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Why women bully other women and why it must stop.
Author: Janie Smith
Copyright: Janie Smith
If you wish to use any part of this article please contact me first. Thank you.
Girls bully other women, women empower women”
As women living in a still largely patriarchal society we have big enough battles to win already. So why then are women not standing united? Why do many still bully members of their own gender? Statistics show that 68% of all bullying cases are female against female. The message this sends to young girls is dangerous. They see their adult role models behaviour and often repeat it. Adult bullies have much to answer for.

Women bullying women is not a new phenomenon but it has certainly become more visible with the incredible growth of social media and more females in the workplace. There are entire communities who seem to derive great pleasure from doing nothing but pull other women down. The more successful, and success comes in many forms, that woman is, the harsher it becomes. Are these women just nasty pieces of work or are they in need of help with their own issues?

So why do women bully?

1.       Insecurity

Women who can admire successful women do so because they understand how hard that person has worked and the time taken to get there, however that success looks. They know that they have made big decisions which may have been difficult, that they have committed themselves to constantly reflect on their behaviours and work on self-improvement. The admiration isn’t about becoming a carbon copy of that person but to understand the processes that went into her success and emulate those processes…. not the person. No one can try to be someone else and be happy. An emotionally mature woman can recognise her own gifts and talents and create success by understanding the journey.

Women who are envious of others who have achieved success often demean others to make themselves feel better, to prove to others that they are good enough, if not “better” than their target. This is a manifestation of a person who does not like themselves. Envy is unattractive and unhealthy. It is often the case that they have had a bad experience. It could be that the successful women they envy reminds them of what they didn’t achieve. The actions they take in bullying are designed to show their target, in their minds, that they are better than the target and the target is “above themselves”. It almost appears to be a suit of armour to protect themselves from future reminders.

Being envious or living a carbon copy life must be exhausting. Successful women don’t have enough spare time in the day to behave like this. They are busy being positive and productive, being great friends.

Envy, arguably can, if not out of control, be used as a positive force to drive a person to success but given the huge negativity that comes with it can be hugely destructive and create immense sadness and bullying behaviours.

2.       The need to be “accepted”

If you can do one thing for the women and girls in your life it is to teach them that they are amazing and can achieve whatever they want. It doesn’t matter if we are not traditionally beautiful, skinny or whatever else it is that society constantly tells us we must be. If we like ourselves our life will be a success and full of positivity. You will not need to be part of a posse that merely reflects their own insecurities and makes them feel “right”. Frequently we see social media cliques develop and a leader emerges. She gets thrills from the number of likes she gets on her posts. It reinforces her beliefs. What she needs to concentrate on is learning to like herself.

3.       Believing that she is an all-conquering heroine.

Sadly, there are many women who believe that to succeed at work or in social arenas they must dominate others. Very poor behaviour is witnessed as this person treads all over others and attempts to control them. The reality is we can’t control others, only ourselves. If a woman believes that domination is the way forward she is deluded and will be desperately unhappy even if she tells the world she is on top.

4.       The ” it’s not fair syndrome.”

This is based upon the belief that opportunity for them does not exist and the limited opportunities that do exist are only for the chosen lucky few. This is small world thinking and that small thinker will only see a few bricks whereas the big thinker sees the fully built house. Those that are small thinkers need to get over it! Opportunity is there for everyone, it’s up to them to take it. Life isn’t about feast or famine, if they believe that they limit themselves and begin to despise the big thinkers who are grateful for every opportunity. Some of the most successful women in the world came from very humble backgrounds but still took a positive outlook. If you don’t believe it you can achieve things look at this article. Women from rags to riches. Remember too that success is subjective, it may be that a woman who was raised in a children’s home becomes a superb mother whilst her friend didn’t.

5.       Needing to be acceptable

If we can grow on a personal level, we know that we are good enough. Sadly, many women are not able to do this, which is a societal travesty in itself. They look outside of themselves to confirm their perceived worth. This results in bullying others to feel “good”. What is unfortunate is that without knowing your good enough it is difficult if not impossible to experience joy in life.

This article is not about excusing bulling behaviour, there are no excuses. Strong big picture women will understand that there are reasons and that person is in a dark place.

As womankind, we must empower each other. This creates a happier world and will stop the vicious cycle of bullying as bullies are role models for their daughters who without empowerment will continue the negative actions of their mothers.

Janie Smith


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