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20 Wrong Assumptions People Have Made Based On How I Look

Never judge a book by its cover.

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1. "That because I'm skinny I don't work out!"

"Staying active and fit is actually something I take seriously. I walk, bike, spin, row, etc. I've been skinny my whole life (I think it's because of a fast metabolism), so when people look at me and assume that I must not work out it can be a little annoying/frustrating. While lifting weights isn't a priority, staying fit is something that's important to me. I don't think that muscles define how active or in shape you are and sometimes it's frustrating that that's the norm."—Kevin Smith
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"Staying active and fit is actually something I take seriously. I walk, bike, spin, row, etc. I've been skinny my whole life (I think it's because of a fast metabolism), so when people look at me and assume that I must not work out it can be a little annoying/frustrating. While lifting weights isn't a priority, staying fit is something that's important to me. I don't think that muscles define how active or in shape you are and sometimes it's frustrating that that's the norm."

Kevin Smith

2. "I'm an immigrant. No, you asshole, I was born here."

"I went to a small college in upstate NY and this happened a lot. Classmates, friends of friends, or people at the bar would ask me, 'Where are you from?' I'd say 'Brooklyn,' and unsatisfied with my answer, they'd ask where I grew up. I'd say 'Brooklyn' and still unsatisfied, they'd ask, "Where are your parents from?" I'd say they were born in China and finally satisfied that I was tied to an immigrant and checked off a box in their head, they didn't ask any more questions."This was extremely frustrating. It's silly that someone would think they know your entire life story just by looking at you. Sometimes I would mess around with people. I'd say my parents were born here and they would look disappointed. Oh well, not sorry to have you check yourself."—Annie Yu
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"I went to a small college in upstate NY and this happened a lot. Classmates, friends of friends, or people at the bar would ask me, 'Where are you from?' I'd say 'Brooklyn,' and unsatisfied with my answer, they'd ask where I grew up. I'd say 'Brooklyn' and still unsatisfied, they'd ask, "Where are your parents from?" I'd say they were born in China and finally satisfied that I was tied to an immigrant and checked off a box in their head, they didn't ask any more questions.

"This was extremely frustrating. It's silly that someone would think they know your entire life story just by looking at you. Sometimes I would mess around with people. I'd say my parents were born here and they would look disappointed. Oh well, not sorry to have you check yourself."

Annie Yu

3. "Because of my booty, people assume I want to be objectified."

"Walking around with a ~curvaceous~ bod can feel like a struggle because men (and it is always men) think my body is something they have a right to comment about. They do not. The worst is when a man decides to be very specific — like the day I took this picture when some guy said, 'I’d eat that booty.' "If that isn’t enough, they become angry if I ignore them, or look angry! The absurdity of it puts me in a rage, I swear. Recently, some guy I politely ignored had the gall to say that *I* should wear something different if I didn’t want to be talked to. No, homie, just no. I’m 10,000% over it. My body is mine."—Julia Furlan
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"Walking around with a ~curvaceous~ bod can feel like a struggle because men (and it is always men) think my body is something they have a right to comment about. They do not. The worst is when a man decides to be very specific — like the day I took this picture when some guy said, 'I’d eat that booty.'

"If that isn’t enough, they become angry if I ignore them, or look angry! The absurdity of it puts me in a rage, I swear. Recently, some guy I politely ignored had the gall to say that *I* should wear something different if I didn’t want to be talked to. No, homie, just no. I’m 10,000% over it. My body is mine."

Julia Furlan

4. "That I'm definitely bluffing when I say I love video games."

"I've loved playing video games — especially ones with good stories — since I was in middle school. They're like getting to play through my favorite sci-fi novels! (Hi, fellow Mass Effect fans.) But I also love to wear pink dresses and patent heels, and talk about how much I love wine. More than once, I've been talking with someone who assumes my mind is sort of vacant (ugh). But as soon as I mention video games, suddenly I'm a COOL GIRL, and their demeanor completely changes. And yes, I can tell when you're judging me, people."—Natalie Brown
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"I've loved playing video games — especially ones with good stories — since I was in middle school. They're like getting to play through my favorite sci-fi novels! (Hi, fellow Mass Effect fans.) But I also love to wear pink dresses and patent heels, and talk about how much I love wine. More than once, I've been talking with someone who assumes my mind is sort of vacant (ugh). But as soon as I mention video games, suddenly I'm a COOL GIRL, and their demeanor completely changes. And yes, I can tell when you're judging me, people."

