• The Hopefulist

Toxic women - are you one?

Warning ladies. I'm going up on my soapbox today and pulling the veil off on how we treat each other. I'm going to ask you to look at your own behavior to determine if you are contributing to the problem. We are all guilty on some level (most of us anyway) but to what extent is only something you can answer.

Women tearing down other women. It's an epidemic. It's brutal. We do it to our comrades when we say we want to see women become more successful. So is that really true? Do we want to see other women be successful if it's more success than we have ourselves? We are so freaking hard on each other. The judgement, the harsh comments, the catty remarks about our appearance.

There is nothing that bothers me more than when women are called catty. It puts us in a different category than men. It insinuates that we we are bitter and nasty to our counterparts. Its women tearing other women down. I think what bothers me most about the term is that it is often true. We are so hard on each other. We are judgmental. We do rip other women to shreds for the mere fact that we don't like them. And here's what bothers me to the most; men do not do this. They just don't. Nor do women do it to men. Not to the same extent anyway. If we want to thrive and be taken seriously we have to stop tearing each other down and hold each other up instead!

As we continue to discuss removing toxicity from our lives, we have to start with our own behavior. Are you contributing to this problem of tearing other women down? Do you judge women in the spotlight harshly? Do you feel you can say whatever you want about them no matter how vicious it may be?

I decided to talk about this after seeing someone post in one my book groups that they were reading "Girl, Wash your Face" by Rachel Hollis. And man, most women in the post just ripped her apart. Judging everything from her upbringing to how she raises her kids to the type of person she is. How whiny she is while at the same time tooting her own horn. She was accused of having a privileged upbringing (she didn't) and talking about herself too much to being a straight out fraud. You all know I'm a fan of Rachel and this isn't intended to be some sort of defense of her but when writing a book about your life experience wouldn't you talk about yourself and your story??? I'm using this post as an example of how we treat women on the whole. And the difference between how us women, talk about other women as opposed to talking about men. Because I don't see women tearing down Tony Robbins or other men in the same sort of genre. I see people say they don't like him and call him a bragger but I don't see his past being dissected or the way he lives his life or the personal attack I see of the women doing the same sort of work.

Here is another thing that completely baffles me. We say we want to see more successful women but if those women say they are successful...they are crucified. Seriously. As women, we are still expected to act like our success is just mere luck or we are blessed. No, successful women work their assess off for their success...often much harder than men because it takes so much longer to catch up but we aren't allowed to say we deserve the fruits of our labor. Because if we do, we are braggers, tooting our own horn, too into ourselves. What? Men brag about their accomplishments all the time and that is perfectly acceptable.

Another example I see about Rachel all the time. She is very transparent about how she manages all that she does. She says straight out...I have help. She talks about how it disappoints her when she sees other successful women say they can do it all because they are organized and can balance it all when you know they have nannies and a staff at home. Yet, when Rachel admits that she has a nanny and a house cleaner, she is still crucified for not being able to do it all, having someone else raise her kids and in a different league than the rest of us. Honestly, we can't win. No matter what we do, we are crucified for it.

I'm not innocent of these things by any means. I have been extremely harsh on some women. But I want to stop. Why do we feel the need to do this? Are we jealous? Are we threatened? Does it make us feel better to bash other women who are successful? I think we all want to see more successful businesswomen in this country so why do we make it so hard for them to do so? We tend to be harder on women who are transparent and live their lives publicly. We love them for being authentic but we hate them for being authentic.

My business, this ...."The Hopefulist" is modeled after the way Rachel does things. I am very open about my life now and in the past. I use examples from my own life to demonstrate how I have overcome obstacles in my life. I try to be as open and honest as possible in an effort to help people. I'm not trying to say my life was worse than anyone else's. I'm not trying to compare myself to anyone else. I'm simply telling my story and how I've grown and improved my own life. But when I see the amount of hatred and vicious comments like I did yesterday in a thread about a woman who wrote her life story for the whole world to judge in an effort to help others...it seriously makes me rethink this line of work. I do not want to be the subject of such a thread. It honestly made me stop and think seriously about continuing this business. Bad comes with the good but there is just no reason to be so judgmental of other people in such brutal ways. Again, I will say...we don't treat men nearly as harshly.

The saving grace is that for all the hate being spewed about this particular woman I know there are many others who love and appreciate what she does. That is what I want for myself. I want people to know my story, learn from it and make a better life for themselves but at what cost? Why ladies? I really need to understand why we continue to tear each other down like this while saying in the next breath we want to see more successful women in this country?

Do you know the majority of comments women on t-v get are about their appearance? Not the work they do....it's the clothes they wear or how their hair looks. Men don't face this same type of scrutiny. Not on the same level. What makes us feel it's okay to say whatever we want about other women no matter how rude or nasty it is? Why do we feel the need to tear them down? And so publicly? It so disheartening.

Are you guilty of this behavior? Are you contributing in some way? I'm not accusing, I'm asking. Examine the things you have said about successful women. Have they been supportive or have you begrudged them their success by verbally attacking them? Look, it's fine if you don't like someone. We can merely say, "She's not really for me but you may like her stuff." But we tend to go into attack mode. Can't we just happy that some women are breaking through the glass ceiling and giving men a run for their money? Why instead of cheering them on do we tear them down? I'm just wondering.

Hey y'all....I warned you I was on my soapbox today. But it is hump day. We halfway to the freaking weekend. Now, go out there and be a badass...you know I'm cheering you on!

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