Why Crying is Good for You: The Japanese Crying Therapy or rui-katsu Explained

‘In the tranquil of a surface, is often a storm raging.’ Elizabeth Bennet, in Pride and
Prejudice, knew that Mr. Darcy was unlike other suiter of hers. His arrogance and
stereotyping of men and women of the era may have prevented Jane Austen from
expressing any outburst of emotions but there are plenty of hints dropped where emotions
pile up to stifle the premonitory events. It was not until 1970 when rock diva Janis Joplin
validated ‘crying’ in her recorded chart buster ‘Cry Baby’. With the song Janis also became
the first to challenge the phrase - ‘Boys Don’t Cry’!

Crying is a natural response to a range of emotions, from deep sadness and grief to extreme
happiness and joy. As we pave the way to welcome Gen A, there’s a lot that’s transitioning
and realigning the jigsaw which was left incomplete for decades. Bridging the vacuum, we
are now understanding and acknowledging that emotions are unigender and are factually
reorienting to accept emotions on their face value.

To recognise and reaffirm these transforming beliefs, especially amidst the pandemic, the
Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced a 100-million-euro mental health drive
and has launched a room especially designed for ‘Crying’. The ‘Cry Room’ or ‘La Lloreria’
set up in the heart of Madrid aims to banish the taboo around mental health concerns. The
room is designed with soundproof double padding and scribbles messages soothing to the
concerned. One can see “Enter and cry '', “I too have anxiety” and other such signs glow in
the dark when one enters the room. To help aid further, there are phones in one corner with
names of people one can call and cry to - including psychologists. With this neon-lit
exhibition, the makers want people to open up and talk about their mental health and to
make the whole topic more socially accepted. In the 1950s, the ‘crying room’ was merely a
space in churches, theatres and cinemas where people could take babies or small children
for privacy or to reduce disturbance of others.

Crying, unlike the general perception, is psychologically very healthy. Crying in empathy or
sympathy is a sign of a person’s underlying humanity and ability to connect to the needs of
others. Crying can also be a healthier way to cope with various unaddressed stressors that
can push you into turning those emotions to violence, anger or self-harm. Unexpected crying
can also be a valuable clue of pain that has been buried in the past.

Usually, there is some sort of related trigger that precedes it. In this case it can be worked out by visiting a therapist. Reflecting on what makes you cry can trigger internal growth and self-awareness.
Mental health experts at Mind Piper, based in New Delhi, recognises that crying is also a
part of therapy and therefore understanding emotional tears is a very important aspect of
their therapies. Certain factors scientifically aid and in fact promote crying by terming it

● Crying has a soothing effect - A research by Asmir Gracanin published in ‘Frontiers in
Psychology’ in 2014 found that crying may have a direct, self-soothing effect on
people. The study explains how crying activates the parasympathetic nervous system
which helps people relax.
● Crying helps to relieve pain - Crying releases oxytocin and endorphins. These
chemicals make people feel good and also help ease both physical and emotional

● Crying can enhance mood - Crying helps lift people’s spirit and makes them feel
better by releasing oxytocin and endorphins.
● Crying releases toxins and reduces stress - When we cry due to stress, our tears
contain a number of stress hormones. Researchers have found that crying could
reduce the levels of these chemicals in the body which could in turn reduce stress.
● Crying helps sleep better - It is hypothesised that calming, mood-enhancing and
pain-relieving effects of crying may help a person sleep more easily.

The Japanese Crying Therapy or rui-katsu translated as ‘tear seeking’ is a unique way built
around deliberate weeping sessions designed to reduce stress and allow participants to
relate to their emotions. Considered a form of self-soothing and self-directed behaviours and
internal processes, this specialised therapy aims to calm an individual in distress by reducing
negative emotions and corresponding physiological reactions.

Whether its joy, gratitude, anger, sadness, love or lust, Latino culture believes in expressing
themselves. Their raw, rustic and untamed connection with their bodies and hearts make
them the world's emotionally strongest people. Accepting crying and in turn seeking help as
a normal process, therefore, reinforces and acknowledges the understanding and universal
shift towards a more compassionate, caring and liberal world.