Dear Internet: Let's cool it with the Chrissy Teigen "cry face" jokes
Awards ceremonies tend to bring out the snarkiest of the Internet, and like, okay, whatever, anyone who’s ever spent .0001 seconds in a comments section knows that the Internet can be mean, and we’re all supposed to just accept it, but sometimes the meanness is just SO MEAN you have to step in, speak up, and do your part to shut that ish down.
Such is the case with Chrissy Teigen, whose husband John Legend won a Golden Globe for Best Song (his “Glory” is featured prominently in Selma.) So Teigen cried for her husband, because that’s what you do when your spouse scores a major life achievement and the only way you can properly emote how excited/overwhelmed/happy/proud you are is with, like, 500 tears.
Okay, so she cried at the Globes, it’s not like she’s the only person whose ever cried at a televised awards ceremony. But for whatever reason, her crying face wasn’t deemed “acceptable,” like, I guess it didn’t look how crying faces are “supposed to look.” And so people on the Internet got snarky and they got snarky fast. This moment, below, spawned a billion reactions and not all of them were very nice.
Memes were made, screengrabs were Photoshopped, comments about “ugly crying,” and jokes about her expression took over Twitter and Instagram.
The real joke is on us. Women, especially famous women, are supposed to look “perfect” all the time, and the minute they show any physical or emotional vulnerability they’re subject to ridicule. As if famous women’s faces weren’t scrutinized enough, there’s a special stigma reserved for women who aren’t afraid to show true emotion when they cry. (See all the jokes at Claire Danes’ expense.) The whole “ugly cry” phrase suggests we need to hold in how we really feel, because real emotions aren’t “pretty” and, I guess, women need to be “pretty” all the time. And that’s a problem. We need to be encouraging women to feel less self-conscious about how they look at every moment, and not the other way around. We need to respect when people reveal their vulnerable side, and let their guard down. It’s actually pretty brave.
Meanwhile, Teigen responded in about the coolest way a person can respond to being taken down a peg: by good-naturedly making fun of herself. Here’s her Instagram response to the meme insanity (with special guest star, her boy John Legend):
Good job Teigen and Legend being for great sports about the whole thing, but seriously, Internet, in the future, can we cool it with picking apart women for acting like, you know, people? Can we stop expecting famous women to be in control of every facial muscle they have at all times? Can we just relax and let people cry—like, really cry—sometimes, and not make a thing about it? Because sometimes, we all need to let ourselves go and just feel, and not worry about how we look every second of every moment.
Teigen actually put it best when she tweeted: “Sorry I don’t practice my cry face, okay.” And she shouldn’t have to.