Ever since the book came out, I've received feedback about how it's made women think about friendships throughout their lives, as well as who is in their lives now. The goal of this blog is to open up and create a dialogue about friendships: the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Each week I will post my thoughts, experiences, as well as various articles, topics or quotes that I feel are important when examining female friendships. Please feel free to leave comments; I look forward to hearing from you!

Email me: survivingfemalefriendships@gmail.com

Follow me on Twitter: @ZangaraNicole

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

The Power of Femship

Femship...that's right, ladies.  Here's a term you need to start using with your best friends.  I came across a fantastic article that explores positive benefits of female friendship...er, femship: Women With Strong Female Friendships Have a Surprising Advantage Over The Rest of Us by Elizabeth Plank.

An excerpt from the article:
"Having each other's backs makes women unstoppable. The femship might be key to providing women with the critical mass they need to reach parity with men. "Female friendship helps women get the upper hand in the world," Sklar explained. "It's advantageous for me when my bestie does well. Not only does it make me look good that I'm hanging out with a baller, or shall I say an egger, but it also increases my own sense of opportunity because the opportunities for me improve, too."

She's right. When women work together, they also succeed together. So although we love to snack on slideshows of Beyoncé and Jay Z's latest tropical vacation while we impatiently await Amal and George Clooney's impending world domination, the thought of seeing more female friendship pop in our newsfeeds should make us giddy. Celebrating friendship, rather than competition, between women will help the next generation of women embrace, rather than resent, the strong women around them. In a world still ridden with gender inequality, femships may be the game-changer we've been waiting for. Cheers a Big Mac with your bestie to that."

Women are shown in the media as either in competition with each other or fighting over a man.  That's not so accurate in reality.  Plank shows pictures of femships, such as Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, Serena Williams and Caroline Wozniacki, as well as Nicki Minaj and Beyonce.  These are some great femship role models that exhibit healthy friendships, as well as healthy competition.

When we're around strong women, it encourages us to become stronger as well.  We learn to work together for a common goal and to push each other to become our best selves.  Behold, the femship!  

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Friendship Break Ups

I came across this article, which covers such a sad, but common topic I get asked about when discussing female friendship: The Day My Best Friend Broke Up With Me by Annabelle Gurwitch

Gurwitch shares her friendship break up story, and how she learned a lot about herself through the process.

Hope you find the article as interesting as I did.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Friendship Quotes/Images

"Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: 'What! You too? I thought I was the only one."
―C.S. Lewis

"There is nothing better than a friend, unless it is a friend with chocolate." ―Linda Grayson


Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Life's Too Short For Crappy Friends

I stumbled upon this great article with a very direct and well-said point: life's too short for crappy friends.

In the article, Anna Lind Thomas explores what it means to have a good friend versus a crappy one.  She gives a positive message to women who may be struggling with being the "cool" or "popular" ones, and why it's important to live your life for you, instead of constantly seeking approval from others.  The more you improve yourself, the more others want to be around you and you'll have meaningful, healthy relationships.  It's a win-win!

An excerpt from the article:
"There are obvious signs you might be in a friendship you shouldn’t be in. Obvious signs could include that the person makes you feel bad about yourself, you’re constantly paranoid about losing the friendship, or the person blatantly uses you and may even be mean and verbally abusive towards you from time to time.

But there are subtle signs too. They don’t outwardly treat you badly, but there’s just something about the way they interact with you that makes you feel inadequate. Sometimes you decide to hide certain aspects of yourself because you’re not convinced they’ll like or accept all of you. Sometimes you’ll start compromising your values to have something in common. Sometimes you find yourself acting like the person you think they want to be friends with rather than just being the precious being you are.

Sometimes, even though you’re surrounded by “friends,” you start to feel lonely and insecure. They’re your friends, but the friendship has limits. Maybe your feelings don’t matter if they inconvenience them or if you ever share that they have hurt your feelings, they decide you’re a little too exhausting to keep around."

It's not worth it or healthy to keep a friendship that makes you feel bad or inferior.  The goal is to have friends who lift you up, make you smile after a difficult day and appreciate all of your (good and bad) qualities.  I agree with Thomas in that I'd rather have one great friend than many who are fake and catty.  That one friendship would provide a lifetime of positive experiences than having many friends who would drain, exhaust or cause tension.  Who wants that?!  Life is waaaaay too short for crappy friends!

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Friendship and Therapy

Check out this article I was interviewed for:
Does your friendship need therapy by Anna North

We often think of couples going to counseling, not friends.  This article explores why therapy may be helpful for those friendships that need an outside perspective.  As a therapist myself, I think it's a great idea, as it would improve the overall quality of the friendship, including any issues with communication.  If the friendship is worth saving, therapy would be a logical next step.

What do you think?  Would you seek therapy with your friend?

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Another Reason I Like Mindy Kaling...

If you're a fan of Mindy Kaling, you'll like this article:
Mindy Kaling Is Right, Friends Are Hard to Find by Dyanne Weiss

The article asks the question that I get asked all of the time: As adults, how do we make friends?

An excerpt from the article:
"Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project, has written a lot about the difficulty of making friends. She suggests that people join or form a group that at least have one common interest – e.g., the yoga class, a book group and other things that at least give one exposure to someone new. The key thing is to keep trying, do not be afraid to seek people out (and possibly get rejected), and make the effort to keep the friendship going. Some people never initiate outings, but welcome the invitation; so keep inviting.

Kaling confided to fans at the event, “The only thing I want to do in the next five years is make a new good friend.” I can relate. As we get older, it gets hard to find good friends with are just right for where your life is at are heading and, for Mindy Kaling, being in the public eye does not help."

It does take putting yourself out there to make friends.  Another way I've found helpful is meeting people through your friends' friends and getting to know them.  This allows your social circle to expand through your various networks of existing friends, as that is most easily accessible to you.  The goal is to keep trying and to not give up.

It's also validating to know that even Mindy struggles with this.  Hey, Mindy, we could be friends?!

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Long-Distance Friendships

I came across this article on why long-distance friendships are awesome, which I couldn't agree more!  One of my best friends from graduate school lives in another state and our friendship has never been stronger because we both put in the effort and time to keep it going through emails, phone calls and text messages.

10 Reasons Why Long-Distance Friendships Make For The Strongest Bonds by Kirsten Corley

What's been your experience with long-distance friendships?  Do you agree with the article?