Women who are overly critical of other women often display these behaviors without realizing it

Some women judge other women like it’s their calling.

They raise their eyebrows when their aunt makes “stupid” decisions.

They cringe when their bestie wears something “trashy”.

And they give their sister a long lecture because she’s “not ambitious enough.”

But most of them aren’t even aware they’re doing it!

They think they’re just “helping”.

While some of them are just mean, most of these women are simply too hard on other women because they’re too hard on themselves. 

They want to become a certain kind of woman and expect others to be just like them!

Wondering if you, or someone you know, is this kind of woman?

It’s time to find out.

Here are 11 behaviors of women who are overly critical of other women.

1) They’re extra nosy

They’re not just curious. They’re very, very curious about you.

Even if you’re not close friends, they’d ask 1000 questions like:

“So how often do you exercise?”

“Did you get that promotion yet?”

Or even “So how’s your marriage lately?”

They just love to dig and dig…partly because they’re genuinely concerned, partly because they want to know if their life is better than yours.

You know they’re overly critical if the way they ask their questions makes you feel like they’re sizing you up.

That they’re NOT asking the questions because they genuinely care about you, but because they want to have an opportunity to give you life advice.

2) They get high when they hear gossip

Especially if it’s about bad things happening to other women.

Oh boy, they just find that so delicious!

When they hear someone say “Oh, did you hear that Janice is about to get fired?” or “Melanie looks so bloated. I think she’s pregnant”, you can see their eyes twinkle.

While many overly critical women genuinely care about the women that are closest to them, they find pleasure in knowing that other women are actually kinda miserable.

3) They give unsolicited advice

You share your problems with them.

All of a sudden, they transform into a motivational speaker or therapist.

If you rant to them “Gah. My work sucks.”

Even if you don’t really mean it because you just love to complain sometimes, they’d use it as a chance to help you transform your life.

They’d say “Well, if you hate your work. You have to look for something else. You can’t stay stuck forever. Only you have the power to do this.”

They’re not wrong, for sure. But somehow, they make you feel like there’s something wrong with YOU!

It’s not even limited to the big stuff like work or relationships. Even if you just say “I’ve been feeling bloated lately”, they still have things to say!

“You should change your diet and stop eating crap”, they’d say. And then give you a meal plan.

Most overly critical women actually care a lot about other women, and so they can’t stand to see you suffer. They will try to help you even if they’re annoying.

4) They want to “inspire” other women

“I’m a mother, an entrepreneur, an athlete. If I can do it, why can’t you?”

I find that the women who think they’ve “made it” are often the ones who are overly critical of other women.

They have high standards of what a woman should be like…and they think everyone should be a little more like them. 

They might not say it, but they’re not happy that you’re just a stay at home mom. They’d tell you “Don’t forget your dreams!” or “Your life should not revolve around your children.”

Again, it’s not because they’re judgmental bitches, not really. It’s more nuanced than that.

Many of them just actually want other women to be successful—the problem is just that they have one definition of success (and it’s their kind of success, of course).

5) They brag about their wins, but hide their losses

They hide anything negative about them.

That’s because overly critical women subconsciously think others are overly critical of them, too.

They’re very open about how they became successful. They can talk about it all day.

They’re very open about their happy marriage, their beautiful house, their great kids.

But ask them about their flaws, about the things that are not going great, or the things they’re not so proud about and they’d act as if they don’t even hear you.

“Let’s focus on the positive”, they’ll say…but they won’t apply the same thing when it comes to you.

6) They cling to those who are just like them

phrases manipulative people use to undermine your sense of self certainty Women who are overly critical of other women often display these behaviors without realizing it

Overly critical women love to feel validated

Many of them hang out with their tribe because they believe “you are the five people you spend the most time with.”

If they’re a sporty mom, they’re suddenly besties with other sporty moms.

If they’re entrepreneurial, they’ll hang out with other women entrepreneurs.

Of course, they’d shout it out to the world—posting on their IG for everyone to see.

Instead of forming genuine relationships, they simply connect with these people because they want to say “This is me! I’m like them. We are strong, powerful, independent women!”

7) They say “A woman should be __________”

Overly critical women are so prescriptive.

They’d say things like “A woman should always be financially independent.” or “A woman should always prioritize her kids.”

A woman should do this, a woman should do that!

They expect a lot from other women. They want them to be smart, powerful, and empowered. 

And while these are, of course, wonderful things to have—and wonderful things to want for others— they say it in a way that sounds like “If you are not this kind of woman, well you should be ashamed of yourself.”

8) They say “She’s nice but__________”

They always have something not-so-nice to say. Always, always.

If they’re talking about other people, they’d not have any filter. They’ll say the meanest things and they justify it by saying “Hey, I’m just being honest.”

Of course, if they’re talking to you or the people you know, they’d try to make it milder. 

They’d tell you that they’re just saying it to help you.

They’d say “But if no one tells you this, who will?” or “I don’t want to be rude, but I think you NEED to know.”

9) They find other women’s wins surprising

“OMG how did she do that?!”

“Woah! She’s rich now. Really?! How did that happen?”

They get surprised when other women succeed at something. And you know why?

That’s because not only did they underestimate them, they also know they’re much better than them (and are now threatened by their success).

10) They’re extra suspicious of other women’s success

Because they can’t believe other women are actually good at what they do, they go “hmmm, something’s not right” when they achieve something big.

They’d think that they got the promotion because they slept with the boss.

They’d think they have a sugar daddy that’s why she’s now rich.

And this is the reason why you have to be careful being around overly critical women. Most of the time, they’re the source of gossip

11) They’re overly critical of themselves

Yep, it all boils down to this.

They’re judgmental of others because they’re judgmental of themselves.

They’re usually high strung, ambitious, and a little insecure.

Their parents were probably hard on them when they’re growing up.

They always have something about themselves that they want to fix or improve. 

And so when they see a “flawed” woman who’s relaxed, they feel uneasy.

They think “How dare this woman just stay content when they need to make a lot of changes so they won’t turn out to be a loser?”

Final thoughts

So…do you know anyone who checks all of these boxes? 

I’m sure they’re a pain in the ass.

But I assure you that even if they seem like they’re tearing you down, it’s actually the opposite—they want to raise you up.

The problem is that they’re not aware how their words are affecting you exactly.

So tell them about it!

If they’re the type of person who wants to improve themselves, they should just take this as an opportunity to become better.

But if they start hating you for expressing how you feel (and they’d even gossip about you), watch out! This person might just be overly critical of you because they’re simply a mean person who wants to attack your self-esteem.

Pearl Nash

Pearl Nash

Pearl Nash has years of experience writing relationship articles for single females looking for love. After being single for years with no hope of meeting Mr. Right, she finally managed to get married to the love of her life. Now that she’s settled down and happier than she’s ever been in her life, she's passionate about sharing all the wisdom she's learned over the journey. Pearl is also an accredited astrologer and publishes Hack Spirit's daily horoscope.

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