Natalie Brown

5. "People think I like Pumpkin Spice Lattes."

"I think people tend to assume a lot of things about my personality and interests based on the way I look. I’m very blonde, I love wearing makeup every day, and I love dresses, skirts, and pink/girly clothing. But just because I enjoy dressing in traditionally feminine ways and curling my hair, doesn’t mean I like certain types of movies or like certain drinks. I wear Darth Vader pajamas and I drink my coffee black, OK?"—Emma Tyler
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"I think people tend to assume a lot of things about my personality and interests based on the way I look. I’m very blonde, I love wearing makeup every day, and I love dresses, skirts, and pink/girly clothing. But just because I enjoy dressing in traditionally feminine ways and curling my hair, doesn’t mean I like certain types of movies or like certain drinks. I wear Darth Vader pajamas and I drink my coffee black, OK?"

Emma Tyler

6. "I have no soul."

"According to South Park, gingers have no souls. So when people see me on the streets they always say 'you have no soul,' and I respond 'I know.' Even though I kind of do. Or do I?"—Jon Premosch
Shannon Rosenberg / BuzzFeed

"According to South Park, gingers have no souls. So when people see me on the streets they always say 'you have no soul,' and I respond 'I know.' Even though I kind of do. Or do I?"

Jon Premosch

7. "That I like girls because I'm a tomboy and I like to play SPORTZ."

"I love to spend my free time playing in pick-up games, working out, and lounging around in sweats whenever possible. Because I'm not as feminine as most people stereotype women to be (or think they should be), sometimes people will assume that means I must like girls. The idea of 'not being feminine enough,' and whether that makes me less attractive to men, is something I've wrestled on and off with for a while. "Nothing makes me happier than taking a ball to Central Park and kicking around for a couple of hours. But that doesn't mean I don't like to get dressed up and put on makeup. I was lucky enough to grow up in a culture where sexuality isn't viewed in a negative or positive light, it's just who you are — so honestly people thinking I'm a lesbian doesn't bother me. But in general, people shouldn't assume one's sexuality by the way they dress or hold themselves." —Shannon Rosenberg
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"I love to spend my free time playing in pick-up games, working out, and lounging around in sweats whenever possible. Because I'm not as feminine as most people stereotype women to be (or think they should be), sometimes people will assume that means I must like girls. The idea of 'not being feminine enough,' and whether that makes me less attractive to men, is something I've wrestled on and off with for a while.

"Nothing makes me happier than taking a ball to Central Park and kicking around for a couple of hours. But that doesn't mean I don't like to get dressed up and put on makeup. I was lucky enough to grow up in a culture where sexuality isn't viewed in a negative or positive light, it's just who you are — so honestly people thinking I'm a lesbian doesn't bother me. But in general, people shouldn't assume one's sexuality by the way they dress or hold themselves."

Shannon Rosenberg

8. "I don't play basketball just because I'm 6'0''."

"My height is the first thing most people notice about me because it (quite literally) makes me stick out like a sore thumb. I think the assumption that I play(ed) basketball is made so often because height is seen as a universal athletic advantage. It's funny to me because I think it's very obvious that so much more goes into a sport like basketball — like athleticism and skill and coordination. Those are independent from height, and I learned that the hard way. Growing up, I felt a lot of pressure to excel at sports because that's what society expects of you as a tall girl. "It was difficult, because I was not a natural athlete at all and I was much more passionate about academics and art. But instead of cultivating my intellectual talents, I struggled with my failure to be a star athlete — which changed when I was 16. I pissed off a lot of coaches when I quit rowing and swimming, but it was the best decision I've ever made. Because I performed way better at the science fair than I did at the races or on the court. And being a nerd made me genuinely happy. Trust me, you'd rather have a blind goat on your basketball team than my uncoordinated, gangly body flailing around."—Caroline Kee
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"My height is the first thing most people notice about me because it (quite literally) makes me stick out like a sore thumb. I think the assumption that I play(ed) basketball is made so often because height is seen as a universal athletic advantage. It's funny to me because I think it's very obvious that so much more goes into a sport like basketball — like athleticism and skill and coordination. Those are independent from height, and I learned that the hard way. Growing up, I felt a lot of pressure to excel at sports because that's what society expects of you as a tall girl.

