Phrases like 'cry like a girl' are often thrown about. But how different are lady tears and the tears of men? Is there really any difference between the sexes when it gets down to a sob-fest? And is there really any difference between your tears - of joy and of terror? Do women really cry more than men?
I have been researching this over the weekend and have found, as per usual, a million and one studies on the differences between the sexes and their tears. But my problem is, the outcome of all of these studies depend on so many human factors: how honest the people taking the surveys are, the agenda of the person conducting the survey and of course the way in which the studies were conducted. Here is the general outcome of my research.
There are three types of tears. Tears in their first form are to lubricate - wahey! - the eye and clean it - lysozyme is a chemical componant in tears that helps to stops bacterial growth in the eye. But here is something you may not have known about your tears, whilst most of your tears will evapourate, some of your tears are redirected to your nose through the tear duct to keep it moist which is why your nose runs when you cry. The point being, that irrespective of gender, your tears play a key role in the maintenance of your body and these are called basal tears.
The second type of tears are produced by irritants - when onions make you cry, or like when you are sitting by the camp fire and no matter where you move the smoke seems to follow you and get in your eyes. These are called reflex tears and are produced to clean the eyes and whilst I found some evidence to suggest they may be chemically different to basal tears, this result seems to change from study to study.
The third type of tears are the most relevant to this article and these are emotional tears. The kind spilled at the end of Moulin Rouge or The Notebook - and regardless of gender here, if you didn't cry at either of these films you must be a robot! *cue ugly crying face*
So let's get down to facts here, it seems like women are more likely to cry more because they have smaller tear ducts than men which is why women's tears will fall faster than men's. Women's tear glands are also compositionally different to men's and the average sob-fest lasts for 6 minutes for a women - personally, I know I can go for at least 10...no shame! - and between 2-4 minutes for men. (This is according to German research published in The Telegraph). But perhaps this is a matter of pride - crying is showing your vulnerability, a trait most men would consider a fault whereas typically women are much more open about this.
Whilst writing this I did come across a story I thought I would share: A woman suffered from severely dry eyes and had to quit her job because of the air conditioning, lighting and work with computers that only made her condition worse. After her husband died she miraculously got better - turns out her only problem was too happy a marriage! She had never cried much during the years she was with her husband but after he passed away she cried herself better. Just goes to show ladies and gents, sometimes all you can do to solve your problems is cry.
So! Ladies, the fact that you may not see your man crying at the end of Moulin Rouge does not mean he is a robot, it's just that by the time your tear ducts were empty his were already three steps ahead of you and thinking about boobs and beer...or whatever men think about to be manly...not that I in any way assume to know. Meaning that if you find a guy who openly cries in front of you he has defied in some small way the nature of his tear ducts and is either really upset or really honest, either of which deserve a hug.
Anton Skorucak, MS: Founder and publisher of ScienceIQ.com. Anton Skorucak has a Master of Science (MS) degree in physics from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, California and a B.Sc. in physics with a minor in material science from the McMaster University, Canada. He is the president and creator of PhysLink.com, a comprehensive physics and astronomy online education, research and reference web site. PhysLink.com
NOTES. I have to say, every guy I have ever dated for more than three times, have cried in front of me, and I mean not only from watching movies but actually from life situations, mostly when breaking up, isn´t this very sweet?
I know I have got great value as a girlfriend but as much as to cry? Of course! What a question!
Let´s all cry together! :)
Could not let this picture goes...