Ever noticed how often sarcasm gets mistaken for bitchiness? This subject is very interesting to me because like many people out there, I kind of have a case of resting bitch-face – and I tend to be sarcastic. You see the problem, right? There are lots of facets of sarcasm that can seem mean, which sometimes leads to trouble. I've seen lots of coverage on the differences between the two, but there are lots of reasons you can be sarcastic without being a bitch. These are the ones familiar to me. How about you?
Sound familiar? Sarcasm isn't about being mean. A mean person can be sarcastic, but a sarcastic person isn't always trying to cause harm or hurt anyone's feelings. I would say “never,” but you know, hey, nobody's perfect!
By and large, bitchy people are trying to be insulting. There's a witty component to true sarcasm, a humorous bent that doesn't mean any harm. It may mean to illuminate and enlighten, yes, but it isn't meant to hurt you for no reason. It's a witty way to reveal a truth.
Elite Daily made a really great point: “Being a bitch is an offensive move, being sarcastic is a defense mechanism.” Bitches want to offend you, first of all, and they want to put you on the defense. And it works, because lots of people use sarcasm to defend themselves against people or situations that make them nervous, uncomfortable, or uneasy. You might be sarcastic around your crush, the colleague who makes you mad enough to spit, your boss, or an ex – as protection. It's your shield (so you're kind of like a superhero).
Well, yeah. If you have a natural expression suggestive of bitchiness, people will think it, especially if you're sarcastic too. Maybe you always look bored, unimpressed, or indifferent, no matter what you're doing, saying, or listening to. Welcome to bitch-face. As I learned on my honeymoon, Paris is our true homeland.
When someone's bitchy, they tend to be mad at the world. They're miserable on some level, and they want everyone else to be miserable too. If you simply speak sarcasm, you ain't mad; you're laughing inside. Speaking of which …
When you're sarcastic, you're not using it to laugh at someone. You're genuinely laughing with them, because that's just who you are – provided you're just a sarcasm master. Mean people who use sarcasm are different; bitchy people are different. They're coming from an ugly place, and forget that mess.
Sometimes your sarcasm only comes out strong around the people you really like, because you know they can take it. You'll mind your manners around the larger world, but around people you love, like, or think you might befriend, you bust out the sarcasm. Bitchy people are bitches when they don't like you. Boo, bitches.
I'm serious. Think about it: true sarcasm is like a gift, it's natural. You can polish it and grow it, but it's part of you from the beginning. Someone can try to learn it and they might get close, but it'll always seem a little fake.
Seriously, sarcastic people will tell you. We don't sneak around behind your back. That's a mark of gossip and rumor-mongering. We're just trying to share our insights.
Do people often mistake your brilliant gift with sarcasm for bitchiness? Share these explanations with the friends who think you're just hating – or with your buddy who has a case of RBF.
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