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Atoke’s Monday Morning Banter: Crying is For Girls



The first time I saw my father cry was at his mother’s service of songs. Even then it wasn’t a deep, heaving show of sadness; instead it was a steely, release of tears – quickly wiped away.

The next time I saw him cry was…

Wait, that was actually the only time I saw my father cry. At my brother’s death his skin was dark and ashy and he seemed 10 years older than his actual age but I didn’t see any tears. He had lost his oldest son and there was no wailing, or running tears – just an outward show of strength in the face of utmost bleakness.

My other brother had sunglasses plastered permanently on his face, so I have no idea if he cried. Maybe the tears were well hidden by the sunglasses. Maybe they didn’t come, as a result of years of practice of ‘being a man’.

Apparently, crying, like sleep, is for the weak. In fact, I am told that crying is for little boys, girls and women. Real men, do not break down in fits of tears at every life event that throws them. Men remain sturdy and firm. They do not exhibit weakness, evidenced by running tears just because life doesn’t deal them the cards they want.

Girls, on the other hand, cry at every chance they get. Hey, they get proposed to by a man they’ve been dating for 8 years and they still cry. Someone comes on X-Factor, tells a sob story and the female judges are sniffling and hogging the box of tissues. Girls cry at their weddings – they’re soooo happy that they express their overwhelming joy by letting down the dam. Girls cry when they see cute puppies. Girls cry every opportunity they get.

Guys? Not so much – at least I don’t know any guy who expresses emotions by crying. It’s almost a universally accepted fact that MEN DO NOT CRY.

This has always intrigued me and because I am a sucker for socio-cultural and lifestyle dynamics. Why not?

A young lady that I spoke to about this said that a man who expresses his emotions by crying is a sign that something is terribly wrong. According to her she can’t stand a man who cries.  “There’s just something disgusting about a man who cries. There are other ways for men to deal with emotions.” She went on to say that she met a man who was wailing just because he wanted to win her heart and for her it was an epic fail.


One guy said guys aren’t allowed to cry – at least not publicly. Another guy said that crying is a show of weakness and men are not supposed to be weak. Another girl I asked said men are not supposed to cry. I asked why? She said, she didn’t know but it just shouldn’t be.

So how does a man express his intense feelings of sadness, grief, misery, displeasure if this option is not available to him… just because he is a man?

In trying to narrow down the source of this ‘norm’, I asked some friends, who are currently raising sons if it was something they consciously instil in their boys. A few of them said, if they were doing it, they weren’t aware – especially since it was something they hadn’t consciously given thought to. Some of them mentioned that they raised their sons to show strength – especially those sons who had sisters. It was important that they realise very early that they’re meant to be the stalwarts when everyone (read as women and children) is crumbling in a fit of tears and despair.  One guy in particular told me that he wasn’t raising his son to be a wimp and he quickly snuffs out any signs of weakness being exhibited by the child. I asked how the child is supposed to deal with upsetting situations. “He will deal with it. Life is not a bed of roses. If he cries at every instance of trouble, what kind of man is he going to end up being?”

One man did mention that he didn’t agree that men weren’t supposed to cry. According to him, moderation was key. He noted that he didn’t want his son becoming broody and channelling his emotions in other self-destructive ways.  “If a man needs to cry to feel better, then he should. As long as he doesn’t turn himself into a whimpering weeping well. I think there’s nothing wrong with a man who isn’t afraid to express his feelings.”

As the equilibrium of the world shifts towards more equality of genders, one is forced to ask questions like these: are tear ducts missing in the male anatomic construct? Are men conditioned not to express their feelings through tears? Have we reacted so shockingly to the sight of a weeping male that men signed a pact never to cry? Is this one of those things that are best left the way they are and passed on to the next generation of men?

Maybe women need to take a cue from men. Maybe we don’t have to cry every time we see random people getting engaged in the mall. Maybe watching Titanic the 1000th time shouldn’t get us bawling like crazy (*note to self*). Or maybe we just need a world where peace reigns, everything is yellow, bright and beautiful.

Just maybe. In the mean time, go out and have yourselves a fantastic and beautiful week ahead. Do something nice and uplifting for someone this week. Remember, you might just be the one who’d stop someone’s tears.

Peace, love & cucumber slices.

Photo Credit: Dreamstime | Paul Simcock

You probably wanna read a fancy bio? But first things first! Atoke published a book titled, +234 - An Awkward Guide to Being Nigerian. It's available on Amazon. ;)  Also available at Roving Heights bookstore. Okay, let's go on to the bio: With a Masters degree in Creative Writing from Swansea University, Atoke hopes to be known as more than just a retired foodie and a FitFam adherent. She can be reached for speechwriting, copywriting, letter writing, script writing, ghost writing  and book reviews by email – [email protected]. She tweets with the handle @atoke_ | Check out her Instagram page @atoke_ and visit her website for more information.


  1. tomi

    September 22, 2014 at 10:24 am

    Lovely write-up,but I think men’s heart are not made of stone,so if there is any need 4 them to cry,they should.

  2. oj

    September 22, 2014 at 10:29 am

    wow! I’m the first to comment. Thank God o!

    • nammy

      September 22, 2014 at 10:39 am

      But u didn’t say anything now

    • oj

      September 22, 2014 at 5:30 pm

      was waiting for other comments. our society doesnot encourage men crying. but the bible has accounts of strong men like David and even Jesus giving way to tears. point is, there’s nothing wrong with a man crying. crying is healing, sort of.

    • Fisa

      September 22, 2014 at 1:13 pm

      JOKER !!!!!

  3. Springsteps

    September 22, 2014 at 10:38 am

    I have never seen my father cry neither my brothers, rather they are sleepless in tough situation’s and mange to always seek advice, pray and walk thru it. For me I wld like to see tears and it truly clears my head and give me less emotions to deal with while thinking through my issues. Crying is theraputic.

