How Can I Learn Not To React So Angrily?
anonymous Asks ...
Hello, I have had some problems with impulse control since growing up as in when I didn't get my way at home, I slammed doors, I am 39 now and in rage have run away from home 3 times in the last yr only to return feeling confused about my own behaviour; now before you say I should be living on my own at almost 40, I have, a couple of times, but after a breakup of an engagment (I impusively would lose it on him but I knew he wasn't the one and probably impulsively got into the relationship, though I did want marriage, I impulsivly picked him based on a comment of someone saying ok it's time, just do it); I want to be a 100% responsbile for my reactions/and respond to situations, not react, as it has cost me jobs, relationships, and almost turning 40 now, I had a breakdown when I ran from home on one occasion where my mother's comment that I wasn't listening to her when I was just trying to cook something to feel better after being laid off from my job and also after breakup of a relationship, had left me low; I felt so insulted by her comment that I am almost 40 and don't listen, that I insulted her, ran to my room and was throwing a chair at my bed and screaming and swearing; thankfully no one but the workers working on renos I don't know heard, however, since then my confidence/self-esteem has recovered somewhat but a deep sadness is still there, as I don't know how I can trust myself in any situation, if I have to be worried about my own reactions; something that has also been reflected to me in relatinships with men, who have said they don't know even after they find me amazing and loving and a great catch, they don't know if they can talk to me without me intterupting, breaking up with them over and over (out of fear of being hurt is probably y I do it,but i realize this is not fair and hurts them, even if justified, it can be done in a rational thought out manner); Please help I want to get a handle on this. I am generally very loving, caring and emotional, into art and admired by people; but when life failures or big events that are negative happen and I feel repeated disappointed wt a job or relationship is when I lose it, or when I am afraid in a relationship with a man mainly. Other than that, I am completely calm, meditate daily and am more than fine, now with mediations, things like my impulsive speeding when driving and my impulsive dating one man after another (without getting too close physically, though emotionally still draining as I have tried hard to be engaged/married again but feel stuck), dating and driving much better with meditation; since I was a teenager they put me on mild antidepressants/anti anxiety but no offense they did nothing to help me permanently; the mediation is what helps in a real way, but still the temper loss I had with throwing a chair at my bed and hitting my bed scared me. Please let me know what are healthy ways to express anger/redirect the energy so when major negative events happen, easier to deal with. for example I had such a positive attitude after being laid off as I hated my job and although I was shocked for 10 minutes, I was singing on the way home, feeling free, but I didn't tell anyone I told evone I quit. then the breakup happened with someone I thought I might marry and my mother's reaction which was not that bad but treating me like a 2 year old made me lose it bad. I want to trust myself again, I want to know that I will never have impulsive issues; as even impulsive comments online, once got me into big trouble a few years back, and now on facebook, affected my relationship with my sister in a very unnecessary -ve way, just because i didn't feel good that day and was stressed and posted something stupidly.
Mark Hughes Says ...
Thanks for giving me such a clear and detailed picture of how your angry reaction is affecting you and making relationships so hard for you, both in your family and with men. I hink you've done well to recognise this, find something that helps (meditation), and are asking for help here.
I'm not sure if I would be the best person to help you, but I would like to suggest that you consider working with a counsellor or therapist. You might also find some kind of group which works with anger, or if you have some sense of the origins of your difficulty - something related to that. Clearly you are sensitive, which just means that small things can hurt you so much and so deeply, that you react without time to consider yourself or what's happening. So I wonder if there's something underlying this from your past.
There are different ways a counsellor or therapist could help you with this. One is to help you slow things down to the point you can identify what it is that causes the reaction, and what in you is being triggered. Another would be to work more directly with the cause, if you think you know what that might be.
I offer counselling online, so might be able to help, but you should consider whether that would work for you, or if you would do better to see someone in person. I can't say one is better or worse for you, so you could try and see how it goes.
You can also look for information online. Your biggest resource is in yourself, so trust that in you which has got you through so far, and keep up with the meditation so long as it helps. But also see if you can find someone to work with, who will both support you, guide you and help you work with this, and ultimately help you support yourself.
I hope this helps. Good luck, and thanks for asking for help. I think it is both brave, and a beautiful gift that you give.