New Study Finds Not So Surprising Link Between Fake Smiling At Work And Heavy Drinking

In a shocking turn of events no one expected, science has found that having to hold in natural human responses to stupidity and abuse for 40 hours a week basically drives customer service workers to drink.

Didn’t see this coming!


The study, conducted by researchers at Penn State University and the University at Buffalo, focused on “people who work with the public”—namely, customer service—and found a direct correlation between that and, like, basically alcoholism.

Specifically, it was having to fake positive emotions that drove workers to the bottle.

As Penn State psychology professor Alicia Grandey put it:

“Faking and suppressing emotions with customers was related to drinking beyond the stress of the job or feeling negatively… [T]he more they have to control negative emotions at work, the less they are able to control their alcohol intake after work.”

Which anyone who’s ever had a service job could have told you without having to do actual research!

Service work is basically being paid (usually poorly) to absorb other people’s abuse without being able to fight back unless you want to lose your job.

It’s fun AND (non) lucrative! 

For real, a job “assisting,” say, an angry white Karen screeching about her EXTREMELY IMPORTANT Bed, Bath & Beyond coupon is basically three steps:

Step 1:

Step 2:

And, once off the clock, Step 3:

All the more reason why you should not be a douchebag about tipping, by the way.

The real kicker, though, was this bit of data:

“Researchers say faking positive emotions, including resisting the urge to roll one’s eyes, can be so draining for some that it can lead to alcohol consumption.”

This the most dramatic and relatable thing ever written. Is there a dating app for people so soul-level exasperated they need to get drunk in order to survive without rolling their eyes?

Because that is a FOREVER MOOD.

People on the internet seemed to find this report highly relatable too.

Stay strong out there, customer service folk!

Ariana Grande said it best:

“Fuc* a fake smile.”