Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump are seen together at myriad events — they happen to be business partners and sons of the current president, after all. But it's pretty difficult to figure out how they actually feel about each other. Experts say
Don Jr. and Eric Trump's body language shows that the brothers are just as close as their intertwined lives would suggest.
"Anything [the media] say negative about the brothers is kind of wrong, because they’re very connected to one another, body language wise,"
body language expert Dr. Lillian Glass tells Bustle.
This is evidenced by the way they comport themselves around each other, according to Glass — they look relaxed, comfortable, and "the most genuine we ever see them." Their strong relationship probably helps them do their respective jobs, as they've been
running the Trump Organization together since their father became president.
They do have a few years between them in age — Don Jr. is 41, and Eric is six years his junior at 35 — so it's natural that between the two,
body language expert Traci Brown sees a clear hierarchy.
"Don is in charge; Eric’s coming along for the ride," Brown tells Bustle, and Glass agrees. But based off these photos of the brothers, neither believes that the hierarchy is a source of tension.
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"The brothers — they’re very close," Glass says, looking at this picture. According to both experts, this photo also says something about the sibling hierarchy.
"That thumb on the chin, that’s what a parent would do to a kid, to control where they’re looking, to control their behavior a bit," Brown tells Bustle. Eric's hand on Don Jr.'s arm, according to Brown, "does not seem like a powerful movement."
While Brown believes Don Jr. was "marginalizing" Eric, Glass had a warmer interpretation — that their movements are evidence of Eric really looking up to his older brother.
"The fact that his brother is either pulling lint off him or touching his chin, that’s a very affectionate gesture," Glass says.
They're Always Side By Side
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Don Jr. and Eric
appear at events together a lot, so they're often in a position similar to the one pictured here — but Glass says that even their postures can tell you something about their relationship.
"[Eric's] behind his brother, so that speaks volumes, but they touch shoulders," Glass explains. "They have physical contact, so there’s this very strong connection between these two. And that kind of validates the strong connection."
One Brother Is "Clearly More In Control"
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This photo reveals who's really running things, according to Brown.
"Don Jr. is clearly more in control here, not only because he’s got the microphone," Brown says. "Notice the way he’s grabbing the podium, that’s someone who wants to be in control, needs to hang onto something for security. When a lot of people speak, they need a little more security, and he’s no different."
Eric Follows In His Brother's Footsteps
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Pride is evident here on the brothers' faces, but according to Glass, it's also possible to glean something further about their relationship.
"Don is pretty buttoned up all the time and his chest is out. He’s very secure, very open," Glass explains. "They have open body language towards each other, and [Eric] wants to look good, making sure he’s all buttoned up too, taking his lead from his brother."
The Brothers Act As A Team
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Two brothers on their phones might seem like a pretty run-of-the-mill shot, but Brown tells Bustle there's actually a lot to be gained from this picture.
"See how they’re doing the exact same thing?" Brown asks. "Their legs are crossed in the same way, the look on their faces is really similar, they kind of have the right amount of energy, they’re wearing about the same things, they’re sitting exactly the same way."
Brown says this is evidence of two people who are "basically on the same wavelength... they’re for sure a team."
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When looking at photos of just the two brothers together, you might almost forget that they have other siblings — until one appears in another photo. This snapshot gives a glimpse into how Don Jr., Eric, and Ivanka all relate to one another, Glass and Brown say.
"The two brothers are kind of more of a team, where Ivanka is pretty much on her [own]... more independent," Glass says.
Brown draws attention to the fact that Eric chose to face his brother, letting his body cut Ivanka out of the triad. This dynamic is also evident in their jobs — while Don Jr. and Eric are working together to lead the Trump organization,
Ivanka has her own initiatives within the White House.
Not A Whiff Of Sibling Rivalry
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In such a public family, where the brothers grew up around competition in business, you might expect familial conflict as well. Judging by the photos of Eric and Don Jr., though, Glass doesn't believe this is the case in with the two eldest Trump brothers.
"They know their position, there’s no competition, there’s no sibling rivalry, they know exactly... who is doing what in the family," Glass says.
As the photos show, the brothers look pretty happy with their close relationship.