Do you think crying is a sign of weakness or strength?

I have been silent on this topic for a couple of days, unsure how to proceed. Truthfully, this question really irritated me, but I didn’t know how acceptable it was to express that in a public forum.

I had a long conversation with my Father in Law this evening as I was driving home from another long work day, and he provided me with some insight. When I first hit on the idea for this blog I invited him to join me in “answering a question a day”; he, by nature, is not as sado-masochistic as I am, and didn’t seem as inclined to post his answers in a public forum, but has been giving thought to the questions each day. I laugh, because that’s probably more than I do. We can be polar opposites: he gives a lot of thought to things, and I give a lot of words to things. Our conversation this evening covered many topics (as is our way), from the iPhone, to whether cloning pets is ethical, and hovered around my blog for a few minutes. I expressed my concern that this question didn’t seem valuable to me, and he agreed. So I decided to share my opinion.

The idea that crying must mean something is insufferable to me. Sometimes, tears really are just tears. I’m very emotive, I cry at everything. I’ve cried at multiple episodes of The Simpsons, pretty much every romantic comedy, and any sentimental story I read on pinterest. This girl has overactive tear ducts. But I didn’t shed a tear when I learned my Mummy had cancer; or even when I watched the dim shores of England disappear for the final time behind a wreath of clouds. Forever. My home lost.

My best friend, the strangest and most wonderful person I know, has never cried in front of me in 25 years. We have shared broken hearts, broken families, and broken countries. The night before I married the hubs (God love him), I shared a bed with my bestie for the last time. She, I, and my twin, shared stories from the last 20 years, but we didn’t shed a tear. Crying doesn’t mean anything, at least not to me. I don’t even remember the last time I cried properly, but that doesn’t make me strong. And it sure as hell doesn’t make me weak.

This question is antagonistic, or self serving, depending on the reader (or the writer). A strong person shouldn’t view crying as weakness, and a fragile person shouldn’t view silence as strength.

Weakness and Strength are measured by more valuable things than tears. There are very few things I am certain of in life, but two of the strongest beliefs I have are freedom of speech, and that tears are biological.

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