A tearful women is something that can send the most powerful man into a confused spiral. For some reason it has been decided that tears are a symbol of weakness, something to be stopped and avoided at all costs.
“Stop crying! Oh no, don’t cry. Be strong.” These are all words we have encountered at one point or another.
Tears are our body’s way of releasing negative emotions. According to this article at Psych Central, there are several reasons why tears are actually good for us:
- Tears help us see. Tears not only lubricate our eyeballs and eyelids, they also prevent dehydration of our various mucous membranes.
- Tears kill bacteria. Tears contain lysozyme, a fluid that the germ-a-phobic dreams about in her sleep, because it can kill 90 to 95 percent of all bacteria in just five to 10 minutes!
- Tears remove toxins. They actually remove toxins from our body that build up courtesy of stress. They are like a natural therapy or massage session, but they cost a lot less!
- Crying can elevate mood.
- Crying lowers stress. Suppressing tears increases stress levels, and contributes to diseases aggravated by stress, such as high blood pressure, heart problems, and peptic ulcers.
- Tears build community. Tears help communication and foster community.
- Tears release feelings. Even if you haven’t just been through something traumatic or are severely depressed, the average Jo goes through his day accumulating conflicts and resentments. Sometimes they gather inside the limbic system of the brain and in certain corners of the heart. Crying is cathartic. It lets the devils out.
In January of this year I tragically lost my father to lung cancer. This was one of the most heart wrenching and difficult experiences I have ever had in my life. He was in a lot of pain and I was not able to help him. The only thing I could do was sit at his bedside and tell him I loved him.
Crying in front of him would have only served to make him feel worse about his situation, but I will say honestly the second I was alone I sobbed and sobbed.
Those tears served to keep me sane and allowed me to be able to face the reality of his inevitable passing and the reality of my life without him.
Think about it, when was the last time you had a good cry? Didn’t you feel better afterwards? It is a healing process that gives us the strength to carry on.
True strength comes from having the ability to be honest about the way you feel and to own those emotions. Pretending that you don’t care when inside you are suffering and in pain does not make the situation any better.
So the next time you feel emotional, whether it is because someone hurt your feelings, you feel overwhelmed by life, or you are watching a sad movie let those tears flow! It just means you are human.