Bois Can (And Do) Cry Too
Before I ever heard the words "highly sensitive person" , I knew I was an emotional being. Some may even say overly emotional. I was the kid that cried at the slightest sound of a raised voice. I was the type of kid that thought if someone was angry that it must be my fault. Simply put, ya boy was a cry baby.
As I entered my teen years, this emotional way of being became more intense. I would see groups of girls laughing and I just knew they were laughing at me. I would see people whispering in the halls of school and I ran to the bathroom and locked myself in the stalls. While I was there I checked myself over intensely to see if there was anything out of place to make people whisper about me. I was most definitely a paranoid teen.
As I matured into adulthood, I carried my sensitivities with me. If someone did not answer my text right away, then they must not be my friend anymore. If someone did not invite me to an event then they must hate me. If someone told me they didn't like something about me, then that must mean everything about me was horrid and I didn't deserve to live.
One thing that contributed to this was a highly inflated and highly damaged ego. I had built my ego on values of toxic masculinity. It was ingrained from society at large from my early days. In order to be masculine, I could not show weakness, I could not be soft and I damn sure could not cry. As a way to combat my sensitivities I put myself on a pedestal. The problem with elevating myself was that I began to look down on others. Every accomplishment was not a reward to myself, rather it was done so I could say "I am better than you because..." This may have served me in allowing me to accomplish material gains, but inside I was gaining nothing. I began to desperately seek validation from everything except my inner being because I could not figure out how to relate to the world around me.
The world bombarded me with noise and chatter of how I should express my core masculinity. "Boys don't cry." "Be full of violence and love gore." " Sexual conquest at all cost. " "Don't ever be weak."
Being filled with major emotions including anger, angst, disgust and despair, I reached out for anything to silence the noise. Nothing was lasting. It was only recently that I learned about "highly sensitive people" and I sure am. I have decided in order to live a life of fullness I must embrace my emotions.
In order to do this, I spend time in nature. I pray and meditate several times a day. I have a gratitude journal. I am learning that it is natural, even as a masculine of center person, to cry. I cry when I feel like it. I laugh when I feel like it. I am learning to express my anger in positive ways; such as intense exercise, rather than self destruction. I am embracing the "cry baby" within this boy. My tears and willingness to understand my emotions has not detracted from my masculine core. I am learning one must be a gentle person in order to be strong.
When I shed tears I show you that I am capable of empathy, love and gratitude. Releasing my emotions through tears reduces the chance of outbursting in anger and causing a wave of negative consequences. Becoming a true gentleman required a few tears and understanding that people have more to do than talk about me!
If you are a "highly sensitive" boi, I can assure you that you are no less masculine because you feel your emotions so deeply. You are no less worthy because you shed some tears. It is perfectly normal to cry and very healthy for you mentally, physically and spiritually. So grab a few Kleenex and cry your heart out, pour your emotions into a journal and go live your best life!