Another spectrum to balance between. Is appearing differently than our true emotional state being fake? Wise? Duplicious? Or just another part of growing up? Is honesty the best policy when others can get hurt by your true feelings/thoughts? or when you’ll be accused of dragging down the emotional energy and avoided for being a downer wet blanket? But do you have to give an Oscar winning performance when you’re with your friends? At work, yes.
According to an expert, Ph D Carolyn Saarni, our “inner emotional state need not correspond to outer expression” …” at more mature levels, the ability to understand that one’s emotional expressive behaviour may have an impact on another and to take this into account in one’s self-presentation” “Growth in sophistication of emotional dissemblance (not showing feelings or incorrectly representing them)… & figuring out under what conditions..emotions get expressed & to whom” depends on the type of Rships kids have in the home. If need be, the ability is learned as a survival tactic. At least by those who would like to make life a little easier & maybe have some more people around. But the ability seems to be part of growing up.
I think “acting out” is a misnomer. What these kids are probably doing is expressing what’s raw. True acting is appearing civilized when that’s really not how you feel.