• Other Friendship Advice

International Day of the Girl: Friendship advice for young women under the age of 18

Published: October 11, 2012 | Last Updated: August 9, 2015 By | 5 Replies Continue Reading

Today is the International Day of the Girl, a commemorative day created by the United Nations (U.N.) General Assembly last year to promote awareness of the unique challenges young girls face in societies across the globe. The term “girl,” as used in the U.N. proclamation, refers to young women under the age of 18.

The readers of The Friendship Blog come from every decade of life, which allows women not only to share with their peers but to benefit from the experiences of those who are older and younger. Adults (The Big Girls) on the blog have always been generous in offering their own life lessons to younger readers who write about their friendship dilemmas and problems.

On this day especially, it would be nice to share with young women (perhaps, some of them our daughters and nieces) some of the lessons we (women of a certain age) have learned about friendship. I’ll start with three life lessons and hope that other readers will take a moment to reflect and add one or two their own:

Friendship Lessons for Girls/Young Women

1) Everyone can’t be popular. We all don’t look the same, dress the same, act the same, or think the same—thank goodness! Just because you aren’t popular now doesn’t mean you can’t or won’t find a friend who appreciates you for who you are. Don’t give up on friendship.

2) Not all friendships last forever, especially friendships we make when we are young. It’s wonderful to feel like you’ve met your forever friend but don’t be too upset to discover that friends may not always grow in the same directions.

2) Losing a friend is never easy. It can feel sad, annoying, disappointing, and embarrassing all at once. Remember that you’ll get over it and learn more about yourself and friendship.

Anyone else care to add to the list of lessons they’ve learned about friendship that they would share with young women?

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Category: Child and adolescent friendships

Comments (5)

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  1. lorraine naimo says:

    i have my friends for 73 years. we were born together in the city
    of boston mass. we are 10 friends who have stayed together all
    these years, never had a fight, never have been mad. we have
    different opinions, we discuss loudly. we have dinner once a month. i am the one who makes all the plans and calls. we are a
    rare group. when we were younger we went away as couples, twice a
    year, and had wonderful times. this friendship we have no one will
    ever break

    • Irene says:

      What a wonderful story! I would love to find out more about this friendship. Can you email me using the contact form, Lorraine.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Although their values and opinions might differ from yours, true friends allow for those differences and even respect them.

  3. Anonymous says:

    Friendship is – a warm and caring nurturing learning place, sharing laughter and fun and doing things like going to the fair, dances, shopping, dinners, walks in the seasons, enjoying the seasons with eachothers company. It is also about dialogue – sharing experiences adding knowlege, listening hearing and building on constructive conversations.
    Friendship is not – a cold demeaning demanding complaint filled guilded palace full of daggers and walking on slippery ice and eggshells afraid without communication only silent echoes of words unspoken.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Hello, I would say beware of putting the person on a pedestal. If you find yourself saying, “oh that’s just X: She gets all the guys.” Or “X is so thin/pretty/athletic/brilliant/stylish…”, then take a step back and do something nice for you, just you.

    Also beware of girl best friendships which are all-consuming and intense, which are in fact substitutes for romantic relationships (I am talking specifically about relationships between heterosexual girls, by the way…).

    I experienced these obsessive types of best friendships in my teens and early twenties. They were founded on a generous admiration but fed by my own insecurities. And none of the people involved, almost 10 years laters are still my friends.

    Furthermore I look back and fail to understand my worshipful feelings. In fact now, anytime I start to feel worshipful, I can take a step back.

    Teenage girls often find it easy to denigrate themselves and to worship others. Learn to do things on your own, to be happy alone, to be independent. Develop your own style.

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