Anger as an internal trigger

A

AveryL

As I move forward in therapy and let some of my repressed emotions come out, I am beginning to realize I don’t really know how to feel anger, let alone express it. When I feel anger, I immediately hate myself for feeling it, and tell myself I don’t deserve to feel upset towards anyone or anything. These feelings are mostly centered around my relationship with my mother, who told me time and again that I shouldn’t ever protest or get upset about her behavior because it could have been worse (usually referring to the abuse she endured as a child from her own mother). I am struggling to avoid falling into a flashback shame spiral as a response to my own emotions. Sometimes it feels impossible to separate feelings of anger and feelings of shame because they are so connected in my mind. I try to make progress by fully feeling my emotions but it is creating more problems when I do.
 

Friday

Moderator
When I feel anger, I immediately hate myself for feeling it,
My son reeeelly struggled with this one, for years... and you could SEE it happening between one heartbeat and the next.

He painted all anger the same, which then painted himself the same, as his abusive f*cktard asshole father (whom he also loved, complicating things further).

What he had to do was to get eyeballs deep into situations where anger was not only the correct response, but also praised/encouraged by a huge number of people (that he both liked AND disliked), and strictly defined. ((For himself, that was politics & contact sports.)) So he not only had people THRILLED he was angry, and actively wanting him to be MORE angry... the externals balancing out the internals... but also guidelines were right out in the open. Allowing him to really play around with what levels of anger (feeling & showing) he was comfortable with. Zip zero nada zilch none in the beginning to waaaaaay more than he would ever be okay with now, until he found his own working zone. Until he was himself when angry, and okay with himself, and with his anger.

He still gets triggered occasionally (once this year, twice last year, that I know of) and he’s still super sensitive to both other people’s anger and other people’s hurt... but it’s a process.

It’s a totally different thing than my own anger/dysreg issues, so it’s needed some different solutions.
 

enough

MyPTSD Pro
@Averyt
Anger is a tough road to follow. I never know where it takes me and I get the feeling of a loss of dignity and self respect when I go down that path too. Same reasons more or less. My father was an angry man that kept a strong cap on it, I guess he wanted to make my cap just as strong as his but all he did was make it hard to feel justified anger without also feeling like the whip was going to come down at any second. His cap didn't protect me from the wrath within and I saw it plenty, he had anger that I was the captive recipient of. Asshole.

It is a balancing act between not acting on what I should act on because I dont want to be seen as angry, and screw it all I am pissed and I don't care who sees it.

Regulation is the trick. I am trying to see myself as a dog that has been beaten for fighting. He may seem to cower when faced with a fight, but there is still fight in the dog and everyone better lookout if he gets cornered.

I would rather have a big dog attitude: don't bark at everything, dont come off the porch unless necessary, and enjoy the fruits of having made every trip down the steps worthwhile- everyone listens to the first words said because they are said to AVOID the anger that everyone would rather not see.

I know that no one ever walked away the outright winner of an actual fight, and anger brings collateral damage when it fogs judgment. The best outcomes of a conflict come from reasonable debates but we are lacking that in our society these days. Collaboration might be the opposite of conflict, but sadly anger's opposite is probably apathy and in order to stir our society up from apathy, anger seems to do the trick. Anger is invoked quite easily it seems.

I wish I had a better handle on my anger going forward. This is a good time to be a large dog on his own porch, that doesn't even have to growl to get the point across.
 
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