“It’s Okay to Cry” Are Precious Words To Ill Friend
“It’s okay to cry” may be one of the nicest things you could ever tell a friend who is suffering and overwhelmed. Let her know tears won’t scare you away.
It is okay to cry. I don’t know if anyone has ever told you that. I don’t know who ever put the notion into our head that tears are a sign of weakness. Allowing yourself to feel all the emotions and letting them rise to the top where they literally seep out of your body has got to be one of the strongest things a person can do.
For those with chronic illness, not only are there multiple emotions of fear, worry, concern, lack of control and more, but we are on and off of medications that can significantly change our mood in less than a moment. I have spent a week in the hospital with a life-threatening infection and never shed a tear–nor did I cry for about a month after that. I was afraid that once I started the tears wouldn’t stop, but I could have used a friend who said, “Hey, it’s okay to cry. Let it go.”
Another time I visited a teenager in the hospital I didn’t even know. Someone called and asked me to come. I talked to her briefly and told her it was okay to cry with me and within seconds she was sobbing and letting it all out. She had been holding in the tears from her family and friends because she didn’t want them to see how worried she was.
No one told her, “It’s okay to cry.” They just emphasized how proud of her they all were for “being so strong and brave.” I recall the nurse coming in and asking me, “What did you say to her? What did you do? She’s hasn’t cried all week until you arrived!” I just stood there feeling guilty, but knowing she needed to be told it was okay to cry.
Has anyone ever told you, “It’s okay to cry. Let it all out. I won’t leave you. I will just sit here and hold the tissue box until you are done”? What did it feel like to have someone trustworthy who didn’t say you had to be brave?
If you have a friend with an invisible illness, there are many ways to bring comfort to him or her. But surprisingly, one of your greatest gifts could be to just hand her a tissue box and say, “Hey, it’s okay to cry around me. I’m not going anywhere.”
TWEET THIS: Things TO SAY to an ill person #4 If you need a good cry, I’ve got plenty of tissues and a shoulder. It’s ok 2 cry. #iiwk12 http://ow.ly/ce3Yl
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It’s okay to cry! And in this song by Mandisa, “Just Cry” she reminds us of that very fact. She says, “Go ahead and take off the brave face. . . ”
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