Mental Health, Parenting

To Cry Or Not To Cry In Front Of Your Kids?

Crying is instinctual.

It’s one of the first things we do when we enter the world. Nobody teaches us how. It’s second nature, like breathing. It’s our only way of communicating our needs before we learn to talk.

So why, if it’s so natural, does it become taboo later in life?

Do you ever feel like you need to cry, but don’t know exactly why? Or have you ever had a good long cry and felt relief after?

Unfortunately, I’ve seen instances where children are made to feel like there’s something wrong with crying. But let’s be honest, sometimes the sound can drive you crazy. And as adults, we often hide try to hide our wet faces and red noses if we feel salty tears welling up in our eyes.

I don’t find anything wrong with crying. And I have no issue admitting that one of my favorite past times is sitting on the room in my floor and relieving the pressures of marriage and motherhood.

But are there exceptions? One thing I do struggle with is crying in front of my kids.

If I’ve been crying, whether it’s because of an argument or one of those just-because moments, I usually hide away until my eyes are no longer puffy and my face is no longer rosy.

I hate the idea that I’m unloading my emotions onto my girls, and I worry about causing them to worry. Part of this may also be due to my childhood. I only recall my mom crying once – the day she found out her brother died.

I didn’t even see those same tears when her mother or father passed away.

But I also know that them seeing me cry in certain instances can be healthy. Research shows that a child seeing a parent cry helps them not only realize that parents are human too, but helps them learn how to healthily regulate emotions. It also helps them to be more open to emotional expression.

Still, I remain on the fence about whether to hide my crying from my children. How do you feel about crying in front of your kids?

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2 thoughts on “To Cry Or Not To Cry In Front Of Your Kids?

  1. I’m not able to suppress tears –never have been– so I cry regularly around my daughters. Often it is while watching birth videos or joyous moments in a movie, and they see that crying is a normal response to happiness too.

  2. I think it’s okay to cry in front of your kids so long as they see the resolve at the end and know that your world (and theirs) isn’t crumbling before them. As an example, I never saw my parents argue…ever. So when I finally got my first boyfriend, and we had our first fight, I figured it was over, because I had never seen the resolve at the end of an argument. Does that make sense? I don’t cry often, which probably makes a difference too. I think it also depends on your kids and their ability to understand what’s going on. So it should be age and emotionally appropriate. As with most of parenting, I guess there’s no clear answer.

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