Over the last decade women and girls have found empowerment through looking to other strong females who have resisted traditional gender roles and paths to success. For many, this has resulted in an increase in confidence and it has shattered misconceptions that there are things in life that cannot be achieved based on gender. While many women around our country enjoy the progressive environment in which they can achieve success and advancement in their careers without repression or harassment, many others do not live in that reality.


All over the world we see women’s independence being suppressed under the law of politics, religion or culture. This is obviously terrible, but in some parts of this country we have problems on the opposite end of the spectrum. Some of the more liberal parts of our country have leaned so whole heartedly into female independence that they have created unrealistic expectations that can be just as harmful to young girls.


I consider myself a feminist and I love female empowerment, but some parts of our country have created a “girl boss” culture that is unrealistic. There is an immense amount of pressure to be successful in your career while raising a family. This in and of itself is not that demanding. The problem is that social media has told us that we have to do all this while maintaining a perfect physique, flawless skin, a neat and organized home, a picture-ready family, and an active social life. This is asking too much of people. If you are someone who believes that she can do this, I support your dreams and goals, but I hate the idea of girls growing up under these expectations.


There is a way to be an independent woman without being a perfect woman. Girls, please understand that Gigi Hadid and the Jenner Sisters, and most girls that look perfect online, either aren’t showing you the bad parts of their lives, or they have a team that helps them look like they do. Dream big; don’t be bound by others’ limits for you, but also remember that you define your own success. The most important thing is that you are doing what makes you happy. Striving for personal growth and happiness is what makes a strong, independent woman. You don’t have to be a girl boss to be happy.

-          Bria