Little Boys Do Cry

I was walking down 81st Street when I watched a little boy, no more than 2, take a spill on the sidewalk. Instead of crying like I expected, he pulled himself up, regained his balance and pressed on.

When he and his mother made it alongside me I said to her, “How amazing he got right up…no fuss, no tears…such a sweet thing to see.”

She looked at me coldly and said, “We don’t teach our kids to cry.”

I don’t have to tell you how taken aback I was since it was the last thing I thought she’d say. A woman all of 30 dressed like an Ann Taylor ad, I figured if anyone would be as charmed as me it would be her. To be honest, that gush of surliness made me want to grab her by her Elsa Peretti pendant and twirl her around a bit.

The kid deserved the credit, not his arrogant, pompous parent.

Modern child rearing, particularly on the Upper East Side, eludes me. I’ve witnessed such travesties by permissive not to mention peculiar parents that puts them in a tribe all their own.

The mother in question also made me wonder, if she really was teaching her son not to give in to his emotions, how is she doing it? Is that little guy punished or admonished for having natural feelings? Do they toss him in his crib till he stops crying? My heart rushed out to him.

I remember my own mother laughing at me because she said I was too touchy, something that stings even today. It took years of therapy and 12 Step rooms to gently convince me sensitivity is nothing to be ashamed of. If anything, it makes you more of a loving and compassion human being.

I thought about that little boy throughout the afternoon. Will he grow up to be cold and unfeeling…the kind of man who’s insensitive to the world around him? What type of  husband will he make being tutored to shut down whenever something troubles him.

Did I mention he wore a navy blazer with mini gold buttons? She even dresses him like a chilled adult.

I wonder when he’ll start his therapy. Hope it’s early so he gets to the other side way before I did.

Mom, on the other hand, needs a good talking to.

A slap wouldn’t hurt either.

I’m just saying.


About Susannah Bianchi

I'm just a girl who likes to write slightly on slant. I've had a career in fashion, dabbled in film and to be honest, I don't like talking about myself. Now my posts are another matter so I will let them speak for themselves. My eBooks, A New York Diary, Model Behavior: Friends For Life and Notes From A Working Cat can be found on Thanks.
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21 Responses to Little Boys Do Cry

  1. Lex says:

    Yes, little boys do cry. And some mothers make them cry, for years on end.


  2. I worked for the adult version of this boy….dear lord. He would tell me that he had to go through his mother’s secretary to talk with her as a child. His saving grace was the man who drove him to school every day, in a limo I might add. I will never forget when the driver died. This uptight, hand-made shirt, conservative lawyer cried like a baby in his office. He was so good to me and I swear it’s because he was fascinated by my regular upbringing.
    I also feel bad for this little guy and pray he has a nanny like my girl in The Help.


  3. why don’t they teach their children to cry? that’s what I want to know, and also how the hell she did it. Impressive!


  4. Rob says:

    Big boys cry too. I don’t bother with Mother.
    Of course, you don’t know what kind of upbringing Mrs Peculiar Parent had. What you describe isn’t a new phenomenon. Maybe slapping her isn’t the best therapy.


  5. Vasca Beall says:

    That mom? You think that’s the way she was taught also? A couple of close friends are plagued with the ‘we don’t cry’ issue and it takes ongoing sessions to keep them from drowning…because his father forbade him to cry. His wife and two daughters are continually hurt by his ‘lack of emotion’ shall I say. You’re on target concerning a test to be a parent…it requires much more finesse than operating a vehicle.


  6. katecrimmins says:

    You should need to go through psychological testing before you are given reproductive organs!


  7. D. D. Syrdal says:

    Poor little kid. My mom used to tell me the same thing, I was “too sensitive”, “cry baby”. Ah well, she was what she was.


    • Personally, I don’t think people on an average are sensitive enough. The last thing we need is another cold-hearted individual ignoring the feelings of others due to some twisted concept of toilet training.


  8. merryprangster says:

    Maybe she was a Scientologist.


  9. Patricia says:

    People are taught to cry? That’s just weird. Crying just happens and is an important emotion. Gotta let it out or it spoils and causes people rot…not a nice thing.


  10. manty67 says:

    Here here ! I do get angry with parents like that, when my eldest was about 2, I was told, boys don’t cry because they have to grow up brave so they can cope with being a real man. What a
    Lot of rot. I never stopped my boys and further down this line, I couldn’t be more proud of my boys, and the compation they have for others.


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