I used to dread being in a room with all girls. It would mean the inevitable opening of the tear duct floodgates and there never seemed to be enough tissues in the room.
Years later, I can’t wait for a girls’ night watching our favorite television show or praying and encouraging one another. While I appreciate and love my male friendships, there are significant benefits to having girlfriends in spite of the inevitable snot-sleeve occurrences:
Every friendship starts with initial effort and flourishes with continual effort. While any relationship takes work, having intentional girlfriends is both a give and a take. Your girlfriends are the ones that you’ll want to check up on and the ones you’ll want to take the time to be with. And in turn, they’ll do the same for you.
As much as I would like to think I do everything right every hour of every day—I don’t. That’s where my girlfriends come in. Whether it’s suddenly fashioning index and middle fingers into a pound sign and yelling “hashtag inapprop!” when I say something inappropriate or sending a text to see how my writing goal is coming along, I need some checkups. Often. Allowing girlfriends to become an intimate part of your life helps you from straying off the path towards a host of temptations and problems. Whether it’s trying to eat healthier, maintaining boundaries in a dating relationship, or refraining from gossip, it’s better with a girlfriend walking alongside you.
There’s a reason I buy bulk tissues now. As much as I hate to admit it, I’m an emotional being. Girls don’t bond by playing video games and drinking beer; we bond by drinking hot coco, watching a romantic comedy, and sharing our thoughts and feelings. Sure, it’s every kind of cheese in the dairy aisle, but that’s who we are. And we need a safe space with steadfast friends in which to share our thoughts, goals, dreams, and desires without judgment.
Think of your girlfriends like those posters in elementary school that had a fluffy puppy on it and read: “You can do it!” Only don’t tell them they look like a dog or that could be taken the wrong way. Sometimes you just need a boost of encouragement from a girlfriend to keep on plugging. Whether you’re frustrated at work, struggling in a relationship, or not sleeping because the baby won’t stop crying, you need a friend who will send you flowers, give you a call late at night, and show up unexpected with the sole intention of giving you a hug.
After my parents, my girlfriends are my 911. If I need some wise counsel, a shoulder to cry on, or simply a ride to the airport, I can turn to my girlfriends to be there for me. Having a core group of girlfriends is like having a huge family of sisters from another mother and father—you know you’re never alone.
While my growth spurt ended when I was twelve, my character growth continues to develop. Having girlfriends affords a great opportunity to learn from one another as each girl has her own host of life lessons learned. As a single girl, you learn about marriage from married friends. As a newlywed, you learn about children from married friends with kids. I’ve learned more about life, love, contentment, travel, and careers from my girlfriends than any textbook.
7. Joy-giving moments
Hanging out with the girls doesn’t have to mean all seriousness and prayer time. Hanging out with the girls should also mean creating joy-giving moments. Laughter, silliness, happiness—these are all things to pursue daily and girlfriends can help you create moments where these things will occur. Girlfriends that know who you are and how you tick will help create these moments for you, especially when you are in need of them.
8. An excuse to have baked goods
Food and girlfriends go together like peanut butter and chocolate. Enough said.
God has blessed me with a core group of amazing girlfriends and sisters in Christ. Without them, I wouldn’t be spurred on to growth or enjoyed half the fun-loving moments I’ve experienced these past few years. I also wouldn’t have gained a few extra pounds from all the cookies, but I digress.
If you don’t have a core group of girlfriends, pray for opportunities to meet some and be intentional on developing those friendships once you do. Your spiritual and emotional well-being and stomach won’t regret it.