I think my self-doubt about not having a girl gang began whenever I started watching Netflix. You name it, in every film there’s some sort of girl gang ready to conquer the world and slash one of the girls ex’s tyres. Take Sex and The City for example – a girl group of four who stick together through thick and thin whether that be babies, relationships, weddings or heartbreak. Or, Bridesmaids. We somehow feel like a failure if we don’t have a girls group chat with constant updates throughout the day or regular lunch dates with the girlies so we can upload a photo on Instagram with the caption ‘squad goals’. It seems to be the thing these days to have a million bridesmaids, a massive girl group who go on holiday and do everything together. However, that isn’t always the case for the majority of us.
It’s the thing these days to post a photo on Instagram on a girls night out all in similar outfits boasting about how great your friendship is, not mentioning the 20 fall outs and the slagging off, when the other half of us meet up with an old friend for a quick drink and forget to post it on social media because we’re too busy just having a chat. I know what I’d prefer.
I grew up around groups of girls in school who from the outside looked like the definition of squad goals, but in actual fact, they all slagged each other off and weren’t there for each other when it came down to it. That for me isn’t friendship and from that moment on it stuck in my head that just because someone has a ‘group’ or twenty friends, doesn’t make them all real friends. A friend for me is someone who is loyal. Someone who you can text if you need to rant about an ex or something that’s on your mind. Someone who celebrates your achievements just as much as you do. Someone who you know will be there for you no matter what and you’ll also be there for them. Someone who lifts you up instead of bringing you down. Friendship for me isn’t slagging someone off and then being friends with them the next or a person who has zero loyalty and hangs around with all your ex’s. Nope not about that life.
I spent ages feeling like crap because I didn’t have a girl group. I felt like I was doing something wrong or perhaps I wasn’t a good friend because of it. Where was my group chat? My girl nights out? Who am I gonna have as my bridesmaids? Can I have just three bridesmaids because the trend these days seems to be to have around ten! But then I thought why am I even searching for this, why do I even want it? Is it really going to make me that happy? As I said above, my experience with girl gangs in previous years haven’t been great. I’ve found there to be not much loyalty, so much drama and they all drift eventually because they all go down different paths. I’m sure there are some successful groups out there but I’ve never experienced that.
Not that long ago I was going through a period in my life where I felt this failure hard. I constantly saw on Instagram groups of girls going out and I literally used to sit and wonder why I didn’t have that. But then I thought who cares if I just go for lunch with one friend? Why do I think having twenty girls around a table will make me happy? I realised that in fact, having a girl gang isn’t always everything.
I decided to invest my time into the friendships I already had. I made plans, stayed in contact and made sure they knew I appreciated them instead of sitting around wondering why I wasn’t part of a group. It’s important to keep the friendship going no matter what goes on in your life – a quick text takes no time at all, or even a tag in a funny quote you’ve seen on Instagram to show you’re thinking of them. Plan ahead in advance and schedule a time you’re both free to get together. Having plans like this to look forward to really helps and shows on both sides effort is there. It’s the little things that matter. I also got used to my own company. Sometimes I like just chilling by myself in the house or having a film night by myself. Being alone doesn’t have to be scary or a bad thing!
It’s true what they say – as you grow up you do realise who your true friends are. The people I was friends with in school I’m no longer friends with and some people who I was in school with and never really talked to are actually some of my closest friends now. I believe that people come into and out of your life for a reason but you won’t always know what that reason is. There are people there for you at different stages in your life and you can outgrow people. Think about how much you’ve probably changed as a person – maybe you’ve got a new relationship, new job, maybe you’ve had a baby and are at a complete different stage in your life where you no longer want to spend your Saturday nights drinking and partying. You might have realised the people you once called your friends are no longer friends. They no longer fit the definition of a friend for you and aren’t worth the time of day. You might have realised people you invest lots of effort into don’t give the same back. Shit happens. That’s life.
I find that I have friends for different things. I love them all the same but bare with me:
Friend number one: we talk every single day, we update each other with what’s going on in our lives. She’s my go-to for outfit advice and she’s equally as psycho as me when it comes to boys so we get on well. We send videos/voice notes instead of texting because we talk so much and can’t be bothered to type a message out. She’s cried when I cry and I’ve cried when she cries – we feel each other’s pain! We’re so similar I sometimes wonder if we’re long-lost twins. We’ve been there for each other throughout the break ups, fuckboy dramas, every family crisis and even down to the boring things like when your fake tan doesn’t come out as dark as you expected.
Friend number two: Another go-to for boy advice/my person to rant to. We never get tired of each other’s problems and I think we get on so well because our love for food is very similar! We both never stop eating which leads to lots of lunch dates.
Friend number three: Been friends for years and years. We don’t need to talk everyday because we know when we pick up the phone or text it’ll be exactly the same as if no time has gone by. Those friends are important cling onto them! She helps me with my blog photos (she knows all the good locations) and is just as proud of my blog achievements as I am. When I got a collab with Boohoo she rang me straight away and was so excited – true friend right there.
Also, not forgetting the fact I’d class my mum as my friend too. We go shopping together, out for food, I tell her everything and we laugh at the craziest things. Sometimes you forget that family can count as a friend too so don’t be so hard on yourself thinking ‘I have no friends’ because that’s often not the case. Some of the cousins I have I’m close with, hang out with and talk to quite regularly so family does count.
Whether you have a group, one friend or three friends, what matters is are you happy? Are they real friends? Because those are the only two things you need to worry about. Having a girl gang isn’t always everything.
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