I am sad as hell but I’m smiling, dancing and looking like the happiest person alive. I am not in good state but you’ll never know. 99% of the time, there’s always a smile on my face so much that people ask me why I am always smiling haha. Some even go as far as calling me the always smiling girl. Everyone thinks my smiles are a confirmation that I am happy and in good state but even on my worst days, I put on a smile, act joyful and act like everything’s okay when reverse is the case.

masked emotions

Photo by Martipaan on Unsplash

A smile on her face

Tears in her soul

She seems ok

But she is in the middle of the ocean

Drowning

She is sinking

But no one knows

Cos that smile is deceit

– A small poem written by me

A smile doesn’t always mean happiness. Most times, there is a broken, hurt and sad person behind that smile you see. I have always been the kind of person that never likes to show sad emotions. I don’t like people seeing me sad. That has always been a huge NAHHH for me. It’s not like I don’t accept my emotions or something. I accept my emotions, I know it’s okay to not be okay and I know everyone feels like crap sometimes but I just really hate showing sad emotions. Hiding my sad emotions has started to seem like culture to me so I decided to write this post to convince myself and everyone out there that you don’t need to act like you are okay when you are not.

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So many of you are like me, I get it. I’ve been there. I can totally relate to the feeling of being a total wreck but trying to act like everything is okay till you are alone and everything bursts. You wanna act like everything’s okay even after knowing nothing’s okay and when you are alone, you spiral into a world of uncontrollable pain and hurt. You keep pretending to be okay till the cup gets full, runs over and makes a really bad mess. Why do we do that to ourselves tho? Acting okay when you are not okay is not a healthy way to react to your feelings and emotions. It will only make you bottle up feelings and emotions that you are meant to let go of.

I am still learning to show my sad emotions. When I am happy, I show it. What’s the problem with showing my sad emotions too? That’s a question I’ll probably never get answers to but I want you to know that emotions whether sad or happy ones are valid and trying to act like you are okay when you’re not is far from healthy. If you need to cry, cry regardless of who is around. If you need to break down and wail do it. Showing sad emotions doesn’t make you weak. The strongest people are those who are able to accept and show their real emotions without caring what the world thinks.

masked emotions

When you act like you are okay when you are not, you deprive yourself of feeling your feelings. We all have things that make us feel better during those bad days and for me, crying is a great way to let it all out. Whenever I cry, I feel better AF. I have decided to take the pretence off and show my emotions as they are. If I’m having a bad day, yea i’m a wreck on that day and I’m not gonna pretend to be okay. I will feel my feelings and react in whatever way seems best. I’m not putting on no mask anymore.

I won’t be okay all the time, that’s okay. I am tired of wearing a fake smile on days where all I wanna do is cry. Life wouldn’t always be rosy and that’s fine. There’s no need for me to put on a charade. Most of the time I am always genuinely happy but I want to learn to show my emotions when I am sad. There will always be sad days anyways. No one’s life is free of bad days. I will feel my feelings. I will not deprive myself of feeling my feelings by pretending to be happy and in good state when I am not.

Do you tend to hide your sad emotions just like me? Sad emotions are part of life and it’s okay to have bad days. No one’s always happy all the time and bottled emotions are like volcanoes. They keep building and when they erupt, they are never good. Let’s do this together. We’ll feel our feelings and we won’t pretend to be okay when we are not 💗

23 Comments

  1. Oh, we are so similar! I always bottle everything up, I am not the one that always smiles but I always say I am fine when I get asked even if it’s far from the truth and it can be so exhausting! Sometimes though I don’t have the words to explain so I avoid it. But I completely agree, it’s okay to show that you’re not okay! Thanks for sharing x

  2. I love the poem!

    I am very guilty of this, I mask my emotions a lot, mainly because I can’t always make sense of how I am feeling which is why I find it easier to smile and pretend.

