Most men I speak to tell me they feel awful/guilty/helpless when a woman cries but for the most part they’re ok with it. However, there are situations when crying is NOT tolerated. When it comes to crying there is such thing as crying etiquette. Let’s start with when it’s ok to cry.
When crying is ok as told by men:
- most guys are comfortable with tears when they’re not responsible for the tears
- they’re also ok when someone they care about is crying (they feel compelled to solve the problem)
“I’m not scared to see a women cry. It depends on why they’re crying. If it’s something I can’t help fix I’d feel bad. But I’d still try to help. If my partner is crying it’ll always make me want to stop them,” Tom.
And it sounds like chivalry is not dead.
Most men I spoke to on this topic take pride in helping a lady in distress: “I’m happy I can be there to comfort her. It fulfils my desire as a man to protect. I feel the need to protect the women I care about.” R.L.
And if they’ve grew up with women, it’s a non-issue
“I have four sisters so I’ve seen all the tears I’ll ever need in a lifetime. Women cry over everything. They cry when they’re frustrated, sad, irritated, stressed, overworked, heart broken or just because it’s that time of the month. It doesn’t even phase me when I see my girlfriend cry, especially when I haven’t caused the tears,” Alex.
When crying is NOT ok
If you’ve read any of my other content you’ll know that I don’t believe in the following things:
- that you can say specific phrases to make a man do something (phrases are not magic spells)
- that you can manipulate a guy to fall in love with you (that’s not love)
- that you can act in specific ways to get someone ‘obsessed’ or ‘addicted to you’ (love is not a drug).
So the use of tears as a weapon is a big no-no in my own set of values.
But they’re not just off putting for me, guys see right through it too: “If I can see tears are used in a manipulative way, I’d kick off. It can’t be used as a wild card to win a fight,” Tom.
“If it’s unwarranted crying, it’s annoying. Like if it’s emotional blackmail crying, crying out of insecurity, angry/irrational crying…I want nothing to do with it. It’s emotional blackmail when crying is used as a negotiation tool to win an argument. It’s similar to men who use their fists to win an argument when they have no other sensible options,” R.L
“It’s not fighting fair. I hate how women can just turn on and off the waterworks and we’re expected to cave. It’s not fair. I always feel like I’m in the wrong in a situation like that,” Jeff.
“Sometimes I feel like I have to give up my opinion in an argument because I just want to make the tears stop,” Mike.
Crying is an expression of emotion and sometimes it’s not always easy to keep our tears in check. I think it’s acceptable to cry as long as it’s not manipulative and the other person feels like they’ve had a chance to feel heard, especially when there are tears over an argument.
If you liked this, you may also like Why Men Panic When Women Cry.
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Iona is a Wellness Coach specialising in relationships and dating. She works with single women to write their own love stories.