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Resting Bitch Face Isn’t a Disease

June 7, 2017

rbfYou know how sometimes you can be out in public and some nice stranger points out to you that you may have something wrong with you? Maybe they think you should get that funky looking mole checked out because it looks like skin cancer. Or maybe your Adam’s apple is bulging a bit too much and they’re worried you might have thyroid cancer. Well, recently I’ve had more than a few people suggest that I may have a concerning physical condition that troubles them so much so that they feel the need to inform me.

No one actually said, hey I think you have this condition. But I can tell they are certain I do, because I encounter an inordinate number of people who, on a daily basis, request that I smile for them. Yes folks, it seems I have come down with a nasty case of the terrible affliction known as Resting Bitch Face. It affects roughly 97% of the female population, but it’s more common in women who are over 40 and don’t give a fuck about your feelings. I think it may also occur more in women who have to deal with other human beings on a daily basis, but I haven’t conducted any actual scientific research to confirm this anecdotal evidence.

It’s funny, because I’ve noticed this condition doesn’t really bother other females when they encounter it in a fellow female. A fellow like-minded female, upon seeing RBF, will give you that knowing look and a small nod of acceptance. Like “I’ve been there sister. Carry on with your bad self.” But boy, does it make the guys uncomfortable. The guys get all fidgety. They think they’ve done something wrong (good assumption, I might add). They want to fix it. They may offer you a donut. And then they’ll say those dreaded words… Just Smile.

Just a heads up, guys, this is NOT the appropriate response to what you perceive as RBF. Do you have any idea what’s going on in my life? Maybe I don’t have RBF. Maybe I have a chronic illness that causes me constant pain. Maybe my loved one is dying. Maybe I’m working along side a bunch of men who make more money than me for the same amount of work. Do you make it a habit to tell your guy friends to smile when they’re experiencing something shitty? Do you tell your friend Steve, whose dog just got run over by a bus, to just smile? Do you say it to Mark who just lost his job? The point is simple. Don’t assume what’s going on in my life is so trivial and that all I need to do is smile so YOU feel less uncomfortable.

I am not a robot here to serve your needs. I’m not a doll on a shelf. I’m a real human being who experiences a wide array of emotions on a daily basis, and not all of those emotions are of the smiley variety. When you tell a woman to “just smile”, you are discounting every thing that is going on in her life that makes her not want to smile.

If you want me to smile, then do something to make me smile. Open the door for me. Wait until I exit the elevator before you rush on. Let me go ahead of you in line. Offer to carry my heavy bags. No, wait. Don’t do that. I’d probably mace a guy for that.

Treat me with compassion, like any other human being you encounter. Treat me like your buddy, Steve, who just lost his dog. That might make me smile. But if it doesn’t make me smile, then go about your day. Walk away slowly and quietly. Because the next guy that tells me to “just smile” is going to lose a limb.

You don’t want to be that guy.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. June 8, 2017 11:17 am

    Reblogged this on Be Like Water.

  2. June 9, 2017 3:55 am

    I hear you, a cousin of mine and I both have RBF and she was told that she seems to glare at random people when she isn’t aware she’s doing it. As for me, I make an extra effort to maintain a Resting Smiley Face because people get bothered too when I put my RBF on. lol.

    • June 9, 2017 9:21 am

      I wouldn’t be worried about bothering other people 😉 Thanks for reading!

  3. June 11, 2017 9:24 pm

    So relatable. Love it. 🙂

  4. June 13, 2017 1:25 am

    Love this haha! RBF’rs never realize the way we look at others, and how sometime it destroys the chances of creating new relationships!

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