...weep, and you weep alone.
Or else, perhaps some older man will come along and tell you "Smile, sweetheart, it can't be that bad."
People who know me will tell you that I have a smile that breaks my face in half.
It's big, spontaneous, and often infectious.
But people who know me will also be able to tell you just how rough the last few years have been.
It really has been that bad.
Sure, I've found reason to smile often during that time.
But I can assure you that one of the things that definitely does not have that effect on me are the people who I've come to think of as the 'Smile Police'.
Often older men, speaking at (not 'to') younger women, they take their sense of emotional entitlement, and demand that you play nice for them.
This twins with the 'taken aback' face that that older, white, heterosexual, close-talking man gave me when I didn't respond positively (with a smile) to his comments on my tattoos.
Hey there, person-I-don't-know!
I think that my body is my own.
And if you don't know me, it is perfectly reasonable for me to find your comments on it unwelcome.
Hell, if I know you, I might still find them unwelcome!
I happen to think I have every right to feel this way.
I also think this woman put it even better than I can.
Let's have some conversations about this.