Police Officer Lies About Job Just To Have Nice Conversations With Civilians

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By: J.B. Larsdotter

Daryl Smith is a police officer in suburb of Detroit Michigan. According to Smith, it is often difficult to make friends or having meaningful connections outside of work. He says he feels like his profession makes other people not want to talk to him.  

“Sure, I have a great family,” Smith says with a smile that reveals complicated emotions under the surface. “And I had friends in high school. I had a whole lot of friends! And sure my copper buddies are great, we love high-fiving and making crass jokes together, but I feel like there is something missing in my social life.”

When asked how his work affects his interactions with others, Smith confessed, “people seem really dodgy with me when I am in uniform or in a patrol vehicle. Even when I smile at them.”

“Just the other day, a family of four was walking by me in downtown Ferndale. I smiled and waved, but the whole family just looked at me like deer-in-headlights and quickly disappeared down the street,” Smith continues. “I thought becoming a cop would make people feel safe around me. I am a protector! I put my life on the line to keep  the public from experiencing crime and violence!”

“Sometimes I feel like when I pull people over or stop them to ask a question, they act extra-nice and friendly toward me, but, I know. They just don’t want to get arrested. They just want a clean record. It’s just emotional-bait,” he said as his bottom lip quivered. “I can sense the inauthenticity. They take advantage of me. And you know, it really hurts.”

Smith says it’s extra difficult if he has a gun on him or when he is spending time in communities of color. “People just want to shun me. I’ve never felt like such an outcast.”

Officer Smith feels more accepted in society when he is off-duty. “But the second I tell anyone I’m an officer, they avoid communicating with me at all costs. Sure, I get a free meal here and there, but no one really wants to get to know me.”

“I figured out if I just tell a little white lie people like me better. When people ask what I do for work now, I usually tell them I am a baker. I mean, it’s sort of true, I did make a loaf of bread with my wife once. But actually she kinda just told me what to do.”

Smith, smirking confidently and nodding his head added, “It’s like magic. People will open up to me more, tell me about their day. Sometimes they will even insult politicians or the police force and we can have a giggle together.” Smith says this tiny lie allows him to have meaningful human contact and better relationships with civilians. “Little things, like eye contact, a smile, any sort of interest in me as a human-being, they all mean a lot. I’m not sure why people won’t talk to me when I tell people I’m a cop. It’s a backwards world we live in, really.”