A spinoff of the movie Mean Girls (2004)… and other female-leading movies

Preface: This post was written from a cis-gendered female perspective on cis-gendered women and may not apply to SALGBTTIQ2+ communities. I acknowledge and respect the cultural nuances and gender identities in communities that experience relationships differently.

Before I begin my weekly rant, you should know there are specific movie days you HAVE TO observe:

  • 3 October: Mean Girls
  • 31 October: Hocus Pocus (and now there’s HOCUS POCUS 2! OMG!!)
  • 25 December: Die Hard (IT IS A CHRISTMAS MOVIE SHUTUP)
  • 25 December: The Nightmare Before Christmas
  • 2 February: Ground Hog Day
  • 4 July: Forrest Gump

So now you know… IT’S “MEAN GIRLS” WEEKEND Y’ALL! If you’re not watching Mean Girls this weekend or on October 3rd, then don’t talk to me! I’m kidding! But if you are wondering why Mean Girls is so iconic on October 3rd, I suggest you go watch it right now!

Women are powerful, and, at times, how versatile they are can be terrifying. Their attitude, thoughts, emotions, and voice can go from zero to 100 faster than you can blink. They’re born multitaskers and have the intuition of a lioness. People who get to see the best version of a woman are truly blessed because women possess a power that motivates and empowers. However, that same power can be weaponized and used to harm others in ways men couldn’t even fathom. I’d argue that an evil woman can be more dangerous than an evil man. Today, I want to give the men in this world a break and shift our attention to Mean Girls and where to find them. 

First, a disclaimer… I’m just kidding! Unlike men, women know that I’m not talking about ALL women. We’ve watched Cinderella enough times that we know not to bother attempting to fit the damn shoe.

Daddy didn’t raise no fool

It’s true what they say: you never forget your first. We were six years old, and Lindsay was her name. As my six-year-old self would say, “She was my bestest friend in the whole wide world.” But our (best) friendship was short-lived when she decided to change the password to our snow fort in the schoolyard after the winter holidays. Pizza, I’d call out at the fort entrance, and she’d reply, “Sorry, we changed the password.” We? Who’s we? She had already moved on to another best friend, claiming – and I quote – people change, Hazar. Damn… how does a six-year-old even know what that means? I know it sounds like I’m holding a grudge, but I assure you it’s because I have a freakishly good memory. I want to say I learned my lesson about being so trusting then, but then there was Kelly, Niki, Alyssa, Kayla, and so on. I’m laughing as I remember these names and thinking, “Oh, God. I need a lobotomy.” I just wanted a best friend with whom I could badmouth my parents, talk about boys, and whom I can share clothes. It seems like that was too much to ask when I was a child.

It’s interesting how women have been raised believing that success means looking over her shoulder, trusting no one and stabbing other women in the back. It’s ingrained in our culture and programmed in our minds from the time we’re old enough to formulate words. In movies and shows like Mean GirlsDynastyHouse of Cards, and Ever After, there’s always a villainous woman attempting to lie, cheat and steal her way to the top. Women compete against one another at every street corner I turn, and it saddens me. How did this all happen? Dare I blame the parents?

The most important influence on a child is the character of its parents, rather than this or that single event.

Erich Fromm

Parents don’t always realize how much power they have over their kids’ upbringing. They have so much power that they “literally” don’t even have to be in their lives to affect how they turn out. Children with or without parents will look for ways to emulate their parent’s behaviour. For example, an absent parent may indirectly cause their children to develop abandonment, attachment and trust issues. A present parent may impose their political views and perspective on life that may forever scar a child or help them grow to be the next leader. After all, the quote “lead by example” was not said for nothing.

Lindsay couldn’t have known to think that “people change” at such a young age unless she heard an adult say that at some point. The same concept could describe backstabbing mean girls (women) today. Remember, women had little to no rights before the 21st century. Mothers may have taught their daughters that they had to do whatever it took to succeed, which sometimes meant sacrificing other women to get on top. In parallel, it’s also possible that fathers taught their daughters to be tough and to push aside their emotions, so they don’t appear weak. They may have shown them little to no affection or favourited their sons, ultimately driving a woman to be more like a man and prove herself worthy of his love. The bottom line is that girls-turned-women are raised to believe that life is designed to set them up for failure and that fighting (each other) is the only way to remain relevant. They develop several emotional and trust issues from the very people meant to nurture and protect them: their parents.

