After having a run-in with a little boy and his guardian at work one day, Lyra Balearica decided to point out how problematic it is that we often tell boys not to cry. In a now-viral Facebook post, she explained that parents shouldn't force boys to repress their emotions when they're in distress.
"The way our culture treats boys sickens me," she wrote. "I had an 11-year-old boy in my room to have blood drawn today. He was crying. Not bawling or throwing a fit, just a few nervous tears. His guardian kept telling him to 'man up' and 'stop asking like a sissy.' Then she threatened to record him crying to show it to all his friends, which made him cry more. I told her we had a strict no recording/photo policy and she got mad at me for 'ruining the joke.'"
Rather than letting the little boy sit there embarrassed, Lyra reassured him that crying is perfectly normal, even for grown men.
"When this woman went to the bathroom, I told the kid it was okay to express his emotions however he needed to and even grown men are scared of needles," she said. "Everyone is scared of something and he was brave for doing it even though he was scared."
"Crying doesn't make you weak. Fear doesn't make you weak."
Now, Lyra has a reminder for parents and guardians with little boys on their hands: "Stop. Telling. Boys. They. Aren't. Really. Boys. For expressing emotion."
She also added that teaching boys to bottle up their emotions is not healthy for their long-term development: "You know why women and femmes have to fear violent men? Because of this sh*t that represses boys and men," she said, adding, "Crying doesn't make you weak. Fear doesn't make you weak. But berating a child for showing those things make you one weak adult."
So far, Lyra's post has been shared 115,000 times and people are praising her honesty. Scroll through to get a peek at the supportive comments.