One thing I’ve increasingly heard from many friends in marginalized communities is the great demand for performing something called emotional labor, which is “the process by which people manage and often suppress their feelings, their facial and verbal expressions, and their body language in order to fulfill the emotional demands of some task.” One common refrain I’ve heard from these friends is that they are exhausted from having to perform this extensive emotional labor, especially when the labor asked of my friends involves something that people can find out themselves through minimal research.
Arielle Rebekah Gordon at Trans and Caffeinated wrote about her own experiences with having to perform extensive emotional labor. As an activist for transgender rights, she, like many of my friends in marginalized communities, has expressed just how exhausting it is to consistently perform emotional labor for other people.
While the emotional labor asked of Arielle may be in some ways different from the emotional labor asked of people in other marginalized communities, many of the same issues expressed in her post about emotional labor have been expressed by friends also having to perform extensive emotional labor. They are issues that others of us should be aware of.
So, I hope that my readers also read her post on emotional labor, and also give her blog a look!
You can find Arielle’s post on emotional labor here.
You can find Arielle’s blog here.
 This definition of emotional labor comes from the post I shared. The only difference between the definition I have and the definition from the author of the shared post (Arielle) is that my definition is in the third person while her definition is in the first person.
 For example, the common question of, “Have you had ‘the surgery’?” is a question that is specific to people who identify as transgender.