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If I Could Change One Thing About Me

In my essay, I disclose what I would change about myself, why it is a bother, and why I would change it. The thing I would change is my case of RBF, which is a polite way of saying that a person appears to be angry, irritated or bored whenever he or she has an expressionless face. [1] In my essay, I explain what Resting Bitch Face is and why I would like to change it about myself.

People with RBF may appear angry, irritated or bored, and in my case, I appear irritated. I happily listen to people’s stories and more timid people become nervous. I find that I have to smile and nod whenever timid people are talking or they stop talking. The term RBF was first popularized in 2013 when Grant Barrett of the New York Times claimed the term had existed since 2002. [2] It was originally aimed at women, but scientists have proved that men and women suffer from RBF in equal measure. The only problem is that with men it appears to add to their authority, but with women such as myself, it makes them look rude, mean, or worse. [3]

What bothers me the most is how people are always telling me to cheer up, especially older people that figure I am some sort of sulky teenager. Even when I am having a good time, if I stop smiling, people automatically assume something is wrong and I have to go back to smiling to shut them up. It feels so fake having to smile all the time when I don’t feel like smiling, and yet if I stop, people assume I am angry or upset.

If I try to make a joke, people are often too afraid to laugh because they cannot tell if I am joking or not. The only time I get a laugh is if I say something really mean about somebody else. People hug me for no reason whatsoever because they assume that my day has been terrible and that all I need is a hug, other people will simply ignore me because they think I will bring down their day.

When people give me good news, I have to overact about it because they think I am not happy for them, and if I take it too far, they automatically assume I am being sarcastic and mean. Even my posts on Google+ have to be over-the-top happy because I am constantly trying to shake my reputation for being an angry person. I even have guys telling me that I am angry because I am a secret lesbian, but the truth is that I just have RBF and there is nothing I can do about how I outwardly appear.


It is almost as if somebody has painted a big pair of angry eyebrows on my face in an Angry Birds cartoon type of way, and no matter what I do with my time, people see my angry eyebrows and assume I am angry. RBF is caused by the configurations of a person’s face, fat, muscle and tendons, which means the only solution is to have surgery to fix it. I would have the surgery if I had the money, if only to stop people from comparing my face to a moody cat’s face on Twitter.


[1] Jessica Bennett (2015-08-01). “I’m Not Mad. That’s Just My RBF.”. New York Times. p. ST9. Archived from the original on 2015-09-05.

[2] Grant Barrett (2013-12-22). “A Wordnado of Words in 2013”. New York Times. Archived from the original on 2015-04-18.

[3] Natasha Noman (2016-02-03). “Science Says Resting Bitch Face Is Real — And You’re Probably Judging People for It”. Science.mic.

Contributors Bio

Contributor photo Lona Glenn
Los Angeles
Lona graduated from Los Angeles City College. While being a lecturer in several high school institutions Lona founded an online educational project Tutorsclass.Read more
Contributor photo Maria Castle
Davis, CA
I studied education and currently work as a tutor for school-age children. I've worked as a volunteer in many different international social projects and as a camp counselor every summer.Read more

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