You’ve shared your deepest secrets, laughed uproariously at the same silly things and cried on each other’s shoulders. It’s hard to imagine life without one’s best girlfriends, and luckily, there’s a holiday coming up that is devoted to celebrating female friendships. Aug. 1 is National Girlfriends Day, and in celebration, here are 10 quotes and facts about why the bonds of female friendship are so special.

1. Women’s friendships are built on emotions and feelings, unlike the more transactional friendships that men maintain, according to an article in Psychology Today. Women also invest more in their friendships, by staying in touch and seeing their girlfriends more regularly than men do. 

2. Strong friendship between females can actually help reduce stress, research by scientists at the University of California, Los Angeles, has shown. When women are stressed out and choose to spend time with other women, the hormone oxytocin is released, calming women and relieving stress.

3. Despite how special and important they are to women’s health, female friendships are often the first thing to go when women become consumed by work or family. “That's really a mistake because women are such a source of strength to each other,” Ruthellen Josselson, a co-author of Best Friends: The Pleasures and Perils of Girls' and Women's Friendships, has explained. “We nurture one another. And we need to have unpressured space in which we can do the special kind of talk that women do when they're with other women. It's a very healing experience," she added.

4. “One friend with whom you have a lot in common is better than three with whom you struggle to find things to talk about.” — Mindy Kaling

5. “Friendship between women is different than friendship between men. We talk about different things. We delve deep. We go under, even if we haven’t seen each other for years." — Jane Fonda



6. "I think so much reality television—and the women that dominate culture today—are pretty unfriendly towards one another. They use language that's really objectionable and cruel and not supportive. I like to remember that Carrie and the other women in Sex and the City were really nice to each other... That's why they can forgive those very apparent flaws and [selfishness]… I think women really respond to that kind of connection. I think we all want it, we all work towards having it, and we're not always the very best friends we can be." — Sarah Jessica Parker

7. “Women understand. We may share experiences, make jokes, paint pictures, and describe humiliations that mean nothing to men, but women understand.” — Gloria Steinem

8. “Only hang around people that are positive and make you feel good. Anybody who doesn’t make you feel good, kick them to the curb. And the earlier you start in your life the better. The minute anybody makes you feel weird and non-included or not supported, you know, either beat it or tell them to beat it.” — Amy Poehler

9. "Abandon the cultural myth that all female friendships must be bitchy, toxic, or competitive. This myth is like heels and purses—pretty but designed to SLOW women down." — Roxane Gay, in Bad Feminist

10. And for good measure, one quote on friendship in general: “The proper office of a friend is to side with you when you are wrong. Nearly anybody will side with you when you are right.” — Mark Twain