Crying Eye Tattoo Meaning, Designs & Ideas

There are many variations of eye tattoos. The crying eye is one option that people choose for various reasons. This tattoo generally symbolizes painful emotions and suffering. Crying eyes can also represent heartbreak and loss.

In this article, we’ll look at the meaning behind a crying eye tattoo and why people choose to get one.

The symbolism of the Eye

The eyes are considered windows to the soul. By looking into another person’s eyes you gain an understanding of how they feel and who they are. Thoughts and emotions are expressed through the eyes, even if the person is trying to suppress them. Much of how a person feels can be determined by looking in their eyes.

Spirituality is often connected to the eyes as well. The Hindu religion talks of the concept of the third eye, which is depicted on the middle of the forehead. It is considered to have qualities of perception and intuition. The third eye chakra, or energy center, is said to control a person’s spiritual power and wisdom.

The Eye of Providence is usually illustrated within a triangle and has rays of light surrounding it. In Christianity, this represents the holy trinity which comprises the Father, the Son, and the holy spirit. The eye also symbolizes that God is everywhere and can exist in all places at the same time.

Crying Eye Tattoos

Most crying eye tattoos feature only one eye, though there are some tattoos that have two (or more) eyes. The majority of these images show the eye open although there are tattoos of closed eyes as well. The addition of tears is what distinguishes a crying eye from any other.

Crying eye tattoos are illustrated in color or in black and white. Many of these tattoos are medium-size and are found on the shoulder or forearm. Larger images of the crying eye have been done on the back as well.

God’s Sadness

A crying eye tattoo can represent God’s sadness about the state of humanity and our world. It suggests that God is looking down on us and feeling sorrow. It may be that God is disappointed with the choices humans are making and that we have strayed from what God’s ideal was. 

God may also feel sorrow at the struggles that people go through and the pain everyone experiences at different points in their lives. Someone who has a crying eye tattoo based on this symbolism may feel strongly about religion or spirituality. They may feel a larger connection to the world and to humanity in general. 

Human Suffering

A tattoo of a crying eye might symbolize the suffering that all humans experience. This image can represent how a person empathizes with others who are going through hardship. The person may feel compassion for humanity in general or for a specific group of people who are suffering, for example, those experiencing hunger or poverty.

The tears in the crying eye tattoo speak to the sadness a person feels when they consider all of the sufferings that people endure. A person may choose this tattoo as a way of having perspective on life and not getting caught up in the small, insignificant hassles of everyday life.


A crying eye tattoo can be a suitable choice for someone who has experienced the pain of heartbreak. The end of a relationship and the subsequent sadness that one feels can be overwhelming. Almost everyone will go through the loss of a relationship. The emotional anguish that comes with this experience can be devastating.

After going through a breakup, a person may choose this tattoo as a way to cope with the sadness they are feeling. They might feel the need to have a permanent reminder of the person they are no longer with. An individual may get the tattoo as a memorial to the relationship that ended. 


Experiencing the loss of a loved one can be one reason for a person to get a crying eye tattoo. Losing a friend or family member is one of the most painful experiences a person can go through. Death touches all of us and the sorrow felt is a universal emotion.

Whether it is a partner, child, parent, or other loved one, a tattoo is a way to memorialize them. It is a constant, permanent reminder of the individual who is no longer physically present. The tattoo can act as a comfort and bring memories of the good times shared with them.


Crying eye tattoos can also be symbolic of physical pain. For someone who experiences pain on a regular basis, the image of a crying eye likely resonates with them quite deeply. Many illnesses cause chronic pain that people must cope with every day.

Having this tattoo can be a sign to the rest of the world that you are hurting. It can be a way of expressing how you feel without words. People who live with a chronic illness don’t always appear to be sick and others may assume they are healthy. The crying eye tattoo may be a way of sharing how it feels to have an invisible illness.


Another emotion that is represented by the crying eye tattoo is regret. People often feel regret about something they did, or more commonly, something they did not do. A missed opportunity or a chance not taken can cause immense regret down the road.

Getting this tattoo might be a sign to the individual to live the rest of their life without regrets. It may encourage the person to take risks, to do what they have always wanted to, and to follow their dreams.

Regret can also be accompanied by loss. Sometimes when loved ones pass on, we regret the things we said or didn’t say to them. We may regret that we didn’t spend more time with the individual while they were here with us. The crying eye tattoo symbolizes the combination of loss and regret.

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