I Need Help to Prevent from Crying

  1. 0 I hate the fact that I cry (more or less tear up or well up) when I'm happy or sad. It really sucks because I know that it can be perceived as a sign of weakness. I'm really trying to practice my game face because I know the emotions I wear on my face could help/hurt my relationship with my patients and colleagues. Any pointers to stem the tide of tears during clinicals?

    Thanks for any advice you can lend.
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  3. Visit  dcgrrl} profile page

    About dcgrrl

    dcgrrl has '0-1' year(s) of experience. From 'Maryland'; 41 Years Old; Joined Jun '08; Posts: 136; Likes: 82.

    10 Comments so far...

  4. Visit  lkwashington} profile page
    1
    Crying doesnt always mean a sign of weakness. Crying can meaning you are overwhelmed. You may be showing emotions for patients. Doctors may be very harsh at times. We all are emotional on some type of level. You may need to take a few minutes to yourself to get yourself together. Me personally when I get to point of crying I was overwhelmed with the things were going on in my surroundings and I knew then it was time for a change. Just a thought. Try to stay strong.
    dcgrrl likes this.
  5. Visit  DolceVita} profile page
    4
    If this is a recent thing you should consider if you are a bit over stressed or depressed.

    If not recent, I really think you are completely correct in addressing this -- at least for how you are in a professional setting. Go with your own instinct on this. It is extremely difficult to interact with someone professionally who is crying. You could have mad nursing skills and will still be judged more on how you interact with others.

    There are a few things you can try.

    Do not give yourself permission to cry. Don't indulge. Most people have much more control of their thoughts and actions than they give themselves credit.

    Consider if you are over identifying a bit with those around you. If they experience a happy even it it is their happy event. If they are experiencing a sad event it is their sad event. So, if you reframe it as such, rather than how you feel about it, it may help.

    If you feel tears coming on you can try:

    • Deep breathing.
    • Tickling the roof of your mouth with your tongue.
    • Doing a jaw thrust.
    • Clenching a fist.
    • Think about the next thing you need to do.


    Essentially distract yourself.

    If you sometimes cry when you are angry -- give yourself permission to be angry. Some women think it is not OK to be angry. That is not the case. It is inappropriate to lash out in anger but a feeling is just a feeling -- it doesn't make it wrong.

    A good cognitive behavioral therapist can help with this if none of these things work.

    Good luck!
  6. Visit  TRR8021} profile page
    1
    I actually start to well up when I get upset or I feel like I'm in trouble or did something wrong! I haven't actually cried though. But I noticed that it's not as noticeable to other people so that's a good thing. I think it takes time to "toughen up" and become more confident. Also, one of my professors said to look up at a light if you feel tears coming! lol I haven't tried that one.
    dcgrrl likes this.
  7. Visit  dcgrrl} profile page
    3
    Quote from DolceVita
    If this is a recent thing you should consider if you are a bit over stressed or depressed.

    If not recent, I really think you are completely correct in addressing this -- at least for how you are in a professional setting. Go with your own instinct on this. It is extremely difficult to interact with someone professionally who is crying. You could have mad nursing skills and will still be judged more on how you interact with others.

    There are a few things you can try.

    Do not give yourself permission to cry. Don't indulge. Most people have much more control of their thoughts and actions than they give themselves credit.

    Consider if you are over identifying a bit with those around you. If they experience a happy even it it is their happy event. If they are experiencing a sad event it is their sad event. So, if you reframe it as such, rather than how you feel about it, it may help.

    If you feel tears coming on you can try:

    • Deep breathing.
    • Tickling the roof of your mouth with your tongue.
    • Doing a jaw thrust.
    • Clenching a fist.
    • Think about the next thing you need to do.

    Essentially distract yourself.

    If you sometimes cry when you are angry -- give yourself permission to be angry. Some women think it is not OK to be angry. That is not the case. It is inappropriate to lash out in anger but a feeling is just a feeling -- it doesn't make it wrong.

    A good cognitive behavioral therapist can help with this if none of these things work.

