Body language experts have frequently examined President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump’s relationship for signs of life. The pair provide plenty of fodder for it, with the first lady especially rejecting her husband’s advances. But do her actions really betray how she feels? Several experts weighed in, and you will not believe what they have to say.
1. Her stony face at the State of the Union speaks volumes
Body language expert Joe Navarro said that the first lady’s face betrayed her true feelings at the State of the Union. Not only did her white suit nod to suffragette sympathies, but her emotionless face said all it needed to. “It was not that she looked stoic, though she often did — it was almost a distant, pained look,” he told HuffPost. “She almost mechanically stood and applauded, without any form of alacrity. That may speak to some psychological discomfort and emotional pain.”
Next: The first lady’s face also gave her away in this situation.
2. Her about-face at the inauguration gave off serious signals
Trump’s smile-turned-frown became the gif that rocked the world after her husband’s inauguration. In a video originally posted by Jezebel and picked up by countless outlets, that smile turns upside-down as soon as her husband turns away.
That said, other videos showed Donald Trump speaking to her son Barron, at that same moment. He could have said something that upset her, some say. However, her face at that time did not represent an isolated incident.
Next: The way the Trumps walk together gives a lot away.
3. Trump does not show deference when they walk together
“If you didn’t know that they were married, you wouldn’t know that they are married,” communication and body language expert Susan Constantine told Mic, of the way Trump walks ahead of his wife. It became especially obvious at the inauguration. “Not only did he not wait, he went up the stairs and greeted the Obamas,” body language expert and professional speaker Patti Wood said. “He didn’t even look back to see if she was there or help her up the stairs.”
The president repeatedly separates himself from his wife. “What we’re clearly seeing is that Donald Trump is walking not just one stair ahead, not two stairs ahead, but a few feet ahead. She’s not being accompanied by him,” body language expert Jacqueline Whitmore told HuffPo. “If you look at some of the old photos of Ronald and Nancy Reagan or the Obamas, they are very close together. In other words, they’re a unit, they’re a couple, they’re engaging in this activity together.”
Next: The following “couple activity” also did not go well for the Trumps.
4. That awkward dance moment made us all cringe
When the pair took the stage during their first dance at the inauguration, Wood pointed out that Melania leaned away from her husband as they danced. “That typically says, ‘I don’t want to merge with you as a partner,'” she explained. Meanwhile, the president countered by “pulling her in sexually,” and touching her pelvis to his. As they held hands and danced, she kept her fingers out straight. Even that small sign can demonstrate a lack of affection, Wood added.
Next: That’s not the only time she has rejected his hand.
5. The Donald wrapped his hand around her fist
Elaine Swann, a lifestyle and etiquette expert, said it did not appear that the two were holding hands in a photo of the two at the Pearl Harbor Memorial. “You can clearly see Melania’s fingers and you don’t see any separation in her fingers ― like his [fingers] in between hers. It looks like what he did is clasped his hand over hers,” she explained.
She said the fact that they looked so stiff at an emotional place especially struck her as odd. “Normally, when you are connected to your mate, your spouse, your partner, you’d expect to see more of a connection between the two,” she said. Closeness definitely does not emanate from that shot.
Next: The first lady explicitly rejected her husband’s touch in these instances.
6. Melania swatted Trump’s hand like a fly
After deplaning in Tel Aviv, the president and first lady walked down a red carpet together, reporters noted. At that moment, Trump held out his hand behind him for his first lady to grab. Instead of taking it, she literally swatted it away. Donald Trump pulled it back, looking resigned. That suggests that he actually wants her affection, but his first lady does not reciprocate.
The first lady did the exact same thing in Rome, and has used other diversion tactics to get out of his touch before. Either the two do not feel comfortable with PDA, or they just don’t like each other.
Next: The following snafu, however, made both parties look like they wanted out.
7. Have you ever seen a more awkward kiss?
On the campaign trail, the Trumps did not often appear together. The now-first lady spent a lot of time at home, ostensibly to take care of Barron. But this one interaction after a rally tells a different story. “It’s not even a direct kiss, it’s more of a kiss for the camera,” communications consultant Dr. Lillian Glass told Elle. She pointed out that what should be a touching moment feels forced. Like so much else in the Donald’s life, it looks like a performance. And a badly executed one, at that.
Next: Melania doesn’t announce this important event.
8. Melania doesn’t announce their anniversary publicly
Melania announces she won’t be traveling with her husband to Switzerland as previously planned on the day of their 13th wedding anniversary. Trump and Melania’s wedding anniversary is on January 22nd. On that day, she announces the change in her schedule but doesn’t say anything about her wedding anniversary.
Next: Sometimes they won’t even look at each other.
9. Trump and Melania don’t acknowledge each other
They say actions speak louder than words. On the day of Trump’s inauguration, the saying couldn’t be truer. In another telling moment, Melania is escorted to stand next to her husband, where they don’t acknowledge each other. Then, Michelle Obama is escorted to stand next to her husband, where he kisses her hand.
Next: She shockingly follows one of her husband’s biggest rivals.
10. She follows Obama on Twitter
Melania Trump follows a total of five people on Twitter. One of those people is former president, Barack Obama. Melania’s husband is known for his strong dislike of Obama. When Melania starts following Obama on Twitter is unclear, according to Newsweek.
Next: In general, the executive couple looks uncomfortable together.
11. They just can’t look naturally affectionate
While en route to Ohio recently, the Trumps looked extremely comfortable displaying affection for each other. While Donald Trump did reach out to touch his wife’s back, it does not look like a natural pose for the two of them. When walking together, they also fall into each other awkwardly. That looks more like a pair of adolescents learning how to walk together than long-married folks. Then again, with the amount of time they reportedly do not spend together, that should come as no surprise to anyone.
Additional reporting by Mandi Kerr.
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