Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

Are you a crier?

Do you sometimes need an emotional release with a good cry?

We’re going to talk about crying today, as it may come up more often than you think in English conversations with native speakers.

We all cry sometimes, and knowing how to talk about it or help others can be a significant connection skill.

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Everyone Cries Sometimes and We All Have Our Views On It

Can you think of an embarrassing time when you cried?

There’s typically no reason to be embarrassed about crying, though you may do it at odd times like when you are overwhelmed or overtired.

You may cry when you are homesick and missing your friends and family.

There are so many reasons why you might cry, and they are all valid to you.

There’s nothing wrong with crying, and sometimes you may need that release!

DO you think it is okay to cry in public?

Is it okay to cry at work?

What does crying or the way we view crying say about us and our culture?

Crying can be a very personal thing, and you may have different views on it than others.

The fact is that everyone cries sometime, and being able to talk about it is huge.

This may be a topic of conversation quite frequently, and so you want to know how to talk it through using the right terms. survey said over 8 in 10 people who work have been at work and cried.

So you can see that crying is a part of life, and you are entitled to your views on it.

Now you want to know how to talk about it, whether it’s you doing the crying or the consoling.

Talking About Crying

Today we are going to talk about the vocabulary for crying, and believe it or not there is a significant set of terms.

Think of this as more of a crying scale, where you can almost measure how hard you were crying or how upset you were.

You will see that we start small here and then build up in terms of the crying scale.

  • Tears in my eyes: You could be either happy or sad. This just means that something moved you one way or the other and you started to get some tears in your eyes. Nothing major, just a little something there. You could say “I had tears in my eyes at the end of the movie.”
  • Happy tears/tears of joy: You might say that you had this when you see something that makes you proud. It may be watching your child accomplish something great. It may be that you have happy tears at a wedding because it’s such an emotional and happy event. You could say “I cried happy tears at my friend’s wedding.” 
  • Tear up: This could be because you are either happy or sad. This tends to be a bit more extreme and you can actually see the tears more visibly. This may be harder to hide from others because it’s a more profound reaction. You could say “I teared up when my mom surprised me with a visit.”
  • A good cry: This is generally just releasing something in some significant manner. It could be a lot, and it could feel good. It may be that you just need a release of some kind, and this helps you to do that. Crying can be healthy and can make you feel better! You could say “I had a good cry and that helped me to get past my feelings.”
  • Weep: This is definitely on the higher end, and when you may be pretty upset. This is beyond just needing a release because you are letting it out in a significant way. You might hear “I wept when I didn’t get into the play.”
  • Sob: This is very similar to weep and it’s significant. This is when something is very upsetting and you need to cry it out. You could say “The baby sobbed because its mother left the room.”
  • Cry one’s eyes out: This is likely as significant as it gets. This is something that really upset you and you feel the need to really cry it out. You need to calm down and sometimes crying is your best release. You could say “Oh my goodness, that story was so sad, I cried my eyes out!”

These phrases and levels help you to be able to talk about crying in conversation.

You just might be surprised at how often it comes up and how you may use each of these phrases.


This is so important because you don’t want to just say “cry” every time, and now you have some options.

It can be useful at times to share when you were vulnerable and you cried as a result of that.

Is it okay to cry?

We all need to have a good release sometimes, and crying can be about happiness or even mixed emotions.

Crying isn’t always about being sad, but if you are feeling down then sometimes crying can help.

We don’t want you to cry, but we want you to have the vocabulary you need to understand others and to talk about it just in case.

This is a common topic, and now you have some great ways to talk about it and even view it as well.

If you have any questions, please leave them below in the comments section.

We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

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