A New Kind of Anger

Loving the ADHD devil – DAY 8

I have a problem with anger management, just like my father or many other ADHD brains in this world. I am using my anger less as a shield to protect myself and although this gives me a new kind of connection with the real me, it also gives me less control of the anger that does occur sometime.

It is a good thing that anger is no longer a part of my daily life, that I no longer hide the truth behind it and that I’m much more open and positive to myself. But now I start to notice how uncontrolled anger might be as harmful as the constant presence of this ugly emotion. Uncontrolled, sudden anger is much more extreme than the anger I used to create my shields. My new anger comes in sudden bursts and disappears quickly but the few seconds of extreme anger make me do things I regret straight afterwards.

When?

I notice that my anger is still connected to my emotions, it’s in a way still a cover-up but now in a different way. When I am trying to express my feelings to another person, when I’m honest and true, this new anger can suddenly appear. Mostly it occurs when an other person doesn’t understand, accept or agree with me and my feelings or when a conversation or my connection with my true self is suddenly interrupted.

I had a discussion with my boyfriend about his exes still being a part of his life. I decided to go on a bike ride before really starting the conversation, to connect to my true feelings about this topic. When I was approaching the conversation I was certain that I could explain my feelings to him and we could move on and understand each other.

I explained to my boyfriend how his exes made me feel like a parts of him are already for them. How I feel like he had found parts of a good relationship in them and how this made me feel like I would never be able to truly connect with him. How I felt like the presence of his exes wouldn’t allow me to know the complete him. How I felt like I got a false start, filling up the gaps they couldn’t fill but never get the whole him like they did.

My boyfriend however, didn’t agree at all. Exes are just like friends and every friend has a part of him I’ll never be able to connect with. Besides, we only know each other for 1 year and our relationship has only been real for 5 months, so of course he was more connected to his friends and exes he spent years with.

His reaction hurted me, I felt even more like a temporary gap-filler. But when I was about to express my pain to him, his boss called. After the second word of a sentence that came from my true but hidden self, he picked up and started his meeting.

What?

I got overwhelmed with anger at this moment. I started shaking, my heart beat went up and I couldn’t think properly anymore. The things I wanted to say where still there but I felt like the connection with my true feelings was quickly disappearing inside me. I wanted to hold on to the truth but I couldn’t express it and the anger became too strong. I tried to turn off the Wi-Fi to make him listen, to make me stay connected, but I knew his call was too important. Instead, I released my extreme amount of build-up anger by throwing my phone through the house, bouncing against walls and furniture, making me able to think clearly and go outside to calm myself down.

This is one example of my ager outbursts that have been occurring in the past 2 weeks. It’s a miracle my phone is still functioning since is has experienced too many collisions with hard surfaces. My doors are a victim of my anger as well, slamming them to release my anger has occurred many times as well.

Although my way of releasing anger seems quite harmless, I do scare myself and everyone around me with it. It shows how much out of control I am when it comes to anger, how strong my emotions are and that I have no way to function properly when they occur.

Why?

Why do I get so angry that I loose control and scare myself and the people I love? I’m afraid that is still has something to do with my shield of anger, especially since the anger occurs on my most honest moments. I’m afraid that I’m still not able to be open, that the anger is still my natural reaction and whenever I’m honest about my emotions, I’m still fighting against my shield.

I’m afraid that connecting to my real emotions is like digging in loose sand. As long as I keep digging I can create a kind of hole, but if I stop for even one second everything I created collapses immediately and I have to start all over again. It costs me a lot of energy to create a hole, to get to the truth, but once my connection collapses I lack the energy I need to gain any control and here comes my anger outburst as a reaction to a feeling of everything being completely uncontrollable.


after one night of sleep


Change

Not hiding behind my emotion of anger has become possible but is far from my natural or normal. I’m proud that I am able to connect to my true emotions but I have much more practise left before I can be free of anger completely. Yesterday I wondered if there was even a point in digging for the truth, if it wasn’t just a waist of energy to remove my anger since it often just comes back even stronger. But now I realize that connecting to my true self isn’t pointless. Many times I am able to express my true emotions without an anger outburst, more often than not it goes well when I connect to myself and this is more important than the few times it went wrong.

Anger has been my main struggle all my life, so it’s completely understandable that it doesn’t just disappear at once. The good thing is that my anger is changing, from a constant experience into a abrupt and overwhelming emotion. The time of my anger being present is decreasing, and I should celebrate this. I went from 100 % of anger to about 20-30 % in the past weeks. Besides, the anger is scaring me now, while it didn’t in the past when it was always there.

I will be able to gain control over my last bits of anger. I will find a way to be completely honest, without having to dig for it. I will get there in the end. Anger-management is a common struggle in ADHD brains and sudden anger is a completely new emotion for me, which makes it normal that I don’t know how to deal with it yet, but I will. At least my new version of anger creates a struggle that is kind of normal in ADHD, it is an emotion that is well understood and researched, so finding a way out is definitely possible. I have improved and I will keep improving, I am getting closer.

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