The wise Jesse McCartney once sung about the ~wonders~ of body language in a relationship, but clearly he hadn’t yet seen Donald Trump and Melania Trump’s many conflicting gestures at the White House Easter Egg Roll this morning.
For the annual event, Donald, Melania, and a freaky-looking Easter Bunny went out on the lawn to play games and pose for photos with thousands of kids. The event was organized by Melania’s office and included postcard-writing stations, egg races, and a new game called “musical eggs,” which is like an Easter-themed musical chairs. TBD on if the kids had to sit on the eggs or how exactly this game works. For now, though, Donald and Melania’s body language deserves all the attention because it was truly confusing.
It’s hard to tell if their body language today was a result of the reported public disagreement they had while having dinner at Mar-a-Lago a little while back, but according to body language expert Blanca Cobb, there’s plenty to dissect here.
Here’s what she had to say about Melania and Donald’s tense and distant, yet somehow cheerful interactions:
The High Cheeks
While Donald stood in front of the crowd to introduce the event organized by Melania, both of their cheeks were pushed up, showing they were genuinely happy with how things were going in that moment. Blanca also noted that while gesturing and waving to everyone, their hands looked relaxed. In terms of body language, these are all great signs right off the bat, but for the rest of the morning, there were definitely some moments that will give you pause.
The Forced Hand Hold
As the two walked down some stairs and onto the lawn, you can see Donald reaching down to grab Melania’s hand. At first, it looks a tad awkward because he was about to grab her wrist, but Blanca said you should pay more attention to how Melania’s hand was pointed up and her fingers were lifted. “If she were resisting it, she’d be turned down,” she noted.
But once you glance up at their faces, things became weird. He wasn’t not smiling, she was looking down and ahead, and “there [wasn’t] really interaction between the two of them,” according to Blanca.
How can someone’s hands say one thing while their face says another? Blanca warned, “You can have conflicting body language…you may not actually be happy, but you know that social protocol would require you to show some togetherness, and one way to do that relatively easily is by holding hands.” Yikes.
The Shoulder Lean
Right when Melania was about to blow the game whistle, her right shoulder dipped down, she leaned away from Donald, and he gave her a “polite, social smile—aka a fake smile.” Basically, these faces are what Drake was talking about when he was trying not to argue with his girlfriend at the Cheesecake Factory because he didn’t want to make a scene. The Easter Egg Roll could very well be Donald and Melania’s metaphorical Cheesecake Factory.
Speaking of trying not to get too close to people, Donald made sure to keep Melania literally at arm’s distance. Blanca explained, “That does look more like a grab because you can see the fingers turned in on his left hand and then you can see how it pulls the fabric. So that lets me know that there’s some tension there. He’s just keeping her at a distance.”
That said, Blanca pointed out that Melania had a genuine smile on her face and both of their torsos and feet were angled toward each other, which is a good sign because “your feet take you where you want to go.”
All in all, Donald and Melania’s body language is just as confusing as you may have imagined! Plus, Blanca noted a few of the photos from this morning suggested they could be faking their happiness. “I mean, how many times are you out with your partner somewhere, and you’re not happy with each other but you fake it?” she said. “You fake it for the public because you don’t want everyone to know your business.” Lovely!