Does Everyone in Your Social Circle (Have to) Look Alike?

October 8, 2010  |  

One thing that ‘girlfriend-centric’ shows like “Living Single,” “Sex and the City” and “Girlfriends” all have in common (besides the four ladies formula) is that each woman in the group fits a particular type.  In general, you have the loose one, the uptight one, the career-driven one and the wild card (airhead/golddigger/etc).  Part of the fun with those shows was knowing just how each different character would react to particular situations.  How fun to figure out which one you are most like and which of your girlfriends seem most like the others!


There’s one more commonality about those shows that maybe you have in your own crew as well. All of the groups of ladies on those shows were very demographically similar.  Around the same age, almost identical race/ethnic backgrounds (I think Lynn on “Girlfriends” was the only one that had a multi-racial heritage) and similar education.

That’s pretty reflective of real life. We do tend to befriend people who check off the same boxes on their census forms as we do.  It’s not necessarily intentional, but many of us grew up in and maybe still live in de facto segregated areas.  College was pretty much like “Higher Learning” (Remember Ice Cube explaining the different groups on campus?) and then you got your first real job, befriended the other brown faces at your job and went to after-work events sponsored by groups that cater to professionals of color. Of course your friends are very much like you!

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