1. That ‘not being like other girls’ isn’t a thing.
Back during the heady days in which I wore my Hot Topic tee-shirts proudly emblazoned with such unforgivable slogans as “You laugh because I’m different, I laugh because you’re all the same,” I was not like other girls. In my mind, “girls” were a squirming mass of heavily-applied makeup, vapid thoughts about The Bachelorette, and catty disputes over one another’s boyfriend. And it wasn’t until that I started embracing female friendship — beyond the two or three “best girls” whom I regarded as more the exception than the rule, as I preferred to “hang with the guys” — that I understood there was no such thing as “girls.” We are all people, complex and beautifully unique, and writing us all off in an effort to seem different is about as sad as you can get.
2. That Girl Love is unique in the world.
There is something very special about the platonic love between two girls, extending from the flashlight-under-the-covers sleepovers to the sangria-laced happy hours, that just cannot be replaced. We let ourselves out and become these creatures devoid of a lot of the insecurity and pressure we are met with in mixed company; we are the kind of people we always want to be. It’s the love that will take a fairly reserved administrative assistant and turn her into a glittering blur on the dance floor, holding her friends as she indiscriminately grinds to the Usher song she isn’t even embarrassed to know all the words to. It’s magical.
3. Some things we love will never change, and that’s good.
If there comes a day in which you do not get into your girlfriend’s car and immediately turn up the stereo the moment “I Want It That Way” by BSB comes on, singing along to every word and doing vague imitations of the video dance moves together, life is over. If you ever feel “too mature” for that, you need to be taken down about 70 pegs, because girl bonding never fades away or dies — it only gets accompanied by alcohol.
4. Girls talk about sex just as much as boys, if not more.
I do not recommend that any man listen into a no-holds-barred conversation between a few slightly-tipsy girls about all things sexual, because you will hear some words and some ideas that you will have wished to remain ignorant to. It is our time to swap war stories, to dissuade one another from faking orgasms by trading tips on a staggering array of vibrating devices, and to hold court on such important debates as “Butt action during a blowjob: Friend or Foe?” The anachronistic images of us as frigid, virginal creatures of purity and innocence are as inaccurate as the screaming climax two minutes into penetration that men have been raised to expect.
5. You’re not crazy for going crazy about your period.
Sometimes, when you’re rolling around on your bed trying to find an angle that doesn’t make your kidneys feel like they’re being punished for the sins of humanity, crying over a particularly poignant fabric softener commercial, you just need to know that someone understands. Your boyfriend can get Häagen Dazs, sure, but he can’t truly empathize with your struggle. And once you have confirmed the suffering with all of your various friends — particularly the really close ones who will text you things along the lines of “Period’s a-brewin and I’m about to go on vacation. Kill me.” — you can sleep just that much easier.
6. The laughter between girlfriends is the best medicine.
There are certain things that are guaranteed to make any hurt just that much easier to manage, and one of those things is the unbridled, perfectly feminine laughter of a few good girlfriends who know exactly what you’re going through. Often, the first time you’ll laugh after something crushing like a particularly difficult breakup will be with one of your girlfriends, over something objectively ridiculous. But the fact that the two of you can make the other laugh with silly voices or old inside jokes is nothing short of medicinal.
7. Growing up to be crazy old ladies together is a dream.
Watch Golden Girls and tell me you don’t want that life. Look at two old ladies in colorful outfits, laughing over tea and cookies in a café for hours one afternoon, soaking up the spring air and catching up on their gossip, and tell me you don’t dream of that being you and your BFF. Old lady love is one of the most beautiful kinds of love there are, and we should all be so lucky as to experience it.