Is it just me, or have all women experienced being bullied by another women? Even in adulthood, I've experienced some woman that felt the need to tear me down. And I've also seen first-hand when my friends tear other women down. And that's not fun to see. But as a female friend, you have the responsibility to stop it!
Here's my attempt at ways to spot and stop female bullying
Passive-aggressive comments about looks
"She would be so pretty if...(she fixed her hair, she got her nails done WHATEVER)" or
"She's so confident for wearing that, if I had her thighs I would stay away from dresses in general."
It sounds like the person cares right? Well, think again. It's essentially demeaning the other person and setting a framework for how you think the other woman should be/behave/look. And that's not your job.
How to Stop it: Try to remind your friend that the person is not perfect, and we need to accept that not all people are perfect. Your standard of beauty might not be theirs! And maybe just because you think something is best for her isn't necessarily what's best for her.
This happens another woman does something that they think they can pull of better or do better. It can shown up in sneaky comments, but other ways include : groans, sighs, and eye-rolls.
How to stop it: Call them out. Ask why they rolled their eyes, groaned or made that comment. If they respond "I could do better!" Tell them that maybe they couldn't. Or maybe if they feel they can, they can reach out and help the other person!
Tearing each other down in public
"I'm really worried about her because she's been (out a lot, drinking a night, looking sleepy), and it seems to be affecting her performance at work."
"I think she would've gotten a better grade if she didn't spend so much time with her bf..."Or generally bringing up an issue to a group of people instead of mentioning it to the person it really applies to.
It sounds like the person cares right? It's essentially demeaning the other person in front of people without the other person's opinion. It's setting a framework for how you think the other woman should behave. And that's not your job.
How to Stop it: Tell the person that what they are saying is actually really a remark. Tell them if they really care, then maybe they should reach out to the other woman and ask her if anything is going on!
Emphasizing female friendships to justify actions
"But I have to many other female friends!" I hate this is excuse with a fiery passion. Just because you are kind and lovely to some woman does not make it ok for you to be to others. It's like when someone makes a racist comment and then turns around and says, "It's ok I have a black friend!" Not as serious, but still a serious flaw in train of thought.
How to Stop it: Remind your friend that they are nice to you, and you appreciate that they are, but one of the reasons you are friends is the fact that you are kind to each other. And just because she is nice to you does not mean that they can be mean to another girl.
The best way to stop it?
Treat women as equals, friends, people that you can learn from and appreciate. My best advice is to really try hard to understand each other, and get to know the people you might not think you'd be friends with. Because they could be your new bff some day. :) And because all woman deserve respect and love <3