Rumors, Gossip, and Lies – Toxicity of Girls

Kate Sams '24, Contributing Writer

“Girls support girls”— until we don’t. That phrase is repeatedly said through social media and conversation. But is it reality? The answer is quite simple: no. Girls enjoy using the phrase as an excuse to cover their poor behavior towards other girls. The girls who enjoy that saying are often the ones who do not live by it. 

It is not just in movies where there are cliques in high school and people are excluded. Way too often, there is gossip within those cliques that travel to other groups by word of mouth or more commonly by social media, starting rumors. These rumors have the power to tear people apart. 

Just through online encounters, in a recent Pew Research study, “59% of U.S. teens have personally experienced at least one of six types of abusive online behaviors.” Within that percentage, “about a third (32%) of teens say someone has spread false rumors about them on the internet.” In addition to that, the CDC says, “About 1 in 5 high school students reported being bullied on school property in the last year,” out of a poll of 13,677 students. Given these statistics, I’ll ask again; do girls support girls? 

A school is a place that is supposedly a safe environment where the purpose is to learn. That is never truly the case. Whenever school begins to get a little boring, the drama will spark. It creates an environment where students no longer feel safe talking to their friends in the hallways because anything they say could come back to hurt them. Unfortunately, the girls who begin these rumors rarely face consequences after hurting others’ emotions. They’re able to damage others through false accusations while they strut away with pride.  

Jealousy is one of the leading causes for rumors to be spread. Girls become jealous of other girls’ looks, personality, athleticism, intelligence, or social life and feel this desire to get revenge. They do this by filling themselves with hatred and often making up accusations to put someone else down. Does belittling someone make you a better person? Knowing you are the cause of stress, anxiety, and sadness for someone else; does that make you happier? It is an interesting question to pose as so many girls either encounter or act in this manner. It differs from the stereotypical male bullying as “this type of bullying usually includes verbal assaults, ostracizing, spreading rumors, and gossiping—the epitome of mean behavior” (Very Well Family). 


What Needs to Happen:


Instead of finding ways to dislike someone just because you are jealous, try to find the good. It may be difficult, but compliment them, talk to them, and more often than not, you may find they are nice and there’s no rumor to be spread. Instead, that’s the moment when you stand up and put an end to any discussions you hear.

It is also extremely important in today’s society to not throw around certain “trigger” words. As soon as someone name-calls another by using certain words, it has the potential to stick with them forever and prompt a false reputation to develop. Once this occurs, it can be hard to shed. The term “canceled” is often used to describe someone who lacks cultural sensitivity. Too often, girls will turn on each other and attempt to cancel someone else in spite of them. 

No good comes out of gossip. There is no tolerance for anyone who believes it is acceptable. I have witnessed female family members, friends, and myself as the topic of a conversation in a group chat or at a lunch table. No matter who it is, it hurts to hear your name in someone else’s mouth. It is understandable to feel hurt, betrayed, or like no one is on your side, but there is always help to reach out to. Never feel weak by searching for a guidance counselor, teacher, or classmate because someone is always there to support you. 

Do not let them win. Do not let these words make you think any less of yourself. Take a step back and realize what they say is not true. If you can, confront them and in an attempt to put an end to it, they will see that you are strong and confident and will hopefully shy away from you by accepting that they were wrong. 

Now, please never be the rumor spreader; it only hurts others and does nothing for you. It is as simple as following the golden rule: treat others the way you want to be treated.  


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