It’s Okay to Cry at Work–Everyone Else Does It

‘ve cried at work. Twice.

The first time, I was a temp in my very first HR job. The position was supposed to be temp to perm (a term I now despise), and I was doing what I thought was a great job. But, the company eliminated a senior administrative assistant’s role, and rather than fire her, they got rid of the temp.

This was right and fair and exactly what they should have done.

But, when my boss told me, I cried. I needed the job. I was six months out of graduate school, and finding a professional job had been difficult. My boss helped me get the next position, and it turned out to be an excellent path for me. But, at the moment, I went into the bathroom and cried.

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4 thoughts on “It’s Okay to Cry at Work–Everyone Else Does It

  1. I’ve cried at work more times than I can count, I’m surprised/jealous Suzanne can actually quantify the exact amount.

    To be fair, it was primarily at my earlier jobs that were just soul-sucking nightmares. I should have especially known when part of orientation for my first job included procedures on what to do and where to go when (not if) you needed to cry.

  2. On the other side of the coin, I made a coworker cry; don’t tell me that was OK.

    I had slight OJT training on a particular professional software. My coworker had more experience in the profession but none with the software.

    She kept trying to do something that (by default) the software wouldn’t allow — because it’s not deemed a “best practice”. (Years later I found out how to get the software to do as she wanted, but it wasn’t in the training.)

    Her frustration with the software, and (when she asked me) my statement that her intended actions weren’t “best practice” pushed her over the edge. Other co-workers were horrified I’d say that to her and made her (the only female in the department) cry.

    I ended up getting pushed out of the department, and within a year left the company. (For vastly better opportunity, I’m pleased to say).

  3. I was participating in a meeting at work in which I was recording the main discussion points on a white board. During the lunch break, I was back in my cubicle when my husband called, telling me that my grandmother had died. I had to stifle the tears before reporting back to the meeting. I told him later that he should NEVER call me at work with news of a death of a loved one. That news can wait until I arrive home.

  4. I was the token female in management at a prior position several years ago. I cried at work and the men I worked with told me to “Quit acting like a girl.” Way to go, guys – now I feel demoralized and ineffective. Fast forward to my current position and when an intensely painful personal situation hit me at work and caused some tears, my co-workers were extremely supportive and caring. What a difference the job environment can make.

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