unbothered

[ uhn-both-erd ]
/ ʌnˈbɒð ərd /

adjective

not experiencing mental or physical discomfort: He was unbothered by the cold.He was unbothered about not being picked for the team.
Slang. indifferent to criticism or negative comments; not annoyed or provoked: She was unbothered by her many haters.They swear they’re unbothered, but they care.

Origin of unbothered

First recorded in 1900–10; un-1 + bother + -ed2

Words nearby unbothered

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2020

VOCAB BUILDER

What does unbothered mean?

Unbothered means not experiencing any discomfort—physically, emotionally, or in another other way. If you’re unbothered, nothing is bothering you.

To be bothered by something is to be worried about it or to feel discomfort from it in some way.

Unbothered is especially used in the context of things that could hurt or bother a person but don’t, as in I’m unbothered by the pain, honestly—it’s the waiting that gets to me.

Unbothered is also commonly used in a more informal way to mean completely unaffected by or indifferent to a bad or difficult situation or poor treatment, such as criticism or negative comments. In this way, it means something like nonchalant, as in You seem so unbothered—how can you be so chill about it?

Unbothered can be followed by the source of the discomfort, as in He seems unbothered by the attention, or it can be used by itself, as in He seems completely unbothered. 

Example: Although Sarah desperately wanted the promotion, she did her best to seem unbothered when it was awarded to Jack.

Where does unbothered come from?

The first records of the word unbothered come from around 1900. The prefix un means “not.” Though the word bothered can be used as an adjective or as the past tense of the verb bother, unbothered is only ever used as an adjective.

When someone is described with the more informal sense of unbothered, it implies that they are remaining completely confident and carefree in spite of whatever nonsense is happening or being thrown their way. When someone is unbothered in this way, nothing gets to them. Insults bounce right off of them. Oh, you’re trying to get a rise out of them? They didn’t even notice. Because they’re unbothered.

Of course, while some people are truly unbothered by criticism or negative comments, others simply pretend to be unbothered so as not to encourage such treatment.

Did you know ... ?

What are some synonyms for unbothered?

What are some words that share a root or word element with unbothered

 

What are some words that often get used in discussing unbothered?

How is unbothered used in real life?

Unbothered is usually used in a positive way in admiration of someone who’s able to keep it together despite a difficult situation, poor treatment, or pain.

 

 

Try using unbothered!

Which of the following words is an antonym (opposite) of unbothered?

A. agitated
B. nonchalant
C. aloof
D. unconcerned