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wundayatta's avatar

When pain leads to anger, how have you responded?

Asked by wundayatta (58638points) November 11th, 2009

A lot of times, it seems to me, deep pain, especially emotional pain, leads to great anger. Some people drink and brood. Others might try to bury the pain with drugs. What have you done? A passive-aggressive slow burn? Or did you lash out and slam the object of you anger as hard as you could?

Based on your experience, what do you think is the healthiest way to handle this anger? Let it all out? That hurts you as much as anyone else. So what? They say time heals all wounds, but anger?

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11 Answers

JLeslie's avatar

Anger lessons with time also. Anger usually stems from emotional pain in my experience. If you are angry at someone I think many times being able to talk to them and understand their motives or perspective can be very helpful, unless that person truly has malicious intent. When we put ourselves in the other persons shoes and are able to step outside of our own minds we can empathasize more with the other person and this lessons the anger. When the other person will not participate in a conversation I get very frustrated and dwell on the anger and sadness longer than I probably should. I never drink or use drugs to deal with it. I’ve never thrown something across a room. I do turn to friends and talk their ear off, and spend some time crying.

shrubbery's avatar

When I was in the most emotional pain I have felt in my life so far, I did get angry, and I got violent. Not towards anyone else, I was home alone at the time, but I wouldn’t have anyway. It was more of an “I want to hurt myself to make this other pain seem less” but still not in a “I want to slit my wrists” kind of way either. It was kind of just having the biggest urge to punch a wall, or smash my fist through a glass door or window for the hell of it. Luckily I didn’t, but I did thrash out and kick. I kicked my desk, and a wooden ornament fell next to me. I picked it up and threw it as hard as I could without thinking or looking where I threw it. It went through a pane of glass in a sliding door. That knocked me back to my senses, and I rang my dad to come home, because I was crying too hard to clean it up.
After that release of anger I still didn’t feel much better about the emotional pain but I didn’t want to punch anything or hurt myself after that.
I think it’s ok to get angry sometimes, if its a release or something to knock you back to your senses, as long as you don’t take it out on anyone or become violent towards yourself or another person, but leave it at inanimate objects (just as long as its not your grandma’s antique china set or something :P )
And about the time healing all wounds thing… well… it’s healed my emotional pain, but I sometimes still feel angry about what happened. Not to anything like the degree I did at the time, but it makes me shake my head and grit my teeth if something makes me think about it again.

OutOfTheBlue's avatar

Drugs used to be my choice, or liquor, but that was years ago, anymore i do not let my self get angered, it’s a complete waste of time.

rooeytoo's avatar

For me repressed anger equals depression and resentment. So I usually let it out with a whoosh. But that can sometimes cause more problems than it cures. So now I am learning to pick my battles and when it is a battle not worth the chancing getting wounded or wounding someone else, I am learning to just go with the flow. You know that line, accept the things I cannot change!

gemiwing's avatar

I did it all. Alcohol, drugs, sex, fighting.. it didn’t matter as long as I could stop feeling the pain. Worked during the anger high- not so much afterward.

The only way to stop the anger is to heal the pain. Anything else is just filling a pothole.

aprilsimnel's avatar

I’d handle my anger by getting depressed. I was in no way capable of striking back at the object of my anger and it would have been extremely dangerous for me to do so then. My very existence would have been at stake. As they say, depression is anger turned inward and I was depressed for more years than I like thinking about.

It lifted gradually when I was old enough to have more agency in my life, and in small steps, I was able to tell that person that I knew what they’d done, even though they were trying to “gaslight” me; that I wasn’t going to put up with it anymore and I wasn’t going to talk to them anymore.

I did feel guilty about that for a while, but I’ve come to realize that if something or someone is upsetting me, I have to ask myself why and deal with that “why”.

In my case, I was not being treated with any respect for my self or my person and my anger was a catalyst to think about how I was being treated and to foster enough self-respect to remove myself from the situation, despite being taught that my job was to be loyal to the closed system and obey.

If it turns out a person’s angry because they aren’t getting their way, well, one isn’t always going to get their way. Sometimes, expectations need adjusting, and as @rooeytoo says, one has to know when to accept what can’t be changed.

filmfann's avatar

When I had a tooth pulled, my normally gentle sense of humor became quite brutal, and I insulted a good friend, which I immediately regretted.

mattbrowne's avatar

Talk to a person I trust.

J0E's avatar

By going to the Darkside.

hungryhungryhortence's avatar

Not very well. I usually get away by myself, enrage even further and/or panic then reach out to a person I feel will soothe or patience out my chaos. Fortunately, I cool down pretty quickly these days. When I was younger then I go off by myself, medicate and then drink until I could pass out in order to get to the next day where I knew (usually) I would feel differently if not a bit better but as I’ve aged that only frustrated me, escapism only embittered me. Since I didn’t want to deal with self loathing, I decided to try as quickly as possible to nip the anger in the bud, apologize for any drama and try really hard to admit what I need or want and then suffer out the rest, be it insomnia, rejection, helplessness, frustration, etc. Anymore I don’t want to numb myself but would rather confront myself and get on with finding the good bits of my hours.

nebule's avatar

I threw
I drew
I cried
and dried
my eyes
I stabbed,
wrote
notes and notes

I scribbled and tore
threw myself on the floor
ripped angry hair out
and screamed out loud

I sit in silence and close my eyes
turn off lights and feel it rise
I let it thud and hit that place
I moan, whimper and weep through unsafe space

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