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Are We Finally Done Pitting Women Against Each Other?

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UCLA chapter.

As if being a woman on its own wasn’t tough enough, society has long conditioned us to feel the need to compete with one another. With only a limited amount of space for female success, it’s more common to see animosity between women instead of solidarity. Except now, maybe that’s changing. 

This new era of feminism piloted by Generation Z is encouraging women of all backgrounds to stand with, not against, each other. For a long time, the idea of the perfect woman was ingrained in our society and we’ve been taught that it can only apply to one person, so if we perceive someone to be filling that spot, then that must mean we’re not good enough. With the help of the Internet, we’re starting to see widespread cracks in that mindset, allowing women to celebrate and lift one another up without feeling threatened. Another woman’s success does not undermine your own, nor does her problems invalidate yours. It’s a hard pattern to break, but we’re on our way. 

I went to an all-girls high school and I still felt like I had to compete with my classmates, maybe even more so socially. We had a brother school of all boys and we would constantly fight for their attention because there were so many of us but only a handful of them. If your friend had a boyfriend at that school but you didn’t, then she was obviously better than you. It was never “She’s really pretty” or “She’s really popular,” it was always “She’s prettier than me” or “She’s more popular than me.” We didn’t ask ourselves why we were perpetuating such toxic, comparative relationships among the students of our school because to us, that’s what was normal and that’s how it always was. 

That may have only been a few years ago, but I’m excited to see it becoming a thing of the past. In both our physical social circles and online ones, we’re witnessing a movement in favor of uplifting women and creating space for all of us to coexist. No more “token smart girl” or “token pretty girl” because there’s enough smart and enough pretty to go around. The presence of another successful woman shouldn’t be intimidating but empowering. 

Anna Schultz-Running To Beach Carefree Inspirational
Anna Schultz / Her Campus

It’s 2022 and it’s about time that we let each other live. We don’t have to tear others down to feel better about ourselves, nor do we need to act like their successes dim our own. We can have our individual wins while still supporting those of our peers. The change has already started, we just have to keep it going.

Audrie is a fourth-year student from Honolulu, Hawaii, majoring in Human Biology Society and minoring in Anthropology. Her favorite things to talk about are self-care, brunch, and her cat. She also really loves the beach and anything matcha flavored! In her free time, you can catch her shopping for records, books, and Trader Joe's snacks.