Saturday, 14 March 2015

Beaches, crying, Seinfeld, Gilmore and not hugging sobbing girls.

I'll be honest - I love a good cry.

No, really. I cry a lot. sad songs. movies. regrets. shoulda coulda wouldas. feeling remorse. being happy. being sad. frustration. sympathy tears for someone else crying.

A lot of people doing getting us people who like to have a cry, because those people aren't often the type who tear up at these moments. So, here's some thoughts, some advice, and a word of warning.

It should be known that I laugh an awful lot too. I even laugh at the same jokes, even when I remember the punchline. This is an impressive trait. I think it's all part of being super sensitive, and laughing can sometimes be as socially awkward as crying.

Fortuantely I grew out of the super adorable, but sometimes annoying trait of giving people hugs. Other people had not. Giving me a hug probably won't solve the problem, especially if I don't know you, or know you very well. So, my word of warning is this - don't touch me. I really don't need a hug because I'm just trying to process something and move on from that moment. This is such an instinctive thing though, and I feel bad to even say it.

It's really okay to cry and it's actually good for us, believe it or not. This fact always makes me feel better.

I realise that most people don't cry as often as I do, or hardly ever at all. When you know someone who is, like me, easily hyped up with emotion, you just become used to it, as in 'here she goes again'.

The last few months have brought a lot to my life, both wonderfully good and terribly bad. In all the news I have received, there hasn't been crying involved, which leads me to a simple theory about myself. Crying = probably a good sign of processing whatever. Not crying = probably not very okay right now.

Sometimes I forget that people aren't like me, and they seem to leave crying as The Last Resort for Dealing with Life. Unfortunately, allowing yourself to be as melancholy as you wanna be, whenever you like, leads to one thing - there's not a lot of places to go, and when you do, it's not great place to be in. I have never been good at rebelling or risk taking, unless risks are only perceived, and to be honest, ways I have found to deal with problems haven't been very classy, or fair.

There's a great Gilmore Girls episode in which Rory deals with her first break up by planning a huge weekend of errands and Very Important Things To Do, despite the fact her mum just wants her to wallow in sadness so she can move on. It takes Rory a day or so, but finally she embraces the fact that it's okay to be sad. And I get that, because I'm a Rory sometimes, but for me it can take weeks or months or years to be like 'you know what, I actually just need to go and be sad for a little bit'. And that, my friends, is why it's okay to cry. Because putting it off doesn't really help very much.

If you're like me and you want to deal with life in a more mature way, other than crying every time 'Last Christmas' comes on the radio, here's what I have found works well:
- just cry if you need to, but focus on the issue, not every single bad thing that went wrong, EVER
- make better choices in what you listen to or watch. Is Beaches a great idea? No.
- if someone else is crying, listen to them, be comforting (well, if that's what they want), but focus on them, not their emotions. Sympathetic crying is the worst, and not helpful!
- do something fun or distract yourself
- talk about it, because talking almost always helps.

Also, not putting your arm around your crying girlfriend during Beaches is a deal breaker. Just sayin'.

Jerry: [To himself] Now what am I supposed to do here? Shall I go over there? It's not like somebody died. It's "Beaches" for god's sake. If she was sitting next to me I'd put my arm around her. I can't be making a big move like going all the way over there. I can't. I won't. 

[Next day, Jerry and George enter Jerry's apartment]

Jerry: She calls me this morning and tells me she's upset I didn't console her. I mean it was "Beaches" for god's sake. What, what do you do in a situation like that?

George: Where were you?

Jerry: I was sitting on the chair. She was over here on the couch.

George: Well you know, if you were sitting right next to her you'd have to console her no matter what. 

Jerry: Of course.

George: When you're talking about a movie like "Beaches", moving from the chair to the couch , . . . that's quite a voyage.