I don’t owe you a smile.

pug in a blanket

Dear Man at the bar, 

I don’t owe you a smile.

I don’t need to smile more.

The point of my whole being is not to make you feel special and important through flirtatious and overzealous behavior.

“Why aren’t you smiling?” is just an underhanded way to say “as a female you should be catering to me and focusing your attention on boosting my ego. That’s the reason you’re here, right?”

No.

My whole life isn’t smiles and giggles and batting my eyelashes for you.

I experience a variety of emotions. I’m capable of having conversations and expressing myself in numerous ways. If I feel like smiling, I will. If a natural occurrence happens that causes me to smile, so be it. If you want to strike up a natural and genuine conversation with me that happens to make me smile, great!

But sometimes I might just want to chill. Sometimes I might be content and calm, but straight-faced. Sometimes I might be sad. Sometimes I might be angry. Sometimes I might be annoyed. Just so you know, I am allowed to be those things.

I am allowed to be human.

When you tell me I need to smile, you are telling me that any feelings or thoughts I might be experiencing and having at the moment are invalid.

They’re not.

I am not going to drop the emotions or thoughts I am experiencing in order to make you feel better about yourself. I don’t even know you. I am minding my own business. Please mind yours as well.

Because if you tell me I need to smile one more time, I’m going to dump that 6th Budweiser of yours down your fucking shirt.

Sincerely,

— a twenty something

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