How do you show someone is crying in dialogue? (as in, is there an onomatopoeia that can show crying well? I ask because "(insert dialogue)..sniffle..(insert dialogue)..snifle..", does show that the effects of crying are playing a role in the dialogue but is there a better, or cooler onomatopoeia that could be used?) Also, is there a single word or phrase to say that someone is slowly stopping crying?

  • "How could you do that to me?" Jane sobbed.
    – Hot Licks
    Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 12:28
  • 1
    In comics, it's common to see "sob" used for this
    – NVZ
    Commented May 4, 2016 at 10:58
  • "Cries in Spanish"
    – NVZ
    Commented May 4, 2016 at 12:04
  • We also say someone "chokes back tears," but that's usually before crying, not after. Commented Apr 12, 2018 at 23:44

3 Answers 3


You can use:

Weep convulsively

As in slowly stopped crying, so far I have never read about its onomatopoeia.

  • "Sob" is a good choice for "serious" crying, ie due to something that is genuinely very upsetting. It gives the impression of very strong emotion. Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 9:12

Waa! He wants me to cry! Boo Hoo! You're so mean! Sniffle.


Meaning: Crying


A whiny term that sounds like someone crying; used jokingly.


"I forgot to get a coffee at Starbucks today. Waa!"

slangit: waa





  1. used to represent the sound of someone crying noisily.


  1. cry noisily.

"she broke down and boohooed"

google: boo hoo define






  1. sniff slightly or repeatedly, typically because of a cold or fit of crying.


  1. an act of sniffing because of a cold or crying.

"he was restraining his sniffles rather well"

google: sniffle define

  • 3
    Just to add some more info, "waa" and "boo-hoo" are used to denote children crying, or an adult crying for childish reasons (when used with adults they are most commonly mocking, eg someone saying "Oh, boo hoo!" to someone to mock them for crying, or overreacting to something). You wouldn't use them to describe an adult crying for good reason, such as the death of a loved one, or the end of a relationship. Commented Apr 4, 2016 at 9:10

My eyes drip with tears. My walls, the walls that hold me up, make me strong just... collapse. Moment by moment, they fall. Salty drops fall from my chin, drenching my shirt. Perhaps these tears will help wash the blood out. I press my head against the wall... baby blue, so innocent... I am anything but innocent. I'm trembling. I can't-can't stop. Even as I press my hand against the wall it shakes, it trembles. It's raw, everything, raw tears, raw emotions. I can't stop... I can't stop. Why can I not stop crying?

Not my work, but love this writing!!!

  • If you didn't write this, you need to attribute your source (preferably also linking to it).
    – Laurel
    Commented Apr 12, 2018 at 22:52

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