    Great post Ruth x

  3. I always hide my sad emotions – sometimes it’s because I don’t know why I’m feeling this way but other times because I don’t want to burden others. I know that it’s super important to let someone know when you aren’t ok so I’m currently working on being more open xx

  4. This is the first time I have read a blog post & had tears in my eyes because of how relatable this is for me. I am this person who is always smiling & I love to always just focus on the good but recently, I have been no where near it in a lot ways because of personal obstacles & upsetting situations. I see smiling as being strong but sometimes I have to let myself cry (usually alone) to feel better.

  5. It’s definitely not healthy to bottle up emotions. Some people who do that reach a point where they can’t even correctly identify what they’re feeling anymore. I had to learn how to put labels on what I was feeling rather than just react or try to cover things up. I will admit that when I’m feeling bad, I still try to save things for when I’m in a place where I feel safe to let everything out.

    Therapy can help, if anyone is ever struggling with balancing their emotions. Some therapists offer services on a sliding scale, or universities with psych departments sometimes have services for low-income patients.

    Depression isn’t just feeling sad all the time, either–it can also manifest as apathy, anhedonia, worry, anger, or even physical feelings like exhaustion or an upset stomach.

    I hope you’re doing well, Ruth, and that opening up helps you feel better.

  6. Like you, I usually keep my sad feelings to myself. It’s not that I don’t except them, or even that I don’ want to talk about them. For me, I feel that my emotions are not for public consumption, they are to be shared with those who know me and understand where those feelings come from. Thanks for sharing this thoughtful post!

  7. I am constantly hiding my emotions and trying to just always show I’m okay. I remember once I was working at customer service job and I had a really hard day and I started crying and one of my co workers at the time actually said to me I never cry in public and was very rude to me. It made me think about how it’s almost expected to be perfect and never show our emotions.

  8. I’m not really good at masking my emotions. Whenever I feel happy, everyone would know. If I feel sad, you would know. All these emotions makes me human. It makes me who I am and I won’t shy away from it.

  9. I think I’ve perfected masking my emotions! I’m so in tune with them though and really focus on ensuring I am happy! When I am at work however and feeling a little down, I’m really good at putting on a happy face. It’s okay not to be happy all of the time, so long as you check in with yourself regularly to make sure you are happy!

  10. I am too good at masking and hiding my emotions, so opening up has been both hard and rewarding. Hard because ultimately I am afraid to, and rewarding because I have never felt so free.

    Loving most of all that you express a little piece of yourself poetically! <3

  11. Love this post! I used to hide my negative feelings a lot as well and have come far in the recent years on sharing my feelings and letting it out instead of bottling it up. It’s much freeing and lighter once I share my feelings, even if it is venting to a friend.

  12. I think at the moment it can feel like we have to hide our emotions, especially with so much going on in the world! Thank you for sharing these important thoughts, it’s always okay to share your emotions x

  13. Since a break-up I have a hard time loving myself, so this post comes very close to me. I really need to work on my self love! And always remember to smile, even when you feel sad, I think that there is nothing wrong with trying to be happy, as long as you give your other emotions space and time.

  14. I really like this post – it was worth the read and really spoke to me. I think it’s easy to put emotions aside and move on, but sometimes it takes a little more TLC. Thanks for sharing!
    Em x

  15. Very powerful post! I’m trying to do better with not hiding how I’m feeling but sometimes it’s just easier to pretend that everything is fine even when you know it’s not. Thanks for sharing!

  16. This is a wonderful post, very raw – thank you for sharing your emotions and feelings about masking our emotions! I hear ya, a good cry always helps me unwind and feel so much better if I’m overwhelmed. I have been trying lately to be better at not just automatically saying “I’m fine”. It’s challenging, but it feels great when I answer honestly. Thanks for sharing this!

  17. Having gone through a marriage breakdown while parenting three children I’ve had to put on a brave face for the world and for my children. But once they weren’t in my care anymore and the doors shut behind me. I cried and let it all out and it felt so good.

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