Is it OK to cry in front of your child?

I cry in front of Adam. In fact today I cried in front of Adam.
Today was an awful day with the younger two boys, they pretty much screamed the whole day. 
Both of them going hells bells full pitched screaming.
I was doing everything I could to calm the situation and to make them stop crying.
I was defeated, outnumbered and frazzled.  
I was totally overwhelmed by everything and well there was only one thing for it, for me to cry too. In fact Adam was the only one not crying!

Did I go into the bathroom, lock the door and hide to sob my heart out ? No. I was on the sofa beside Adam, tears rolling down my face.
He has seen me cry before lots of times. He asked me was I OK.
I said that I wasn’t feeling OK, but after a cry I will feel a little bit better.
I explained to him that I was feeling overwhelmed by the situation with the younger boys. Sometimes when I have a lot of strong, overwhelming emotions all at once they have to come out and I cry.
He totally gets it he said “Everybody needs to cry sometimes”

Do I hide my laughter from my children? No I don’t. So it doesn’t make sense to me to hide my tears either.
Crying is a human emotion. I am raising boys and I want them to know that it is OK to cry.
It is OK to cry when you are upset, stressed, sad, overwhelmed, exhausted.
It is an emotion just like laughing.

By expressing and explaining to Adam how I’m feeling it teaches Adam to share his feelings too.
That is something that he does and I hope that never stops.
I have always said to him he can share anything with me.
All feelings good or bad. I will always be there for him, to listen and try to help.
I want him to feel comfortable to do that. I want him to feel at ease to chat with me about his emotions.
A few weeks after Finley was born we sat and had a chat, he explained he was feeling a little jealous of Finley. Not a lot of kids would admit that.
I reassured him that it was totally normal for him to be feeling that way, and that it will take some getting used to having a little brother after being the only child for so long.

I never expect Adam to comfort me when I cry. The last thing I want is for him to feel like it his job to make me feel better.
That would be totally unfair and as my child it is not his job to pick me up and make me feel better. 
He always gives me a hug or little rub of the back because he is a very thoughtful child.
But I always explain to him that I will be fine. That I just need to shed a few tears, wipe my eyes, wash my face and I will feel better.
I explain how I’m feeling in simple terms that he can understand.

It is normal to want to shelter our kids from our feelings of sadness, stress and pain.
However I do think it is healthy for my children to see and understand that Mummy has a range of emotions, just like everyone else.

How do you feel about this? Do you let your kids see you cry? I would love to hear your thoughts.

4 thoughts on “Is it OK to cry in front of your child?

  1. I think you've got that exactly right. It is a wonderful thing to be teaching your boys and Adam is obviously such a thoughtful and caring boy because of the way you are raising him. Bottling up emotions and always putting on a brave face in front of our children is unrealistic and even more exhausting. Bravo to you for letting those tears come then picking yourself up and getting right back to it. Motherhood is the hardest and most unrated 'job' on the planet.

  2. You are totally right, it's ok to show every other emotion, so why not tears. I can I just your Adam is such an amazing little boy. The fact he opens up to you like that is lovely. You have true bond. Hats off to you boy mumma! Your doing good xxxxxx

  3. Thank you so much for your kind words. I think its so important to show Adam and the boys that its ok to cry. but also important that they know that by talking about things it always helps. I do hope they always feel like they can talk to me.
    Kathryn x

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