I both love and hate crying.
Actually, love is too strong a word (hate is not). I do not love the headache I get, or the snotty nose. I do not love the rest cheeks or the puffy eyes. I don’t even like these things. What I do like it the release of tension, the relief and the need to cry is satisfied. I like the way the endorphins kick in making me feel better. Not great, not necessarily even good – just better. It’s usually just enough to get over something, get over the worst of something. Just enough to take the edge of so I can do something about the problem.
Unless the need to cry or release some emotions is the programme.
It took me a long time to learn to cry and appreciate it.
When I was a kid I cried a lot, at a lot, at a lot of stuff. I have a pretty low pain threshold and always have, and I’ve always been pretty clumsy. I’ve not always had the right reaction when crying from the people around me – ignored, or told it can’t be that bad, I started to hide it a lot more, and started to really hate crying in front of people, any people. Plus as the depression kicked in and more bad things started to happen in my life and to me I started to get used to it all, managed without crying.
When I started taking medication for the anxiety and depression I stopped crying altogether.
I didn’t start cutting right away as a substitute, that was a year or so later I think I started cutting instead of crying or instead of dealing with my anger in any healthy way. By the time I went to therapy I think eight years had gone by and I’d hardly shed a tear. My dog died, my uncle died, and those things made me cry. I left my ex and my house and didn’t even cry then (though mostly I was frightened).
I sort of had to learn to cry again and to learn it was okay to cry. Though it was hard because I had group therapy and that meant crying in front of other people.
I cry much more easily now and at all sorts of stupid things. Horrible things like people dying and silly things like the song at Spirited Away. It’s much better this way, to cry, to get it out, instead of hiding it, internalising it, cutting it.
I still don’t like crying in front of people though,(unless that person is my wife). I can’t imagine there are many people who do though.
Check out my first published post on The Mighty for more mental health thoughts.