    Good luck!

    Thanks!! I'm really going to consider cognitive behavioral therapy...I think it has come down to this because I haven't been very successful on my own. I have identified the main problem which is basically I find that I'm too empathetic. While I know empathy is a good trait to have as a nurse---too much can be a hindrance.
    dream& achieve, RNTutor, and DolceVita like this.
  8. Visit  happy2learn} profile page
    2
    If I feel a tear I open my eyes up more and stop blinking so it dries up. And if anyone notices a watery eye, I blame it on my contacts, lol. My contacts actually do make my eyes watery at times.
    LuvCinci and Poi Dog like this.
  9. Visit  blessedbelle} profile page
    0
    I was once like that too.. deep breathing helps me though. ^^
  10. Visit  championnicole} profile page
    0
    so this is my first post...but i had to say something! I am the same exact way, and it has been incredibly embarressing and limits my ability to interact with professor, new people, etc. i'm in my first week of accelerated fundamentals, and have nearly cried twice. at orientation i cried twice while watching a little nursing video that was all sweet. please let me know how things have worked for you, and if you've found a way to deal with it. i just moved here for school too, so it's even more difficult. i find it's never hindered me before, but it honestly happens for no reason. i'll be just tryin to talk to a prof, and start like get all teary; i'm so nervous when clinicals begin next week, and i'm going to try to find a therapist ASAP! hope to hear back from you! GLAD I'M NOT ALONE :-)
  11. Visit  ghillbert} profile page
    0
    I'm a crier too - doesn't bother me at work, except if I get really angry. This sucks because being angry and confronting someone (esp male!), you don't get much respect if you're crying. Luckily this has only happened once, when I had a total pig of a man as a boss. It didn't go well... heh.

    I agree with DolceVita's suggestions though. Sometimes I just have to take a timeout and give myself a talking to.
  12. Visit  dcgrrl} profile page
    0
    Thanks for everyone's response. I'm going to try some of those distractor techniques too. I've also been watching more of TLC's Trauma: Life in the ER to gives me lots of opportunities to practice! LOL
  13. Visit  Bobbkat} profile page
    1
    If it makes you feel any better, I totally cry like a baby when I see movies, touching commercials, anything like that. I never did until I had my daughter, then it was like some switch in my head was turned on. While I understand it's embarrassing to be the person crying, I think there are enough of us in the world that no one will really hold it against you.

    I don't really have suggestions, the previous posters had some pretty good ones. I would, however like to share a story with you.

    Last year, in my senior term of my BSN program, I was required to participate in several shadowing experiences for one of my classes. Long story short, I shadowed in a NICU for a 12 hour midnight shift and was able to see the delivery and immediate intubation of a 23 weeker. It was extraordinary, in so many ways. I have never felt so touched and awed by what we are medically able to do until that moment. The father came into the room where the NP, nurses, and neonatology fellows were all working, and the charge started asking him questions (she was very, very considerate and knew he was pretty overwhelmed). The look on the father's face, as he watched what was going on with his daughter, and the questions...I'll never forget it. It was so much to take in and I just felt myself beginning to lose it. I held it together long enough to leave the room with the charge, but then just burst into tears. No one mocked me, no one looked like I was doing something embarrassing. The charge gave me a huge hug, as well as a few of the other nurses, and told me that they would have would have been really shocked if I hadn't reacted that way, being new to the NICU. My Mother works on the unit, but wasn't in that night. I don't know if they ever told my Mother that her 29 year old daughter sobbed on their unit or not. I do know that she wouldn't have cared. She's shared with me many occasions when she's just had to cry because of something happening at work. She has cried with parents, she has cried with other nurses.

    You'll get used to seeing things, both horrific and wonderful. But sometimes, something will touch something so deeply in you that no matter what, you just need to let out the emotion. Don't be ashamed, and don't let anyone try to make you feel that you should be.

    And BTW, deep breathing and thinking of something completely unrelated do help me when I'm tearing up at something really corny, like a movie or a hallmark commercial.
    dcgrrl likes this.


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