The ClearOut Logo

What Is a Man, Anyway? Part 3 – Episode 157

In this lachrymose episode and further exploration of masculinity, Dara is talking about the benefits of crying. He confesses to being a crier anyway, easily shedding tears over any number of things, but goes on to share an extremely recent loss that knocked him sideways with the tears it provoked. He argues that there is a ranking system that qualifies the when and how much of crying.

For Dara there is a strong connection, verging on causality, between problematic iterations of masculinity and male behaviour and the invalidation of the emotional lives of men. He believes this begins very early in male lives with the three words: boys don’t cry. In the past week he was on his knees crying big fat tears. He’s a boy. He was crying. What’s the problem?

The problem is the conditioning that men receive for most of their lives that tells them it is unmanly to cry. Unmanly to show emotion. That crying is weak and feminine. Dara pushes hard against this rhetoric and performed masculinity and asserts that the emotional richness and vibrancy of men’s lives needs to be given licence to express itself. And that includes crying!

Aeon article (2015) on men and crying:

Medium article (2024) on cultural attitudes to male crying:

Michael Kimmel article (2023) on toxic masculinity and male characteristics:

Leave a Reply

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments