09/05/2013 13:12 BST | Updated 07/07/2013 06:12 BST

Why Can't Women Celebrate Other Women?


I rarely agree with whinging celebrities banging on about their right to privacy considering they are usually on next week's newsstand posing up a storm flaunting every aspect of their life to the highest bidder.

But Myleene Klass' comments in The Independent last week caught my eye as she hit out at a 'horrid culture...that criticises [women] all the time' and has asked for women 'to give every woman a break for Christ's sake'.

It is pure and simple Myleene, I completely agree with you.

As a teen studying journalism and sociology, I consumed feminist literature hungrily. We were told patriarchal societal systems and structures were the cause of our oppression, the reason why we stare for hours on end in the mirror scrutinising the arch of our eyebrows, the flick of our eyelashes, the shape of our noses and the plumpness of our lips.

But as I go through my twenties (far too quickly for my liking), it has become more and more apparent to me that sadly it is women - the very people feminists like me champion and celebrate - that are holding other women down - with men's help of course.

I wouldn't say I was bad looking - I would probably go so far as to say I was good looking - but don't worry, I am not on the same ego trip as Daily Mail writer Samantha Brick with her 'I'm so pretty and other women can't handle it' nonsense, and would score myself a modest seven out of ten. I have always sought confidence in my intelligence and personality. Sure I like to look good and spend far too much on cosmetics to suggest otherwise, but I am at my happiest and proudest when making someone laugh or engaging in debate with other sharp minded thinkers. What I am saying is in a very long winded way is that I am a normal girl - not Rosie Huntington-Whitely (sob) nor a female version of Stephen Fry (double sob).

But while I as a 'normal girl' love to surround myself with strong, funny, intelligent and engaging women, some women plainly do not. It seems some women are threatened if they are not the 'top dog' of the group - whether it is the most 'beautiful', 'the highest achiever', 'the 'funniest' or the 'most intelligent'.

Women inspire me to be a better me - but other women seem to be so consumed with insecurity and competitiveness that it is all they can do to see you through a man's lens and if there is any chance of you detracting attention from them, you're out love.

What a pity it is.

So what if your friend/sister/cousin is better looking than you? Would you rather a troll take her place? Why can't women celebrate other women?

More and more, I am sensing this lack of celebration of women on women and rather a jealousy if a women has something that another doesn't have or is seen as 'better' in some way.

The age-old situation of it being the girl's fault when you catch your boyfriend's eyes wandering is a classic example and something that shows no signs of reversal. If a man makes you feel second best to another female, it is the man's problem not the 'other' girl, who probably is completely unaware of his roving eye. Yet, how many friendships have been lost because a woman is left to feel inferior to another - all because she wasn't strong enough to stand up for herself and her friend and boot the bugger out.

We all feel pressure to be better looking, skinnier, fitter and more successful. I deal with these pressures by talking to other women. There you find out that that girl who turns heads at a party was actually the victim of a sex attack and has crippling anxiety, the 'funniest' girl in the group uses her wit to detract from her lack of confidence stemming from being bullied at school and the 'most successful' girl cries at night because she is desperate to find a boyfriend.

All isn't as it seems, and women are as guilty as men at taking women at face value. These women like to go it alone, sure in the knowledge they won't be upstaged by someone they are jealous of or someone they just don't understand.

This would all be fine if feminism didn't need the unity that the celebration of the sex brings. As a feminist, you cannot pick and choose what 'type' of woman you wish to champion. The stay-at-home mum, the ambition-driven career woman, the charity volunteer, the page three model, the traveller, the builder, the hijab wearing muslim woman - black, white, yellow and green - we are all women and if you freeze out any of these women on whatever grounds, I don't believe you are fit to call yourself a feminist.