Thursday, 22 January 2009

More tears

Thank you again for all those who commented on the first tears post. This is such a personal area and it was good to begin to understand different perspectives.

Selkie also published a post about tears. You can read it here. In it she explains how for some women it can feel to be a weakness to cry and why many strive to avoid tears in certain situations.

I remembered too a discussion with a sub a long time ago - where she felt that some subs in a difficult scene might use tears as a kind of "topping from the bottom" to try to control the scene and the level of intensity. She was somewhat critical of this. Though I will talk in another post about topping from the bottom.

Tears certainly can be used by some women to manipulate some men. I guess this is done in a conscious way by some women but in others might just be learned behaviour - that tears help them to get what they want. Whilst I am very moved by tears and want to console and help a person in distress I have personally never felt manipulated by them. (Well there is one person but that is a very long story!)

I was once a senior manager in charge of a medium sized organisation. My deputy at one time was very firm and appeared quite hard to staff. But with me when we were discussing difficult issues she often came to tears. We had a professional relationship and we would get past that. It never affected our decision making. I was worried though about her ability to take over if I was to leave because of this propensity. However she eventually took over quite successfully and presumably found another outlet for her emotional frustration. Or perhaps when I left she didn't have the same frustrations that drove her to tears! There was many other times with staff where there were tears but I cannot recollect ever feeling manipulated by them or changing a decision because of them. Am I so very hard!?

I know some strong women too can be angry and frustrated when they see other women using tears manipulatively as a means of getting their way rather than through more appropriate ways.


Anonymous said...

I commented on selkie's post about how 'play' can sometimes bring me to tears with M, but only when something is emotionally stressing me. It took me (though not him it seems) completely by surprise when it happened the first time and I hated a lot of women I worried about how it would affect him, whether I'd seem weak, whether I'd look ugly (though he assures me he thinks the opposite is true because my vulnerability makes me beautiful to him).

Your post today though reminded me of another time. When my husband died, I was working as an Executive Assistant to a man I had a wonderful working relationship with. My first week back at work was going ok until one afternoon when I went in to give him a message and, out of nowhere, began to cry. I was extremely good friends with another Executive Assistant and he very calmly picked up the phone, called her and said 'L...I have a wet woman in my office, would you come and take care of her and I'll have her back when she's dry'. When I've told this story since, some have been horrified at his 'callousness'....but if you knew him, and the working relationship we was exactly right. It made me smile, and diffused what would otherwise have been a very awkward moment for us both.

Its a good memory...thank you for triggering it.

hugs x

Pygar said...

Thank you for sharing this M:e. I think it highlights different peoples responses to others tears and how there is no "right" way. On this occasion it seems that your boss instinctively knew how to respond - and knew you well enough and had a good enough relationship with you for it to work out well.