"It was difficult, because I was not a natural athlete at all and I was much more passionate about academics and art. But instead of cultivating my intellectual talents, I struggled with my failure to be a star athlete — which changed when I was 16. I pissed off a lot of coaches when I quit rowing and swimming, but it was the best decision I've ever made. Because I performed way better at the science fair than I did at the races or on the court. And being a nerd made me genuinely happy. Trust me, you'd rather have a blind goat on your basketball team than my uncoordinated, gangly body flailing around."

Caroline Kee

9. "That because I'm short, people think I have a complex about it. Nope, I don't give a fuck."

"Admittedly, being a short male came with its obstacles growing up. I haven’t grown an inch since freshman year of high school, and dealing with it early on was difficult. You are constantly measuring yourself to peers and trying to establish yourself socially in high school and early college days. "However, I’ve learned over the years that height doesn’t matter. I realized that if I make a joke about it before anybody else, people quickly realize that I’m not worried about it and that they shouldn’t be either. I’ve dated girls taller than me, played competitive sports without it ever holding me back, and am genuinely comfortable with myself. It’s all about the mindset you have about your physical appearance, and nobody can control that but you."—J.J. Noel
Shannon Rosenberg / BuzzFeed

"Admittedly, being a short male came with its obstacles growing up. I haven’t grown an inch since freshman year of high school, and dealing with it early on was difficult. You are constantly measuring yourself to peers and trying to establish yourself socially in high school and early college days.

"However, I’ve learned over the years that height doesn’t matter. I realized that if I make a joke about it before anybody else, people quickly realize that I’m not worried about it and that they shouldn’t be either. I’ve dated girls taller than me, played competitive sports without it ever holding me back, and am genuinely comfortable with myself. It’s all about the mindset you have about your physical appearance, and nobody can control that but you."

—J.J. Noel

10. "That I like being compared to Harry Potter because I have a scar on my forehead. (LMAO, no.)"

"I cracked my head open when I was a little kid and since then I've had a pretty big scar in the middle of my forehead. I was bullied about it a lot throughout school, specifically because it happened at the height of the Harry Potter world takeover. I grew out my bangs and wore headbands a lot to try to cover it up because people were always pointing out that I had this giant, screaming flaw on my face. We all look at ourselves in the mirror every day and we all know our fallbacks, so there's no reason for anybody to point them out — even if it's to compare them to 'The Boy Who Lived' (The Lord of the Rings is cooler anyway, folks)."—Kaelin Tully
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"I cracked my head open when I was a little kid and since then I've had a pretty big scar in the middle of my forehead. I was bullied about it a lot throughout school, specifically because it happened at the height of the Harry Potter world takeover. I grew out my bangs and wore headbands a lot to try to cover it up because people were always pointing out that I had this giant, screaming flaw on my face. We all look at ourselves in the mirror every day and we all know our fallbacks, so there's no reason for anybody to point them out — even if it's to compare them to 'The Boy Who Lived' (The Lord of the Rings is cooler anyway, folks)."

Kaelin Tully

11. "People think I'm aloof because I have crazy hair and listen to obscure music."

"Oftentimes, when I get to know acquaintances or new folks, they'll tell me that they were intimidated by me at first. I don't know why, but that's what everybody always says when they're talking about meeting me for the first time. LIke, 'Oh, she is so cool; I'm intimidated to go talk to her.' But it doesn't mean I don't want to talk to you or get to know you!"—Christina Lan
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"Oftentimes, when I get to know acquaintances or new folks, they'll tell me that they were intimidated by me at first. I don't know why, but that's what everybody always says when they're talking about meeting me for the first time. LIke, 'Oh, she is so cool; I'm intimidated to go talk to her.' But it doesn't mean I don't want to talk to you or get to know you!"

