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Anger Management Issue Today


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I am having a hard time with my anger management issues today. I've not yelled or even said anything that would be perceived as a display of anger. However, in my head, I can see warning signs. They've increased and I'm not doing well at stopping them. I hesitate to post anything, because it's possible it will all go away when my husband gets up. But, in case it doesn't, I think I should post here. Heh, maybe the post will help me deal with the internal confusion.

No one in the house has been sleeping well, so I know we're all very tired. We also came to the realisation that we are not going to be able to buy a house this fall; we'll have to wait until the spring. Plus, we've been extremely busy at our respective jobs. Stresses that are just part of life, that I recognise, and that "should" make it so I am more understanding of crabbiness.

Where we rent has a pool, and this morning (very early; it was dark still) the suction bucket started making noise. No one in the family wants the pool, but it came as part of the house, which we do like. While my husband tends to do the maintenance, sometimes I've gone outside and cleaned the suction bucket so it stops making horrible noises. Back to this morning. I was woken up by the noise, and went downstairs to unplug the pump (sometimes people run their pool pumps only a few hours a day, so I knew it wouldn't damage anything). My husband was still up since we don't work today, and he follows his night-person schedule on days like this. So I mentioned to him what I was going to do. He said something along the lines of "You can't do that; the pool will get messy again." I replied "A few hours wouldn't make that much difference." I then realised he might want to clean the suction bucket, so I said, "Unless you wanted to clean it?" He said he didn't, so I said that I was going to unplug the pump. He didn't say anything else, and I went back to bed. He went to bed about the time I got up, which is also standard for these types of days.

Here's the thing. It could be a normal, adult conversation. I feel like I was being told I had to deal with the noise from the suction bucket or else clean it, which involves putting your hand in the water. I didn't want to do that because the water would be cold and wake me up, which would defeat the whole point of unplugging the pump. I knew when I woke up that I would clean it and turn the pump back on (which has been done).

I am all churned up inside, feeling like I'm being told I can't do what I want without any valid (to me) reason. I know that's not the way it looks, and it may not be what he was even thinking. I'm still all churned up inside. I keep imagining other scenarios where I have to stand up for my ability to make decisions. This is stupid - my husband does not try to control me generally. The scenarios would all involve a significant change to my husband's character in order to even occur. So why can't I break this thought pattern? :confused:

As I thought, writing this out has helped a bit. I'm feeling calmer, and am going to go do something I can feel good about before he gets up. Maybe that will help me get back my normal thought processes. Not sure what else to say.


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Guest ASchwartz

Hi Chou-tonbo,

You described a situation that many of us find ourselves in from time to time and that has to do with feeling frustrated. Sometimes, when frustrated, we feel Helpless!!! Helplessness or feeling that way can give rise to thoughts that are unrealistic: like, "it's his fault," or, "I never get what I want," or a dozen other types of thoughts. We can then start to feel angry and depressed, or depressed and angry.

You did an excellent job of helping your self and I want to congratulate you. :)

What you did was to write about this and post it here. We know that writing about these frustrating situations can help us to let go of it with the result we feel much better and that is what you did.

You also did a good job of thinking about your husband and became aware that he was not telling what to do or not to do. Excellent. :)

Just to make you aware, in case you are not aware, you started to build a "case against yourself" by stating that you are not yet able to buy a house at this time." This is true of millions of us. Just remind yourself of two things:

1. Not buying a house at this time has nothing to do with the pool and, 2. You will buy a house next year. Other than that, great job and I am pleased that you feel better. Writing about these types of frustrating situations can really help. :)

Nice piece of self work.


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Thanks Allan. I greatly appreciate the encouragement. I was a tad stressed yesterday morning. It's been almost a year since my last major blow-up (some smaller bits since, but within 'not anger management problem' range). I saw myself thinking things I've not thought for some time, and I know that they lead to the big blow-up. Things like imagining myself in a difficult situation and yelling, the manipulative wording or attitude, the threats, that type of thing. It's a bit hard to write about it. This seems weird, since it doesn't change the fact that I did think those things. But I want to hide that from everyone, including myself. I suspect that is normal though.