  4. chick

    September 22, 2014 at 10:47 am

    well I have seen grown men cry,one of my dad’s frnd cries like crazy.when they were waiting to take him to d airport he was inside crying like crazy,wen he dropped of his first child in boarding school he cried like hell and wen his child was involved in an accident he cried his eyes out.funny enuf d wife hardly cries.a collegue of mine also cried his eyes out wen we went for d burial of anoda colleague of ours.I dnt see anytin wrong in guys crying,they r free to let out their emotions afterall we r all human

    • whisper

      October 1, 2014 at 2:01 pm

      The wife is forced to be the stronger one emotionally. You can’t have husband and wife crying like that naa. Who would tell the other to calm down?


    September 22, 2014 at 10:52 am

    I have seen men cry but their cry is not as dramatic as that of women. I remember my guy crying for me then when I was having a severe menstrual pain. Those were lovely tears. On another note, women should stop crying at every given instance, I remember crying because le boo was leaving me and the young man told me, “Hey, get a grip on your emotions”. The tears quickly dried up and since then, I have always had a grip on my emotions.

    • lol

      September 22, 2014 at 1:35 pm

      OMG!!! WTH get a grip on your emotions that’s so mean. I will be glad he left too after that, wave at him and all. Tell me to get a grip!!!

  6. Blackbeauty

    September 22, 2014 at 10:52 am

    I want cupcakes Atoke, not cucumber slices*grin*. Toodles!

  7. Que

    September 22, 2014 at 10:53 am

    Pls only important things get my tears out… these days its most likely death/sufferings or when I’m praying and baring my soul., other things I shake/smile/shout or laugh off. As far as my men its death that brings the water works… my Dad’s was his brother’s death n my sister’s too…then when he died, my brothers let it out…. only other man I rmbr cryng was an ex, the day he looked in my eyes n realised I was truly DONE after 3yrs n 2brk ups in btw. #thatsall!
    My mother though, ordinarily quite tough would chest many painful events, but can cry at ridiculous things like Oprah crying, or famous deaths…etc… or for any beneficial wayo …if na cry them dey carry be president, she for be 1st female president!

  8. India

    September 22, 2014 at 10:57 am

    Great article! The only time i saw my dad cry is when my sister died. And it wasn’t even in public. I came around a corner in the house and saw him looking out a window with tears on his cheeks. Even to this day that scene and how i felt remains with me. I had no idea how to comfort him so i left quietly and cried for hours. I’ve seen my younger brother cry a couple of times but less and less now as he gets older. I think it’s okay for men to cry but if my man cries at everything i wouldn’t like it. A deeply emotional movie is fine, a cat video not so much lol!

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      September 22, 2014 at 11:35 am

      Wierd. When I lost my sister, I never saw my mum cry. Maybe it was because she’d been with her until the end and I only got told to arrive at the scene after the end had come and gone… My dad was the one I saw with tears in his eyes. My mother just had this resolute look on her face as told me, “Your sister has died”. In the days after, I spents nights in my mum’s room thinking she’ll need me in her time of mourning but I never saw her cry, even during the burial.

      Now the irony is I have a permanent memory of seeing my dad grieving in a different way when he was younger, many years ago and he lost his only brother (who he loved very dearly). I’ll never forget his reaction that night because he never even told us our uncle had died; don’t think it was long after he received that call but he came into the living room and sat down quietly beside me as I watched the telly. He remained like that all evening, maybe he cried after I left him and went to bed. It was only when I woke up the next day that I was told Uncle had passed on.

      Maybe as men get older, they start understanding that it’s no bad thing to remove the societal constraints which stop them from expressing emotion in public. And on the flip side, women, like my mum who lost her parents as well as other family members become all cried out and take life’s tragedies on the chin.

      “Remember, you might just be the one who’d stop someone’s tears.”. Yes oh, as if you just know Atoke. My friend’s dad passed away this morning. 🙁 It’s painful news but I’ll keep that to the side and instead practice what you said about being there to uplift her in the grey days ahead.

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      September 22, 2014 at 12:00 pm

      Just reread my opening line. @India, sorry and please note that the weirdness I spoke of had nothing to do with your comment i.e. Your comment isn’t weird. It only prompted my memory of a similar event that I found weird.

      Brain wasn’t fully activated before posting…

  9. AAA Event & Design

    September 22, 2014 at 11:04 am

    Nice one
    Check dis out

  10. nira

    September 22, 2014 at 11:04 am

    Nice write up!! Crying is really therapeutic, there are times when I have felt really down emotionally or pyschologically and I lock myself upin my room, shed a few tears n I come out looking and feeling better. Sometimes you just need to cry and let out your emotions to feel better. However, I think its okay for men to shed a tear or two once in a while ( not wail thou…). The only time I ever saw my father cry was twenty years ago at the burial of my late mother. The day my eldest brother and his wife welcomed their first child after 13 years of marriage, I was on the phone with him but I could my brother was in tears.

  11. nira

    September 22, 2014 at 11:05 am

    I could tell*

  12. deely

    September 22, 2014 at 11:11 am

    My boyfriend cries o…sometimes I laugh at him when he does. I once made and sent him a video of our moments together during our anniversary and he was crying seriously. I kinda felt embarrassed cos I’m quite the opposite, I hardly cry. Hope there’s nothing wrong with him being a cry cry o, lol.

  13. lolly

    September 22, 2014 at 11:14 am

    first time i saw my hubby cry, it broke my heart, I never want to see him that way again….he was trying to be brave and manly, but you could see he was losing to the pain he felt inside.

  14. 1 + The One

    September 22, 2014 at 11:20 am

    I like a man who is confident enough to show emotions when there’s a need. I like the idea of being able to be there for my man and not just him being a shoulder to cry on for me all the time… I believe that if he can be vulnerable with me in the privacy of our home, it’s a plus… If he never shows emotions with me, I will be very worried 🙂

    I remember once expressing the fact that my husband has to shed a few tears when I walk down the aisle (like being overwhelmed, thinking to himself, “How did I get so blessed?” hehe) and some of my female friends were like huh?! “No way! We’ll do the crying” haha.. I guess different strokes for different people.

