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Hidden Anger???
February 14, 2004
12:22 am
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Crispie
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My therapist thinks my anxiety problems stem from guilt and hidden anger. I don't get it! I can't even tell when I am angry. How do I figure this stuff out? I have taken the question test for hidden anger, I get it. But I don't get it when I am supposed to find things daily that make me angry. I don't see them. Any suggestions?? Thanks! Crispie

February 14, 2004
4:23 am
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free
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Reaching here. Is he speaking of triggers?

Things like smells, sounds, voices, faces, tones, colors, anything, that brings up old hurt?

I know that anger is really old hurt. Hurt that hasn't healed- just scabbed over.

Many people speak of anger in negative terms. Personally, I like my anger. It generates a great deal of energy. It has enabled me to "overcome"- to do things I wouldn't have been able to do. Sort of a "I'll show HIM just how helpless I am by becoming as successful as I so desire." that kind of thing.

I know anger can be a very destructive thing, too. Like an abusers anger. It has to be excruciatingly painful to lose wife after wife, family after family, court case after court case, and feel even more victimized and angry. And never see that it was all so unnecessary.

At one time I was terrified of anger. Terrified to ever let be a part of me. Terrified it would make me like him. Cruel, hateful, without compassion or remorse for inflicting nasty wounds on people, blind to the beauty in people and the world, deaf to the music of peace and harmony.

Anger, for me, was something to embrace. I'll never use it to hurt. It's not in me. But this, I had to learn, trust in, and come to believe.

Anger has become a part of me. I should be angry for things that have been done to me. And I am. For that reason, I've a quest to make this world a better place BECAUSE I'm in it, and BECAUSE of these things that have happened.

Anger is a natural human emotion. A good thing to learn about. Especially if it affects your daily relationships with people.

Anger bleeds out when left unrecognized. It wants you to know it is there. It wants you to feel it. Acknowledge it. Give it it's place in your being.

Give your anger it's place. Embrace it so that you can direct it, and in the process, heal the old wounds.

What could they be- those old wounds?

Probably abuse in one form or another. By family, by a stranger, by friends- surely by someone who betrayed or stole trust and/or innocence from you.

If I'm off the mark, please say so.

free

February 14, 2004
9:52 am
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Crispie
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Free-
I don't think my T was just talking about triggers, but anger itself. I cannot tell when I am angry, unless it is VERY ovious!
I never thought I had gotten angry in my whole life until I went thru treatment for drug and alcohol abuse when I was 26, I'm 41!! And I STILL don't see it or feel it. I just don't know how to feel if I am angry. I have stuffed it for SO LONG, being raised in a very crazy family, along with other abuses. But I don't want to blame them either. I want to move on. At first I was afraid to move on, I'm not now. But I still need to be able to see my anger and accept it. But I just can't see it to start with.
Your advice was very good, and I agree with it. I am just confused about finding it inside of me, because I can't seem to see or feel it, unless it is the real intense anger.
I don't know, maybe this is too confusing. But I just thought I would throw it out for any answers I could get. Thanks!!! Crispie

February 16, 2004
12:29 pm
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eve
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How connected are you to your body? I've been doing body work for some time now, and now sometimes I notice my anger because of what my body tells me. For example I realise that I crush my teeth or that the muscles in my neck get tense and my breath seems to be locked.

You could also try to look for things that angry people do (like shout, hit, break things, be mean, hurt yourself...) and look for situations when you fell like doing such things - you might find your anger there.

February 16, 2004
3:22 pm
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Pickles
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Oh yeh....
I'm just beginning my CoDa work (so alot to learn)...wondering (have to find out more at my next session later this week)...how it can be that I could have accomplished so much in my life, if I hadn't had so much subliminal anger.

Just this a.m., I was angry with someone on one of the committees that they went ahead and did something which I deemed 'unprofessional'...I shot off a semi-nasty email to her...with my usual 'mightier than thou' attitude. Afterwards, wanted to disconnect...walk away...the heck with them...they don't get it...at least I guess it's progress to recognize...now...the BIG question...how to translate this into CHANGE...when I'm still so angry. Hmmmm...much work to be done.

February 16, 2004
4:38 pm
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kmshull
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I've realized my "hidden anger" had a lot to do with my childhood. I wasn't allowed to have feelings unless they were "good feelings". My mom was very preoccupied with presenting an image - good marriage, good kids, etc. She was lucky; for the most part she did have a wonderful marriage and two good children. But I remember if I was ever unhappy or angry or confused or any other feeling than just being content, she didn't want to hear it. She would tell me I had no reason to feel that way. She found a letter one time when I was 16 in which I had poured out the hurt and anger I was feeling. I was depressed; I thought I wanted to die. She got ahold of it, read it, and proceeded to tell me I was ungrateful, that I had a wonderful family and didn't appreciate it, etc. Looking back, she obviously didn't know how to handle my feelings and probably took them personally. She never once talked to me in order to find out why I was hurting. When I was 20 and became pregnant, she was more concerned about how it would reflect upon her and gave me an ultimatum: get an abortion, or she would disown me. But in all of that, she never really wanted to know my feelings. I learned to supress my hurt and anger and pretend I didn't feel it. I didn't feel "allowed" to have those feelings. I look back and I don't blame my mom for the tremendous issues I am working on in my life today. I know she did the best job she could at the time. She was probably dealing with a lot of issues herself, trying to please her parents, trying to find ways to validate her own self-worth, etc. But, I know that I had "hidden anger" for years and it really was a result of me pushing down the feelings and not allowing myself to FEEL them. Additionally, I wasn't sure how to deal with them if I did feel them so it was easier to pretend that I didn't get angry. Is there anything in your past that might have caused you to push these feelings down to a point where you don't even know when you are angry?

February 16, 2004
11:36 pm
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Zinnie
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Pickles,

Perhaps by sending the semi-nasty e-mail to yourself first. Calming down then reading it. Seeing it how the other person might see it. That has helped me in the past.

Z.

February 17, 2004
1:31 am
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marley
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Crispie -

I am with eve on this. Your body does not know how to lie to you and your mind is addicted to making you believe things that are not always true. Try to feel in your body and tenseness or holding of breath - like she mentioned. It sounds strange but it works.

Marley

February 17, 2004
11:19 am
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HARRYO
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When anger becomes a conduit for
transferring your pain to another,
then it becomes dysfunctional and codependent.

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