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I am a cry baby...

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
This is embarrassing but I am kind of a cry baby and always have been. I am highly emotional and sensitive. Every little thing hurts my feelings and when I am upset, embarrassed, angry etc I cry. I feel like my kids are already used to it and think it is normal. It is not just a depression issue...I am this emotionall all the time regardless of if I am depressed or not. It is very frustrating and my DH and family members get very annoyed because anytime anyone wants to have a serious talk with me I get defense and start crying. I feel so emotionally immature sometimes. I have been through a lot in my life though so you would think I would be stronger and more thick skinned by now. How do I get more tough and not cry at every little thing?!
post #2 of 16
I know what it is like to feel too sensitive and emotional.

For me, getting a little older helped (I'm 33.) I kind of toughened up some time after my 30th birthday. Some of it was about increased self confidence and a deeper understanding of my own strength and resilience. Some of it was that I started doing yoga. I have also learned from working with my highly emotional DS1; I try teaching him skills and end up applying them for myself. But some of it really was just getting older and crustier and a little bit calloused.
post #3 of 16
Since I used to be the same way I can totally relate, and I think its an issue that needs to be dealt with through therapy. Crying is a child's reaction to things, not an adult reaction, so it probably means you shall have to heal some chilhood issues to become more emotionally mature, and react in an 'adult' way - its not a matter of become thick skinned. In my case I decided enough was enough when I had to 'defend' my children from very a confident and aggressive pre-school teacher, and do it without crying.
I can also tell you that it IS tough on family members to deal with this: my Mom is a cry baby and ALL my life I have had to steer conversations away from anything that my trigger her tears, but more often than not she'll end up crying anyway! Especially when we are with other people I have to really make sure the topic doesn't touch onto any tear triggers, not because its bad to cry, but because the other people then feel bad, like maybe they have been rude. I mean, she cries several times a day, and after a lifetime with this person I just wish she would deal with her issues, because by being a 'cry baby' she is dumping her issues on the people around her - because WE have to deal with her, and she's not dealing with herself. Does that make any sense?
Basically, if the situation is something that presents itself on a daily basis I would advise you to seek therapy, or whatever you think is the best way to deal with this issue, for your own sense of feeling confident (and to avoid having your husband and children deal with this issue for the rest of their lives - not because its not do-able, but it is tiresome).
I hope the tone of this post doesn't seem mean! I re-read it and it sounds a bit harsh, please know that that's not the tone I'm taking.
post #4 of 16
It sounds like you perceive you are always being attacked and feel weak to defend yourself. I am this way also, but I am working on it, so you are not alone!

One thing that is helpful for me is to ask myself if what was said was really an attack, or am I just perceiving it that way. Look at the facts. Sometimes it really is, sometimes not. When it really is attack, there is a very good chance that someone is projecting their own issues onto me. My mother does this frequently. It helps first to differentiate the two. It forces me to be honest and present rather than assume or just accept that "the world doesn't like me".

There may be underlying unhealed issues that come up for you in situations that are a repeat of past hurtful experiences. Maybe you go on auto pilot because all those feelings associated with a previous hurtful event come jumping right to the surface in a similar present experience.

I found The Power of Now to be extremely helpful in helping me to stand stronger, stop perceiving constant attack, and be more present. I should say, I'm working on it! It's definitely a process.
post #5 of 16
You are not a cry baby. I think that's a really rude and demeaning thing to call someone- especially your self.

As you get older it should lessen up some, but you really have to work at becoming ok with other people having their own opinions about you or reactions to you without thinking the world is coming to an end and that they hate you.

Also try not to take things personally. What helped for me is to step outside myself in these situations and try and take a 3rd party look at what was happening. Become detached from other people's emotions and opinions. They aren't yours, and they also aren't everyone else's.

It is rough being overly sensitive. Growing up in my house as a child we weren't allowed to express any emotions- positive or negative they were clamped down on or made fun of. I think that's why I had the issues with being overly sensitive that I did, and I think I'm just that sort of personality.

You can work through it. Reallly.
post #6 of 16
I cry a lot. I cry less now. But I still cry a fair amount. It is embarrassing and frustrates some people.

If I'm angry or frustrated, I'll often cry. I see something sad, I'll cry. If I read about women who have been hurt, I often cry for them.

and you know...i think crying is ok. Good even.

Bottling up emotions is awful and it can affect your health. I have a friend who bottles up her emotions and she envies me. Because I can get it all out right then and there. There is no hiding that I'm upset. And at the end there is that release from crying.

You mentioned something about being defensive and maybe you need to look at that. I love counseling because I'm really able to work through my issues and help make myself a better person.

But I completely disagree with the pp who says that crying is a child's response. People all over the world cry. So I say cry. I think we'd all be much healthier if we did.
post #7 of 16
You are being so mean to yourself! You cry and are emotional because that is what you do, it's how you react.
post #8 of 16
As you get older, you will probably react less emotionally to situations you've encountered before. That being said...I really don't think you need to "get over anything" or "toughen up" You have a tender heart, and you shouldn't compare yourself to anyone else who doesn't respond this way. :heart
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the responses. Honestly I think I am a highly sensitive person but I try to not be overly sensitive. I think my issues with crying lately are due to depression. It has been one heck of a past few months. There has been a lot of things that have happened in my person life, plus I get very depressed in the winter anyway. I have been very excited to start school and signed up for all online classes and then today DH found out the computer we bought for me a month ago off of craigslist was stolen and we have to give it to the police today and I am sure we will never get the money back that we paid for it and we don't have money to get a new computer. I kind of feel stuck in this rut of self pity but it is just hard!