  15. nammy

    September 22, 2014 at 11:21 am

    Men cry! That’s a fact, av seen many instances. The truth is that men r not as emotional as ladies so watching a movie where poor girl marries rich guy and they live happily ever after doesn’t tear them up. Men usually hide their tears even when it comes to rily painful situations like death, they just swallow their tears nd try to b strong for them ladies.
    My frnd Taiye died at 21, his mum was devastated but his dad was her pillar, comforting her nd all, fast foward to a month after d burial, his dad came over to my parents house, said he was just strolling nd stopped to say hi,it was just my mum, my aunt nd myself at home, we were all gisting nd he was telling us how Taiye was a content young man, wasnt materialistic, how he helps out at home especially in the poultry, then all of a sudden there was silence, he stopped talking,nd started weeping, we had to comfort him nd of course cry along with him, he promptly got up and left our house maybe feeling bad that he cried in front of women, but it was just tears-a way of expressing pent up emotions, natural and nothing to be ashamed of.
    Taiye, I still miss u lyk crazy, sleep on, for the resurrection is where we have placed our faith and hope upon.

    • omawunmi

      September 25, 2014 at 12:47 pm

      You just made me cry. rip taiye


    September 22, 2014 at 11:21 am

    The way I see it, even as the equilibrium if the should shifts towards equality of genders, we ought to keep in mind that a man will always be a man and a woman will always be a woman. Equality should not mean erasing the differences in gender and making one more like the other. Women naturally are emotional, sentimental and more expressive. So if I want to cry at the drop of a pin, then I will, it in no way means that I’m weak or feeble, nor should it be construed as such, it’s the way I am; a woman. Likewise men have a different makeup, they are naturally less emotional, more practical and less sentimental. This is science and not necessarily an element that has been imposed on them by society. Therefore if a man is a “whimpering weeping well” it’s only normal that some brows will be raised.
    That said, I quite agree that moderation is key. I once knew a whimpering weeping well and it was extremely awkward the way he would burst into tears the second something didn’t go the way he wanted. Very awkward. Yet, even men have emotions too and should be allowed to express them, in moments of profound sadness , loss, unhappiness or even joy, they should be ‘allowed’ to cry if they so choose.
    The way parents and society suppress a man’s emotions is what causes some men to be so closed up and friggin difficult…

    • D

      September 22, 2014 at 1:26 pm

      I have to say I disagree with your statement about men being less emotional, sentimental or even expressive. We (humans) are naturally emotional, sentimental now we express our emotions or sentiments in different ways and that is irrespective of gender or age. The way we express joy and saddness or grief differs from individual to individual. So to say a gender is less emotional or sentimental just based on how one expresses them does not mean they are less expressive or less emotional it just means we express our feelings in totally different ways. Whether Male or Female, old or young. If you lack emotions or sentiment then something is seriously amiss, you should be checked in ASAP!!!

  17. Tina

    September 22, 2014 at 11:25 am

    Well, I guess we’ve always been told men don’t cry without a very congent reason. My then boyfriend now husband cried once in front of me because our house got broken into and important stuff got taken – which to be fair would be hard to replace. I told him off then. Fast forward three years and his mother is dying, this really hurt my husbands feelings but instead of crying in front of me he did so behind my back. Eventually, I found out he had cried – I later asked him why he didn’t let me know – his response was I had once said it was wrong for a guy to cry so he didn’t want to cry in front of me. I felt really bad. I guess the moral of the story is, yes guys cry depending on situation.

    • BlueEyed

      September 23, 2014 at 3:51 am

      You should have felt more than bad my dear, chastising a man because he showed emotion?? And This man in question is your husband. Something as hurting as losing his mom should be a moment for you to be there for him and even bring u two closer, because u feel “it is wrong for a man to cry” u have gladly missed out on that part of being a wife. Women like you raise emotionless boys in the society, feeding more of the stereotype, and I am more than glad that you feel bad, you should feel worse.

    • MoladeD

      September 25, 2014 at 11:07 pm

      I hope you noticed in her write up the husbands mum is not dead. So how would saying it’s not ideal to cry because thieves broke into the house make her someone who would be raising emotionless kids and a failed wife? Please try and understand someone’s view points before attacking them. Yes this is the internet but we still need to be sensible when making comments.
      For me, I believe she learnt her lessons. Shikenan

  18. Nurumba

    September 22, 2014 at 11:27 am

    Nice write up! Atoke Atoke. …

  19. Luqman

    September 22, 2014 at 11:28 am

    No matter how much cue women take from men, they can never control their feelings, for the fact that women are more emotional than us and women’s minds are more flexible than men, in fact, that is more reason why they are easily heartbroken in the midst of adversity and it takes them a longer time to get over it. In the other way round, men do cry too, but they usually cry internally without shedding tears with their eyes being reddish occasionally, which makes some men to put on glasses in order to cover their grievance. I only saw the situation once in my entire life and it was one of my uncles that was wailing in distress when he virtually lost all what he had laboured for, which buttresses the point that IT IS A SIGN OF WEAKNESSES for men

    **They normally compare men that do cry to women or baby.
    Lovely topic!

    • Carliforniabawler

      September 22, 2014 at 4:40 pm

      Women’s minds are more flexible?? Do tell!!
      Your comment was a bunch of chauvinistic crap!!
      I hate it when I’m handling a situation, being myself (not one to show emotions, at least not in public) and someone comments on how i’m acting like a dude…..quite irritating!.
      On the other end, I believe most women are stronger than we know we are…. I’m a firm believer in science and I’ve come to conclude that half my ‘crying episodes’ are/were hormonal.

    • Luqman

      September 22, 2014 at 5:55 pm

      I am talking in terms of percentage number of women not generally putting everyone in the context, there are so many exceptional ladies that are even more stronger than men

    • Luqman

      September 22, 2014 at 5:56 pm

      *same context*

  20. fred

    September 22, 2014 at 11:34 am

    Lovely article, I almost cried, lmao….
    I don’t think it’s an every man thing, just like it isn’t every woman that cries. It is just our usual stereotype(I’ll like to see an article on this). Different people deal with their emotions in different ways and their sex doesn’t play a part.. When we were in sec sch, some boys cried when they were canned, some didn’t. Same thing applied to the girl folk. Few weeks ago, I got to watch think like a man after reading the book, somewhere in the movie tears dropped down from my eyes, and while in sch we were talking about it, and a girl said she was in tears and when me(a ‘man’) relayed how I felt too, some girl said to me “y should u cry, u r a man”. Being emotional is a thing of the mind, not of sex, the fact men r supposed to be strong doesn’t mean they don’t cry, our pillows know better..

