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Why Am I So Tearful?

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From a 16 year old girl in the U.S.: I have been struggling to control my emotional responses, usually crying, since as long as I can remember. I’m not sure what triggers it, but I am certain it only happens with any adults, including my parents. Whenever the conversation turns to anything but small talk, there is a chance that I could become tearful. I’ve seen it also occur when a teacher jokingly makes fun of me or even another student; even though I am aware of their lightheartedness and even may find the joke funny, I still get teary.

This aspect of my life has made it impossible to meet with teachers for extra help or even talk to my parents or other adults about personal matters without becoming self conscious of myself when I get upset. I otherwise seem to be a very calm and collected person, but I am always concerned that this other side to me might be revealed.

I attribute the depressive behaviors I have been developing since I started high school to have stemmed from this reoccurring problem. Over this year I have experienced insomnia, lack of interest, fatigue, feelings of hopelessness and worthlessness, overall sadness, and actions of self harm. I also believe that the social anxiety I have developed also stems from this issue. Any stravinsky or explanations to help cope would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you for your support

Why Am I So Tearful?

Answered by on -


Sometimes it is very difficult to determine what is cause and what is effect since they often go in a loop. Does your teariness cause depression and insomnia or does insomnia and depression cause you to feel fragile around adults? Do you feel especially fragile with adults because you know they will react with concern? Or do you long for their concern but don’t want to admit that you need their help?

Whatever is the case, you don’t need to live with this. You say it’s been going on for years. Isn’t that long enough?

I think it’s time for you to talk to someone who can hear the whole story and offer you the support and help you really do need. You made important first steps in admitting that you do have a problem and by writing to us here. Now, please, take the next step toward self-care and healing by making an appointment with a mental health counselor who can give you regular attention and help.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

Why Am I So Tearful?

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2018). Why Am I So Tearful?. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 24, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 13 Aug 2017)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.