Christina Lan

12. "My smile doesn't mean I'm flirting with you. (#RestingFriendlyFace)"

"You know the classic 'gimme a smile' catcall? Well, I get the exact opposite comment. Random creeps assume my 'resting friendly face' is an invitation to approach me in public, invade my personal space, and talk to me even when I make it clear I am not interested in conversation. Just because I’m smiling, or I 'seem friendly,' doesn’t mean I am flirting with you or want to talk to you. It’s just my damn face, dude."—Julia Reinstein
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"You know the classic 'gimme a smile' catcall? Well, I get the exact opposite comment. Random creeps assume my 'resting friendly face' is an invitation to approach me in public, invade my personal space, and talk to me even when I make it clear I am not interested in conversation. Just because I’m smiling, or I 'seem friendly,' doesn’t mean I am flirting with you or want to talk to you. It’s just my damn face, dude."

Julia Reinstein

13. "That I'm intimidating because I have a 'resting bitch face' and am tall."

"Sometimes when I meet people they tell me they were too nervous to introduce themselves because I seemed intimidating, which always blows my mind. They soon find out I'm just awkward and shy with a case of ~RBF~ and height. And to everyone who has told me to smile more, do you know how insane that would look? I guess I'll take intimidating. It's just what my face does, you guys."—Sarah Kobos
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"Sometimes when I meet people they tell me they were too nervous to introduce themselves because I seemed intimidating, which always blows my mind. They soon find out I'm just awkward and shy with a case of ~RBF~ and height. And to everyone who has told me to smile more, do you know how insane that would look? I guess I'll take intimidating. It's just what my face does, you guys."

Sarah Kobos

14. "Because I'm well dressed, people assume I'm not outdoorsy. But I have a fucking lemon tree in my apartment."

"I try to dress well every day — which is hard to do consistently, so I've settled on a personal uniform of a pair of jeans and an Oxford shirt. It really simplifies my life a lot and allows me to focus on what I find important. But a lot of people also ascribe to it a lack of imagination or personality. The truth is that I DO have hobbies and interests that range outside the collared shirt and jeans look." —Matt Fischer
Shannon Rosenberg / BuzzFeed

"I try to dress well every day — which is hard to do consistently, so I've settled on a personal uniform of a pair of jeans and an Oxford shirt. It really simplifies my life a lot and allows me to focus on what I find important. But a lot of people also ascribe to it a lack of imagination or personality. The truth is that I DO have hobbies and interests that range outside the collared shirt and jeans look."

—Matt Fischer

15. "That I don't eat because I am thin."

"So many times in my life people have used the tired ol' phrases 'You need to eat a hamburger!' or 'You need to get some meat on those bones!' First of all, I friggin' love hamburgers. Second of all, telling someone to put meat on their bones is creepy and weird. I hate when people scoff at me, thinking that I purposely don't eat or that I worry too much about my weight, because I do neither of those things. I simply have a high metabolism. People lose and gain weight for so many reasons unknown to you, so maybe just don't comment on it, ever. I'm happy and healthy and will eat a hamburger when I'm in the mood for a goddamn hamburger."—Elaina Wahl
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"So many times in my life people have used the tired ol' phrases 'You need to eat a hamburger!' or 'You need to get some meat on those bones!' First of all, I friggin' love hamburgers. Second of all, telling someone to put meat on their bones is creepy and weird. I hate when people scoff at me, thinking that I purposely don't eat or that I worry too much about my weight, because I do neither of those things. I simply have a high metabolism. People lose and gain weight for so many reasons unknown to you, so maybe just don't comment on it, ever. I'm happy and healthy and will eat a hamburger when I'm in the mood for a goddamn hamburger."

Elaina Wahl

16. "People think I'm a baby. But I'm actually a grown-up."

"I still don't know what about my appearance makes people think of me as a little boy or baby. To be honest, there are a few co-workers here at BuzzFeed that are convinced I'm under 18. They call me baby all the time and it's a bit frustrating because they don't know how much I do on my own!"—Andrew Richard
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"I still don't know what about my appearance makes people think of me as a little boy or baby. To be honest, there are a few co-workers here at BuzzFeed that are convinced I'm under 18. They call me baby all the time and it's a bit frustrating because they don't know how much I do on my own!"

