Do you find yourself being approached by strangers asking if there’s anything wrong? Does anyone ever come up to you on the train to give you a patronising pat on the arm accompanied by the dreaded words “cheer up love”?
Or do you get people telling you that you have the face of a slapped ass? No? Just me then. Thanks Dad.
But, in all honesty if you answered yes to the first two questions, and find yourself being told “it might never happen” frequently, you may be surprised to know that you suffer from a condition. It’s called Bitchy Resting Face (BRF).
And yes, it is real – according to the Americans. This condition can wreck friendships, ruin first impressions, start fights and kill an atmosphere in seconds.
It’s basically an expression (or should I say a non-expression), that makes everyone think you’re in a bad mood, when actually you’re not. To some, it’s a bitchy alternative to the usual blank look most people have. People, mostly women suffering from this resting face have the tendency to look hostile and judgemental, when in fact they’re probably thinking about nothing.
I remember at school my sister (who was in the year above) asked someone in my class what they thought of me (they clearly didn’t know we were related even though we have the same surname and the same mum). They said something along the lines of “yeah she seems like a nice person but whenever she walks past me she looks like she’s going to punch me”. At least they thought I was a nice person.
It’s not my fault that my default face is rather bitchy and mean looking, I was born like this. I used to think something was wrong with me because in the past I’ve been told my ‘resting’ face puts people off, it makes them worry and annoys everyone because they think I’m annoyed with them.
Yes I’m a moody person 87 per cent of the time, but it really gets to me when people think I’m moody the other 13 per cent of the time…just because my grumpy face says so.
I thought I was alone in my plight until thankfully, journalist and comedian Taylor Orci in the States decided enough was enough and created a video for those, like me, who suffer from the condition, which has already gained more than 2.5 million hits on YouTube.
In the video below, women who suffer from BRF appear to encounter animosity wherever they go.
“These women might be suffering without you even knowing it. They might just have faces that to you, look bitchy. They might not be bitches at all.”
Does this bitchy resting face – and its male equal, “Resting A**hole Face” – actually exist?
Absolutely, says I.
I came across Jezebel’s site who quite rightly said:
“So here we are, as a society, collectively expecting women of all ages are to smile, and if they aren’t smiling, we’re incorrectly assuming that something is amiss and they must be bitches. Or mutants.”
Does society’s rules imply that to be an acceptable woman we have to be feminine, compliant and smiley?
She also said: “Despite the reception it sometimes gets, I’ve grown to love my bitch face. And you should, too.”