I have a Dr. appt next week to discuss trying a different anti-depressant. With my personality type I easily gravitate toward depression and anxiety and it can be a slippery slope but the last two weeks I have been crying multiple times every single day and in front of my kids and that is just not okay with me.

Anyway thanks for the support!
post #10 of 16
It could also be anxiety, instead of or in addition to depression.
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
Normally even when I am in good spirits I cry at least a few times a month but I just feel like no one else in the world prob. cries this much...well except for maybe a newborn baby lol. It is just frustrating to be crying this much!
post #12 of 16
I strongly recommend you read The Mood Cure by Julia Ross.

There is a specific section in there that addresses people who are really highly sensitive and emotional and cry a lot. She recommends specific amino acids (those are the building blocks of proteins, so the are basically things you would find in food, but of course in larger doses than you would get from just eating chicken). She reports some very dramatic results. It seems these amino acids can help you whether you are sensitive from childhood abuse or you have a dietary deficiency or any other unknown cause.

Best of all, I think this book will lift a burden you seem to be carrying, that you are somehow defective. There's a huge emotional difference in seeing your situation as "I'm a crybaby, I overreact, etc." versus "I am deficient in XYZ amino acid and it makes it difficult to cope."

FTR I am really anti-drug, I don't even take aspirin. But I do take tyrosine as recommended by this book, to help me deal with low energy.
post #13 of 16
Oh, by the way, to underscore the concept that this is about your body and not your shortcomings (regardless of whether your body was damaged by childhood trauma or dietary deficiencies or exposure to certain drugs or whatever) - I will briefly share my experience.

In 2008 I was pretty sick. I won't bore you with the details, but I was in very bad shape. Not cancer or anything, but I just did myself in, in a serious way that affected my daily life bigtime (couldn't function). Saw doctors, got tests, etc. I hit upon a description of adrenal fatigue, and while I don't think that was the only thing going on I think it was a big part of it. But one of my symptoms during this time was - you guessed it, I was extremely sensitive to things. I had several incidents where I was literally traumatized by hearing of things. I couldn't sleep, I couldn't get those images out of my head. I cried a lot. Separately, if I saw a movie I would be holding back tears at scenes that were emotional, even stuff I would have considered corny before - the non-traumatic birth of a child, a romantic embrace, a peaceful death (like the end scene in The Notebook).

All I'm trying to say is, I'm not even like that normally. And it happened to me. It could happen to anyone. I'm not a stronger person than you. I just have apparently somewhat healed an imbalance I had. I don't think I'm 100% healed yet, and frankly I think I will forever be more sensitive to things now that I'm a mother, compared to my pre-mother days (and I think this is good and natural), but I can now get through a corny movie without clutching kleenex again
post #14 of 16
Originally Posted by anon_abroad View Post
Crying is a child's reaction to things, not an adult reaction,
I don't strictly agree. Crying releases emotional chemicals. That's not the need of a child alone. I would agree that ideally, as a child grows, he or she has less of a need to cry. But I think most adults cry sometimes, even if very rarely, and furthermore I think it's dysfunction if an adult (at least a woman) literally never cries. (I allow for the fact that men and women do seem to be a bit - though not totally - different in the need to cry).

So again, I look at this like a chemical problem, not a personal shortcoming. The OP has more of these chemicals to release. (Crying provides a release as those chemicals are shed in the tears, making us feel at least a little better).

Of course there are other key issues. Feeling powerless is a huge factor of crying, I think. For that same reason - the person cannot deal with the issue in any other way like telling a person off. So the emotion has to be shed through tears. But it sounds like the OP is saying she simply feels sensitive overall, not that she specifically cries when she feels powerless.
post #15 of 16
Thread Starter 
Wow you really hit the nail on the head. Thank you so much for your support, advice and insight. I will check out that book.

I have always been told I am way too sensitive by family ever since I was a young child. Even as a young girl I can remember crying for hours if I saw a sad movie, had a bad dream, got yelled at or spanked etc. Sometimes I wish I didn't feel so much. It feels extreme sometimes and I don't know what to do with all my emotions or how to express them. I have really been getting on DH's nerves lately because I cry all the time but it is just hard for me not to. How else can I express all my feelings?! I just don't know!
post #16 of 16
Make it a challenge for yourself. Whenever you feel the tears coming and the tightness in your chest, take all of your concentration to your breath. Breathe in very slowly, hold it for a second, then breathe out slowly while envisioning the stress of whatever situation melting right out of you. Keep breathing until you feel calm inside.

I know I've rambled on about breath work in other posts, but after several supersad events happened in my life, I dove into breath work and its really changed my approach to living. Here is an example of a calming breath... if you go to youtube there are a billion other videos on pranayama (breathing techniques) if the one I posted doesn't do *it* for you.

Your sensitivity is a gift, its a powerful gift - it just needs fine tuned so that you can use it & not be used BY it, yk?

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