  21. blogaddict

    September 22, 2014 at 11:36 am

    Its ok for men/women to cry when they are emotionally or psychologically overwhelmed. But i feel somethings are more feminine than masculine probably because of the different hormonal makeup in both sexes.

  22. Bobosteke & Lara Bian

    September 22, 2014 at 11:39 am

    Jesus wept.

    • S!

      September 22, 2014 at 11:58 am

      Thank you for this statement!

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      September 22, 2014 at 12:25 pm

      In fact….

    • Amdi

      September 22, 2014 at 3:42 pm

      Debit alerts makes me cry…am I weird?

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      September 22, 2014 at 8:55 pm

      You are. And so are the rest of us so you’re in great company… 🙂

  23. nene

    September 22, 2014 at 11:47 am

    i think a lot of it has to do with culture….Indian men are really emotional, just watch their movies….hehehehe

    Seriously, i saw my dad shed tears twice, when he’s siblings died. An ex cried when we were parting after Youth Service and i found it cute. I think its a sign of strength for men to express their emotions even if its with tears….

  24. Rs

    September 22, 2014 at 11:54 am

    First and last time I saw my dad cry was when he told me my brother had died…. I was so shocked as it was unexpected just got back from boarding school. June 12 would never be the same again 🙁

  25. Noms

    September 22, 2014 at 11:56 am

    I personally think its okay to cry. Men, women and children but it should be for a good reason sha and controlled(especially children).
    Shedding tears has its way of relieving the stress without necessarily solving the problem- problem induced. It clears the mind to think straight afterwards.
    Crying when a message is preached, during worship, seeing a movie . . . all gives a sense of connect to whatever the situation is at a given time.
    I didn’t grow up with my dad, so I have never seen him cry. He told me over the phone on Saturday how he was shedding tears of joy upon seeing my Elder sister, who is expecting her 1st child since 2008(6years of being married) @that moment, tears started welling up in my eyes because we have all being praying and God has again answered us. He has named he baby – OGHENENYERHOVWOME ( God has answered my prayers).
    I cried too when i found out God has manifested His words in my family.
    Oghene Miguooooo.

  26. amarachi

    September 22, 2014 at 11:58 am

    I hate men who cannot cry, who hold their emotions in too deep all in the name of being a man.
    Not like i want an “egbere” who sheds tears at the drop of a hat but i think a man who is capable of showing his emotions when necessary is strong and balanced.

    Even my Lord and Saviour who is an embodiment of strength and power – Jesus, wept.

  27. Smart girl

    September 22, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    Mehn!!! i cry at any provocation, fear or anxiety! but i hate it when i cry, even though i cnt help it

  28. Chidinma Eke

    September 22, 2014 at 12:05 pm

    Its ok to cry, crying is therapeutic for both sexes.
    I rarely cry, some don’t believe I do, but sometimes I know I need to let go, and at those times any little thing sets me off and I feel better after.
    Crying isn’t a sign of weakness to me (at least not crying at the slightest iss).

  29. Easy n Gentle

    September 22, 2014 at 12:07 pm

    The only time I ever saw my father cry, was when his “adopted” son passed away many years back. He was my tutor then too, had boundless potential and was supposed to be the one to save his family from poverty, had stroke at 25 before he eventually passed. Popsy’s eyes were red and tears rolled freely. Similarly when his father died but it was more controlled. Now that I think about it, is happened quite a few times. Just not the wailing associated with grieving women.

    I don’t think it’s wrong for a man to cry, but I wouldn’t want to raise a cry-baby. I didn’t raise my brothers to be cry babies. My best friend once cried in front of me and I didn’t know how to handle that, I just stood there and watched with empathy plastered on my face.

    Men do shed tears, I think it’s mostly very very private. I couldn’t figure how tears came rolling down my eyes in April, no one died, just a lot of things not going my way at the time. It was relieving to do so but I’d drown before I’d let anyone see that. Men just generally don’t do vulnerability very well, and shedding tears openly is considered one

  30. venus

    September 22, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    I actually like to see men express theeir emotions through crying. it constantly reminds me that we r all humans as such we can all feel pain. I had a boyfriend who cried cos he was telling me something he had hidden from me after repeatedly questioning him over a period of time.
    The one I ll never forget was when I was in the room crying after I had failed an exam in med school.. My dad came to check up on me and saw that I was crying,he started to cry too.sad

  31. Vivadrew

    September 22, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    I’d say it is better when men express hurt (losses etc) through tears. Suppressing the anguish all cos “I’m a man or he is a man” could even lead to greater damage to the man (depression, suicidal thoughts, emotional imbalance). Let it out please, you are human not robot, don’t follow what the society says rather be human and feel human for once.

  32. Ade

    September 22, 2014 at 12:46 pm

    Tears releases manganese which is often associated with stress in the body. Its secretion is as well hormonal. Men shed tears, women shed more tears. Why? Hormones controlling tears are more secreted in the female specie… From a Biochemist. looooooool

  33. Ade

    September 22, 2014 at 12:48 pm

    But, i feel so shy and inferior when shedding tears so as a guy, na hiding things bruh………

  34. judith

    September 22, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    extremely nice write up….i saw my dad cry the day he buried his dad and other times if he is hurt he just handles it….i pray to have stron heart so as not to cry at almost every suituation…cos crying is one very good way to ease my heavy heart…once i cry it off ,its sooo gone out of my heart..

