TBH Meaning

Last Updated:

What does TBH mean?

TBH means To Be Honest.

On this page:

TBH Meaning
Find out what TBH means and how it is used.

TBH is an initialism that means “to be honest”. It is a short way of telling someone that you’re giving them your honest opinion about something and that they should hear you out.

For a period of time, it was common for Facebook users to do TBH statuses, where if someone liked or commented on the status they would respond with an honest comment about them. These honest comments could be anything from “TBH I think you’re annoying” to “TBH I think you’re pretty”.

Where is TBH used?

TBH is used in text messages and in online communication on all popular social media sites and chat applications. It is basically used in any place where two or more people can have a conversation.

TBH is used on the follow platforms and places:

  • texting
  • online conversation
  • Discord
  • Facebook
  • Facebook Messenger
  • Instagram
  • Reddit
  • Snapchat
  • TikTok
  • Tumblr
  • Twitch
  • Twitter
  • YouTube
An example of the initialism TBH in a text message.
An example of the initialism TBH in a text message.

How is TBH used?

TBH is used to tell someone or some group of people that you are being honest. While it would be nice if everyone were honest all the time, people often just tell people what they want to hear. Telling people that you’re being honest may help them be more receptive and convince them to think more deeply about what you’re saying.

Do people say TBH out loud?

People do not say the initialism out loud, and instead just say “to be honest” as it doesn’t take much more time.

Example Uses of TBH

In a text message:
TBH I don't want to go to the party. I'm tired and I have to wake up early tomorrow.

Someone sends a text to their friend telling them they honestly don't want to go to a party because they are tired.

In a text message:
TBH I'm sick of the way you speak to my brother. You need to treat him with some respect.

Person A tells person B that they don't like how they disrespectfully talk to their brother.

On online conversation:
It's not the best photo, TBH. It isn't framed well and it's overexposed.

Someone giving honest feedback about a photo someone else took.

On Facebook Messenger:

A friend gives advice to apologize to someone.

On Reddit:
I think golf is boring TBH. I'd much rather play basketball or something.

Someone honestly thinks golf is boring and basketball is more exciting.

On Twitter:

Someone is not excited by any of the presidential candidates and would like a different one.

On Twitch:
TBH you should focus more on gameplay and less on talking to viewers.

A Twitch viewer gives feedback to a streamer suggesting that they focus more on gameplay.

Who uses TBH?

TBH is used by a wide range of people in many different places; we don’t see it being a more popular initialism among any particular group of people.

History of TBH

First Use

TBH is one of those initialisms that we remember seeing here and there since we began using the internet. It was first defined on Urban Dictionary in 2003.

Data from Google Trends showing the popularity of searches for TBH.
Data from Google Trends showing the popularity of searches for TBH.

Rise in Popularity

Google searches for TBH started picking up 2011 and again in 2013 and 2014.

What was used before TBH?

Before the initialism was used, people would just use the full phrase “to be honest”.