“Girls compete with each other. Women empower one another. There is always room for everyone to succeed.”
Chelsea Handler said women have a problem supporting each other, is she right? Whilst I wouldn’t want to dive into American politics here, to her it was shocking to see that 53% of women voted for Donald trump in favour of Hilary Clinton in the last US presidential elections.
For me personally, I have some few very dear and lovely female friends, mummy friends and colleagues that have always been a great and constant support to me in all areas- socially, professionally, spiritually and continue to be, however it’s very clear this is a problem that is holding many women back. The photo above is of me and my friends from work on a girls fitness trip to Spain few months ago. Except one of us, we all work in the Finance sector. One of us is a Private wealth manager, another is a Vice President an at investment bank, another is investor relations communications manager at a hedge fund whilst the other is a change manager at a large retail company. Being around these smart, supportive and inspiring ladies on that trip was such an amazing and fun experience so it pains me when i hear how women don’t support one another.
Similarly, my close mummy friends have become my biggest support system since I had my kids, given I relocated to the United Kingdom away from my country of birth where most of my family still reside. They encourage me, motivate me and even help with child care when I’m stuck. We also hang out every now and then just to unwind and share notes.
I recall a friend of mine once had absolutely the most difficulty with her female boss, a Vice President at a corporate organisation. Sadly, to cut the long story short that female boss later got fired whilst my friend got promoted to Vice President. All these feelings of envy, jealousy and competition are wasted emotions. They harbour dysfunctional energy and create a negative result, usually with those harbouring them continuing to be unhappy and stagnant and others continuing to succeed.
Former US Secretary of State, Madeline Albright once said: “There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help each other.” How are you treating the women around you? Maybe you’d best offer a helping hand instead of a pounding foot. “If you don’t have anything nice to say, then don’t say anything at all.” So, the next time you see or hear a woman doing something courageous or taking action to be the best they can be, embrace them and tell them how much they inspire You. If you see them doing a good job, tell them. If they look fabulous. Tell them.
Look around. Find women to support. Throw your weight behind them. Get involved. We have to stop ourselves from the nasty comments that come easily and out of jealousy that are simply a projection of our own insecurities.
Let’s stop it with the negativity about how women look or what they wear, or if they’ve gained or lost weight or if they are a stay at home mom or a working mom or breastfeeding or bottle feeding or if they’re married or divorced.
We have a whole generation of girls who are looking at us to see how we treat each other. Let’s show them what the power of being a woman really looks like. Let’s open our arms to each other, and to them.
Here are the responses from some women on about this topic on the Notjustamum facebook community.
“Women hardly support themselves. I think it is coming from a place of jealousy, envy and all negative vibes. I for one have more male friends than females as I feel secure with them.”
Shakirat, future mum
“It is true. Fortunately I have had several women who have genuinely been supportive of me be it with regards to my career, relationships, family e.t.c. Thing is, I think women are competitive between themselves so they either steer clear when they feel they don’t measure up or are fake just to prove they’re better. Personally I try to be real and honest and supportive with women around me but I pull back the moment I’m not getting back as I give because I believe it should be a symbiotic relationship (and I’m not talking about giving material things) and don’t want to get caught in friendships that aren’t genuine. I may be wrong but an observation I have made is that sometimes women are more supportive of other women that they do not have longstanding relationships with.”
Saude, mum of 1
“She is very right! Women are the problems of women. There are some supporting one’s though, but the percentage of very very low!!”
Tomi, mum of 2
“Very right women compete compare and envy too much it’s sad!!! Cut your coat accordingly and celebrate others!!!”
Glory, mum of 3
“Insecurity is the problem – I think women with a very strong character don’t have such issue. Also women who acknowledge their insecurity and work to go beyond this limitation are in a good position to support other women. The moment we embrace ourselves as we are knowing perfectly well that we are not perfect that will be a stepping stone towards appreciating the woman next to you.”
Abby, mum of 2
“Women who have strong and secure character have no issues supporting their sisters. When I see a woman being amazing I immediately want to send her a message to say “you rock! I need to know you!” I always want to celebrate women and show them off. Maybe that’s why I specialize in photographing women – I want to bring out and show the best in my sisters!!”
Swat, mum of 3
What are your thoughts on this topic, do you think women tend to support one another or not? Leave your comments below.