what i've learned along the way
what ticks you off?
Published on March 23, 2004 By lobsterhunter In Personal Relationships
I went to an Al-anon meeting last night, and the topic was anger. It was interesting to hear all the stories about how people choose to deal with the frustrations of life. Near the end of the sharing time, I felt the need to impart a bit of wisdom I had learned during college, so I opened my mouth, and what came out surprised even me.

I intended to talk about how there are two types of people in the world; pouters or shouters. A few years back a local pastor did a serious of sermons on controlling anger. One of the most profound things he shared was the fact that no one can make you mad. Ultimately we choose our emotions, although circumstances and situations may trigger them.

About midway through my commentary I realized I was talking about my experience growing up with both a pouter and a shouter. My grandfather's alcoholic rages terrified me, and I remember all too well the shattered glass and stinging hatred that would spew from within him. I cannot begin to articulate how absolutely frightened I was of his outburst, and until yesterday, I didn't realize the impact of these memories. My grandmother was more of a suppressor. Rarely did she express resentful feelings, although she certainly had reasons to be pissed off. She was a master at pretending, and I'm not even sure she dealt with sideways anger. I only remember two specific occasions when she erupted like a dormant volcano spewing over anything and everything in her path.

This is how anger was dealt with in my home, and I had never paused long enough to weigh the effects and consequences of my reality. Today I got a chance to look it sqaure in the face, and I'm pretty certain I became my grandmother. I have always known I was a "pouter", but I was unaware of my keen abilities to supress my feelings. Somedays I feel like shouting, but something inside screams "No!" It's too scary.

I know that just like everything else, there is a balance between these two extremes. I'm just glad I now know it is ok to feel the emotion, and move forward. Anger writing seems to be productive for me. So many times, just releasing the thoughts is theraputic. I have a lot of work to do in this area, and I'm pretty sure there are some deep rooted resentments and bitterness I will have to address at some point. Many of them are going to have to be dealt with in the not so distant future. I'd like to stick my head in the sand, but I'm learning the problem only gets bigger.

Guess I better get crackin'

Comments
on Mar 23, 2004
you and Trin are the only people I know who say the "grr fist" thing. Good post.

~Dan
on Mar 23, 2004
Bet you thought this wuz and Trin article huh Dan?

Trinitie
on Mar 29, 2004
I love you Tenille.

Trinitie
on Apr 05, 2004
Geez, Tenille. would you write another frick'n blog so I can be supportive? hehe

Trinitie
on Apr 05, 2004
lol Trin

~Dan
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