The notion that women cry more than men is seldom more than a sexist stereotype. There is a sound scientific background behind the observation as well. Hormones have a part to play in the picture, but there is more to it.
It Is About Fertility
Women have higher rates of crying in the years when they are fertile. This characteristically lasts in between the ages of 13 to 50, 37 years in total. It is very closely related to the hormonal changes that are a part of a woman’s body when she is capable of conceiving a baby. Hormones fluctuate with the menstrual cycles and the women cry more frequently. They cry lesser following menopause
The Physiological Aspect Of Women Crying More
Anatomical differences between men and women involve the larger tear ducts which women have. While a human being is fertile, tear ducts of women are more active as compared to those of men.
Men Cry Less
It was vastly believed that female sex hormones make women cry more. But this is an evidence-based finding, not research-based. Testosterone, the male sex hormone inhibits men’s crying. Since men have more testosterone in their bodies, they cry less.
Crying Can Be Good
Emotional tears contain the adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), which is also an indicator of stress levels. It has been hypothesised that when one cries, the body frees itself of toxins associated with stress. So crying nicely allows one to overcome stress. Women correspondingly are better than men in terms of coping with stress.
Cultural Stereotypes Render An Influence
Crying is more than how an individual physiologically responds to a situation. Boys’ and girls’ upbringing influence the situation as well, and they abide by cultural expectations. Between the age of 9 and 15, boys’ testosterone level increases by 250 times.
Boys characteristically have more control over their tears because they practice controlling them. While boys control their tears, girls control their emotions. As childhood is spent mastering the art, it is perfected by the start of adulthood. Each sex exhibits emotions in ways deemed right for its gender.
Parents are not always to blame for teaching girls to cry more and boys to cry less. Instead, it is peer pressure that makes a difference. Suppose a 12-year-old boy starts crying when he loses a game. This will induce bullying. Hence, boys are under more pressure to suppress tears as compared to girls.
It Is Not Just Sadness That Tears Express
Beyond sadness, tears express helplessness. In any negative situation, such as burglary at home or a computer crash, women respond with helplessness and are more likely to cry. But for emotional situations such as breakups, both sexes cry equally.
Men respond to helplessness by not crying to show that they are stronger. Women, on the contrary, respond to helpless by crying to show that men are stronger. The cycle hence goes on.
Crying Is Subject To Personal Preferences As Well
Crying has more to do it than tear duct sizes, social upbringing, and hormone levels. Some people would rather avoid crying, while there are others who don’t seem to mind. There are people who are correspondingly on a lookout for tear jerking experiences.
Even while this factor is sometimes overlooked by science, it is reasonably significant. It has a lot to do with how frequently an individual comes across emotional stimulation. As an example, the media that women prefer, in the format of sitcoms, cinema and literature make them cry more. Ultimately, each individual is different, and that renders an influence over one’s crying as well.