And most of us cry when we grieve.
Actually with grief we weep, sob, and sometimes wail because the pain is so deep. Sadly, in our society, we tend to be uncomfortable with tears be they our own or someone else's. As a result many hold them in far too often; apologize for them; and save them for when they are alone even though crying with someone is a sacred experience. My husband used to call my tears "holy water".
When we suppress our tears we sort of deaden ourselves and with repeated "practice" we become "good" at not crying and then become unaware of what we feel. British psychiatrist Henry Maudsley says: "The sorrow which has no vent in tears may make other organs weep."
It is my opinion that tears shed in grief help us heal. That does not mean everyone who grieves, cries or has to cry. Grief is unique to each person and shedding tears depends on many factors including the relationship to the person who has died. What I can tell you about crying in grief from a personal stand point is that I always feel better after a good cry. There is a biological and social reason for that. Laura Schocker reports that criers who felt support from caring people as they cried, report feeling better afterwards. Tears release the valve and the stress we feel.
It is also my opinion that when we suppress our tears and with them our feelings, we only prolong the grief process or make it more difficult. We live in a society that seems to have little tolerance for pain and grief. Many do not know what to say or do when someone is grieving and it makes it very difficult for those who need to talk, to cry, to just be with someone. I have often found myself just sitting on a sofa or on the floor holding a client as she sobs. No talking is needed.
Remember what Maudsley said: "The sorrow which has no vent in tears may make other organs weep."
Finding Crying Time in Grief by Marty Tousley
Thirteen Things You Probably Don't Know About Tears:
If you are mourning or anticipating the loss of a loved one,
you are most welcome to join our online Grief Healing Discussion Groups.