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January 17, 2005


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i've always been a bit of a crybaby and having a child certainly did nothing towards turning off the waterworks. i think there were about 6 months there when i was crying more or less non-stop, partly from exhaustion & hormones and partly from the sort of extreme fear and empathy that comes with being a parent.

it gets better. i don't think it ever gets back to normal. but like everything else that changes with parenting, the thing is not so much that you "had to" give stuff up (like, in this case, your former stoicism) as that you sort of lost your taste for it (empathy FEELS good, even when it hurts).

also, it's not a bad life goal to laugh and cry less in response to fiction and more in response to reality.


I know what you mean, Metro. I've always been a pretty tough guy who wasn't all that great at showing my feelings. But after the birth of my twins, I've definitely softened up. My girls have taught me how to be more emotional. I will say that the first few months after their birth, I was just like you. The weeping for joy turned into just general weeping. Having kids is an emotional experience. The joy won't fade but you'll get a better handle on your emotions soon enough. I guess it's all part of the cycle of life.

By the way, I really enjoy your blog. There aren't too many fathers out there writing who cover the range of topics that you do. I find myself checking for new posts from you all the time. Keep up the great work.


will you marry me, metrodad? (just joking, bosslday!) most guys i know here are either total toughies or total wusses. i think it's great that your in touch with your feelings but are still a man's man. and you seem like a great dad too!


This is the new you. Embrace it. And invest in a hanky. :0)


Forget it--you're stuck. Forevermore your heart will be worn on your sleeve when it comes to the preciousness of children. Kiss your tough-guy exterior goodbye. But in a good way. :)


Metro - my wife and I are expecting our first child on May 27. So I think what you are describing starts sooner than the birth. I too have experienced a salty, watery substance that comes from my eyes while watching the likes of Rudy, Hoosiers, Field of Dreams, etc.. Now that we are expecting, I even develop the same salty, watery substance while watching Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.

It's all good though.


While I'm not a guy, I'm also not a crier. Well, I haven't been a crier. I haven't even had my boy yet and I was lightspeedahead crying about some couple's story on Discovery Health who had adopted three bi-racial girls into their white home. Obviously, that's not what made me cry. I bucketed tears because the parents knew it would be important that the kiddos have siblings that might share their experience and that the oldest daughter said, "Look Mom, she's brown like me!"

From what you're saying, this new sensitive side may be on the rise well after the boy gets born!

And thanks for the tip on the roll of quarters. I done and got my own roll. The better to love the nurses with.


Welcome to the weepy world of fatherhood. Like all the other commentors have said, there's no going back. You're officially a mush now! Enjoy it. It never ends.

The Zero Boss

Crying at the drop of a hat? We have a word for that, dude: STRESS.

The Zero Boss

As an aside, thanks for all the mad props you've thrown my way lately. They have not gone unnoticed, and will NOT go unpunished.


no...I think you're in for the duration there Mr. Mush. Your little girl will always be your little girl, even when you walk her down the isle. Isn't it great?


Ahhh, yes.

I used to be on the emotional side of normal and having a baby pushed me over into the low end of mental. My husband was a reasonable guy, but now when the stories about abused children or the horror stories about the tsunami are on the television we both dive for the remote.

We are suddenly weepers. We are weepers because before those stories used to be about the generic "child". Some sweet, but distant face suffering in a distant way. Enough to exclaim in horror, but not enough to feel personally.

Now every story we watch isn't about some faceless child; it's about Charlie. Somewhere out there someone is doing horrible things to a Charlie. Just thinking about it makes our hearts clutch and tears leak out wildly.

The idea that a Charlie is out there hurting or alone or lost or dying... we can't take it.

For the rest of your life your heart will be walking around out outside your body and will be more vulnerable than it's ever been. Every baby should be loved as much as you love Peanut and we love Charlie. Every baby should be as lucky.

We cry for those Charlies all the time.


You may get it under control, for a while. But when your daughter has babies of her own, it will start all over again. I also think you should buy a hanky(ies)!

Cynical Mom

I recently watched the new Battlestar Galactica miniseries remake and there's this point in the story (after the entire earth has been nuked) where two pilots land their plane to make repairs. As they're completing the repairs, a horde of people starts running towards them over the hill, so they stand up and get out their guns and aim them at the horde.

As the people arrive and try to get themselves on the plane, one of the pilots says "OK all right - the children. Only the children." I couldn't stop the tears. I wouldn't have cried if it was just a group of adults, but they had this scene where the mom straightened up the collar of her 6 year old son before putting him on the plane.. you know, so he could be safe while she would die. I lost it.

So if you are, I'm a wuss too.


I have no sniffle threshold anymore. I watched the end of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory last night, and when Gene Wilder gave Charlie the factory, I blubbered like a total sap.

Now that my wife is pregnant again (and has begun crying at commercials again), it's a wonder we get anything done.

jimlad the dad

hey MD,
our little daughter was 3 weeks old yesterday, and I had a little cry. I started crying from when she slid from her momma and I struggled to identify her sex. The next 5 days bore intermittent sobbing. I cried when I left Mom & Moose for my first day back at work. It's weird man, but I can look at her, touch her soft skin and feel my eyes welling up with tears.
She is going to break my heart one day...

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