When sadness takes over

When Sadness takes over

I went to the movies this weekend with my family to see “Inside Out”.  We’ve been waiting to see it since we first saw the previews as it looked hysterical.

And it was.

There are five main characters who play the emotions inside the mind of a little girl name Riley.  They are Joy, Fear, Sadness, Anger and Disgust.  They’re a little clan of funny looking creatures at a control board inside Riley’s mind.   They often fight for control, often leaving her conflicted and confused.

I must say, the entire time, I was rooting for Joy to be at the controls.

I liked Joy the most.  She’s easy to be around, always looking on the bright side.  (I could also relate pretty well to Anger, but that’s for another day.)  But when Sadness got her turn at the controls, it made me uncomfortable.  Everything she touched would turn blue and well, sad.

I could feel myself wanting to fight to help Joy take back over.

Throughout the movie I became more fond of Sadness.  She has a quirky cuteness and a sweetness about her that makes you laugh and kind of want to cuddle up to her.

I don’t want to spoil the show if you’re thinking of going to see it, (and I totally think you should) but in the end, I saw a whole new value to the emotion of sadness.  I mean, I know that sadness is a valuable human emotion, but it’s one I try REALLY hard not to feel.   I tend to want to be more like Joy.

I avoid sadness at all cost.

This little cartoon, helped me see something I’ve been working on in my own life in a new way.

When Sadness takes over, it doesn’t feel great.  When we let ourselves feel sad, it might be painful, but it can be a very productive emotion.  It can help us get past our defenses of Anger and Joy to prove to the world, and sometimes ourselves that we’re okay.

Sometimes, we’re not feeling okay.  And that’s okay.

If we don’t notice and show a little sadness, no one can help us get through it.  We can’t even help ourselves, until we call it what it is.

It’s funny because we talk about this with our boys, at our house all the time.  We’re constantly calling out emotions with things like,  “You sure seem mad, that must have really hurt your feelings.”   It’s a huge help to get them to identify all the emotions at play.  But, I guess I needed a reminder.

That movie helped me.

I had some big moments of realization, of areas in my life where I try so hard not to let myself feel sad.  And if I do feel sad, I certainly try not to ever show it.   The movie helped me see, from the outside, how helpful it can be to let people know you’re feeling sad.

I know this isn’t breaking news.

I couldn’t help but think of it this morning, in light of Father’s Day yesterday.  You might have seen all the happy posts on Facebook and felt sad.  You might have felt mad too.  It might have really pissed you off that you don’t have a good relationship with your Dad.  Or that you never did.

Maybe you’ve been denying the sadness about that or other things in your life.

I want you to know, it’s okay to feel sad.  It also might be helpful to show it and talk about it with someone you trust.  No one can care for you and help you process it, if you don’t share it.

I’m personally going to spend some time letting myself feel sad around a specific topic in my life this week.  Then, I’m going to talk about it with a friend I trust.  I’ve already committed.  It’s going to happen.

Would you consider trying it too?

It’s not going to be fun or easy, but I’m trusting it’s going to be worth it.

I’ve been holding back for a little too long.

It’s time to get acquainted with Sadness so I can let her play her role as a valuable member of the team.  😉

Maybe you should too.

To more love,



  1. I thought it was especially appropriate for Father’s Day. We took the whole family. It provided an opportunity to talk about our feelings which is always a good thing. We all liked it. It was a reminder that you have to have moderation in all things. As much as we would love to have unbridled joy we would miss out on a lot if we did.

    1. Very cool Quay! I totally agree.

  2. Crystal,

    I avoided sadness for so long and stuffed so many of my true feelings. What I have learned is that numbing out the difficult also means dulling the wonderful so that all emotions are just quenched and avoided.

    I became so unaware of my own self that my therapist had to give me a Feelings Chart – just so that I could identify how I felt!

    Sometimes, I still have to remind myself that is is okay to feel less than okay. Like you, I’m trying to teach my children then words to identify their feelings and give them permission to express.

    I liked the movie, but it didn’t quite live up to its hype. Still, we took away some good moments and I appreciated the creativity. Thanks for sharing!

    1. So true Missy!!

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