I’ve shed a few already today, in a meditation where I connected with some of my ancestors, and I started to write an Instagram post on the benefits of crying. However, when I realized how nuanced the subject was, I knew I needed to write something longer, and more deserving of the subject.
There are many benefits to having a good cry. Emotional release through crying and tears actually helps release stress hormones, and brings about a feeling of calm, peace, and space. Sometimes tears come because of emotional pain, but the feeling of deep love can also produce tears.
We can think of crying as a way to release some debris and some toxicity, and make space for allowing something new and positive to come in.
Crying honors where you are, and how you feel. Which is so very important. Crying can be a huge act of self love.
When emotions arise, it is important to acknowledge their presence, and invite a release, under the right circumstances.
While it is beautiful to feel your feelings and have a good cry, we also have to take into consideration how your tears may affect a situation where you are with another person.
If you’ve cried with me present, you’ll know, I always encourage it, when it is genuine. I have no hesitation in offering you permission to cry with abandon in my presence! But I am also highly intuitive, and am instantly aware if tears are self-serving or re-victimizing.
Tears can be tricky. We have to be careful if our tears are being used in a way that is seeking a response from another person.
You might consciously or unconsciously be playing a victim role to avoid taking responsibility. Doing that bypasses the opportunity for REAL healing.
You might also offend someone by crying. If you feel emotional as an empathetic response to someone else’s pain, or as a response to hurting someone unintentionally (“White Women’s Tears” is a chapter in Robin DiAngelo’s book White Fragility which deserves mention and deep self inquiry). I highly recommend reading that book, or using google to gain more insight on this subject.
The message I hope to convey is: do no harm. Do not harm yourself by stuffing down your tears, since releasing is so cleansing and healing. But also do not harm others with your tears, since tears can also be an act of victimizing yourself - even if you genuinely feel sad - as doing so can be very harmful to others.
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