Everything That Made Donald Trump the Man He Is Today

Donald Trump speaks to press

Donald Trump | Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

Donald Trump often appears more impulsive and emotionally driven than the public typically expects from a world leader — so much so that many have questioned his mental health.

The way the president talks, tweets, and behaves still stuns the masses. Some compare him to a fussy two-year-old. Others place images of him and Hitler side-by-side to try making sense (if there is any) of what’s become of the U.S. political climate.

Even those who support him have expressed concerns about his personal behavior. Whether you voted for him or not, still root for him or not, we can all agree that the list of cringe-worthy moments collected since his first day in office will likely get longer.

But people who behave like Trump don’t just wake up one morning and decide they’re going to engage in repetitive, erratic tweeting. Science — and several key facts about the president’s childhood — might explain how he became “The Donald” we know today.

He grew up with 4 siblings

When you learn from a young age to compete for your parents’ attention, you also figure out that speaking up — and loud — is the best way to ensure you’re heard.

Trump likely established early on that not speaking his mind would do more harm than good. That might explain why he seems to tweet without thinking and speak without remorse. He’d rather be heard than ignored.

He was bullied as a kid

Unfortunately, Trump’s no-filter approach to speaking hasn’t always worked out in his favor. People who knew him as a child said that when young Donald said whatever came to mind, other kids would laugh — but he never backed down.

So why does he act like such a bully even though he’s been on the other side of the pain? Several studies suggest many people who bully their peers have previously been bullied themselves. It’s no surprise that Trump would continue the cycle.

His dad was a successful business owner first

Fred Trump was a successful real estate developer before Donald entered the business. The family surrounded the future president and his siblings with various displays of wealth and power.

As Donald Trump established his own career, he only grew wealthier. He conducts his business deals with the same end goals as his father: To establish dominance and power. Is that why there are so many compilations of all his awkward handshakes?

‘Trolling’ is how he gets his messages across

Donald Trump at a podium

Donald Trump | Win McNamee/Getty Images

To a president, public opinion matters. Science might explain why Trump’s campaign against “fake news” never stops.

Researchers have actually studied the level of influence internet trolls have on people’s opinions. Spoiler alert: Even the words people type shamelessly as they hide behind their screen names and avatars influence people’s opinions. Maybe Trump knows this. Maybe he uses it to his advantage.

The president speaks loudly for the sake of being heard, bullies because he knows it hurts, and takes after his dad when playing the role of businessman. And he’s possibly most infamous for his relentless Twitter presence.

We can’t get inside his head — though we don’t often have to guess what he’s thinking. But we do know where he comes from. And that, at least, answers a few of our questions.

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