Sunday, January 20, 2008

Tearing one down to build another up?

Lately I've noticed a tendency in women to do a weird thing. Well, women do a lot of weird things. (So do men, but as a woman I notice the women's weirdnesses more.) It's one of those social things that women are so good at: tearing one person down in order to build another person up. Here's what I mean:

Woman A compares herself to Woman B, and worries that there is something wrong with her because Woman B does things differently. Being a woman, she asks her friends what they think about this. Being women, the friends assure Woman A that there is something wrong with Woman B, and that Woman A is all right and fine and dandy.

It doesn't matter if both Woman A and Woman B have valid (though different) opinions on some point, or different reactions to something, or different methods of cooking potatoes. If Woman A is concerned that she is wrong, then the friends have to assure her that she is right, and that means Woman B cannot also be right. Woman B must be neurotic, or callous, or a bad cook, or whatever. Whatever makes Woman A feel better about herself.

Why can't we just say "yeah, well, I guess you're different" and leave it at that?

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