Boys don’t cry! 

This morning while having my usual cuppa tea, flicking through Facebook. I came across a video titled ‘boys don’t cry‘.

boys don't cry

An article about the stigma of boy’s don’t cry from the point of view of 5 boys

The video was about a variety of young boys crying in different situations such as their mum leaving to go to work, falling over and a boy at his first day at school. In each clip the adult asked the young boy ‘why are you crying?’ ‘You’re a boy’, ‘boys don’t cry’ ‘stop crying, you’re not a girl!’

boys don’t cry

This got me thinking…

Why is there so much stigma on ‘boys don’t cry‘ or aren’t allowed to cry?

Being a Mum to 5 boys, I certainly know this ISN’T the case. Boys DO cry! In fact boys can give girls a run for the money in the crying  stakes. I hate the stigma linked to boys and masculinity and being an Alpha male. That they are being pressured to be tough and strong both physically and emotionally. To be resilient to feelings of sadness or hurt. We all know the typical stigma of what a boy ‘should be’, the whole stiff upper lip, don’t care and tough attitude, pride of being the best’. To be fair, that’s a lot to live up to, of others expectations of what they think you ‘should’ be.

Why try to make them into something they potentially might not be?

From a young age, I have always told my boys that if they’re feeling negative, upset, sad or angry that they should to come and talk about it. I encourage my boys  to cry, shout, scream etc.

To show their emotions.

That just because they’re a ‘boy‘ doesn’t mean they aren’t allowed to cry or express their feelings. I encourage them to not keep in their feelings. That there is no shame in showing or talking about your feelings. That they should be proud of who they are and the only expectations they need to live up to is their own.

When my boys cry I don’t turn around and tell them ‘Stop crying!‘, this is a demand. They’re already feeling a negative emotion so why make them feel threatened by a demand? I say ‘You sound very upset/sad/frustrated, do you want to tell me about it? I might be able to help you’ This way I am showing them that I have acknowledged their feelings and giving them the option to talk about whatever is bothering them. That also, they aren’t alone and that you’re there to help and support them.

 

Encourage boys to Speak Out

Childline have recently launched a campaign Tough To Talk

The campaign urges boys to speak out about their problems and reassures them they’re not alone.

  •  Recent figures show 1,934 Childline counselling sessions were delivered with boys in 2015/16 compared to 11,463 with girls (In 2015/16 Childline carried out 19,481 counselling sessions about suicidal thoughts and feelings. In 2015/16 11,463 counselling sessions were held with girls and 1,934 with boys, a ratio of 6:1. Gender was unknown in 6,084 counselling sessions.)
  • the suicide rate for boys aged 10-19 was more than double that for girls in 2015 (Office for National Statistics (2016) Suicides in the UK: 2015 registrations: In 2015, the suicide rate for boys age 10-19 was higher than the rate for girls in the same age group at 4.4 – almost 2.5 times that of the girls rate at 1.8.)

This video is amazing and it gets the message across!

As a sufferer of depression myself in the past, having one of my cousins commit suicide and watching my mum suffer from depression all my life; it makes it more important to me to encourage people to talk about their thoughts and feelings!!! I feel we all need to get away from this stigma of depression and talking about our feelings making you less of a person or weak. In fact it makes you stronger to know yourself and your triggers and to go and get help!!! Plus people need to listen and know the signs of depression. Take time to listen to someone, it might ease the load that tiny bit making their day more bearable to make it through until bedtime at least! ❤️

Claire xxx

Links to check out

https://www.nspcc.org.uk/what-we-do/news-opinion/childline-urges-boys-speak-out-suicidal-feelings/

https://www.childline.org.uk/info-advice/your-feelings/feelings-emotions/depression-feeling-sad/

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30 thoughts on “Boys don’t cry! 

