The acronym “BRB” stands for “Be Right Back” and is commonly used in online chatting and texting. It indicates that the person using it needs to briefly pause the conversation but will return shortly.
BRB is used by both men and women, but can have some different implications depending on the context when used by a girl or woman. In this article, we’ll explore what BRB tends to mean when used by girls and women in various situations.
Indicating a Brief Pause in Casual Conversation
In casual conversation, BRB is often used by girls and women to indicate they need to briefly pause the chat for any number of mundane reasons. Some examples:
- Needing to step away to take care of something in the physical world like answering the door, going to the bathroom, or grabbing a snack.
- Needing to briefly shift attention to something else like another chat window or reading an urgent notification.
- Simply needing a break from the current conversation to refresh.
In these cases, BRB signals that the girl will return to the chat within a few minutes at most. It’s not meant to be an extended disappearance from the conversation.
Girl chatting with a friend online:
Friend: So what are you up to tonight? Any fun plans?
Girl: Not really, probably just watching some Netflix. BRB, need to grab a drink from the kitchen.
Friend: No problem!
The girl uses BRB here casually to indicate she needs to briefly step away for a mundane reason but will be back to continue the conversation shortly.
Needing to Exit an Uncomfortable Conversation
Some girls and women may use BRB if they feel uncomfortable with how a conversation is going and want to exit without being overtly rude. Rather than making up an excuse, a simple BRB can provide the opportunity to politely disengage.
Girl chatting online with a guy she recently met.
Guy: So do you have a boyfriend?
Girl: No, I’m single.
Guy: Cool 🙂 Want to maybe go out sometime?
Here the girl uses BRB to avoid directly turning down the guy’s date invitation without ghosting him entirely. She hopes he’ll get the hint so she can exit gracefully.
Buying Time when Caught Off Guard
Sometimes a girl might say BRB if she’s asked a surprising or delicate question and needs a moment to collect her thoughts before responding. It can be a reflexive way to buy some time.
Girl chatting with her sister:
Sister: So when are you going to tell Mom that you dropped out of college?
Girl: Umm BRB
The girl didn’t expect her sister to confront her about this and uses BRB to give herself a chance to calm down and consider how to best respond.
Avoiding an Argument that’s Heating Up
During a heated disagreement that’s turning into an argument, one or both parties may use BRB to temporarily diffuse the situation and prevent things from escalating further. Taking a short break can help both people calm down.
Girl arguing with her boyfriend over text:
Boyfriend: I can’t believe you didn’t invite me to your work party!
Girl: It was just for people in my department! Why are you so upset?
Boyfriend: You could have asked if you could bring me. This happens every time!
Girl: I’m so sick of you getting mad about this stuff! BRB, I need some air.
The girl says BRB here to prevent the fight from getting even more heated in the moment. After the break, they may be able to have a calmer discussion about the underlying issue.
When Needing to Consult with Someone Else First
Girls sometimes use BRB when they need to quickly consult with someone before continuing a sensitive conversation. This allows them to provide a more thoughtful response.
Girl chatting with a close friend who just came out to her as gay:
Friend: I really hope this doesn’t change our friendship. I just needed you to know.
Girl: Of course it won’t change anything! BRB though, let me call my brother real quick.
The girl wants to thoughtfully reassure her friend but also get some input from her gay brother first, so she uses BRB to buy some time.
BRB can also be used by girls to provide a smooth segue between conversations about very different topics, especially in group chat situations.
Group chat with three close girlfriends:
Girl 1: Ugh I’m so stressed about midterms next week!
Girl 2: I know, I’m freaking out about biology…
Girl 1: BRB, sorry to change the subject but did you guys see Amanda’s Instagram pics from the Bahamas? Looks incredible!
Rather than abruptly switching the conversation away from midterms, Girl 1 uses BRB to signal the transition to a lighter topic.
When Needing to Briefly Handle Another Conversation
If a girl is multi-tasking conversations on multiple platforms or chat windows, she may use BRB in one chat when needing to briefly shift her attention to keep the other conversation going.
Girl talking to her boyfriend on Facebook messenger while also exchanging texts with a friend.
Boyfriend: Babe do you want to grab dinner tonight?
Girl: Dinner sounds great! BRB, my friend just texted me something urgent.
The girl uses BRB to let her boyfriend know she needs to briefly pause their conversation to check the text from her friend.
Signaling Intent to Return Later
When a girl has to leave a conversation for an extended but finite period of time, she might use BRB to make it clear she intends to come back later.
Girl in an online chat room for a TV show:
Friend: Can you believe they just killed off Alex’s character??
Girl: OMG no way! Ugh I have to run to class now but BRB after to discuss!
Here the girl uses BRB to indicate she has to leave temporarily for class but fully intends to come back later and continue analyzing the show plot twist with her friend.
Letting Someone Down Easy
Some girls may use BRB to gently reject someone or turn down an invitation without having to provide an overt refusal. It allows them to avoid an uncomfortable direct interaction.
Guy chatting with his crush online:
Guy: I was wondering if maybe you’d want to go on a date this weekend?
Rather than turn him down outright, the girl uses BRB with the hope that he’ll get the hint without putting her in an awkward position.
When Needing Time to Process Negative News
Receiving unpleasant news over chat can be difficult, and sometimes a girl’s first instinct is to say BRB to buy some time to absorb the information before responding.
Girl talking to a friend who just found out her mom is sick:
Friend: The doctors said it’s stage 3 cancer…I can’t believe this is happening.
Girl: Omg that’s awful, I’m so sorry. BRB, I need a minute.
Hearing this upsetting update, the girl uses BRB to give herself a moment to process before providing comfort and support to her friend.
While BRB is commonly used by both genders to signify a brief pause in conversation, it can have some nuanced implications when used by girls and women depending on the context. It allows them to gracefully exit uncomfortable situations, buy time to collect thoughts, diffuse rising tensions, gently reject advances, and process negative news. But in many casual contexts, it simply means “I’ll be right back!”