  35. D

    September 22, 2014 at 1:05 pm

    My dad cries ooo and he is not ashamed to cry at allllll. People die he cries, that is friends. At his mother’s grave side he cried not wailing but the tears flowed, freely too, he came prepared with tissue. I even did for him too. Recently, we lost my older sister, my father wailed!!!! not just tears flowing but actually sobbing. Aside from your younger sister who is the “baby of the house” no one wailed as much as my dad not even my mum. My older brother and myself just had to be strong for everyone else. Though I cried when it was just me and the hubby in our house. But yes o man cry well well. O maybe it is a family trait cos my cousin (Male) cried too at my sister’s funeral and was not ashamed to say he did. I saw my uncle cry at my greatgrand mother’s burial (he termed it tears of joy) but women that cry at the weddings, men, but why? there was no drop of tears in my eyes, I was happy to be getting married, very happy too so there was no need to be pretending one fake tears too,

  36. Tru

    September 22, 2014 at 1:07 pm

    Hian, Atoke, thank you for this topic. Was watching Guy Code the other day, and the way they tackled the issue of men crying was hilarious. While I know crying is therapeutic for the soul, I honestly would get turned off by a guy who competes with me for crying space. Shu? He’s the man now, what are his strong, broad shoulders for if not for me to lean on and weep unabashedly as he says “There, there”?
    Plus, there’s this popular joke about Tears: “A woman’s water power defeating a man’s willpower.” 😀 So so true!
    (PS: Atoke can we have apples instead of cucumbers?)

  37. pretti

    September 22, 2014 at 1:14 pm

    it’s very rare to see a man expressing himself through crying, but for a woman, infect i myself just may watching Nigeria movie and it has to be a sorrow part i cried, talk more of someone hurting me.

  38. Fisa

    September 22, 2014 at 1:15 pm

    Reading all these comments is even making me shed tears. Very funny but TRUE

  39. D

    September 22, 2014 at 1:18 pm

    My hubby tries to do the men don’t cry deal so imagine my shock when I saw him wiping tears at the Movie “Best Man Holiday 2”. This dude try to pull the “something got into my eye” trick. I mean that’s the oldest trick in book of tears trick. I am naturally not a cryer and movies naaaa does things are acted na at least that’s what I tell myself so I don’t cry.

  40. Idak

    September 22, 2014 at 1:58 pm

    Guys? Not so much – at least I don’t know any guy who expresses emotions by crying. It’s almost a universally accepted fact that MEN DO NOT CRY.

    I must be a different kind of guy.
    I cry almost every Sunday (when I am kneeling down in church (whichever one I find myself in) and think of how I had let God down during the week, the dam just bursts). I cry some more when confronted and overwhelmed by His prodigal live. The dam bursts uncontrollably.

    I cry at random deaths. When I mean random, I mean that the person was not particularly close to me. I cried at the service of Songs of a 30 year old colleague who barely spoke to me twice (we did not have much reason to speak). However,when I saw his wife at the service and heard how he died while they were away on a holiday to mark their one year anniversary, the dam burst. When I read the words from her lacerated heart in the program, I cried some more on my way back to the office and my driver was a bit concerned for my sanity. I cried all day and still cry when I remember that guy. Meanwhile, I doubt he knew my name while alive.

    I cry when i remember an old classmate of mine who died from the dreadful C after fighting it for almost 2 years. I would not be listed in his list of 100 friends and neither would he be listed in mine (I do not have 20 friends though,no matter how you define it).Yet when he died, I saw a life that seemed to have it all. Good career, loads of money (old money at that),good education and his pick of the IT girls. I stumbled on his complimentary card days ago while searching for something in my cardholder. I cried some more.

    I cry at the emotional pain of others,sometimes. I remember crying at a story of someone going through some issues online. Not only did I cry but I made a contribution to the person’s rehabilitation., only to find out later that the story had holes and was not as bad as first told. I felt sick in the pit of my belly.

    Nothing else makes me cry. Not the loss of closed relatives,not movies (never) and not physical pain, There is nothing unmanly in tears. Even for folks like me who do not have a set pattern.

    • Annie

      September 22, 2014 at 2:45 pm lols

    • Idak

      September 22, 2014 at 4:35 pm

      Prodigal love not prodigal live.

    • TA

      September 22, 2014 at 4:49 pm

      Idak oh Idak where have you been? I don miss you o. Nice to read from you.
      On to the topic,ain’t nothing wrong in men crying. It seems human to me. If a guy I know never cries no matter what,I will prolly think he is an insensitive &:#!*.

    • nursearike

      September 24, 2014 at 1:43 am

      idak can I have your email address? just to be friends, you speak with a lot of wisdom .

    • BunB

      September 29, 2014 at 6:38 pm

      ….. Oh @Idak, please marry me. You have the cutest message



  41. mo

    September 22, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    wow! the men around me cry a lot and i don’t see it as a big issue. i feel its actually therapeutic … my dad has cried so many times i’ve lost count. lol… when he lost his dad, mum, my brother… my hubby has also cried twice now (at least that i know of) first when i was in labor pains when having our first child and the day he slapped me during an argument.. he was so shocked he touched me that he cried for hours and called the whole world to beg me…

    • Doxa

      September 22, 2014 at 7:10 pm

      What did you do when your husband was crying after hitting you?

    • Bisqo

      September 26, 2014 at 3:03 am


  42. Beeeee

    September 22, 2014 at 2:11 pm

    Ooook am a town crier and could cry for Africa…..I watch my own movies late at night where no one wud c me crying,can remember vividly one night I was watching this kool movie and next thing see me wailing,my mom hurd d sobs and came out of my room….she tot mayb robbers were in our hood self……u knw dis type of cry dt wud give u hiccup….kaiiii.

  43. mz zzy

    September 22, 2014 at 2:12 pm

    I don’t think any one can compete with me when it comes to crying. I can so so much & that’s one thing I hate about myself. I cry @traditional weddings, I cry when I’m trying tzo make a point, I cry when I’m accused wrongly & I’m trying to stand on my right. I even cry when I imagine things that can’t even happen….mehn, I can be paid to cry for people o cos I’ll do it well

    • f8

      September 23, 2014 at 12:45 am

      Me too. It even irritates my parents. That was how i went for my friend’s traditiinal wedding, and i was crying on the babe’s behalf o, and the bride herself didnt even shed one tear. My mum was pissed when she saw

    • Ad'io

      September 23, 2014 at 2:28 pm

      You swear you’re me huh? Lol
      I’ve gat hazel iris, so I’m thinking that’s why. Optometrist get in!

