A time for … tears?

Spring seems to finally be coming. The seasons change, life moves on. Some days, weeks, months are wonderful and filled with joy. Others bring loss and sadness.With the hope of spring, I wanted to touch on a touchy subject. Tears. Yes, tears, the salty liquid our eyes produce when we are sad and sometimes, in moments of extreme happiness.

Tears are natural, normal and a part of life. Sometimes we cannot tell when someone we care about is having a bad day. Other times it shows in their faces. Talking helps relieve stress. Talking about tears can be stressful, but shouldn’t.

If someone appears to have been or is crying, we may try to brush it off as allergies, close contact with an onion, a piece of dust in the eye. Anything to avoid asking, ‘Are you doing ok?’, ‘Is everything alright?’ Sometimes, that is all it takes to open the floodgates of either more tears or of information.

But, all you really have to do is be there and listen. Maybe offer a tissue if one is handy. Letting a person cry and talk is all you need to do. Most people, when they are upset, need a shoulder to lean or cry on and do not expect more. If they have serious issues or problems that really need attention, refer them to someone who could help. But most of the time, the best help is to not ignore their tears and discomfort, just listen and be there.

I am not a counselor but have found the above to work, many times. I just needed to ignore my discomfort of their tears and listen. There is not one solution to every problem but sometimes all it takes is for us to ask “How are you?” and then listen to the answer.

Happy Spring!