Resting Veteran Face

Resting Veteran Face

The stern looks on the faces of other Sisters in Arms, both past and present, are often remarked upon. It's something people constantly comment on, and I'm regularly asked why I always seem so serious or irritated or on a mission. I'd want to say this only happens to me when I'm not wearing my uniform, but it's happened to me while I was. My face appears to be at rest or emotionless to me, but society has labeled it as "Resting B$#@$ Face (RBF)."

Without delving into the term's concerns or the fact that as a woman, I'm being asked to appear more pleasant, I'd like to bring to light something that is frequently overlooked. When we are standing in formation as Service members, no one is smiling. We are taught not to show emotion in certain situations. Close your eyes and picture a military formation with Service members standing perfectly still and grinning from ear to ear. It would not only be strange, but it would also be far from intimidating. Women stand in those formations as well, and they are trained to have the same expression on their faces. We can't show emotion, and this isn't going to change overnight. This brings me to the shirt I designed, Resting Veteran Face. I dislike the concept of RBF. My feelings about the phrase are the same for women who haven't served, but for every woman who has served, tell them next time you have "Resting Veteran Face."

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