6 Real Reason Behind Why Do I Cry When I Am Angry (2024)

The projector was loud and made my hands shake. I felt sweaty and saw my colleagues looking at me like they were blaming me for something. I tried not to cry because I didn’t want to seem weak. But then, a tear fell, and soon I couldn’t stop crying. My presentation was ruined.

It wasn’t the first time, it probably wouldn’t be the last. The shame was always the same: “Why Do I Cry When I Am Angry?” Why does frustration twist into unexpected sadness, leaving me feeling vulnerable and misunderstood?

If you’ve ever asked yourself the same question, take a deep breath because you’re not alone. This isn’t weakness, it’s humanity. In fact, countless others wrestle with this very puzzle.

I often start tough talks by saying, “I might cry. It’s not because I’m sad.” Feelings like anger, rage, frustration, and stress make me cry, which only makes me more upset and frustrated, creating a never-ending cycle of emotions.

But why does this happen? Let’s understand it in this article so that we can explore the reasons behind these emotional tears and discover healthy coping mechanisms to manage anger constructively.

Table of Contents

Why Do I Cry When I Am Angry? 6 Real Reasons

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Crying when you are angry is something a lot of us go through, and it happens for several reasons, both emotional and physical. When we get angry, our bodies pump out adrenaline, making us super sensitive.

Often, we are not just angry but also feeling hurt, powerless, or frustrated, and crying helps us calm down from these feelings. For people who really feel what others are feeling, known as empaths, crying when angry happens because they are feeling the effects of their anger on others. “Why do I cry after I get angry?” may be linked to stress hormones or unresolved feelings.

Here are six reasons to answer your question of why do I always cry when I am angry:

Too Many Emotions at Once

Feeling overwhelmed by tears during anger? “Why do I cry when I get angry?” can be confusing. When you have been holding back your feelings for too long, it can lead to a flood of emotions all at once, making you cry. This happens because a part of your brain that deals with emotions called the amygdala, gets overwhelmed, leading to a burst of feelings that come out as tears. This is your body’s way of trying to handle and ease the emotional overload.

What Society Expects

Cultural expectations around emotions influence “why we cry when we are angry?” Depending on where you are from or your gender, there might be different expectations about showing anger or crying. Often, women are more expected to cry and not show anger, while men are told the opposite. These societal rules make women cry when they are actually angry because they have been taught that showing anger isn’t okay for them.

Feeling Stuck or Helpless

“Why do I cry when I am angry?” might point to emotional overload or deeper feelings like hurt. If you are in a situation where you feel like you can’t do anything to change what’s happening, you end up feeling both angry and sad, leading to tears. This kind of crying comes from a place of feeling totally stuck.

Calming Down

Believe it or not, crying when you are angry can actually help your body chill out. Crying gets you rid of stress hormones like cortisol from your body and makes you feel less stressed and angry. It also helps release endorphins, which are chemicals that make you feel good, helping you relax after a bout of anger.

Feeling for Others

Sometimes, you cry out of anger because you are feeling really bad for someone else who’s been hurt or wronged, especially when you can’t do much to help them. These tears are a way of showing how much you care and how upset you are about the situation.

A Way to Deal With It

Crying is a good way to deal with intense feelings. It’s a sign to both you and others that you are going through something tough and need some understanding or help. Letting out tears when you are angry helps you work through those strong emotions and let others know you are struggling.

If you also cry when over minor issues, our deep dive on Why do I get angry over small things? 11 Signs of Deeper Issues might be an excellent read for you.

Is crying when angry common?

Tears without obvious triggers happen. Asking, “Is crying for no reason normal?” is valid.

Yes, crying when you are angry is a normal and natural way to react. It’s key to remember not to beat yourself up for crying during these moments—it only adds more stress and complicates your feelings. Accepting and understanding your emotions as they come is crucial for self-kindness and dealing with overwhelming situations.

Why Crying When Angry Can Be Good

Crying out of anger can actually do you some good. On the physical side, it releases natural painkillers and a hormone called oxytocin in your body, making you feel calmer. Emotionally, it provides a way to let out all those pent-up feelings, helping you figure out why you’re angry and how to deal with it. Plus, it signals to others that you’re really upset, paving the way for open and honest talks.