S is for Sex-ess

Sometimes Dolores… sometimes you have to be a high-riding bitch, to survive. Sometimes, being a bitch, is all a woman has to hang on to.

Vera Donovan from the movie “Dolores Claiborne (1995)”

Everyone knows the famous line, “She f*cked her way to the top”. Oh, do I ever hate, hate, HATE, that line because it reeks of sexism, misogyny and a strong dose of vicious jealousy. First of all, women have sex. Get the f*ck over it. Who cares? Second, who she sleeps with is NO ONE’s business. Now, I’m not saying that there aren’t women who objectify themselves and use their sexual prowess to get what they want. After all, this post is about Mean Girls and where to find them. But rather than trashing a woman who becomes a victim of this (last) resort, let me show you a different perspective about why this still happens today.

Professor Callahan hits on Elle Woods in the movie Legally Blonde (2001)

It takes two to tango, and sex in the workplace usually involves at least two people. This means that a man with an authoritative power has just as much choice to act on sexual solicitation as a woman. However, when caught, women always seem to be the ones to carry the burden of shame. Remember, it’s Eve’s fault that Adam chose to eat the forbidden apple, and women have carried this blame since the beginning. But I have one question for you:

Do you HONESTLY think a woman’s first choice is to bang one out with a crusty, bored, ugly, fugly, likely married, sexist, misogynist, wrinkly-skinned, dangly-bitty old man?!

Bitch, please. Use some common sense. No woman in her right mind will start a job thinking, “I’m going to be the CEO of this company one day and will f*ck my way into this role!” Not one. Not even the evilest, nastiest and most vile woman alive. If that were the case, Hillary Clinton would have been President long ago (I clearly have as strong opinions of Hillary as I do Trump). My point is that women have been conditioned from birth to believe that they are set up to fail and that they are weak, emotionally unstable and insignificant unless seen. What better way to be seen than to move in on a man who holds all the cards? Suppose society allowed space for women to reach their potential, excel in their work, and accomplish their goals on their own merit. In that case, I guarantee you that sex would be off the table. Women face many obstacles and roadblocks when paving their way to success; unfortunately, being backed into a corner is one of them. That does not excuse the behaviour, which brings us back to the theme of my post. We always have a choice which means when we think we’re backed into a corner, we need to remember that the room is round and has no corners. Walking away and moving towards another window of opportunities is an option, as Elle Woods (Reese Witherspoon) showed us in Legally Blonde

Put down the mean-girl amour

A woman is the full circle. Within her is the power to create, nurture and transform.

Diane Mariechild

My family would tell you that I’m notorious for instantly calling women I meet my (new) best friend for the first time. It’s true; I’m guilty of that. I can’t help it, though! When women come together and form a (healthy) bond, it can be so powerful that anything is possible! They’re empowered, inspired and motivated to achieve the seemingly impossible! I may have been naive and quick to assume every girl or woman I met could be my friend when I was younger. Still, I never stopped believing that together, women have a better chance of succeeding and making this world a better place for all of us and generations to come.

I was raised to believe that sharing my knowledge, empowering others and leading by example is the sure way to success. I love watching women achieve impossible goals and thrive! I’m so proud of the women in my life who wake up every day and contribute to building this world. I have a lot of appreciation for women and what they’re capable of. Even the mean ones are fascinating! Believe it or not, it takes a lot of courage and bravery to be tenacious, bold or, well, sometimes plain rotten. It probably takes more energy to be evil than it does to let it go and do the best with the cards you were dealt.

The 21st century is the mother of protests and movements. Since the turn of the century, women are realizing their value, worth and, most importantly, that they are stronger together. Women-Empowerment campaigns have raised awareness of the gender inequality and inequity that created these Mean Girls. Mothers are teaching their daughters to put down their mean-girl armour and reach out to help or seek help. More women are revolting against the sexist patriarchy that designed the system to pin women against one another by doing the opposite. Mean Girls are not mean because they want to be; they’re mean because society raised them to believe they had to be.

References

Image by Amy from Pixabay

One thought on “You Can’t Sit With Us: Mean Girls and Where to Find Them

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