Whenever I’m in public I have a habit of smiling at people. I’m conscious of it and if I catch eyes with someone I tell myself “you have to smile at them!” So I just wear a small pleasant smile on my face at all times when I’m in public.
I do this because I’ve been conditioned by men to smile. So many times they’ve said to me something like “You should smile more honey!” Or “You’d look better if you’d smile!” By complete random strangers I’m just passing by. I once got told that while I was trying to get into my car during a hurricane, and I had dropped something made of glass and it broke in the parking lot… and some a**hat tells me I need to smile more?
So I just started smiling all the time while I’m in public, to avoid men making those comments. See, I’m smiling! No need to come up and tell me to smile, I’m already doing it! I’ve asked men about this and they can’t believe it. No one would ever tell a man he has to smile in public all the time.
But now, we’re all wearing masks! I don’t have to smile any more! I catch myself still smiling and telling myself “oh they made eye contact, I need to smile at them”. But now I’m like “oh wait, I’m wearing a mask, they can’t even see me smile.” It’s such a huge relief, I can just rest my face! It’s so much easier wearing a mask.