Here are some key benefits of crying when angry:

  1. Emotional Release: Crying serves as a release valve for pent-up emotions. It allows for the expression of anger without resorting to harmful behaviors. This release prevents emotions from building up inside, which can be detrimental to emotional health.
  2. Stress Reduction: Crying has been shown to release stress hormones and other chemicals that build up during periods of emotional stress. This leads to a sense of relief and a reduction in the physical symptoms of stress, such as tension headaches or elevated blood pressure.
  3. Self-soothing: Crying activates the body’s parasympathetic nervous system (PNS), which helps your body to rest and digest. The activation of the PNS has a soothing effect on your emotional state, helping you to calm down after an episode of anger.
  4. Communication: Tears are a powerful non-verbal way of communicating how deeply you are affected by a situation. This signals to others that you need support, understanding, or space, leading to empathy and assistance from those around you.
  5. Chemical Release: Crying helps to flush out chemicals that build up in the body due to stress. It’s also thought that emotional tears contain higher levels of stress hormones and other toxins, suggesting that crying helps to eliminate these substances from the body.
  6. Enhances Mood: After the initial release of emotions, many people experience a mood boost or feel calmer and more peaceful. This is partly due to the relief of shedding tears and the body’s physical response to emotional release.
  7. Facilitates Coping: By allowing yourself to express and process your anger through crying, you are taking a step towards coping with the underlying issues. This is more constructive than suppressing your emotions, which leads to increased stress, anxiety, or depression over time.
  8. Promotes Emotional Resilience: Regularly expressing emotions in a healthy way, including crying when necessary, strengthens emotional resilience. Being in touch with your emotions and knowing how to manage them improves your ability to cope with future stress and challenges.

The Downsides of Crying When Angry

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However, crying in anger also affects how people see and treat you, and it might leave you feeling embarrassed. Some might view tears as a sign of weakness, which changes the way they talk to you or the kind of work they trust you with at work. If you start believing these altered perceptions, it will lead to feelings of embarrassment.

  1. Misinterpretation of Emotions: Crying can be misinterpreted by others as a sign of weakness or manipulation rather than a legitimate expression of frustration or anger. This misinterpretation undermines the seriousness of the message you are trying to convey.
  2. Communication Barriers: Tears act as a barrier to effective communication. When you are crying, it becomes harder for you to articulate your thoughts and feelings clearly, and similarly, it becomes harder for others to understand or focus on your message.
  3. Professional Perception: In professional settings, crying when angry is also viewed negatively, affecting how colleagues and superiors perceive your emotional stability and professional competence. This perception can impact your career advancement or workplace relationships.
  4. Emotional Exhaustion: Crying as a response to anger is emotionally draining. It will leave you feeling exhausted, vulnerable, and less able to address the situation at hand effectively.
  5. Escalation of Conflict: In some cases, crying escalates the conflict, especially if the other party perceives it as an emotional manipulation or an inability to handle the situation logically. This leads to further misunderstandings and a breakdown in communication.
  6. Social Stigma: Depending on cultural norms and social contexts, crying, especially in public or in certain professional environments, carries a stigma. This stigma deters people from expressing their emotions healthily and seeking support.
  7. Personal Frustration: For the person crying, this reaction is frustrating if they feel they have lost control over their emotions. It is also disheartening if they believe their tears prevent them from being taken seriously.
  8. Impact on Decision Making: High emotional states, including crying, cloud judgment and lead to impulsive decisions that might not be in one’s best interest in the long term.

How do I stop crying when angry?

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It’s completely okay to cry when you are angry, but if you are looking to hold back the tears, there are several strategies and techniques that can help. Whether it’s speaking up for yourself, writing down your feelings, or taking deep breaths, finding the right approach for you is key to managing your emotional response effectively.

