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The best spots to have a breakdown in NYC, according to New Yorkers

From Central Park to the Staten Island Ferry, these places are good for a cry.

Shaye Weaver
Written by
Shaye Weaver

To outsiders, New York City might seem like the worst place to have a cry, but it's actually conducive to a good old breakdown.

New Yorkers know to give each other space, so shedding some tears can usually be done without interruption, and partially because of that, the city has a multitude of spaces to tuck into or sit at and just let it all come out. 

New Yorkers took to Reddit last week to share their favorite places to have a breakdown after user u/4ever-jung1 posted the question and there were about nine answers posted repeatedly, citing churches to waterfronts and more.

Below are some of the best places to let your tears fly and lose your shit in NYC:

9. Central Park

Central Park
Photograph: Shutterstock

This one's kind of obvious because any park is going to be a prime crying location—people are spread out, you're enveloped by trees and like the name says, it's a pretty central location. New Yorkers on Reddit though have specific places inside the park they say are good places to let the tears go. 

"The Obelisk in central park is an epic place," samydees wrote. 

8. The Temple of Dendur inside the Met

Met Unframed
Photograph: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The mysterious and beautiful Temple of Dendur is at first glance an odd place to get emotional, but some New Yorkers swear by it. We can't blame them—the room is large enough and the temple is so beautiful that no one is going to notice when you cry. That gallery's bathroom is also a solid choice.

"It’s good for everything: thinking, tinkering, drawing, lunching. Breakups, breakdowns, proposals, rejections. Writing, sneezing, treading, wheezing," bill11217 wrote. 

7. The Staten Island Ferry

staten island ferry
Photograph: Alys Tomlinson

Having your breakdown on a boat that passes the Statue of Liberty is pretty cinematic, even if you are just going to Staten Island. We can see how the beauty of the water around you and the great open space before you could be a perfect weeping spot.

"The Staten Island Ferry (on the way there you cry because you're going to fucking Staten Island, on the way back you cry because holy fuck you just hit such a low you went to fucking Staten the statue of liberty is real pretty in a sunset)," wrote happyhoppycamper.

6. The Riegelmann Boardwalk in Coney Island

Coney Island Riegelmann Boardwalk
Photograph: Shaye Weaver/Time Out

Coney Island's has been a happy place for New Yorkers for more than a century, but for some, it's ripe for a breakdown.

"It’s quiet, there are benches to sit on, you’re close to the handball courts so you can watch people if that’s your jam, or turn and face the ocean if you want to quietly die inside without anyone seeing you. You’re also close to the gazebo in case it starts raining. If it’s crowded, you can walk a while to a more secluded spot. Close to the train, too, in case you need an easy getaway. Plus, soggy Nathan’s fries in case you’re an emotional eater like me," said HumblerMumbler.

5. Narrow streets in the West Village

The Village Vanguard
Photograph: Shutterstock

The Village has more than just great restaurants, cool jazz clubs and fun shops to peruse, it also has perfect streets for the breakdown of a century. Its small, alley-like streets (like Gay Street) are good for private cries.

"There's one street in the West Village that feels like some sort of European alleyway, definitely a spot if you know how to find it. Also 15th and 16th streets around union square, in both directions (only at night tho)," free_slurpee_day wrote.

4. Really any sidewalk

nyc schools
Photograph: Courtesy Shutterstock

Let's face it, sometimes we can't control when we cry and most of the time, it just happens on the sidewalk. Luckily for us, our fellow New Yorkers mind their business so taking our frustrations out on the street is not a big deal. 

"Walking down the sidewalk! Basic af but what’s wrong with a classic? Gets the job done," UponMidnightDreary said.

3. Houses of worship

Old St. Patrick's Cathedral
Photograph: Courtesy The Basilica of Old St. Patrick's Cathedral

For some, there is something romantic and cathartic about crying in a church or house of worship. Maybe it's because crying there is almost expected? And of course, for some, it's a way to connect to their higher power when they're at their lowest.

"If I need to cry in public I used to duck into churches. I’m not religious but generally it’s a spot where you can cry, be left alone and no one will think you are weird for it," -goodgodlemon wrote.

2. Next to a body of water

Pier 26 Hudson River Park
Photograph: Max Guliani for Hudson River Park

New Yorkers find our rivers and polluted waterways a comfort when spilling their guts. Some take to the Gowanus Canal while others seek out the Hudson or East rivers. Maybe it's a calming effect or maybe the water offers some perspective.

"But, really, the west side highway comes in clutch. There’s just something so soothing about drowning your tears next to a body of water infested with chemicals, sewage, heavy metals, bacteria, pesticides and, at multiple points, dead bodies. It leaves you thinking that hey, compared to the Hudson’s toxic waste, maybe my life isn’t so bad after all," venusinfaux said.

1. The subway

Mask on subway
Photograph: Shutterstock

The no. 1 place to have a breakdown in NYC is on the subway. It's almost inevitable. A bad day at work? A break-up in a park? You'll likely be taking the subway home and once you're surrounded only by strangers, it feels OK to cry. 

"I always tell people crying on the subway is basically a rite of passage in new york," Roothitini said.

"On the A train going to the Rockaways. Coney Island is too basic and Lena Dunham. So I go between the cars while going over bridge and scream before I go surfing at the beach," Ohlakers wrote.

On a more serious note, if you need to talk to someone visit the city's mental health resource pagetext "WELL" to 651-73 or chat with a counselor now

Fill out our excellent (and extremely quick) Time Out Index survey right now, and have your voice heard.

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