  1. Brandi Beasley says:

    I’m so thankful for this post! I hate hearing people say that boys shouldn’t be crying and if they do they are acting like girls. Boys are human too and shouldn’t be taunted for expressing themselves as such.

  2. Cheryl says:

    Wow a mum to 5 boys well done you. A great post and so try we need to get rid of the stigma that boys don’t cry. I am sorry to hear about your suffer with depression and your family and you are so right we need to share our emotions more.
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  3. Kenisha says:

    I agree boys do cry, and they should cry. I have a son and I am raising him to know that’s it’s okay to cry. He hugs his sisters and tell them that he loves them. It brings tears to my eyes. Great post.

  4. Dilraz says:

    Boys dont cry. Dont throw like a hirl. Why does society force its misconption on babies.

    My boy will grow up knowing i ve got his back.that he is free to cry and lean on me no matter what!

  5. Kristine Tsiknaki says:

    I have friends who suffer from depression and they do feel like they can’t talk with their parents because they grew up in a very traditional stiff upper lip English household.
    While they have also agreed that they should be able to express their feelings they have in other times said in casual conversation that they are surprised with me and have praised me for being calm and handling situations without being an emotional wreck like they expected me to be because I’m a girl.
    It’s interestingthat while they are going one step towards the right direction they are still not fully there to understand that all people can have any type of feeling and can react to different situations in a number of ways regardless of their gender.

  6. Ana De- Jesus says:

    Amen! I always try and encourage my male friends to be open with their emotions and in fact it is beautiful to me if a guy shows his emotions. The problem is we live in a society which conditions boys and men into thinking that it is not ok to cry and it saddens me. Let them be themselves.
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  7. Kirsty says:

    You’ve hit the nail on the head wit this. I think it’s great you’ve encouraged your boys to show their emotions. I think men are better when they are more open with themselves x

  8. Amy Hunt says:

    I watched ‘No more boys and girls’ last night and this really rings true to what the pyschologist was trying to say. We tell boys to be strong and ‘just get over it’ and girls are allowed to express themselves. it really leads them to not knowing how to express emotions either way.
    Everyone cries, I hope the new generation are encouraged and supported during their tough moments.

  9. Jo - Pickle & Poppet says:

    Agreed! My little boy is a very sensitive soul and when he is angry, sad, upset I try to get him to acknowledge the emotion and then talk to me about it. Sometimes he says he doesn’t know and hugs me, in those instances I just hug him until he stops. I hate seeing people stop boys from crying but not just boys girls too.
    I have been raised with a ‘suck it up’ attitude and I can see now it doesn’t help anyone. I encourage people to cry now if I can. #Blogstravaganza

  10. Anosa says:

    My brother was a cry baby and I hated it when our older cousins or even uncles would tell him boys don’t cry. I used to hide him and tell him to cry for as long as he needs and I would protect him and he did. It was important for me that he expressed his feels and I think that helped in him maturity and respecting other people’s emotions
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  11. Nicola Cassidy says:

    I don’t have any boys but I agree that being educated to hide or suppress emotions is just wrong. They are human, of course they are going to cry from time to time. I hope the stigma is starting to change – I feel it is.

  12. The Culinary Jumble says:

    Absolutely love this and the message behind it. My two boys have always cried (like all kids do) and I have never said to them not to cry and certainly not because they are boys. I think (hope) that society is changing and that most parents feel this way. Not crying can cause so many emotional instabilities and mental health problems in the future, so I can’t advise it enough that boys are allowed to show their emotions!

  13. Lisa says:

    I completely agree. I have two little boys under two, and I will certainly be encouraging them to show their emotions and that it’s perfectly ok to cry. It’s stupid in this day and age that anyone would say that to a boy.

  14. Ashleigh-Jayne O'Connell says:

    I’m all for boys (and men) for being able to show their feelings and I’m very fortunate that I grew up in a household where this was encouraged. Crying and showing their feelings doesn’t make a boy/man seem any weaker. To me they’re stronger

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