In various print and web magazines, there is always talk of the relationship dynamic between women: how we support each other (or lack thereof), Waiting to Exhale moments and the occasional cat fight or two...
But from my indirect and direct experiences, there is definitely a lack of support among women. We don't have the same camaraderie as men do. We're quick to super-friend up and in the same breath tear each other down. I honestly feel a responsibility to be accountable for the uplifting and support of my fellow woman. (Let's sing Kum Ba Yah now, please...)
What's depicted of us it that there's always an underlying ulterior motive when it comes to a group of women. Until recently, I had never experienced genuine love and support from my female peers. In the past 2 years, I have seen a great deal of support from perfect strangers as well as ladies who I have grown close to through trial and triumph.
I feel a personal responsibility to support my fellow woman at all times. I know first hand what it feels like to have no support system behind you. We must push each other, console each other, guide one another and have a level of respect for any woman that we come in contact with. Change starts with one. I'm a firm believer that I have received so much so that I can have the ability to give so much. That's what I intend to do.
I've seen what evil and negative thinking can do to us. Looking out for self does nothing for the advancement of us all. When you are selfish in your efforts, you are only hurting yourself in the end. With that being said, it is essential that we as women do what it takes to ignite a fire within ourselves to light up the younger generation (s) of young ladies to come.
I honestly am the young woman I am today because other women poured into me when I was empty and uncertain of myself. When I was OF this world, I was shown sisterly love and I continue to encounter it on a daily basis. I get it in real life interactions, social media friendships and strangers who genuinely connect to the love I have within my own spirit. It's such a beautiful thing to experience those moments...
A quick story before I go:
Last March (2010), I went to jail in Atlanta. I spent 4 days in Wright Street population for something that I didn't do. To the average individual it may seem like a cruel mistake. But when I actually began talking to the women imprisoned, I knew my reasoning for being there was perfect purpose in action.
My cell mate was a woman by the name of Miss Judy. She was imprisoned for prostitution and possession of a controlled substance. Miss Judy was knowingly a slave to her addiction and couldn't do anything about it. She told me tales of her euphoric, nightmare-like highs, how walking the "strip" was like a fashion show and the other men made her feel pretty. She told me she got high to escape her past reality. She was raped at the age of 13 and felt like the life she now lived was her punishment for letting that happen.
I tell this story to say that there are women who have no hope, no voice, no support system. Miss Judy poured her heart out to me because I took the time to listen when no one else did.
Please don't let us walk around as sisters in this world alone. We must be accountable for the success and support of the next woman.
Open your heart and listen.