Here are some methods to help you hold back tears when you are upset:

1. Deep Breathing Exercises

Deep breathing is a powerful way to control your emotions before they lead to tears. Starting this practice early, before you are too upset, helps keep your emotions in check. Deep breathing acts as a calming mechanism, reducing the chance of crying. Try to incorporate it into your daily routine and especially when you start feeling angry.

Deep Breathing Techniques to Try:

  • Box Breathing: Breathe in for four counts, hold for four counts, breathe out for four counts, and hold again for four counts. Repeat this pattern to help calm yourself down.
  • 4-7-8 Technique: Inhale quietly through your nose for four counts, hold your breath for seven counts, and exhale forcefully for eight counts. This cycle help bring relaxation.
  • Belly Breathing: Breathe in through your nose and watch your belly fill up with air. Exhale slowly through your mouth, noticing your belly fall. Repeat this a few times for relaxation.
  • Alternate Nostril Breathing: Close one nostril and inhale through the other. Then, close the other nostril, open the first, and exhale. This helps bring you to a relaxed state.

Taking a Break

If you are feeling overwhelmed with anger, stepping away from the situation prevents your emotions from escalating to tears. Find a quiet space to pause and collect your thoughts, which helps you regain control over your emotions.


Writing down your feelings is a therapeutic way to express yourself without crying. It allows you to process your emotions later when you are calmer and not in the midst of an angry moment.

Prioritize Self-Care

Regular self-care strengthens your emotional resilience, making you less likely to cry when angry. Ensure you are getting enough sleep, eating well, and exercising. Maintaining a peaceful state of mind makes you less reactive to triggers, helping you manage anger without tears.

Consider Mindful Distraction

When you are feeling angry, changing your focus helps you avoid tears. Mindful distraction means shifting your attention to something else, like an activity or object, to interrupt the buildup of anger. This method gives you a temporary break from whatever is upsetting you and helps you manage your anger without crying.

Use Clear and Direct Communication

Speaking up clearly and directly, without being aggressive, helps you manage your feelings without crying. This way of communicating lets you express yourself and deal with your emotions without holding them in. By talking things out assertively, you can keep your emotions in check and lessen the chance of crying. This method helps you share your feelings in a positive way.

Should You Prevent Yourself From Crying When Angry?

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It’s not always necessary to stop yourself from crying when you are angry, but there are times when managing your emotional response is helpful. It’s important to understand your emotions and find healthy ways to deal with them. Knowing when to let yourself feel your emotions and when to hold back tears is key to not always crying or keeping your feelings bottled up.

Times When Holding Back Tears Might Help:

  • In professional settings: Keeping tears in check during work meetings helps keep the focus on the task and ensures clear communication.
  • During public speaking: Controlling tears in front of an audience helps you stay confident and deliver your message effectively.
  • In emergencies: In crisis situations, it’s important to stay clear-headed and make decisions without the interference of tears.
  • During conflicts: Crying in the middle of an argument hinders clear communication and prevents your points from being understood.

Times When It’s Okay to Cry:

  • While grieving: Crying is a healthy part of grieving, especially when dealing with anger related to the loss.
  • To break through emotional barriers: Crying helps you confront and accept emotions you have been avoiding, helping you move past them.
  • To process anger on your own: Crying is a way to work through anger instead of keeping it inside.
  • To show vulnerability: Crying when angry reveals your deeper emotions and vulnerabilities to others, showing there’s more to your feelings than just anger.

Crying is Good for You

Seeking answers to “Why do I cry all the time when I’m angry?” is crucial for understanding and managing your emotions. Crying is a natural reaction for humans and can express a wide range of emotions, not just sadness. It is a response to feeling angry, frustrated, scared, happy, or embarrassed.

Crying is also good for your health. It helps get rid of harmful substances from the body and releases hormones that make you feel better and reduce pain.

When someone cries, the kind and mature reaction is to show sympathy and concern, not to get upset or punish them. You should never feel ashamed or weak for crying.

If you find yourself crying a lot, especially without a clear reason, it can be a sign of depression. If you are experiencing other symptoms of depression too, it might be a good idea to talk to a therapist or another professional.

6 Real Reason Behind Why Do I Cry When I Am Angry (2024)
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