Crying. It’s weird. Human beings are distinguished from the rest of the animal world by lieu of the fact that we cry. NO OTHER ANIMAL CRIES. Not even doves. Prince was bullshitting us about that.
So, it’s time to talk tears: do you cry on the regular like it ain’t no thang? Or, are you the sort of person that didn’t even shed a single tear at the birth of your own children, but get emotional when you watch people YOU DON’T EVEN KNOW giving birth to children YOU WILL NEVER MEET on “One Born Every Minute”?
(ahem… **coughs**…. guilty)
What type of crier are you?
The “I Cry at Weird Things and Not at Things I Should” Crier
This type of crier has the dubious distinction of crying at all sorts of weird and inane shit while never actually crying at things that really matter. I am this type of crier. This is me all the way. I never cried when my partner proposed to me on the beach. I never cried at the births of either one of my children. I never cried when my kids started school or daycare. I never cried when my dad got diagnosed with bowel cancer. But fuck me if I didn’t tear up at the end of Finding fucking Dory, and completely lose my shit halfway through James Cameron’s Titanic. I also used to cry when people sang “Happy Birthday” to me as a kid. None of this makes any sense whatsoever. I get that.
The “My Kids Have Never Seen Me Cry” Crier
I was having drinks with my girlfriends when talk turned to emotions – because that’s what women do when we’re not having tickle fights and giving each other pedicures. I can’t remember why but I mentioned that my kids have never seen me cry, and apparently that is weird. I mean, it’s not like my life is all unicorn farts and vagina glitter but I guess I’ve just never gotten around to it. The closest they ever got to seeing me cry was at the end of Finding Dory, but thank god it was dark and I managed to get my shit together before the end of the credits. I mean, if you’re gonna cry in front of your children you gotta make it count for something. Crying over a fictional fish having a fictional reunion with it’s fictional parents is just weird. And confusing for my kids.
The “I Cried Four Times Before Breakfast” Crier
So, call me naïve a dickhead, but I didn’t know that this type of crier existed and I basically just assumed that most grownups don’t cry all that often (except at certain kids movies, which is totally understandable and not at all weird). Following on from my admission that my kids have never seen me cry, one of my friends snort-laughed and said “Man, sometimes I cry four times before breakfast”. Several of my friends chuckled in agreeance, while I sat there open-mouthed and not entirely sure that they weren’t taking the piss. I feel like this is some big secret that y’all have kept from me. Apparently some people cry a lot and it’s normal and very cathartic. I’m thinking I should probably try it. In front of my kids.
The “I Haz Hormones” Crier
I used to dismiss the dramatic sensitivity of hormonal criers as a self-indulgent wankfest – until I was pregnant for the first time with my son. One day I was out waddling walking and for some reason I burst into uncontrollable tears when the epic 80s power-ballad “We Built This City” came on my iPod, because I was so incredibly moved by the…. well, I’m still not entirely sure…. Marconi played the mamba and Hugzilla lost her third-trimester shit all the way down Quakers Hill Parkway, leaving behind an indelible trail of tears and snot. Never again would I doubt the legitimacy of a good hormone-fuelled sob-fest. Those sessions are fucking intense. And make absolutely no sense whatsoever.
The “I Never Cry” Non-Crier
Stoic as hell, the Non-Crier literally never cries. Weddings, funerals, births, deaths? Nope. Family reunions of fictional tropical fish in children’s films? Nope. Being whacked in the face with a wooden mallet covered in spikes. No siree! Nothing gets through to these people, and it’s almost as though their tear ducts were fused shut at birth, closed forever by an unforgiving heart that said “Not today, fuckers – not EVER”. Truth be told, I have a grudging admiration for anyone who can sit through 4 hours of Titanic without losing their shit when Rose and Jack get separated at the lifeboats, because that scene gets me every. fucking. time.
I swear to god, in my next life I’m coming back as a bad-ass clownfish.