constant verbal bullying and intimidation).

As for the movie Mean Girls, that is a very, very fabricated story, and to reach that depth of such toxic hatred is extremely rare. You never see any faculty jumping in to stop the teens in Mean Girls until it gets out of hand to the point of the Burn Book being posted everywhere. In real life, faculty would step in before it got that crazed, and those kids would be expelled from school if they began attacking someone full-throttle in the lunch room.. I don't think teachers would have that little power, either (haha).

I do think this is a beautifully written article, but a little inaccurate regarding the "teenage society" today/quite pegging on a certain age group. I would have loved to see some literature or psychological theories worked in to the statements you made. Not to be extremely analytical, but the statement you make about how teen girls are "more often hurt by their friends than by boys" is a little hazy - what about lesbian and bisexual girls? Do you think the culture is any different for them? Probably, and not because they are just girls, but because they are gay, on top of that. From my young life, *partners* hurt me a lot more than my friends, then again, I'm a smart enough young person to choose friends that would never backstab me, and trust the few that present themselves maturely. It is all up to the teen - whether they want to live in a hell-bent life, or shape up and choose the correct people to associate with, certainly not all of us live in such a horrible position, and I am thankful I got out of it while I could. Bravo, Theresa! Well written.

Good article

Excellent article

Thank you everyone!~

this is outstanding work.

thank you so much!

I agree with Kathryn, there is a little hint of stereotyping in the assessments of teen girls. This is still a good article, and deserves to be voted up. So consider it done!

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