I'm not entirely aware of the thing you mentioned about the case against myself. I hadn't thought about how the frustration with the pool may have been increased because of the house buying situation. Was that what you meant?

The writing of the post helped me tons. When I first sat down to write, my insides felt sick and knotted and a bit like a whirlwind. By the time I finished writing and editing, I felt like I could actually ask my husband if he was upset at me without attacking him or being defensive. I knew I had to be sure about this, because I used to think I was not attacking when I was, so he still expects/is afraid of that to an extent (naturally).

At any rate, I found out that he thought I had been trying to manipulate him into taking care of the pool. He had mentioned something about how the pool might be messed up by my actions, but if I wanted to unplug the pump, he wasn't going to stop me. He had just wanted me to recognise that he would be expecting me to fix it if I broke it. Reasonable, in my opinion. I am a bit bothered that I didn't recall this acceptance of my decision when I was recounting the situation, however I do recall him saying that.

One of the things he asked me (and my sister seconded the question) was what I was feeling insecure about. I thought quite a bit, and realised that I still was doubting my ability to make decisions. I interpreted his statement to be more of "I think you're being stupid" rather than "You get to live with the consequences." I know this comes from my upbringing, but I get to decide to see the situation as it currently, really is. This is in contrast to seeing the current situation as if I was still the young girl trying to learn how to make decisions and be independent, yet having all that undermined by my parents. At any rate, by looking at the situation like it really was, that I could make a decision my husband didn't think was best without losing his respect, I was able to completely calm down.

Hopefully this makes sense, and hopefully something I've worked through here will help someone else.

Thanks for providing the forum.


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Hello Angiecarra,

I was in an extremely similar spot to the one you are in, just in late March or early April of 2007. I remember that Easter was just after an explosion where I was actually hitting my husband. I've hit walls before, and I had done a bit of other hitting. This was hitting with the intent to hurt. Wow, even writing that I have to remind myself to breathe and remember where I am now so I can continue writing.

Okay, so I knew I had to do something after that explosion, the hitting and the hours of yelling at my husband and sister. I don't know that my decision was even worded in my head, if I had a picture, or anything. It was more of a core truth that I knew somehow. I had been yelling about respect at one point (can we say "ironic"?) and picked that as something to learn about. There was a difference in the way I responded after that abusive situation than the way I responded after others. The others I was very apologetic (and I was this time too). However, this time I had a need or drive to change/improve/learn to respect. That became my focus, rather than apologising for my actions and decisions.

An internal switch flipped inside of me. This type of thing happens in emergencies, where someone "just does" whatever needs to be done. The thing is, you can make the decision to change. It's critical to make that decision. And it's critical to continue making that decision.

I mention elsewhere that I took an anger management course. That was extremely helpful because they taught me how to think through things like I did yesterday, in the previous post. Through the course, I was able to see what warning signs I needed to be paying attention to. I was able to admit which thought patterns changed so I allowed myself to become angry and abusive. The course I took was online, but I had (and still do have) a very good support system in my husband and sister. The real-life courses can help provide that support group, and I would recommend finding a course in your community. (My goal of completing the course played a role in continuing to make the decision to change. It was quite important in creating new mental habits.)

You can do other things too (definitely find an anger management course!). Read about respect, read about healthy relationships. You'll see other things that you can do to help you stay on track. I signed up for an email newsletter at a website that addresses anger management. I may not always agree with everything in the newsletter, but it's a reminder that I do have an anger management problem. As you continue your journey, you'll be able to share or ask questions here. It's scary to write something here, where everyone can see. But abuse likes to hide. Abuse has more power if it's hidden. Not everywhere is safe to share about abuse, but this forum has been safe. There are professionals here that are extremely helpful. Use this resource; that's why it's here.

I hope you are able to make the decisions you need to make. I know abusers can change, and I know each of us are able to make the decision to change.

I sincerely hope even a small section of this is helpful to you. Please let us know how you're doing.

Take care,


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