I don’t think one truly knows a man until one has seen him shed tears ~ and I’m talking about deeply personal and emotional tears here, not the kind that are shed at football matches or at the movies.
I could probably count the number of men I have truly known, given this criterion, as being about eight, and that includes one who admitted to me that he was ‘crying inside.’
I still don’t fully understand the terrible taboo that there is about men crying. I often wonder if they cry when they are alone or if they simply aren’t able to cry, given that nonsense about: Big boys don’t cry.
I jumped on a book recently called Poems that Make Grown Men Cry (2014) which is edited by Anthony and Ben Holden. It is a lovely collection which brings together the poems that make 100 well known men cry and the reasons for the selections. It also highlights the humanity of tears in the Preface:
Crying expresses our very inability to articulate emotion, after all, and so what could be more human, honest, or pure than tears?
I read the book while basking in the sunshine at the beach yesterday. It seemed the appropriate place to read it as I am always acutely aware of the fact that sea water and tears are like two sides of the same salty coin.
There were lots of people on the beach and I encountered a few men while in swimming. I longed to ask them about crying but somehow didn’t feel able.
How do you feel about grown men crying?