  44. Annie

    September 22, 2014 at 2:28 pm

    Saw my dad cry once, when it was obvious my eldest bro was going to lose a leg, funny thing is, i am not sure my bro even cried when he was told he is going to lose a leg, all he did was ask the doctor if he is going to live after the surgery..thats all… an ex cried hard too cos i was crying too….

  45. J

    September 22, 2014 at 2:40 pm

    Oh the love of my Father… My Dad was honest to me when he couldn’t afford things. I always wanted to reinvest and protect his finances. As he will say my brothers ah those ones don’t care but to eat my money well. True.. My brother use to say you don’t know how much favour you got. I never wanted to see my Dad suffer or stress. Long story short… My Dad being hopeful and promising me finances for my higher education couldn’t meet up with it. When I went home to visit he saw how much I lost weight. He cried at the airport. I didn’t see him but he told me that he cried. I was wondering why he took so long to pick me up. I didn’t ask him. But he said as soon as he saw me he walked to side and cried. I felt really bad for him…
    A male friend of mine who use to be my very good friend. He always told me when he cried. Especially when things were difficult. I use to chuckle when he told me. Just because I felt his pain and didn’t want to cry but be strong for him and encourage him.

  46. DIG

    September 22, 2014 at 3:06 pm

    you compliment me too much, i cry…., i read a good book, i cry…., something is cute, i cry…, i’m angry, i cry…. i’m sad, i cry…. i’m excited, i cry…, I’m in love, i cry…., i watch a sad movie (like ‘the fault in our stars’), i wail…., someone dies….., i’m wailing for days…
    Its never on purpose, i hate it sometimes, but its just me. I’m trying to work on it sha, but no one makes it a big deal, maybe because i’m female.
    For me, i think a guy dat cries for serious reasons once in a while is cute. But the idea of my man crying when i’m walking down the isle is horror. lol.

    • Carliforniabawler

      September 22, 2014 at 4:41 pm

      Sweetheart!! I hope you stay hydrated sha…hehehe 😛

  47. Eyitayo

    September 22, 2014 at 3:11 pm

    Toke mehn u need to meet my dad..chai d old man can cry for Africa….

  48. Le moi

    September 22, 2014 at 3:24 pm

    The only time i cry is when i laugh… Or should i say “the only time tears do come out of me eyes” is when am having a good laugh with family/friends.
    But i cry myself to sleep at the same time am praying ’cause in the morning i feel better and when i pray i know say that ma prayer pass roof dy reach heaven…

  49. tos

    September 22, 2014 at 4:02 pm

    my ex cried when we started having issues in our relationship….never seen him that way before, it made me cry even more….wonder why it never worked out! i myself am a very emotional person…i watch movie i cry..i laugh so hard i cry…..but thats part of life i guess….to me i see no reason why men shouldnt cry when they have blood flowing in their veins! Its okay to cry but make sure u bounce back and be strong afterwards…

  50. Menoword

    September 22, 2014 at 4:09 pm

    Consistently bursting into blubbery tears is not attractive in any gender, however, this thing that men don’t cry is one of the reasons why some of them have such trouble expressing themselves. I’ve seen my father cry, especially when one of us was in pain. It made me see so clearly how much he loved me, that my pain became his pain.

    Parents can teach their children that it is ok to cry, but that in crying, they should also be able to work through their emotions and deal with the issues causing them pain/anger/hurt etc

    • TA

      September 22, 2014 at 4:52 pm

      Thank you menoword! I liked your comment 20 times.:-) very very true words you wrotr

  51. hey hey

    September 22, 2014 at 4:46 pm

    Nice write up atoke,but what if you can’t control the tears like me. Sometimes its embarrassing the way tears roll down my face I just can’t help it, though most time I quickly excuse myself so people won’t notice.

  52. Carliforniabawler

    September 22, 2014 at 4:58 pm

    I had a friend whose 6ft5 ex would start crying every time she was about to call him out or question him on cheating… about emotional blackmail. After a couple of episodes, na so she sef catch on, and would also start crying on cue, in fact she said it was so dramatic, she wouldn’t stop until he stopped and consoled her. Whenever their crying competition was over, she would continue her interrogation where she stopped. Needless to say they broke up within a year due to his trifling ways,

    Now to my own crying details, I only cry by myself, or over the phone with someone, or for the most part in front of strangers (that one, even I find weird). Anywhoozies, sometimes I can be hard o….just on friday at about 1am it had been a long day and was needing to drive home for about an hour or so, so I decided to make a gas/bathroom/coffee stop….after the first two, I spilled an entire cup of hot coffee on my groin (and by groin, I mean my headquarters 🙁 ). I screamed! Tears welled up in my eyes (a physiological response) but I didn’t cry. I just wasn’t up to it….this is what happens to me quite often. Crying seems to be a drain on my energy. Most times sef, I start crying and then begin laughing at myself for being silly.

    • PurpleiciousBabe

      October 6, 2014 at 8:58 pm

      lool o… this cracked me up..
      Awww poor u.

  53. Chike

    September 22, 2014 at 5:02 pm

    I’ll speak for myself. I haven’t cried outside my house ever no matter how bad. But in my room, i have cried! Its my fort and refuge LOl.. I do cry when i’m alone in my room and watching a very depressing movie. When i hear or see something depressing, tears do well up in my eyes and i quickly walk away when i realise i’m in public as i need to regain my composure afterwards. Crying is therapeutic to be honest. In my house, we all cry when we are very angry.
    Crying is different from wailing tho! I have never wailed in private or in public.

  54. beautiful onyinye

    September 22, 2014 at 10:45 pm

    I dunno how I was wired,when someone I know dies or a patient dies,I just become numb but no tears but watching a movie,reading a book I bawl.When I’m really angry,I cry.Really happy,I cry but when expected to cry when someone dies,I’m dry eyed.I tire for this kind thing oh!

