The comment about how to avoid or stop crying July 3, 2013 4:33 PM   Subscribe

The comment about how to avoid or stop crying: That did not invoke the such-and-such reflex when you splash cold water on your face. I'm almost certain I read it in ask-me. From memory, which is really bad, it seemed really effective, obvious, smart. But obvious could mean, "oh yes, of course if you wind yourself by falling out of a tree, you're not going to be able to draw breath to cry" if that version of "obvious" makes sense. I would also like to help by saying it was posted by an insightful regular mefite, but unfortunately, once I notice two posts from a mefite that I like, even if they registered yesterday, I think of them as insightful regulars. I *think* it was a physical method, pretty sure it wasn't deep breathing or mindfulness. Thanks in advance for your help. My makeup thanks you, too. Posting from phone, so italics etc beyond me.
posted by b33j to MetaFilter-Related at 4:33 PM (12 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite

Drink water. You can't drink water and cry at the same time. I learned this when my cat died and I was freaking out about it at work and couldn't stop crying. I think I've posted this before, don't know if it's what you're looking for, but it's a good method for me.
posted by janey47 at 4:44 PM on July 3, 2013 [2 favorites]

Was it from this AskMe?
posted by kagredon at 4:49 PM on July 3, 2013 [1 favorite]

Kagredon,I can't tell for certain but yes! That's exactly the info I was after.
posted by b33j at 5:11 PM on July 3, 2013

Weirdly, the thread has a different physical solution: flaring your nostrils.
posted by Margalo Epps at 10:21 PM on July 3, 2013

Maybe this?
posted by ellieBOA at 3:36 AM on July 4, 2013

This isn't from an AskMe but I heard that if someone is talking and about to start crying, ask them to speak up ("sorry, can you please speak up I'm having trouble hearing you") apparently can help them stop from crying.
posted by 1000monkeys at 8:52 PM on July 4, 2013

No, no -- I remember it vividly, I loved it. It's the Mammalian Diving Reflex. It was posted by desjardins in this thread!
posted by thinkpiece at 6:02 AM on July 5, 2013 [3 favorites]

Thanks! But for this post, I'd have had no idea. It amazes me how many things I've learned from MetaFilter.
posted by bearwife at 5:13 PM on July 5, 2013

b33j, I hope you find the post you're looking for. The best trick I know is to do something that requires logic, which seems to flip a switch and turn off those emotions. I have to first let go of any thought like "if I'm not crying over Fido maybe I didn't love him," with reassurance like "I can cry about Fido after work." After that, doing something logical that I could succeed at quickly helped immensely: make charts, sort paper, alphabetize the file folders.
posted by salvia at 6:24 PM on July 5, 2013

I don't understand this sentence in the mammalian diving reflex link:

"Dr. Linehan explained that this reflex is activated by icy cold water (i.e., not freezing) on the face."

But isn't icy water freezing? Not frozen solid obviously, but icy = starting to freeze. What I mean is that, practically speaking, I don't know what the temperature difference is between icy and freezing, and if I'm out in public I'm probably stuck with the coldest water that will come out of the tap anyways.
posted by IndigoRain at 3:17 AM on July 8, 2013

The answer is to go dead instead. You're welcome.

Re: mammalian diving reflex, I think the water just needs to be cold, not icy. Wikipedia says under 70 degrees F, which is room temp. Here is the reference, I believe. (PDF)

I was never aware of this reflex either, although I just experienced it this past weekend (diving in the ocean.) I will now pay more attention.

the reflex is always exhibited more dramatically, and thus can grant longer survival, in young individuals

posted by mrgrimm at 9:54 AM on July 8, 2013 [1 favorite]

Thanks everyone - it was connected to depression more than an event I could logic away. Nostril flaring + eyebrow raising worked amazingly well. Thanks again
posted by b33j at 10:10 PM on July 9, 2013

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