getting emotional

Fri Jul 30 16:25:53 EST 1993

Just because we work in the world of "hard" science should not imply that our
emotions should be just as rational and empirically explainable as our research
is.  There are two situations inwhich I have known myself to cry-  when I have
hurt someone emotionally and after lengthy duscussion realize that I was the
one in the wrong, or when I am mad.  Although the first case has not happened
to me in a professional setting, the second has.  There are two situations I
can recall in which my mentor made me extremely angry and I cried (with tears,
but not vocally), in discussing the matter with him.  We are real people, not
machines, and I believe that the interpersonal conflicts which destroy so many
labs would be much less frequent if we would be honest and upfront about our
emotions.  Unless a male mentor has an inappropriately paternal attitude
towards his colleagues and/or students, crying should be interpretted as an
indication of how strongly you feel about something, and should not be
interpretted as a kind of emotional manipulation.

D Lee
Microbiology Department
mbidle at lluvm

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