    • Ena

      October 3, 2014 at 1:09 pm

      Same here. I can be an “egbere” when watching a movie, reading a book, worshipping in church (which I feel is perfectly normal) but when someone dies, I just find it difficult to cry. Dunno why

  55. Flames

    September 23, 2014 at 8:52 am

    I don’t use 2 cry bt since I fell in luv, small tins make me cry like watching a movie or reading a book. Ironically, real serz issues don’t make me cry, like d death of som1( I’ve only cried 1ce wen my bestie died in jss3, since den nothing). Dia was a tym boo did somtin hurtful 2 me and I was feeling so sad, I just wanted 2 cry bt d tears refused 2 come. I tried everytin, even went as far as listening 2 hrtbrk songs bt still nothing. I just accepted dat I’m nt built dat way.

    I personally don’t see anytin wrong with men crying even though I grew up in d midst of guys who all like 2 b forming “macho men”. Since my brodas grew up, I’ve neva seen dem cry or even my uncles dat grew up in our house bt I’ve seen boo cry 1ce even though he’s always forming macho, somtin happened and it seemed like he was going 2 lose everytin he worked 4 nd he jst started crying. Seeing him cry also made me cry 2.

    D 1 I absolutely cannot stand is guys who cry wen dey’re asking u out, I feel its fake nd dey’re jst trying 2 guilt u in2 accepting. Some will even be threatening u with d kin tears, dey’ll b like “do u want me 2 start crying nw” or d 1 I personally hate “do u want 2 see a man crying 4 u nw?” Cry na, is it my biz 😀

  56. frances

    September 23, 2014 at 9:15 am

    I was reading the soup kitchen stories a while back and one of the stories was of a father who suddenly broke down in tears at the weight of his troubles-divorce and taking care of his kids alone.
    His 6years old daughter(or so) walked in on him and he started apologizing to her for crying.
    And the little girl said-“its ok daddy, you can cry, you are just a person”..

    I am inclined to tow that little girl’s opinion, men, women, we are really all just a person. If you feel too overwhelmed by issues, then by all means cry..then wipe your tears and pick yourself up.
    No one says you should be a wimpy, but tears when all seems bleak doesn’t make anyone less of a person.(a man)
    Happy new week all.

  57. Magz

    September 23, 2014 at 9:48 am

    My crying habit started when i was 7years old and i was watching Yemi my lover with my uncles and cousins, i cried my eyes out and they teased me for days.

    If i watch a good romantic movie, i will cry, read a good novel, i will cry. If i am going through a difficult situation, oh la la, crying is the next thing. there are times i just sit down and i start crying; those times i blame my hormones. I am too empathic for my own good, so if i see anyone (anybody o, known or stranger) in pain, bam! the waterworks will start.

    And there are times the tears are just therapeutic.

    • Ena

      October 3, 2014 at 1:05 pm

      I can perfectly relate to this! Infact my mum once asked me if I was an “egbere” (a yoruba word for insulting somebody who can cry for the universe)

  58. shewhomustnotbenamed

    September 23, 2014 at 10:02 am

    I cried…
    When I lost my mum
    My beloved Uncle…ever since I cry at every instance.
    A beautiful love story,cute couples,babies, a good read, a depressing movie just to mention a few. The Irony is that I’m the strong one amongst my siblings but I’m HUMAN!
    It’s okay for men to shed tears ,of joy,grief and sorrow.
    They’re Human!

  59. Audrey

    September 23, 2014 at 10:14 am

    I have had to stop reading this. I’m at the hospital and I’m tearing up. will come back to it when I get to the office

  60. Berry Dakara

    September 23, 2014 at 11:19 am

    The only times I’ve seen my dad cry was when he spoke during mine and my sister’s traditional weddings – of course that made me bawl like a baby (what else is new? CrybabiesUnite)

    I had an ex that could cry for the whole universe!!! I was sick once and he came to visit and wanted to sleep over, to which I declined. He left and 2 minutes later, my sister walks in and asks what I did to him that he’s outside crying!!!!! That was the beginning of the end of that relationship.

    • Audrey

      September 23, 2014 at 6:31 pm


  61. DD

    September 23, 2014 at 3:28 pm

    My Husband cried the day we has our first baby,i was in labour for 26 hours and finally had an emergency cs.As soon as i was wheeled out of the threatre and asked for my baby,he started crying..that moment was priceless!that didnt make him less a man i guess…

  62. Moyo

    September 23, 2014 at 4:33 pm

    My husband cried when the doctor told him that I will have to undergo an emergency CS for our 1st child, and I was lying on the bed looking at him, wasn’t I supposed to be the one crying. any way after that one I had 2 other CS and no tears. He cried when Micheal Jackson died, cried while watching the funeral service. Oh boy I tire. He cries when watching movies that are emotional.

  63. funbaby

    September 24, 2014 at 11:48 am

    ahh I can cry for Africa as in small small things like looking at old pics I will start tearing up, watching emotional movies, reading nko, ohh and when am in the spirit of worship I cant even stand. But it doesn’t mean am not a strong woman o. Abi?

  64. omawunmi

    September 25, 2014 at 12:57 pm

    I’ve never seen my dad cry.
    my husband cried once (hiding) we were watching reality tv and an old blind woman’s sob story apparently got to him. (he didn’t cry when his mother died o). but he tells me he cries sometimes looking at our kids being happy.

  65. ThatAbiribaBae

    September 25, 2014 at 4:10 pm

    Since I was born, till now I am getting old… I have never seen my dad cry!

    On the other note, seen le boo cry a couple of times. First was when I threatened to call off the relationship. The second was few days before he relocated to a different continent…


    September 26, 2014 at 12:32 am


  67. chaircover2

    September 27, 2014 at 11:07 am

    Men cry full stop. Be it in the presence of someone or behind their back. The fact is men cry.
    The write up is quite interesting and has brought about many varied comments.. however @ BlueEyed, abeg biko you know Tina before? Abi you dey look for husband you no get? How would you gun for her like so? How u take deduce she would be raising emotionless boys? How come you suddenly translated ‘his mum is dying’ to ‘his mum is dead’? Even so, how you know say she failed as a wife? Abeg small small o! Read the comments and digest before you just type.

