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Older than 18? You’re Not A Mean Girl, You’re A Mean Woman

I was walking into a store recently and ran into a primary school classmate; a female I’ve known since I was five-years-old.

We exchanged pleasantries; hugged, hailed and kept it moving as I hustled to get inside. I chuckled to myself when someone in my party asked what was I laughing at. I didn’t hesitate to tell them that the same woman I greeted outside was so mean to me when we were younger.

I could literally go to school one day and be her best friend and the next, you could’ve sworn I stole her freshly sharpened No. 2 pencil and broke it in half. Some days we were BFFs, but some days she just hated my guts and I never knew why.

And she was an alpha female, too. If she was mad at me all the other girls (and some of the boys) were mad at me. If she was talking to me, then they too became my “friends.”

These were my first real introductions to female friendship and non-biological sisterhood and these awkward and sometimes painful experiences had me shook!

Thank God I had a sister and cousin attending the same school, who kept me entertained and wiped my tears (and encouraged me to put gum in their chairs) as I tried to figure out and understand this crazy relationship dynamic.

My tender little five-year-old heart was constantly broken and mended back together with Elmer’s glue.

I told my friends as we shopped that those see-saw interactions with my schoolmates really shaped my relationship with women on the whole.

These events happened (and have been forgiven) eons ago, but to this day, they’ve made me weary, observant, cautious, apprehensive and even scared of befriending other females.

But the childish snickering, brushing by me in the hallway, moving seats when I saw down next to them for lunch, gum in the chair (wait, that was me) and not inviting me to ring play during break is what mean girls do.

We were kids!

We had to learn what it meant to be a friend, to stand up for ourselves, to stand up for right, to figure out what loyalty is and how to get along.

Was it right?


But weird childhood friendships happen and are usually forgiven. The forgetting part (or lack thereof) is what shapes you as a woman.

I read somewhere once, though, that, “mean girls become mean women.”

mean girls mean women

I can’t swear by this statement but I do know that as a woman,  we’ve all had our times, moments and days where humans just aren’t our favorite things.

Let me just say, I think we all can be mean women at some points. I know for sure I’ve been that woman; letting my annoyance, frustration or anger at someone or something make me lash out.

It happens, it’s a sucky and horrible thing to both experience and be but, once you tread that line you have to be prepared to suffer the consequences.

The main difference between a mean girl and a mean woman is that the mean girl’s actions can be forgiven, while…

Mean woman actions don't blow over so easily Click To Tweet

Vile attacks on another woman’s character, career, family; intentionally excluding her from shared social experiences, vindictive snickering and snarky remarks as soon as she walks in the room, talking above, around and across her while ignoring her presence in a social setting, are things that just aren’t tolerated and forgiven on the fly.

A mean woman could literally ruin lives, where significant others, children and reputations are involved.

While the mean girl from primary school may have suffered detention and having to clean all the blackboards after school, the mean woman could possibly suffer career blacklisting, missed opportunities and a scarred reputation.

But the gag is, unlike a mean girl, a mean woman doesn’t HAVE to be tolerated. She likely doesn’t have the luxury of time on her side…or worse yet, someone waiting in the wings to forgive. 

The reason is…

Mean women don't realise that their victims are women too...grown women! Click To Tweet

These are women who probably have no time to even call them out on their bullyish ways and who would much rather ignore them.

These victims are women who’ve probably encountered (cried, been depressed, and questioned herself) when she experienced mean girls in her past and have no patience for women who try to make her relive a history she’s since moved on from.


Share your thoughts! Have you experienced a mean woman?

Read also: Stop Leaving the Daters Out! “Single” & “In a Relationship” Are Legit Statuses Too

8 Responses
  • Tracey Crockett
    September 12, 2017

    I never made friends easily as a child (and still don’t) but even so, I felt the sting of mean girls especially when I got pregnant in the 11th grade. To this day I remember the hurt I felt and even shared it with the woman as an adult. She apologized profusely but the damage had been done so I’m leery of her to this very day. Is she a mean woman today? I don’t think so, but for me, I’ll never allow myself to get close to her. As a result, like you, I am leery of befriending people despite having no problem supporting them in every way. I tend to sit back and watch what a person does & says before I truly allow myself to even consider them a friend. Honestly, I’ve probably missed the opportunity to have a few friends because of this, but old habits used to protect our fragile hearts don’t go away so easily.

    • ianthia
      September 12, 2017

      Amen, Tracey! Wow, thanks so much for sharing this! It’s very true that old habits die young. But just as we retain and remember lessons in school and at home from our youth, we retain and remember the hurts as well. people don’t realise this!

  • Carmen Moss
    August 30, 2017

    I have had my experiences. However, if you were mean to me, I would beat up your butt, and let you go with that. I cussed a few as well! Lolol and so loudly, I would be reported to my parents by those in hearing distance. My mom would say wait til your dad gets home, and my dad would whop my behind as soon as he got home from work!
    Sometimes I was allowed to explain what happened…..

  • Monalisa
    August 29, 2017

    I totally love this story and can relate to it at a stage in my life! I can also relate to turning into a bully to not be subject to anyone’s insults. It feels good to treat others the way i want to be treat and surround myself with like minded people who now laugh at insults or become our own joke. This story is a must read for my daughter as she has her days with this very situation at 8 years old in modern time. It is very important for parents to instill morals in our kids that would create an impact that others can adapt to. P.S. Life has a way of surprising us!

  • Michelle
    August 28, 2017

    My mean girl in high school situation didn’t happen up until I was 16. A group of girls peed in my cup of water. That definitely shook me for life. Have I experience mean women? I sure have, but I have come to learn that the women that do try to come at me tend to have their own insecurities and can only feel better about themselves by making others feel bad. And I am way too cute and educated to succumb to their BS – or I try to remind myself of that when it does start to irk me.

    • ianthia
      August 29, 2017

      Peed in your cup?! That’s beyond mean, that’s cruel as hell! But you’re right it is due to insecurities and I experience that from women on a daily basis sadly enough. But yes, we’re too educated and cute to retaliate!

      Thanks for reading!

      • Dess
        August 29, 2017

        I cut off mean women before they take their next breath! So you’re right, there is no need to tolerate a “mean women”. What strikes me about mean woman is how petty and small-minded she is! I found myself on social media being jeered by this one particular (40 year old) mean woman because earlier we disagreed about the BAISS results. No issue is too small for a mean woman to blow up! I’m a proud SACA and expressed that! She objected. The next thing I know, this heifer is talking about whether school fees are paid (I have no children in SAC), implying that I have no baby daddy for my son or he was a married man because she’d never seen s photo of him. Say what! I admit to becoming a mean girl and reminded her that she was truly a sad clown, hiding behind her glitter, while her husband was the town whore! Yes, of course, no names were called. After allowing my post to stay up for a few days so she couldn’t miss it, I blocked her.