Press "Enter" to skip to content

The power of female friendships

The beginning of February has been known for centuries as a time to celebrate romantic relationships. The societal pressure of showering your partner with gifts and affection on one day of the year has grown exponentially with the added responsibility of Instagram, Facebook and various other social media platforms. If you don’t post a picture of flowers and candy on Valentine’s Day, does your partner even love you?

However, a new tradition has stepped into the spotlight, muscling its way into people’s celebrations on Valentine’s Day Eve. Originating from the sitcom “Parks and Recreation,”  “Galentine’s Day” was celebrated in storm this year.

Galentine’s Day is an unofficial holiday, but an official celebration of platonic female friendships: “Ladies celebrating ladies,” as Leslie Knope, the fictional curator of the holiday, says in a 2010 episode of “Parks and Recreation.” Women gather with their fellow lady friends to dine, usually over breakfast foods, and remind each other that they are loved and supported.

Galentine’s Day has been a holiday for many “Parks and Recreation” fans since the release of the episode, and is celebrated yearly. However, it takes on a new meaning in 2018.

The focus of empowering female friends, supporting one another and celebrating the joys of female solidarity has been reflected more than ever. Following the #MeToo movement in 2017, 2018 has brought on a powerful year of the female force.

The Grammys saw solidarity in celebrities touting white roses to show their support of the “Time’s Up” movement — a rally against sexual assault founded by celebrities after the Harvey Weinstein allegations. Similarly, The Golden Globes saw solidarity in female celebrities wearing black dresses, including the famous faces of Angelina Jolie, Meryl Streep, Viola Davis, Emma Stone and more, for the same movement.  

Michigan Judge Rosemarie Aquilina became a hero to the movement when she vowed to let every victim of Larry Nassar speak at his trial. More than 150 women and girls testified with their stories and were given the justice they deserved when Aquiliana sentenced Nassar to 40 to 175 years in prison. During the trial, she encouraged the girls giving their stories, telling them that they were “so strong and brave.”

Women are tired of being pitted against one another in endless competitions. Women are tired of letting sexual violence and assault go unnoticed for so long. Women are tired of placing their identities and worth in romantic relationships.

Women are awesome. Women are strong, and women are important members of our society. Galentine’s Day is a good way of acknowledging these facts, and a reason for women to gather and remind each other of these truths. The enlargement of Galentine’s Day this year has shown that the trend of 2018 will be positivity, growth and empowerment.

Whether you remembered to stop and include your platonic friendships in your Valentine’s Day celebration or not, take a moment next year to recognize that love can expand farther than just the reach of significant others. All relationships deserve to be celebrated with equal importance and love.

Get the Maine Campus' weekly highlights right to your inbox!
Email address
First Name
Last Name
Secure and Spam free...