Monday, March 21, 2011

why is it not ok for "real" men to cry?

ok - so that is a rhetorical question obviously. But its something I have been pondering all day - and have pondered before...

Why do men (and of course I am making generalisations here - because I do know that there are men out there that don't have a problem with crying) consider crying to be weak or that your a "girl". There is a whole generation, make that two generations of men- (probably more if I researched it) that consider crying to be a sign of weakness. My own 12 year old son, who is throes of massive hormonal changes, considers it weak to cry. Recently, overwhelmed with emotion, and the changes going on in his life - highschool, reconnecting with his father, physical changes, as he sobbed, he said "i'm such a pussy. I'm such a wose" and it was because he was crying. I comforted him, and said "No - your not.  Crying is a release of emotion, and healthy. Its when you don't cry that its not ok".

Why has "society" deemed it ok for women to cry, but not men? The cycle gets perpetuated as men say to young boys "don't be such a girl" if they cry. Is it the fact that a young boy can still cry that makes them feel uncomfortable and threatened?

any commentary would be gladly welcomed... because I'm really trying to get my head wrapped around this quandry....


  1. This was question was recently asked on an english women's chat show. Most of the ladies said they would be turned off by men that cried too much. Interesting, imagine if the president of American cried at every sad news story etc. But, we love it when men cry at dog stories like Marley and Me and at the recent news story of the dog in Japan bringing rescuers to his dog mate. Touching but we do need our men to be strong - spiritual and strong. Poor men - can they ever win?

  2. It is in the make up - boys need to not cry as they get older. Only to their Mum's. Girls are very strong and probably don't cry much once they get to their teens. This question was asked on a women's chat show recently almost all said they would be turned off by a man that cried more than them. WE love men to cry at dog stories like Marley and Me - and the dog in Japan that bought his rescuers to this mate saving both their lives. Boys need to be able to release their emotions so the emotion is not used in a negative way - but in the safe environment. Recently I watched a programme of quite young boys in boarding school and was truly touched when experienced boarders supported new boarders through the first days and weeks where tears of loneliness flowed freely. My son 35 has tears in sad movies, when I arrive, when I leave and at all the usual sad family events. But he is a strong a capable business person. I know your boys will be the same, single mums do great jobs of bringing up healthy young men. Is a tough few years but worth it. His emotional balance is in safe hands

  3. How can a woman be turned off by a man crying? I don't understand why there is such a discrepancy between emotion and gender. Why should we say men are supposed to be"strong" "emotionally stable" and women then are not, they are expected to be emotional and weak, it is a double edged sword, stereotypes create stereotypes. It shouldn't be a question of gender, but of humanity. Having emotion and expressing it regardless of how, or what gender is expressing it, is human. ugh lol sorry for the rant!


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