On female friendships – and death to patriarchy

The last several months, I’ve been thinking a lot about friendships (and love and stuff). I’ve grown to love my friends, I’ve gotten closer to the ones I was already close to–’cause life and shit teaches you to keep the good people in your life closer to you because they’re a blessing; good friends and a good friendship are great excuses to be happy … not that you should ever need an excuse to be happy, though, but more on happiness another time. I don’t have as many male friends as I’d like (I believe in being friends with people of all genders and sexes, all races, all colors, all language groups, etc.), and the few that I do have brighten my day whenever I talk to them.

But this post is specifically about friendships among women. Because the image that the media keeps throwing at us about female friendships is that all girls/women are deep inside jealous of each other, all are in a competition with each other, all hate each other, all want the same things, and so on. This is a dangerous, misleading, and unfair image of us – we’re not like that. That’s not to deny that I’ve had some bad experiences with a few female friends I’ve known, but that’s also not to deny that I know plenty of males who’ve been terrible to their male friends as well.

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Wise words from 5-year-old Kashmala

The Kashmala – I THINK in Apr 2013?

For the past several months, I’ve been going through some shit. That includes losing people/friends that I regret losing (no, don’t be like, “Well, they weren’t worth your friendship in the first place if they had to choose to get out of your life,” or, “Oh, well – their loss!” No, it’s their loss, maybe, but it’s my loss, too, and I’m not okay with that), and some other stuff. I share these things with Kashmala because I love her opinions, I love her reminders to me that “It’s okay, I’m here for you. You want me to do your make-up? Let me do your make-up and then you’ll feel sooooo good.” I share stories and anecdotes of my friends with Kashmala, and she knows the names of some of my closest friends and has even talked with some of them through Skype, Whatsapp, gchat, Facebook, etc. She’s loveable, and she’s easy to talk to and have fun with.

So, as I lose people that Kashmala has come to know about or interacted with before, she goes, “I hate her; don’t ever, ever talk to her again” (I love that she takes my side – loyalty FTW, ai). I told her of two people I’d briefly been close to this summer in Oman who stopped talking to me without at all communicating their feelings to me about whatever problem we were having and who denied any tension when I went up to try to talk to them about it; I told her about this other friend I lost whom she adored; she saw pictures of my friends on FB who are no longer in my life, and I told her that, na, I didn’t know them anymore, etc., etc. And finally came her wise words:

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