Look Happy!

Miz Rachelle says that the tacit deal she struck with her family when she emerged was to look happy.   It was happiness they claimed to want, and happiness that they could approve, so appearing happy was what they could buy.  “Well, if it makes them happy. . . ”

Of course, as she notes, she came out during her year of euphoria and was happy.  By the time she got to dealing, she was 3000 miles away across the Atlantic.

When you first come out as a transgendered person,
you spend your first year in absolute euphoria.
Then reality sets in, and you have to make a life
and deal with the stigma.
Joan Roughgarden, NY Times Magazine, 9 May 2004

We are impressed with the obligation to manage others fears, and one way to do that is by looking happy.    Of course, that means you can’t easily surface your own pain and fears, because they will just be shot back and used against you.