This Chart Tells You If You Cry a Normal Amount

We all cry. How often you let the flood gates open, though, is less certain.

There's a lot that obviously depends on life events — deaths, breakups, getting fired, [something really positive] — but other important factors, for better or worse, can include gender, age, and even location.

But even as wholly unpredictable as it is, there are studies that attempt to provide estimates of how often people just let it all out.

One interesting 2002 study, highlighted in New York Magazine's "Dear Mona" column this week, looked at global averages of monthly emotional crying, split between genders. The researchers, Ad J. J. M. Vingerhoets and Marleen C. Becht, found that across 31 countries, women cried about 2.7 times per month, while men said they cried only about once each month.

In the U.S., those numbers were slightly higher for both men and women, who reported crying about 1.9 and 3.5 times per month, respectively. Here's a snapshot of the countries' averages.

Global crying averages

It's no surprise that men report crying less often, given deep-seated cultural stigmas that characterize crying as effeminate or emasculating — even though experts suggest that getting all weepy probably makes everything a little bit better.

Take stress, for instance. "They say that's men's problem with hypertension or with stress," Catherine Bolzendahl, associate professor of sociology at the University of California Irvine, told ATTN: in November. "If [men] could have more of an outlet for these emotions, if [men] could express their emotions more, then it would be better for their health, for their physical health, for their mental health."

Head to New York Magazine for more on crying.