    At the end of the day to each his own

  68. always happy

    September 28, 2014 at 6:26 pm

    Crying is a natural human emotion….. just like empathy. Key word “human” not ” gender specific” or “culturally relevant”. I reckon what irritates folks is the “reason behind the crying” but this is objective and not subject to what you feel or reckon is “cry worthy”. So men cry, boys cry, girls cry, women cry too but after the crying , make sure 1 of these happens – you learnt the lesson or you’ve given it up to God to handle. Because otherwise, the next time it happens, you will cry again.

  69. Habyke

    September 29, 2014 at 3:54 pm

    Hmn, the men in my life cry. My Dad is a drama King, he cries when there is a need for it. My elder brother likes the attention when crying but thankfully, my younger bro is quite stoic. Ha, my fiance does not know it is infuriating to me to see him cry especially when the situation demands a more pragmatic approach to the issue. Me, I cry at every opportunity.

  70. uncensored chic

    October 2, 2014 at 6:39 pm

    Laff wan kill me die…
    I only cry in the confines of my privacy @ any lil thing but no one knows cos I appear quite tough. I am yet to see my dad cry but I know he is quite an emotional being but my mum cries @ every lil thing including anytime chibok girls appear on tv still missing. I walk out quietly wen she starts ranting about d girls and their parents, my sister does dramatic crying including seeing a pimple on my face and d dam just bursts; she says she doesn’t like when spots disfigures people’s faces.
    I once sat down beside a lady in church and someone had tears in her eyes while sharing a testimony and this lady was like ‘cry me a river…’, I was stupefied(couldn’t believe my eyes) and she said she just can’t handle anyone crying around her.
    Let it out if you need/have to regardless of your sex/number of ribs, it doesn’t portray you lesser than you are.

  71. Ena

    October 2, 2014 at 8:14 pm

    I remember when my father-in-law died, my husband was all lively, making calls to inform family, telling jokes to sympathisers who had come around and all just to liven the house. I remember thinking in my head “is this guy ok? abi nan him kill him father ni?”. Later at night, all visitors had left the house and we had to go back to our own house. We got in and headed straight for the bathroom. Just as I was about to run the bath water, he just looked at me and said, “hmmm….honey so daddy is truly gone” Immediately he gave me a big hug and opened the floodgates! Mehn! He wept like I can never imagine! I was so shocked and all I could do was to just keep rubbing his head and whispering that it’s ok and that daddy was in a better place now. Men cry…they just do it in their closet

    • PurpleiciousBabe

      October 6, 2014 at 9:03 pm

      awwww so cute!!
      I think it finally sunk in….

  72. Ena

    October 3, 2014 at 12:43 pm

    I remember when my father-in-law died, my husband was all lively, making calls to inform family, telling jokes to sympathisers who had come around and all just to liven the house. I remember thinking in my head “is this guy ok? abi nan him kill him father ni?”. Later at night, all visitors had left the house and we had to go back to our own house. We got in and headed straight for the bathroom. Just as I was about to run the bath water, he just looked at me and said, “hmmm….honey so daddy is truly gone” Immediately he gave me a big hug and opened the floodgates! Mehn! He wept like I can never imagine! I was so shocked and all I could do was to just keep rubbing his head and whispering that it’s ok and that daddy was in a better place now. Men cry…they just do it in their closet….I guess he was just trying to be strong for his mother and sisters cos he’s the first child and only son

  73. Ena

    October 3, 2014 at 1:13 pm

    And may I add that in all of this, I couldn”t shed a tear? I dunno why but I don’t cry when somebody dies. I just stand there like a piece of numb wood. But lemme see one cute little girl do something cute, the tears will start rolling. I guess I’m wired to cry over stupid things and ponder over serious things

  74. tb

    October 6, 2014 at 12:33 pm

    I believe its ok for a man to cry once in a while as an expression of sadness depending on the situation. Growing up i never saw my father cry at any time, ,until he passed away he was never a cryer. When I met my ex however, I saw another type of man. At first it was cute to see my man willing to express himself emotionally to me like that but gradually I realized that it was just a tool he used as he pleased. I began to hate it because he did not give me a chance to express myself emotionally. I had to be the strong one even when i needed to be the soft one. I it that he cried more than me, crying at the drop of a hat even when there is no reason to. My ex was a wailing well… He cried all the time and he was also an emotionally abusive man. He used his tears to manipulate me and get me to pity him even when he was wrong, he also used it to manipulate others into seeing me as a bad person. when we had quarrels, he would pick up the phone and burst into tears when reporting me to his family members (that in itself is bad), meanwhile he would be the one shouting on top of his lungs and even beating me up during the fight. Sometimes he would just sit down and start crying and when i asked what happened, he would say he is thinking about his mother who died over 10 years ago. I will comfort him. Another time he would be crying over the fact that life is hard and he is struggling to ensure his family has enough, I will comfort him. Another time he would be crying over why he is grateful for God’s blessings in his life, I will comfort him. On the other hand when he sees me crying, which hardly happens, because I am not the crying type, he would just walk past and not ask any questions about why I am crying or sad talk less of comforting or consoling me. Even when i lost a pregnancy and was mourning the loss of our unborn child, he did not comfort me, instead he also turned the grief to himself and started crying/mourning too on his own, expecting me to come and console him, I just ignored him. When I was really sick in the hospital, he made my illness all about himself. About how he is suffering, of course he was always crying or telling me about how he was crying to God to heal me, how he had not eaten for days because of worry etc, this he narrated to other people too, in tears, just to elicit pity from them. His own crying was another dimension of crying that I have never seen in my life. Thank God I got the strength and will to walk out of that abusive marriage. I later researched and found out that people who had such personalities have a disorder called narcissistic personality disorder. I pray he gets help.
    Atoke, sorry I am sure you were not expecting this type of comment in terms of what makes men cry, but i had to explain what I had experienced.

    • PurpleiciousBabe

      October 6, 2014 at 9:07 pm

      Am glad you got away from him…
      Some people can defo use their emotions to manipulate.

  75. Teri

    October 6, 2014 at 2:26 pm

    my sister’s husband first cry was when he was stuck in traffic for 3 hours………u won’t believe me but its true

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