Cultivating Female Friendships

Female friendships are the worst and the best. I’ve always prided myself in putting my female friendships first. I’m a good friend and I look for good friends in return. But female friendships can be the most difficult friendships you will ever maintain.


When I was in high school, I didn’t date, but I had a strong, close group of girlfriends. I never saw anything wrong with this. I was happy. My mom even expressed admiration for my desire to put my female friendships first. She always had a boyfriend and she never had a group of girlfriends like I did. I felt more centered and more connected because of this strong group of friends.

However, female friendships are difficult. The problem with these friendships is how vulnerable we are with each other. That vulnerability opens us up for hurt if the friendship dissolves or problems surface.

As a young girl, it seems as if friendships in threes is a problem. Inevitably, it would turn into two against once and problems would proceed. But once you get older, it gets more difficult to discover who your friends really are. Here is what I’ve found are from my core group of friends:

  1. Best friend from high school.
  2. A friend or two from college.
  3. Your mother.
  4. Mom friends.

At first glance, this seems like a small, sad list. But at the same time, it’s a short, quality list of people who will love you no matter what.

Female friendships are hard. I can’t say this enough. Because it’s true. Here are 5 ways to cultivate these friendships and ensure they last the test of them.

  1. Be loyal. Always have your friend’s back.
  2. Be vulnerable. Talk about the stuff that’s hard.
  3. Appreciate their individuality. Allow your friends to be who they are.
  4. Be honest, but kind. People make mistakes. Talk to them. Help build them back up.
  5. Laugh! Life is hard. The closest distance between two people is laughter.

What is the hardest part about female friendships for you?