Andrew Richard

17. "That I'm nice...but I'm not."

"I think it's the combination of being a Canadian and an Asian woman that makes people think I'm automatically super approachable/nice/friendly, when most of the time I just want to be left alone. #SorryNotSorry"—Jenny Chang
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"I think it's the combination of being a Canadian and an Asian woman that makes people think I'm automatically super approachable/nice/friendly, when most of the time I just want to be left alone. #SorryNotSorry"

Jenny Chang

18. "That I'm not queer just because I wear femme clothes and makeup."

"As a femme-presenting queer woman, people often look at me and assume that I'm straight. Unless I am in the presence of my partner — who is androgynous and masculine-presenting — my queerness pretty much becomes invisible to others. It can be frustrating that in a world of strict gender expectations, my femme-ness automatically disqualifies me from being acknowledged and affirmed as a queer person. It is a huge part of my identity, and a little part of my soul feels crushed every time someone I interact with makes the assumption that I have a boyfriend, am looking for a boyfriend, or have any general interest in men whatsoever. THE ANSWER IS NO, THANK YOU."—Sally Kaplan
Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"As a femme-presenting queer woman, people often look at me and assume that I'm straight. Unless I am in the presence of my partner — who is androgynous and masculine-presenting — my queerness pretty much becomes invisible to others. It can be frustrating that in a world of strict gender expectations, my femme-ness automatically disqualifies me from being acknowledged and affirmed as a queer person. It is a huge part of my identity, and a little part of my soul feels crushed every time someone I interact with makes the assumption that I have a boyfriend, am looking for a boyfriend, or have any general interest in men whatsoever. THE ANSWER IS NO, THANK YOU."

Sally Kaplan

19. "That I'm ditzy because I'm blonde."

"I bleach my hair within an inch of its life every other month for no reason other than the fact that I think it looks super rad. So it still BAFFLES me when people think that a hair color could have any influence on one’s intelligence, personality, or preferences. Didn't the dumb blonde trope pretty much run its course in the '90s?"I graduated magna cum laude last year from one of the best schools in the country. During that period, I sported everything from bright pink hair, to lavender hair, to my current platinum. I like to have fun with my hair because it’s all temporary. It doesn't make me any less intelligent, any more bubbly, or whatever stereotype you want to project onto it. And no offense, but I'm usually feeling like you’re the ditzy one when you ask me at a bar if I’m Swedish or of some other vaguely Nordic ancestry. As if 'Mother of Dragons' blonde is my god-given hue and not purchased for $11.99 at Sally's."—Sara Easterling
Shannon Rosenberg / BuzzFeed

"I bleach my hair within an inch of its life every other month for no reason other than the fact that I think it looks super rad. So it still BAFFLES me when people think that a hair color could have any influence on one’s intelligence, personality, or preferences. Didn't the dumb blonde trope pretty much run its course in the '90s?

"I graduated magna cum laude last year from one of the best schools in the country. During that period, I sported everything from bright pink hair, to lavender hair, to my current platinum. I like to have fun with my hair because it’s all temporary. It doesn't make me any less intelligent, any more bubbly, or whatever stereotype you want to project onto it. And no offense, but I'm usually feeling like you’re the ditzy one when you ask me at a bar if I’m Swedish or of some other vaguely Nordic ancestry. As if 'Mother of Dragons' blonde is my god-given hue and not purchased for $11.99 at Sally's."

—Sara Easterling

20. "People think I'm in my twenties, but I'm in my thirties...OK, forties."

Jon Premosch / BuzzFeed

"When people first meet me they often think I'm younger than my actual age (42), sometimes much younger. This may sound great to most people, and don't get me wrong. I usually enjoy it — however, I do feel that others do underestimate and dismiss me as being naive and inexperienced. I also worry that I buy into the illusion that I am younger and may not take care of myself in a way that's appropriate for someone my age.

"But then I think, Whatever, fuck appropriate."

Will Varner

Body Positivity Week is a week of content devoted to exploring and celebrating our complicated relationships with our bodies. Check out more great Body Positivity Week content here.

Chris Ritter / BuzzFeed

UPDATE: A photo has been removed at the request of the subject.

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